Media Beat
Media Beat

Media Beat: July 21, 2017

New CRTC chief Ian Scott: The pros and cons of the veteran telecom exec

His appointment has sparked both concerns that the regulator could soon be taken in a less consumer friendly direction and hope for a new direction.

Advocacy group OpenMedia said former chairman Jean-Pierre Blais, who chose not to reapply for the job when his term came to an end earlier this year, did a lot to open the telecommunications marketplace to increased consumer choice and affordability.

"Canadians were hoping for somebody with a strong consumer rights background, and will undoubtedly be disheartened to see the Trudeau government place someone from industry into the top decision-making position," commented OpenMedia communications manager Meghan Sali — The Canadian Press

‘Great guy, works hard, very sane’: Incoming CRTC chief lauded despite concerns from consumer groups

Scott has represented industry in CRTC proceedings related to basic internet access and satellite service in remote and rural locations. His most recent role was at Telesat, which plans to launch a new high-throughput satellite next year that could vastly improve internet service in satellite-dependent communities in the far north — Emily Jackson, Financial Post

Rogers posts strong earnings in Q2

Rogers Communications Inc, Canada's largest wireless company, posted a 35% increase in Q2 profit as it added more subscribers.

The company's net income rose to $531M, or $1.03 per share, for the quarter ended June 30, from $394 million, or 77 cents per share, a year earlier.

Revenue rose to $3.59B from $3.46B.

Media revenue increased 4% in the quarter, primarily as a result of the continued growth of sports-related revenue, increased sales at Today's Shopping Choice (TSC, previously branded as The Shopping Channel), and higher conventional broadcast TV advertising revenue, partially offset by lower publishing-related advertising and circulation revenue due to a strategic shift to digital media announced late last year — Newswire

Rogers connected car device turns your car into a wifi hotspot

The company has partnered with Vancouver’s connected-car tech firm Mojio to deliver what is described as ‘the first connected car device for Canadian consumers.'

In addition to the cellular connectivity, the device can also track a car’s location and set alerts to monitor vehicle speed. The data coming out of the OBD-II port can also diagnose car problems, such as providing an error code when your “check engine” light is on.

The app can also alert users if their vehicle is hit while parked and provide maintenance reminders — IT World Canada

Canada’s anti-fake news protector

Canada’s Radio Act requires that “a licenser may not broadcast … any false or misleading news.”

As a result of that law, Canadians enjoy higher quality news coverage including the kind of foreign affairs and investigative journalism that flourished in the US before Ronald Reagan abolished the “Fairness Doctrine” in 1987 — Various

Fake news broadcast by media-bashing Tory MP deleted from Facebook

Conservative MP Cheryl Gallant‘s recent mock newscast called Gallant Nightly News (GNN) took aim at Omar Khadr‘s $10.5M settlement with the Liberal government — and Canadian media’s coverage of the controversy.

 “Whether it’s the Toronto Star, CBC, Globe and Mail, CTV or even the National Post, editorialists and columnists have been tripping over in a rush to justify Justin’s payout to Khadr,” Gallant said on a “special edition” of GNN on July 13. She added that mainstream media was defending Khadr’s settlement because they want a subsidy from the Liberal government. The post has since been deleted, possibly due to peer political pressure to do so —Maham Abedi, Global News

CBC radio show is creating a national podcast playlist

Podcasting is a growing industry, but the really good stuff can be hard to find.

That's where Podcast Playlist co-host Lindsay Michael can help.

Working with her co-host Matt Galloway, Michael plans to sort through the podcast universe and bring the very best to the national CBC Radio show.

"The biggest problem that people say in the industry is that there is a discoverability issue; people don't know how to find podcasts," Michael told Island Morning host Mitch Cormier in a recent interview.

The program's producers start with the iTunes charts, but they are also scanning blogs that focus on podcasts, and as Podcast Playlist grows in popularity there are recommendations coming in from listeners as well — Kevin Yan, CBC News

RIP

Boyd Beck, a historical research officer with the P.E.I. Museum and Heritage Foundation, but best known for the stories of Island history he told on CBC Radio over a period of nearly 25 years, died Tuesday of complications from pancreatic cancer. He was 56.

Worth Noting

Largest dark web market closed in massive government takedown

Adios, AlphaBay. US and European law enforcement agencies have slammed shut a booming online trade in drugs, weapons and stolen identities — CNET

The secret of how Amazon dominates

E-commerce giant Amazon has its hands in dozens of businesses: publishing, television, hardware, the cloud, logistics, meal kits, and grocery, to name just a few.

At Fortune’s Brainstorm Tech conference in Aspen, Colo., on Tuesday Jeff Wilke, CEO of Amazon's $120 billion consumer business, revealed how the company tackles so different markets at once — Fortune

iHeart’s battle with bondholders reaches critical stage to avert bankruptcy

In its battle to win over bondholders who hold the key to its fate, iHeart Communications has signed up a group of funds led by Eaton Vance Investment Management, Symphony Asset Management, and OppenheimerFunds to convince holders that it is better to take the new deal than pushing the company into bankruptcy — Fox Business News

Google to add 'news feed' to website and app

Google is adding a personalized Facebook-style news feed to its homepage that will display news stories, features, videos, and music chosen from previous searches by the same user — BBC News

Discovery and Scripps in merger talks

A deal between Discovery and Scripps would create a $19 billion cable network that specializes in non-scripted shows — Reuters

The Star launches new tablet app today

The new app offers continuous updates, breaking news, broader depth of content, simple navigation, the ability to search for stories and columnists and easier ways to share items across social media — The Star

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