The Weekly Briefing


The Western Association of Broadcasters held its 2019 WAB Gold Medal Awards Gala Thursday evening at the Fairmont Banff Springs. Hosted by Global Calgary’s Linda Olsen, the awards celebrated the best in Prairie broadcasting. The evening was highlighted by presentations to 2019 WAB Hall of Fame Inductees Boyd Kozak and Bob Ridley. Stingray’s Jenn Dalen was also presented with the WAB Leader of Tomorrow Award. Find the full list of honourees here.

The Western Association of Broadcasters (WAB) celebrated the 85th edition of its annual conference at the Fairmont Banff Springs last week. John Vos, WAB President, and Glenn Ruskin, WAB Vice-President, took time to acknowledge some of the instrumental figures in the association’s history. Gord Rawlinson began attending the WAB Conference before he officially joined Rawlco Radio in 1969. He has since attended more than 50 consecutive WAB Conferences. At the 50th WAB Conference, back in 1984, Rawlinson’s father Ed Rawlinson received a Perfect Attendance Award for 38 years of continuous WAB attendance. Since 1958, Golden West Broadcasting CEO Elmer Hildebrand has missed just one conference. 2019 marked the 60th WAB Conference that Hildebrand has attended.

PPM ratings for Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto and Montreal are out covering the 13-week period from Feb. 25, 2019 to May 26, 2019. Read David Bray’s full analysis here.

Toronto: Bragging rights at the top of the ratings heap go to CBC Radio One delivering a 13.3% share for A12+ (up from 12.3%). CHUM-FM trades places with CHFI-FM grabbing the #1 spot with women 25-54 delivering a 17.7% share (up from 13.6%).  BOOM-FM holds the #1 spot for males 25-54, posting an 11.1% share (down from 12.6 % in the last 13-week book). CHUM-FM leads the way for M18-34 with an 11.6% share. For F18-34, CHUM-FM leads, posting a 14.7% followed closely by CHFI-FM at 14.6%.

Vancouver: CBC Radio One grabs the #1 spot for A12+ with a 17.0% share of hours tuned (up from 14.0%). Taking the top spot for F25-54 was QM-FM, posting an 18.6% share (up from 21.9% last time out). CBC Radio One grabs the lead for M25-54 listeners, delivering a 13.0% share followed by CFOX at 11.9%. The FOX is well out in front for M18-34 with a 16.6 % share of hrs. tuned (down from 17.3%). When it comes to females 18-34, oddly enough, Rock 101 takes top spot posting a 14.3 % share.

Edmonton: NOW! Radio takes #1 with A12+, posting a 9.2% share of hours tuned (down from 9.6%). NOW! takes also top spot for F25-54, delivering a 20.0% share (down from 20.9 %). CRUZ-FM tops the list for M25-54 with a 10.5 % share (up from 10.3%). For M18-34, NOW leads the way posting a 12.5%. NOW also led with F18-34 delivering a 19.0%.

Calgary: CBC Radio One leads the way for A12+ with a 9.4% (up from 8.1 % last time out).  95.9 CHFM is popular with female listeners, taking #1 spot for F25-54 delivering an 8.9% share (down from 9.5%).  For M25-54, X92.9 is #1 with a 10.1% (down from 10.9%). CKCE-FM takes top spot for M18-34 delivering 9.7%. Wild 95.3 steps up and out front) for F18-34 posting a 13.1% share.

Montreal: CHMP 98.5FM is #1 for A12+ (Franco) with a 17.3% share (down from 18.9%).  For A12+ (Anglo) CJAD 800 is #1 with a 26.7% (down from 27.1%). CITE-FM is tops with women, taking #1 spot for F25-54 (Franco) delivering a 23.2% share (up from 25.4%). For F25-54 (Anglo) The Beat 92.5 is #1 with a 32.5% share (up from 30.0). For M25-54 (Franco), CHMP 98.5FM is on top at 15.5% share (down from 16.2 %).  For M25-54 (Anglo), CHOM-FM is #1 at 19.1% (up from 18.3%).

Vista Radio has launched 98.1 2day FM (CKBD-FM) Lethbridge, playing a customized playlist of hits that cross musical genres from the likes of AC/DC, Bon Jovi, Ed Sheeran, Queen, Taylor Swift and Imagine Dragons. CKBD had been branded as 98.1 The Bridge since September 2014 following its acquisition by Clear Sky Radio. It initially played modern rock before switching to a modern adult contemporary format in 2017. Vista acquired the Clear Sky Radio stations late last year. The company says after conducting extensive research in the Lethbridge market, “it set out on a journey to design an innovative new sound that centers around many different styles of music and concentrates on being a truly local radio station. The station will also expand its local news coverage with more newscasts, in addition to content on local news portal Vista has also rebranded its other Lethbridge station. Classic Hits CJOC will be known as 94.1 Juice FM.

The CRTC has approved South Fraser Broadcasting’s purchase of the former Roundhouse Radio (CIRH-FM) Vancouver licence, but has denied its requests for exemptions to its CanCon requirements or its ask to be exempt from tangible benefits. Roundhouse Radio, which operated as a unique urban talk format under the leadership of rock radio veteran Don Shafer, went dark in May 2018 after being on-air for about two and half years. Heard at 98.3 FM and with its studios located in Railtown on Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, the station had an ERP of 1.7 kilowatts. South Fraser, which operates Pulse 107.7 FM (CISF-FM) Surrey, had asked that it be allowed to delete the station’s condition of licence requiring it to devote a minimum of 50% of its musical selections from content category 3 (Special Interest Music) to Canadian selections. It also proposed reducing the requirement to devote a minimum of 50% of its musical selections from content category 2 (Popular Music) to Canadian selections to a minimum of 40%. In addition to denying that exemption, the commission says South Fraser will be on the hook for CIRH-FM’s outstanding Canadian Content Development (CCD) contributions. Roundhouse shareholders applied to the CRTC last November to sell to South Fraser for $600,000. It’s unclear if the exemption denials will hinder the deal. Read more here.

The CRTC has concluded that the North Bay, ON market can sustain another commercial radio station. Vista Radio, which already operates CFXN-FM in the market, has expressed interest in starting a new station which would bring the number of commercial stations serving the area to five, including Rogers stations CHUR-FM, CKFX-FM and CKAT. The market is also served by Christian music station CJTK-FM-1 (Harvest Ministries Sudbury), as well as a transmitter that rebroadcasts the programming of CBC Sudbury.

Rawlco Radio CEO Gordon Rawlinson and his wife Jill will receive honorary Doctor of Laws degrees at the University of Regina spring convocation on Friday. The Rawlinsons are being recognized for their widespread philanthropy, supporting a variety of causes over the years through their Lily Street Foundation. Those causes include St. Paul’s Hospital in Saskatoon, Victoria Hospital in Prince Albert and Saskatchewan Hospital in North Battleford. They also support a financial aid program for aboriginal business students at the Edwards School of Business in Saskatoon; the U of R School of Journalism; Saskatoon’s Remai Gallery; the E.A. Rawlinson Centre for the Arts in Prince Albert, and the Persephone Theatre in Saskatoon, among many other charitable endeavours.

Robert Huish

Dalhousie University’s International Development Studies program has introduced two summer courses via podcast for the first time that’s resulted in an enrollment boost over the traditional offering of the same courses. The summer version of Introduction to International Development, like many summer courses, has traditionally been taught using Dalhousie University’s web-based video platform. Requiring a lot of independent reading and with little direct engagement, Associate Professor Robert Huish started thinking about how to make the course environment more responsive to allow students the best chance at success without watering down the subject material. The same in-class curriculum offered throughout the year has been translated into three podcasts using the Panopto app, a video content solution which allows users to marry slides and photographs to audio. The first podcast series talks about core issues in the field of international development; the second interviews experts on the issues; and the third talks about how those issues are used in research or journalism. Read our feature story here.

Spotify has announced that it’s bringing back its Sound Up accelerator program aimed at bringing more diverse voices into the podcasting world. Sound Up helps applicants take their ideas to pilot production, covering technical challenges, storytelling through audio, and marketing. At the end of the week, participants pitch for a chance to win $5,000 and the opportunity to have up to five episodes produced, while retaining the IP to their podcast idea.

She Podcasts Live, a conference aimed at female podcasters, is happening Oct. 11-13 in Atlanta. She Podcasts began in 2014 as a small Facebook group for women seeking podcasting answers, tips and resources. That network has since grown to almost 12,000 women with its supporting podcast, hosted by Elsie Escobar and Jessica Kupferman, boasting 5,000 downloads per month.

On the latest Broadcast Dialogue – The Podcast, if you weren’t at the recent 2019 Canadian Music & Broadcast Industry Awards, among this year’s Hall of Fame inductees were longtime CJAY92 Calgary morning man Gerry Forbes, coast to coast rock radio legend Brother Jake Edwards – who currently helms mornings at TSN 1040 Vancouver, and legendary CKOI-FM Montreal music director Guy Brouillard. We’ve compiled some highlights from the evening and be warned…you will hear LANGUAGE NOT SUITABLE FOR ALL LISTENERS.


Nonnie Griffin

Nonnie Griffin, 85, on June 7 in Toronto, of an aortic aneurysm. Griffin studied voice, speech and drama at the Royal Conservatory of Music, taking to the stage at the Red Barn Theatre in Jackon’s Point, ON at age 16. She’d go on to study with the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London and mime artist Marcel Marceau. By the 1950s, Griffin was a staple on CBC Radio, appearing on Canadian Short Stories and Ideas. On TV, she appeared as Diana Barry in the original televised production of Anne of Green Gables in 1956. Other TV credits include lending her voice to animated series like The Care Bears and Racoons, in addition to guest appearances on shows like Bizarre, King of Kensington, Forever Knight and Kung Fu: The Legend Continues. She also appeared in feature films The Believers, The Abduction, Good Fences, A Husband, a Wife and a Lover and If You Could See What I Hear. Later in life, Griffin began writing her own parts, performing as six different characters in “Sister Annunciata’s Secret”, which had a run at the 2012 Edinburgh Festival Fringe and the Hamilton Fringe Festival. She also staged “Marilyn – After” in 2014, a one-woman show imagining what Marilyn Monroe’s life might have been 50 years after her death. It played at the SpringWorks Festival in Stratford and went on to win Best International Show at the 2015 United Solo Theatre Festival in New York City. Griffin was planning a return to the stage this month in “Before Scarlett”, in which she would have portrayed Gone With the Wind author Margaret Mitchell.

Hunsdeep Rangar

Hunsdeep Rangar, 43, suddenly of heart failure, on June 7. Rangar was 11 when his family moved to Canada, landing in Mississauga and Montreal before settling in Ottawa. Rangar developed a passion for Ottawa and sharing South Asian culture. In addition to organizing marquee socio-cultural events like Ottawa’s annual South Asian Fest, Rangar was host of the Mirch Masala and Bhangra Nation programs on multicultural radio station CHIN 97.9 FM.


TVA Group has eliminated 68 positions, saying deep budget cuts are necessary in order to reduce operating expenses. The Quebecor-owned French-language network said in a release that “numerous unfair practices that have been undermining the television industry for years” are to blame for its financial position. President and CEO France Lauzière is calling for a rebalancing of subscription fees for specialty channels on the basis of quantifiable, measurable criteria, rather than historical rates – the argument at the crux of the network’s carriage dispute with Bell Media. Lauzière also says CBC/Radio-Canada’s mandate should be refocused to make its programming complementary to that of the private broadcasters. “In tapping multiple new revenue streams such as TOU.TV EXTRA, and forming distribution partnerships with other broadcasters, the public broadcaster is competing directly with private companies, without even contributing to the Canada Media Fund, thereby bypassing current regulations,” says Lauziere in a release. Among other measures called for are regulation and taxation of online giants such as Google, Facebook, and Netflix.

The Banff World Media Festival kicked off with a major federal funding announcement aimed at empowering women in business, and in particular female entrepreneurs in the screen industries. The Women Entrepreneurship Strategy is a $2-billion investment that aims to double the number of women-owned businesses by 2025. The announcement includes an investment of nearly $2 million in the Banff Television Festival Foundation to deliver the Banff Accelerator for Women in the Business of Media. The accelerator helps women entrepreneurs build and grow their own business within the screen-based industries. The program is expected to connect 200 women with networking, matchmaking, or mentorship opportunities and help at least 50 participants grow their businesses. It will support 16 women as they start a business.

CBC/Radio-Canada has pledged to ensure by 2025 that at least one of the key creative positions (producer, director, writer, showrunner or lead performer) on its English and French-language commissioned programs is held by a person from a diverse background, including visible minorities, Indigenous peoples, persons with disabilities and members of the LGBTQ2+ community. The public broadcaster announced the commitment at the Banff World Media Festival in the context of its new strategic plan “Your Stories Taken to Heart” which prioritizes giving underrepresented Canadians greater opportunity to build their skills, experience and relationships in the film and television industry. In areas where the diverse talent pool may be lacking, CBC says it will expect a commitment from independent producers to mentor or train a diverse person in one of the key creative roles of a greenlit production. CBC surpassed its goal of gender parity across its commissioned programs this year, with 62% of its original English and French shows female-led with a woman in a key creative role. Read more here.

CBC and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) have  announced a creative and commercial collaboration that will enhance the reach and impact of their content across both countries. The two national public broadcasters have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to co-develop English-language drama, comedy, factual, children’s and podcast content to maximize the value of their public funding. The three-year MOU will also provide further opportunities for co-financing and format sales of drama and children’s content. This builds on an existing relationship that includes CBC’s acquisition of the broadcast rights to ABC programs Ronny Chieng: International Student, Mustangs FC, Hannah Gadsby’s Nakedy Nudes, Hannah Gadsby’s Oz and the format rights to ABC original series You Can’t Ask That. CBC’s Canadian version of the award-winning format launches on CBC Gem in June. The broadcasters also have a history of sharing audio content such as CBC Podcasts’ Alone: A Love Story and Someone Knows Something and ABC podcasts Trace and Ladies, We Need To Talk, and ABC RN programs All in the Mind and Off Track and CBC Radio’s Ideas and Out In The Open.

Netflix and the Alliance des producteurs francophones du Canada (APFC) are partnering with Telefilm Canada and the Canada Media Fund to launch the first-ever Professional Development Program in Film and Television for francophone producers and creators in minority communities across Canada. The internship program will allow Canadian francophone scriptwriters, directors, and producers to benefit from support to develop original work representative of the country’s diversity. Netflix and Telefilm will invest $150,000 in the first year, with the Canada Media Fund allocating $50,000 in the same period. More than 50 feature film and series scripts with international potential will be available for submission to the production stage by 2022.

Netflix has announced partnership programs with imagineNATIVE, the Indigenous Screen Office (ISO) and Wapikoni Mobile to develop the next generation of Indigenous creators. The programs range from screenwriting intensives to apprenticeship programs, joining 11 existing partnership programs Netflix has funded to nurture Canadian creators from underrepresented communities. The Netflix-imagineNATIVE partnership will support Indigenous filmmakers with professional development through its Indigenous Screenwriting Intensive; ‘imagineNATIVE Originals’ Mentorship Commissions; and Original Storytellers Series Incubator, among other programming. The ISO-Netflix Production Mentorship and Apprenticeship Program will provide second phase support for Indigenous projects that may have received development support through other programs. It will include Key Creative Apprenticeships and Cultural Mentorships for directors, producers, screenwriters and showrunners. The Wapikoni Mobile development experience will help structure a program of continuing education and professional coaching.

The Banff World Media Festival has handed out its annual Rockie Awards with Baroness von Sketch Show picking up two awards in the International Program Competition. The Frantic Films-produced sketch comedy show won the $25,000 Rogers Prize for Excellence in Canadian Content, in addition to Best Comedy or Variety Program. At Tuesday’s Gala, Lifetime doc Surviving R. Kelly was awarded Program of the Year, while HBO miniseries Sharp Objects was the winner of the Grand Jury Prize. Previously-announced honourees included Paul Feig, creator of the hit series Freaks and Geeks and director of Bridesmaids; British screenwriter Jed Mercurio (Bodyguard, Line of Duty) was named Showrunner of the Year, while Kristin Kreuk (Burden of Truth, EuroTrip, Smallville) was given the Canadian Award of Distinction. Drew and Jonathan Scott (Property Brothers) were awarded the Innovative Producer Award.

Rogers has announced that its cloud-based IPTV service Ignite TV is now available across Newfoundland, following its initial rollout in Ontario last June. Featuring a Voice Remote that allows customers to search for shows or channels using voice recognition technology, Ignite TV brings together content across Live TV, On Demand, recordings and Netflix. It also includes a personalized SportsApp that allows users to watch live games while tracking scores from another game at the same time, and an interactive and PIN-protected KidsZone.

CTV says its suite of rebranded specialty channels – CTV Comedy Channel, CTV Sci-Fi Channel, CTV Drama Channel, and CTV Life Channel – will debut on Sept.12. As previously announced, the new brands are the next evolution of The Comedy Network, Space, Bravo, and Gusto, respectively. CTV Comedy Channel’s new slate of series includes Kevin Hart’s sports interview series Cold As Balls and the revival of Mad About You with Paul Reiser and Helen Hunt. CTV Sci-Fi has acquired Resident Alien, based on the comic book series, starring Alan Tudyk (DOOM PATROL, Rogue One); STAR TREK: PICARD, starring Sir Patrick Stewart; and anthology series Castle Rock. CTV Drama has landed thriller Gold Digger, starring Julia Ormond and Ben Barnes; and mystery crime drama The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair, starring Patrick Dempsey. CTV Life Channel will feature new Jamie Oliver series Jamie’s Ultimate Veg, Martha and Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party, Bonacini’s Italy and Where To I Do.  

CTV and NBCUniversal International Studios, together with Montréal-based producer Sphère Média Plus, have announced that production is underway on Transplant. The new drama tells the story of an ER doctor who fled his native Syria to come to Canada, where he must overcome numerous obstacles to resume a career in emergency medicine. The first 13 one-hour episodes will continue to shoot through November. As announced last week as part of #CTVUpfront, the new series stars Hamza Haq (Quantico); Laurence Leboeuf (19-2); and John Hannah (Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.). Transplant was developed at CTV and is set to premiere during the 2019/20 broadcast season. It will also air on VRAK in a translated French version.

Nelvana has a new partnership with the Line Friends brand, originally created as stickers for mobile messenger application Line. The partnership will see the development and co-production of a kids animated television series (52 x 11-minutes), to be globally distributed by Nelvana (excluding Korea, Taiwan, Russia and CIS). Nelvana will also be the Canadian partner of Line Friends’ Brown & Friends brand for millennials.

Mike Holmes Jr. and Mike Holmes

Mike Holmes has a development and production deal with Bell Media that will see new original television series Holmes Family Rescue debut in Summer 2020. Described as “inspirational”, the series sees Holmes team up with his children Mike Jr. and Sherry to help transform the lives of homeowners.

CTV has struck a brand and content agreement with Harlequin Studios, the newly-established production shingle owned by Harlequin. The deal will see CTV commission more than 20 made-for-TV films, drawing on content from the Harlequin romance catalogue, for the newly-rebranded CTV Drama Channel. The initial commitment represents more than 40 hours of new Canadian content with the movies set to debut in a Harlequin-branded program block. The first film has a planned Canadian premiere in Q4 2019 on CTV Drama as well as Bell Media’s VRAK French-language specialty channel.

TSN’s summer soccer schedule includes 150 games across competitions that include the FIFA Women’s World Cup of France 2019, MLS ON TSN, the 2019 CONCACAF Gold Cup, the 2019 COPA America, and the UEFA EURO 2020 qualifiers. Find full broadcast schedules here.

Lisa Haley

APTN has brought back youth hockey series Hit The Ice back for a seventh season. The 13-episode series, which returned to the network this week, features female Indigenous hockey hopefuls from communities across the country as they are put through the paces of a real NHL style training camp, led by Sochi Gold Medal winning coach Lisa Haley. Hit The Ice is also broadcast in Cree.

APTN will air National Idigenous Day celebrations live and on location from Winnipeg, Whitehorse and Calgary on June 22. Terri Clark, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Randy Bachman, Blue Rodeo, Crystal Shawanda, Julian Taylor Band, Diyet & the Love Soldiers, The Jerry Cans and Leela Gilday are just some of the artists in this year’s lineup. The four-and-a-half hour concert will be broadcast live from 8 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. ET on APTN, with the livestream online at and partnering Indigenous radio stations. A special emerging artist pre-show from each host city will also be live-streamed online ahead of the live broadcast.

AMI-tv eight-part docuseries You Can’t Ask That debuts June 20. The series, from Pixcom Productions, confronts prejudices and breaks down societal taboos with Canadians with disabilities – from wheelchair users to those with neurological conditions – reading and candidly answering questions from the public. The English-language version of You Can’t Ask That follows the French-language Ça ne se demande pas, which premiered on AMI-télé this past winter. The series can be watched post-broadcast on demand at or the AMI-tv App.

Thunderbird Entertainment Group is launching a new International Division to be based in the UK. The new division aims to establish partnerships with production companies to develop Thunderbird’s intellectual property (IP) and grow in key international territories. Ed Sayer, who most recently served as head of Original Commissioning at Discovery International, will lead the new division. As part of its official launch, Thunderbird has announced its first UK factual partnership with Endemol Shine Group’s Workerbee. Under the terms of the deal, Workerbee will be a co-producer on the ground in the UK, pitching and producing Thunderbird projects for UK platforms.

DHX Media has received an unsolicited merger proposal from Indian company Sakthi Global Holdings. Indian news reports indicate DHX shareholders are being offered $5.32 per share upon completion of the proposed merger, comprised of $1.32 per share in cash and $4 in common stock. Sakthi Global would emerge as the majority owner. The merger is contingent on 80 per cent of DHX Media shareholders voting to accept the offer.

Shaftesbury’s technology and VR division is currently working in collaboration with Canadian pediatric healthcare professionals and researchers to investigate the use of immersive media to relieve stress experienced by children undergoing medical procedures and surgery. Holland Bloorview’s research institute and Scarborough Health Network (SHN) are currently testing the benefits of augmented and virtual reality (AR and VR) using a unique game engine, featuring Shaftesbury’s original content, to lower stress in kids ages 8 – 15 in clinical settings. SHN’s trial is focused on Positive Distraction Therapy for perioperative stress relief with a test group of 120 children. Holland Bloorview has conducted a research study (under review for publication) to examine the usability and safety of VR technologies for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Susan Hay

Global News anchor/producer Susan Hay is celebrating 30 years with the network. Hay began her career at MCTV in Sudbury as a weather anchor, host and producer, eventually moving over to CBC as a weather anchor and entertainment reporter. In May 1989, she joined Global TV, anchoring daily regional and national forecasts on Global’s evening and late-night newscasts. During her tenure, Hay has covered everything from weather, news, and special events and currently produces and hosts the Making a Difference segment profiling inspirational people and organizations throughout the GTA. Hailing from North Bay, Hay is a member of the Canadore College Alumni Hall of Fame, as well as a member of the North Bay Kiwanis Walk of Fame.


Corus has announced a partnership with edgy American digital brand Complex, which is behind hit web series Hot Ones and Sneaker Shopping. Complex Networks, one of the top youth culture brands in the U.S. with the male 18-24 demo, boasts more than 750 million monthly views, and is best known for its slickly edited, au courant content featuring hip hop stars like Gucci Mane, Wiz Khalifa, and Lil Pump, in addition to celebrities ranging from Saturday Night Live cast member Pete Davidson to actress Scarlett Johansson. Corus will serve as the exclusive ad sales partner for Complex Networks in Canada and will license content from the networks’ library to be distributed on both linear platforms and on demand. Beginning this fall, Hot Ones – which pits celebrities against the spiciest of hot wings – will get a one-hour block on Global TV following SNL. Corus will also bring Sneaker Shopping to its digital and social channels. Kin, the digital lifestyle brand acquired by Corus earlier this year, is also expanding its offerings with the launch of “its new male vertical.” Joining the stable of Kin creators are Canadian country crooner Brett Kissel, musician SonReal, Filipino-Canadian singer and comedian Mikey Bustos, web star Gunnarolla (Andrew Gunadie), vegan pro athlete and Winnipeg Blue Bomber John Rush, Toronto stylist Harjas Singh (Styled by Harj), tattoo artist SLEESTAK, Toronto-based comic book writer and artist Cameron Stewart, and Vancouver fashion and lifestyle influencer Dejan’s Day Off. Read more here.

CBC Sports and the Canadian Elite Basketball League (CEBL) has announced a partnership that will see live streams of the remaining 39 games of the inaugural season, as well as the CEBL 2019 Championship Weekend, Aug. 22-25, available on CBC Sports platforms and the CBC Gem streaming service. The CEBL includes six teams – the Fraser Valley Bandits, Edmonton Stingers, Saskatchewan Rattlers, Guelph Nighthawks, Hamilton Honey Badgers, and Niagara River Lions – featuring top Canadian players as well as international talent. For the full schedule of games that will stream across CBC Sports platforms, click here.

Facebook has launched new ad transparency tools in Canada ahead of the federal election, in an effort to help combat foreign interference. Those tools include the launch of an authorizations process for advertisers in Canada as well as an Ad Library and API. Anyone who wants to run ads about social issues, elections or politics will need to first confirm their identity and location in Canada, and disclose who is responsible for the ad. Identity verification will include two-factor authentication for accounts; valid, Canadian Government-issued ID; and location verification through a postal mailed verification code. More information about the process can be found here.


The CRTC has announced that Northwestel has agreed to spend $5 million to upgrade its network infrastructure after contravention of the Telecommunications Act. Over a period of seven years, Northwestel failed to obtain the CRTC’s approval for rates it charged for nine of its services and brought the non-compliance to the commission’s attention. Commission staff and Northwestel reached a settlement that directs investment to benefit the northern communities Northwestel serves. Specifically, $3 million to bring fibre to First Nation offices, schools, health centres and government offices in Yukon, the Northwest Territories and northern BC, and $2 million to expand cellphone service along highways and major roads in Yukon, the NWT and Nunavut. Northwestel has committed to finishing construction of the projects within three years.

Rogers is introducing unlimited data plans, starting June 13, with no overage charges. Later this summer, Rogers will also launch new device financing options giving customers the ability to buy any smartphone with $0 down. Rogers Infinite plans feature unlimited wireless data starting at $75 for 10GB of high speed data. Beyond that, customers can use unlimited data at reduced speeds. More high speed data can be purchased as a Speed Pass for $15 for 3GB. Customers can also pool their data with family and friends, eliminating the need to monitor data use.

Top Risks in Telecommunications 2019 Canada, a report from EY, looks at how the Canadian telecom sector is managing risk amidst the cost pressures of new customer demands and digital tools. The report highlights the top risks for Canadian operators topped by connectivity commoditization due to ineffective growth and diversification strategy, and eroding organizational trust from underestimating privacy and security changes. EY says research shows that while 51% of operators believe that the lack of digital skills is a top transformation barrier, only 3% see growing and retaining talent as a top strategic priority — highlighting the need to focus on internal workforce issues. On the capex front, the rollout of 5G is expected to see capital intensity increase to 21% by 2023 globally – just one of the factors impacting infrastructure ROI.

The Canadian Association of Journalists (CAJ) says it accepts the calls to justice for media as issued in the Final Report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Women and Girls (MMIWG), in addition to the term genocide. The CAJ says Canadian journalism has a legacy of perpetuating racist stereotypes, using insensitive language and overlooking patterns. “Journalism is not a reconciliation free zone; we need to thoughtfully move forward and do better,” reads a statement issued by the association. The CAJ is supporting the inquiry’s call to increase the number of Indigenous people in broadcasting, television, and radio, and in journalist, reporter, producer, and executive positions in the entertainment industry, including providing educational, scholarship and training opportunities aimed at Indigenous inclusion in media, film, and music industry-related fields.

John Ruskin aka Nardwuar the Human Serviette

Nardwuar (aka John Ruskin) was one of 13 inductees into the BC Entertainment Hall of Fame last weekend and one of eight to receive a star on the Walk of Fame on Vancouver’s Granville Street. Nardwuar’s foray into broadcasting started at University of British Columbia campus radio station CiTR 101.9 FM. His show has been running every Friday afternoon since Oct. 1987. His interviews eventually made their way to MuchMusic with the “Human Serviette’s” quirky antics leading to interviews with celebrities ranging from Drake to Henry Rollins and Seth Rogen. Among those also receiving stars on the StarWalk this year are actress Karin Konoval (The Good Doctor, The X-Files, Rise of the Planet of the Apes) and three-time Emmy Award winner Moira Walley-Beckett – creator of TV series Anne and Flesh and Bone, who has also worked as a producer and writer on Breaking Bad.

Ryan Snoddon

Loyalist College’s highest academic honour was conferred upon CBC Nova Scotia and New Brunswick meteorologist Ryan Snoddon during the college’s 52nd Annual Convocation Ceremony. Snoddon, who graduated from Loyalist’s Broadcast Journalism program in 2004, addressed the School of Applied Sciences, Skills & Technology and the School of Media, Business & Access.  Snoddon was presented with the Hugh P. O’Neil Outstanding Alumni Award for exceptional contributions to his profession and community.

Michael Colborne and Lena Macdonald

The Canadian Journalism Forum on Violence and Trauma has awarded its annual Forum Freelance Fund (FFF) bursaries to three Canadian freelancers working in dangerous places around the world. The 2019 winners, chosen by an independent international jury, are: Michael Colborne, a freelance reporter/photographer from Sherwood Park, AB, reporting on connections between far right groups in Ukraine and Croatia, involving illegal activities. He has already been assaulted physically in the course of that continuing work; Lena Macdonald, an independent Toronto-based filmmaker and journalist, currently producing a feature-length documentary investigating the international justice apparatus, and how it harms or helps post-conflict nations on the African continent; and Anna Bianca Roach, a Canadian freelance journalist with a focus on the intersection of gender, labour, and migration. Roach has reported from Armenia on the 2018 Velvet Revolution and its aftermath. She is now reporting on labour rights under populist governments. Each FFF bursary is worth $2,500 CAD. The bursary is sponsored by CBC News and supported by Radio-Canada and individual donors.

The Jack Webster Awards entry deadline is approaching July 7. Online, print, radio and television journalists in British Columbia are invited to enter. Check out the 13 categories you can submit your work in.



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