The Weekly Briefing

RADIO/AUDIO/PODCAST:

Elton John and Nevin Grant

Canadian Music Week has announced that longtime CKOC Hamilton music director Nevin Grant will be inducted into the Canadian Broadcast Industry Hall of Fame as the 2020 recipient of the Allan Waters Lifetime Achievement Award. Grant established himself as a hitmaker during his 37-year tenure at CKOC from 1968 until his retirement in 2003. Known for his knack for breaking new hits, he started working at the station in 1966 as a copywriter following his graduation from Ryerson’s Radio and Television Arts program, and worked his way up to music director, assistant program director and eventually program director. Read more here.

The CRTC has found that the Vernon, BC market can’t support an additional commercial radio station, and is conducting a more thorough analysis before approving Vernon Community Radio Society’s application for a community station. The proposed station, 97.9 Valley FM, would operate at 1,000 watts. The community is currently served by two commercial broadcasters, Bell Media and Jim Pattison Broadcast Group, which opposed the call for applications.

The Sheet Harbour Radio Society has received approval for a new low-power community station in Sheet Harbour, NS. 94.7 CHHR-FM will operate at 45 watts. The station proposes to devote three and a half hours each week to spoken word programming, with 95% of its newscasts devoted to local news and 5% regional. The station also plans to broadcast a community bulletin three times a day, six days a week, featuring information on community events and local interviews. Approximately 82% of its music will be drawn from content category 2 (Popular Music 66%, and Country and Country-Oriented 16%) and approximately 16% from content category 3 (Special Interest Music).

Radio Humsafar 1350 AM (CIRF-AM) Brampton, ON is in test mode after experiencing delays securing a transmitter site. The South Asian station is broadcasting at 1,000 watts during the day and 45 watts overnight. What’s expected to be three weeks of testing began Dec. 19.

Wanex Lalanne

102.3 Radio Centre-Ville (CINQ-FM) Montreal and the community station’s current management, led by Wanex Lalanne, have come out on top of a court battle over who should have control of the station after the plaintiffs dropped the case on Monday. Tensions between station managers and a group of dissidents, who launched the suit, have been high since 2016 when Radio Centre-Ville started selling airtime to independent producers. Lalanne has not ruled out counter-suing the group for defamation.

Gord Rawlinson, the owner of Rawlco Radio and founder of Regina’s Santas Anonymous program, is donating $500,000 over five years to the Salvation Army. Half of the funds will go to support expenses around Santas Anonymous, including purchasing toys. The rest will go toward a pilot project called Pathway of Hope, which will target repeat clients needing food and shelter and get them on the road to self-sufficiency.

CBC/Radio-Canada’s Open House and Food Bank Day in Vancouver on Dec. 6 saw over 2,100 people visit the public broadcaster and a record breaking $1,021,618 raised. Local personalities including Stephen Quinn, Gloria Macarenko, Michelle Eliot, Sheryl MacKay, Mike Killeen, Anita Bathe, Brett Soderholm, Dan Burritt, and Lien Yeung welcomed the community into the CBC Vancouver Broadcast Centre along with CBC network personalities Ian Hanomansing, host of The National, and Erica Johnson of Go Public.

The 31st Annual Corus Clothes for Kids Campaign saw Global Kingston, Fresh Radio (CKWS-FM) and BIG FM (CFMK-FM) help provide over 1,000 snow suits to children in the community. Viewers and listeners donated over $50,000 in cash through Kingston Community Credit Union and GoFundMe (via globalnews.ca/Kingston), in addition to donating snowsuits at Corus’ studios and the Cataraqui Centre Mall. Corus works with local school boards to identify needs at over 50 schools in the Kingston area.

  The 4th Annual 98 the Beach Radiothon for the Saugeen Memorial Hospital Foundation raised a total of $90,294 on Dec. 13. Money raised during the 12-hour event, broadcast on Bayshore Broadcasting’s 98 the Beach (CFPS-FM) Port Elgin, ON, will go toward the purchase of new equipment at  Southampton Memorial Hospital.

Evanov Radio Group’s Manitoba stations, Energy 106 (CHWE-FM), HOT 100.5 (CFJL-FM) and AM 810 CKJS, held their annual Christmas broadcast live from Grant Park Shopping Centre on Dec. 7. Local public figures including Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman were on hand to pledge support and encourage others to donate. A total of $25,225 in cash and food were raised in just nine hours for Winnipeg Harvest.

Benztown Imaging’s 6th Annual #Cans4Cans campaign is a social media-driven food drive in support of the Los Angeles Food Bank. The concept is simple – post a photo of yourself wearing headphones to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #cans4cans and Benztown will donate a can of food on your behalf. Benztown is asking its friends and followers to participate. Last year, over 900 people posted in support of #Cans4Cans.

Betsy Longchap

CBC North has launched its first Cree-language podcast as part of efforts to recognize the International Year of Indigenous Languages. Wiih’teh is co-hosted by Mary Shem and Betsy Longchap, a reporter and host working with CBC’s Cree Unit in Montreal. Each episode features Cree words in the Eastern James Bay Southern and Northern Cree dialect about the weather, seasons and more, with the goal of maintaining and strengthening the language.

The 2019 Canadian Podcast Listener (CPL) study says celebrity podcasts are getting new listeners in the door. When CPL asked relatively new listeners to describe what initially got them listening to podcasts, 19% said it was because one of their favorite radio hosts, authors or celebrities had a podcast. Read more in the latest CPL blog post, here.

 

 

Spotify is now more popular than Apple Podcasts in Canada and 10 other countries, according to Voxnest’s 2019 State of the Podcast Universe report. As of November, it says Spotify pulled ahead as the top podcast destination in Canada, Puerto Rico, Central African Republic, Kyrgyzstan, French Guiana, Suriname,  Iceland, Switzerland, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Greece, and Moldova. According to Voxnest Audience Network data, Android podcast consumption increased by 10.4% year-over-year, while iOS podcast consumption dropped by 4.8%. Desktop consumption dropped from 13% to just over 9% total. You can download the report here.

Edison’s Podcast Consumer Tracker says the most-listened to podcast genre is Comedy (36%), followed by News (23%), Society & Culture (22%), Sports (15%) and True Crime (12%). The results reflect greatest reach amongst U.S. weekly podcast consumers, based on human-reported results, not downloads.

SIGN-OFFS:

Robert Lowe

Robert “Bob” Lowe, 92, on Dec. 15. Lowe, who spent much of his working life as a sales manager with CKBW Bridgewater, NS, became one of the station’s owners in 1974 when Lester Rogers and John Hirtle sold their interest to four longtime employees, including Lowe, Jamie MacLeod (Station Manager), Bob MacLaren (Program Director), and Doug Hirtle (Chief Engineer). Lowe retired in 1989, owning 23% of the station, when it was sold to Acadia Broadcasting. In addition to his work with CKBW, Lowe and his wife Greta were behind the Victoria Acres housing development in Lunenburg County. He was also involved in the Bridgewater Board of Trade and Chamber of Commerce, serving as its president for five years, and was appointed to the Bridgewater Development Commission, where he helped establish a relationship with major community employer Michelin Tires.

Monique Leyrac

Monique Leyrac, 91, on Dec. 15. Born in Montreal, Leyrac trained in the dramatic arts which led to a job at CKAC Montreal in 1943. After a few years at the station, she began singing at the Au Faisan doré cabaret, performing songs by Edith Piaf, among others. She went on to record an album and star in Quebec film “The Lights Of My City” in 1950. After touring Europe and Lebanon, she did a stint in the Parisien theatre before returning to Quebec. She went on to a successful recording, television, and touring career, including a series of shows at Expo ‘67. Among the accolades she received are induction into the Order of Canada and National Order of Quebec, the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award and Quebecor’s Prix Hommage.

Don Tremaine

Don Tremaine, 91, on Dec. 15. Tremaine’s first exposure to radio was in high school where he gained experience as an announcer while attending Halifax’s Queen Elizabeth High School. After dropping out in Grade 11, he joined the RCMP Marine Division, before returning to broadcasting and CHNS Halifax as an announcer. He joined CBC Sydney in Cape Breton in 1951, transferring to Halifax a few years later where he would establish himself as CBC Nova Scotia’s first television newsreader at station launch in 1954. Tremaine is best known as the host of variety show Don Messer’s Jubilee, which aired across the network from 1959-69. He moved over to CBC Radio in 1971 where he hosted the local edition of Information Morning, up until 1987 when he retired from the public broadcaster. Tremaine was awarded the Order of Canada in 1996.

Wayne Stafford

Wayne Stafford, 76, on Dec. 14. Stafford’s radio career started at CJGX in Yorkton, followed by CKRM Regina. By the mid-1970s, he had moved to the West Coast and become General Sales Manager at CFUN Vancouver where he and retail sales manager Barry O’Donnell are remembered for setting the bar with year-after-year sales records. He went on to join CFMS/CKDA Victoria, where following the death of Capital Broadcasting President David Armstrong in 1985, he launched a failed bid to take control of the stations. Stafford closed out his broadcasting career as General Manager of the CHUM stations in Windsor, which he stepped away from in 1997. 

Ann Elvidge

Ann Elvidge, 68, on Dec. 8. Elvidge worked with CBC Radio Vancouver, starting in the mid-1970s as a production and programming assistant, working behind-the-scenes on shows like early 1980s supernatural/horror series Nightfall. Elvidge also lent her talents to the Radio Drama department, in addition to working in television.

Bill Terry

Bill Terry, 84, on Dec. 3. Terry had a 35-year career with the CBC that included many years as a current affairs producer for radio in Vancouver, Ottawa and Winnipeg. He went on to become head of CBC Television in Manitoba, and then Radio Drama and Features in Toronto, before being appointed Deputy Head of English Radio Networks. In addition to his work with CBC, Terry was an avid author, gardener, community volunteer, and lecturer at Capilano University in their Continuing Education program. He authored four books: “Blue Heaven: Encounters with the Blue Poppy” (2009), “Beyond Beauty: Hunting the Wild Blue Poppy” (2012), “Beauty by Design: Inspired Gardening in the Pacific Northwest” (2013, written with his wife, Rosemary Bates), and “The Carefree Garden: Letting Nature Play her Part” (2015). In retirement, he supported a number of local organizations near his home of Sechelt, BC, including the Sunshine Coast Botanical Garden Society, Sunshine Coast ElderCollege and the Sunshine Coast Festival of the Written Arts.

TV/FILM/VIDEO:

Kew Media Group has parted ways with Chief Financial Officer Geoff Webb and announced a strategic review, following what the publicly-traded content producer and distributor says were “inaccurate reports” regarding the company’s working capital. Webb had been Kew’s CFO since March 2017 and according to the Toronto-headquartered company’s website had taken “a leading role in the company’s multi-faceted finance, banking, corporate development and other operations.” In a press release issued Dec. 11, Kew announced that its Board of Directors had formed a special committee of independent directors, chaired by David Fleck, “to examine strategic alternatives for the Company” that could include “a sale of part or all of the company, a merger, or other business combination…” Michael Corrigan, former Senior Executive Vice-President and CFO at Metro Goldwyn Mayer, has been appointed interim CFO. Read more here.

Rogers cable will drop AMC, home of original shows like Better Call Saul and The Walking Dead, as of Jan. 1. Rogers says customers who pay for AMC individually will no longer see the charge on their bill, while those who subscribe through Ignite TV will be able to replace it with another channel. The two companies have so far been unable to reach a carriage agreement, and while they continue to negotiate, the CRTC requires cable companies to inform customers of programming changes at least 30 days in advance.

APTN’s Cree-language NHL broadcast team (l-r) Earl Wood, John Chabot, Clarence Iron, and Jason Chamakese.

APTN and Rogers have struck a three-year deal that will see the Indigenous broadcast network air NHL games in Plains Cree. Six games will air this season, starting with the Jan. 19 matchup between the Winnipeg Jets and Chicago Blackhawks. Sportsnet and APTN made Canadian broadcast history this past Mar. 24 when they teamed up on the the first Cree-language NHL broadcast. They’ll use the same broadcast team going forward including Saskatchewan broadcaster Clarence Iron on play-by-play, NHL alum John Chabot as game analyst, Juno Award-winning musician Earl Wood as studio host, and Cree-language advocate Jason Chamakese as studio panelist. Read more here.

Kawhi Leonard

Kawhi Leonard’s return to Toronto resulted in a new record for the most-watched regular season NBA game. According to Numeris data supplied by TSN, the Los Angeles Clippers win over the Toronto Raptors attracted an average audience of nearly 1 million viewers, and reached nearly 3.2 million viewers Dec. 11. Leonard was presented with his championship ring during a pre-game ceremony, during which audiences peaked at nearly 1.5 million viewers. Live streaming starts for the game were up +61% compared to TSN’s previous highest Raptors game this season. The game also attracted major engagement on TSN’s social media platforms, with more than 4 million impressions and nearly 400,000 video views on Instagram, and more than 1.5 million video views on Twitter.

Rick Mercer

CBC will ring in the New Year with Canada’s New Year’s Eve – Countdown To 2020, broadcast live on CBC and streaming on CBC Gem, Dec. 31 at 11 p.m. ET, CT, MT and PT, 11:20 p.m. AT and 11:30 p.m. NT. Rick Mercer returns as host of the annual special, which will capture events taking place in Whitehorse, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Niagara Falls, Montreal and St. John’s, featuring musical performances from Bryan Adams and indie pop band Walk off the Earth in Niagara Falls; Tyler Shaw in Edmonton; hip-hop duo Heartstreets in Montreal; folk singer William Prince in Winnipeg; singer/songwriter Alan Doyle and folk band The Dardanelles with Tom Power in St. John’s; and alt country band Diyet & The Love Soldiers, joined by the Dakhká Khwáan Dancers, in Whitehorse.

Global’s winter schedule kicks off Jan. 6 with the world premiere of all-Canadian medical drama, Nurses, which follows five recent graduates beginning their careers at a downtown Toronto hospital. Debuting Jan. 7, Dick Wolf delivers new spinoff series FBI: Most Wanted, focused on hunting and capturing the notorious criminals on the Bureau’s Most Wanted list with the help of the Fugitive Task Force. On Feb. 6, no-nonsense political drama Tommy debuts with Edie Falco playing the first female chief of police for Los Angeles. Rounding out Global’s new series this winter is Season 9 of Undercover Boss, premiering Jan. 8.

CTV is set to introduce five new series throughout January and February, headlined by new Rob Lowe drama 9-1-1 Lone Star (Jan. 19) and family drama For Life (Feb. 11) from executive producer Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson. CTV2’s schedule will be anchored by Season 2 of America’s Got Talent: The Champions, and new Maggie Lawson and Jason Biggs comedy Outmatched (Jan. 23). Other new series include the premiere of Flirty Dancing (Dec. 29) on CTV, in which complete strangers are taught a dance routine and then meet for the first time on a blind date. Musical drama Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist makes its two-hour debut Feb. 16, following a whip-smart computer coder forging her way in San Francisco.

Kortney and Dave Wilson

HGTV Canada’s winter programming sees Kortney and Dave Wilson kick off the New Year with new series Making it Home with Kortney & Dave, premiering Jan. 22. The duo will help homeowners achieve renovation goals by teaching them new skills and completing big transformations. Drew and Jonathan Scott return with new episodes of Property Brothers, beginning Jan. 6. Starting Feb. 3, five powerhouse real estate agents are featured in new Corus Studios original series Hot Market, showcasing Ontario’s most lavish properties for sale. On Feb. 18, HGTV Canada designer Samantha Pynn and master builder Sebastian Clovis are back for a new season of $ave My Reno. Also returning is the highly anticipated reboot of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, with 10 brand new episodes starting Feb. 16.

Emma Hunter

Emma Hunter (Mr. D, The Beaverton) will host new culinary competition series Fridge Wars (6×60), premiering Feb. 27 on CBC. An original Canadian format produced by the public broadcaster, the show pits two celebrity chefs against one another with a challenge to create extraordinary meals using only the ingredients taken from the ordinary fridges of Canadian families. The improvised dinners must win over two families who act as judges to determine which chef wins each battle. Canadian chefs facing off this season include Matt Basile vs Massimo Capra; Nadia G vs Rodney Bowers; Shahir Massoud vs Wallace Wong; Shane Chartrand vs Joshna Maharaj; La-toya Fagon vs Julie Miguel; and Nicole Gomes vs Dustin Gallagher.

Chloe Wilde

Chloe Wilde (ETALK) is the host of new Crave Original Series Healthy Is Hot. From Bell Media Studios, all six episodes will start streaming on Crave Jan. 10. Developed from Wilde’s highly successful blog, podcast, and Instagram of the same name, Healthy Is Hot is set to inspire new resolutions for healthier living as viewers settle into 2020. The series showcases Wilde’s journey– from Vancouver Island to Ottawa and Toronto – as she tackles fears, indulges in new foods, gives back to charity, and more.

Lainey Lui (The Social, ETALK) will host new Crave Original Series Cravings: The Aftershow. From Bell Media Studios, the companion series premieres Jan. 12 at 11 p.m. ET following the debut of the first two episodes of HBO’s new series The Outsider. Each Sunday, Lui and a rotating panel of guests – including her television-loving friends – will dive into the subject series with candid takes and post-show analysis.

Discovery starts airing new episodes of Heavy Rescue: 401, Tuesdays at 10 p.m. ET/ 7 p.m. PT, beginning Jan. 7. Fourteen new episodes feature compelling extreme winter wrecks and roadside rescues on Ontario’s notorious 400-series highways – extending from Windsor in the west to the Québec border in the east. Heavy Rescue: 401 has been a Top 5 series on Discovery across all seasons among the key A25-54 demo.

Hollywood Suite will present the world television premiere of Queering the Script Jan. 9 at 9 p.m. ET. The feature-length documentary explores the rising power of fans shaping representation on television, the relationship between fandom and activism, and what lies ahead for visibility and inclusiveness. The film will also air nationally on OUTtv Jan. 10. Among the queer relationships in shows that are examined are Xena: Warrior Princess, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Lost Girl, The 100 and Carmilla. Queering the Script is a Hollywood Suite Original Documentary produced by Shaftesbury Films.

Millefiore Clarkes and Anne Pick

The Documentary Organization of Canada’s sixth annual awards event in Toronto saw P.E.I. filmmaker Millefiore Clarkes take home the BMO-DOC Vanguard Award for emerging creatives. Anne Pick, who co-runs Toronto’s Real to Reel Productions, received this year’s Rogers-DOC Luminary Award.

TIFF is out with its Top 10 Canadian features & shorts list of 2019. Its top-ranked features include And the Birds Rained Down (Il pleuvait des oiseaux) from Louise Archambault (Quebec); Anne at 13,000 ft, Kazik Radwanski (Ontario); Sophie Deraspe’s Antigone (Quebec); Black Conflux, from Nicole Dorsey (Newfoundland/Quebec); and The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open, from Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers and Kathleen Hepburn (BC). Find the full list here.

ONLINE/DIGITAL:

Netflix earned CAD $780 million in Canada in 2019, according to a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing released Monday. For the first time, Netflix has released historical streaming revenue, membership and the average revenue earned per paid membership by region, in light of a growing number of subscribers and revenue from outside the U.S. Revenue for the U.S. and Canada, combined, for the three months ended Sept. 30, 2019 reached USD $2.62 billion – a 57% increase over the past two years. Subscriptions reached 67.1 million – up 23% over the same period. While North America remains a stronghold for the streaming giant, its growth is now being driven from outside North America amidst an increasingly crowded OTT landscape that recently expanded with the introduction of Disney+ and Apple TV+, among other new services. Read more here.

The Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA), which manages the .CA domain, parted ways with three members of its IT staff but kept president Byron Holland in place after more than 1,000 explicit photos were found on his computer in 2016. The matter was brought to light by the Toronto Star this week after interviews with current and former employees amid concerns that the matter was mis-handled. CIRA, which was created by the federal government in the late 1990s and brings in annual revenue of $27 million, is declining interviews on the matter.

CBC/Radio-Canada, as part of its participation in the DG7 public service media organization (comprised of ABC Australia, CBC/Radio-Canada, France Médias Monde, DW, NHK World Japan, BBC World Service and U.S. Agency for Global Media), is committing to new joint action against disinformation. “Project Origin” will adopt tools for the validation and verification of digital content ranging from written articles to video, aimed at increasing the public’s confidence in material they read online. CBC/Radio-Canada has been playing a leading role in developing a common international approach to fighting AI-generated “deep fake” video news, including adapting tech to digitally verify the authenticity of news content when it appears on other online platforms. Project Origin also builds on the work, the public broadcaster is doing with the Trusted News Charter, a BBC-led initiative to strengthen measures to protect audiences from disinformation.

Robert Downey Jr.

Robert Downey Jr. is the host behind Network Entertainment-produced YouTube Originals series “The Age of A.I.” – an eight-episode learning series that takes an immersive look at artificial intelligence and its potential to change the world. Launching Dec. 18 on YouTube.com/Learning, the premiere episode follows co-founder of Soul Machines, Mark Sagar, an Oscar-winning special effects artist as he builds an autonomously animated digital version of Grammy-award winner will.i.am. Future episodes will feature former NFL linebacker Tim Shaw, who is battling ALS, as he works with a team at Google to help restore his ability to communicate, testing the prototype of Project Euphonia for the first time.

Candace Leca

Much Studios has released special holiday digital content from creators Candace Leca, Jaclyn Forbes, and YouTwoTV. Leca debuts new holiday single Christmas Lights, beauty expert Forbes shares her top gift-giving ideas, and YouTwoTV has released a comedic take on holiday spending, Rich Christmas vs. Broke Christmas.

LISTEN: It’s headquartered in Toronto and Los Angeles, but The QYou Media – a next-generation global media company that curates, packages, and distributes Millennial and Gen Z-focused digital-first, short-form content from influencers and creators, is finding huge success outside North America. On the latest episode of Broadcast Dialogue – The Podcast, Curt Marvis, CEO and co-founder of The QYou, on the company’s journey to growing its distribution reach to 500 million viewers in India alone, plans for growth in the U.S., and his predictions for what’s to come after a decade of disruption in the broadcast and video content space.

GENERAL:

The CRTC has released data on the Retail Mobile Sector as part of the most recent Communications Monitoring Report. Total revenue for the sector was up 10.7% last year to $27.1 billion, mostly due to a change in international financial reporting standards (IFRS) and how providers recognize revenues from consumer contracts. The Top 3 captured 91% of revenues, leaving 9% to be divided among the remaining providers. In 2018, mobile subscribers grew by 4.8% to reach 33.2 million. That growth rate was more than two times slower than the revenue growth rate of 10.7%, indicating greater revenues per subscriber for 2018. When it comes to roaming revenues, approximately 74% of voice roaming and 55% of data roaming revenues were derived from users roaming in the U.S., with very few revenues generated from within Canada. Average monthly data usage for all subscribers and subscribers with a data plan was 2,128 MB per month and 2,525 MB per month, respectively.

The Canadian Media Concentration Research Project (CMCRP) finds that internet advertising continued to soar in 2018 to an estimated $7.7 billion—up from $6.8 billion over the previous year, however subscriber fees outstripped ad revenue by a ratio of 5:1. Helmed by Professor Dwayne Winseck, at the School of Journalism and Communication, Carleton University, the first installment in this year’s series of reports looking at the state of the media economy, finds that U.S.-based internet giants are consolidating their dominance of digital advertising markets in Canada and becoming increasingly dominant across the advertising landscape as a whole. According to CMCRP data, Google and Facebook had a lock on over three-quarters (77.2%) of the $7.7 billion online advertising market in 2018 and more than two-fifths (42%) of the $14.2 billion in advertising spending across all media. However, the report found that subscriber fees from “pay-per media” including online gaming, music subscription, and pay and specialty TV soared from $1.4 billion in 2014 to nearly $4 billion in revenue last year. Including internet advertising, those sectors amounted to an $11.7 billion share of the network media economy in 2018, or 14% of all revenue—double its share of the pie in 2014. Read more here.

Steven Guilbeault
Canadian Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s mandate letter to new Canadian Heritage Min. Steven Guilbeault lays out several priorities for the broadcast and film sector, drawing heavily from Liberal campaign promises. Among them: to create new regulations for social media platforms, starting with a requirement that all platforms remove illegal content, including hate speech, within 24 hours or face significant penalties; co-lead work with the Min. of Innovation, Science and Industry to modernize the Broadcasting Act and the Telecommunications Act, examining how best to support Canadian content in English and French and ensure quality affordable internet, mobile and media access; work with the Min. of Innovation, Science and Industry to introduce legislation by the end of 2020 that will take appropriate measures to ensure all content providers, including internet giants, offer meaningful levels of Canadian content in their catalogues, contribute to the creation of Canadian content in both Official Languages, promote this content and make it easily accessible on their platforms; strengthen the regional mandate of CBC/Radio-Canada to broadcast more local news and require CBC/Radio-Canada to open up its digital platform; increase annual funding for Telefilm Canada; and support local journalism and develop business models that facilitate private giving and philanthropic support for professional journalism and local news.

Luce Julien and Ginette Viens

Radio-Canada, in a directive issued Dec. 5, has informed staff that the French-language arm of the public broadcaster will no longer use the word “exclusive” to describe stories on its platforms, except in the context of certain reports or interviews “meeting well-defined criteria.” The directive from Luce Julien, Directrice générale de l’Information, and Ginette Viens, Première directrice, Programmation nouvelles, actualités et déploiement, says with it not uncommon for the public to be exposed to “exclusives” several times a day, it has analyzed use of the label and determined that overuse risks reducing the desired impact. Julien and Viens also point out that it’s not uncommon for the same story to be played “exclusively” on two or three outlets in the same day, with that exclusivity sometimes attached to journalism based on public documents accessible to all or quickly verifiable.

Women in Communications and Technology (WCT) has extended the nomination deadline for its annual awards to Jan. 10. The 2020 WCT Leadership Excellence Awards will take place May 7 at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa. More info here.

BROADCAST TECH NEWS:

Pelmorex Corp. has announced a majority investment in Weather Source, a U.S. based global provider of analytics-grade weather and climate data. Its patent-pending technology, delivers hyper-local weather data for any LAT/LONG point and for many geographic areas such as ZIP or postal codes, census blocks or tracks, metropolitan statistical areas, or designated market areas. Weather Source will add to Pelmorex Corp’s portfolio of brands, including The Weather Network, MétéoMédia, EITiempo.es, OTempo.pt and Clima, as the company broadens its data solutions business. Pelmorex entered the big data, analytics and insights market in 2017 and says partnering with Weather Source allows it to expand its Weather Insights Platform for enterprise clients by integrating Weather Source’s proprietary OnPoint weather and climatology data. Pelmorex says its leadership positions in Canada and Spain and expansive user base, combined with the integration of Weather Source’s data, technical expertise, product vision and explosive growth in the U.S. market, will enable both companies to provide specialized solutions on a larger scale.

Rogers has opened Rogers 302 – what the company is billing as the first 5G-ready store in Canada – where customers can experience and understand the new tech with the guidance of an expert. The 9,000 square foot space in downtown Toronto, at Yonge & Dundas, is equipped with 5G network technology and spectrum and showcases the latest wireless, connected home technology, and media content for consumers and businesses. It includes interactive zones like a Google immersive space where visitors can test the latest smart home products, and dedicated space for events and exhibits featuring cutting-edge tech from Rogers and its industry partners.

 


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