Media Beat
Media Beat

Media Beat: September 12, 2017

A Canadian media consortium has won the 2017 Paralympic Media Award in the broadcast category for its coverage of the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.

The prize, awarded by the International Paralympic Committee, goes to the TV or radio broadcaster that presented the highest quality and most effective coverage of Rio 2016.

The Consortium media partners—CBC/Radio-Canada, Sportsnet, Yahoo! Sports, AMI, SendtoNews, Videogami and Facebook Canada—provided 1,200 hours of coverage across a variety of platforms to an audience of over 10.2M, representing a 208% increase over London 2012 and reaching nearly 29% of Canadians.

The production and marketing costs were underwritten through a network of sponsors that included CIBC, Air Canada, Petro-Canada, Canadian Tire, Sport Check and Bell Canada.

Jesse James Palmer, the Canadian sports commentator and former college and professional football player who was a quarterback in the NFL for five seasons in the early 2000s, is hosting the newly launched Daily Mail TV show that will be syndicated across the UK effective Sept. 18.

— The UK plans to expand its probe into 21st Century Fox Inc.’s bid for pay-tv broadcaster Sky Plc, exposing Rupert Murdoch and his family to further scrutiny over governance at their media empire and adding to the uncertainty about the $15.5 billion deal.

Bell Media Studios and Group M’s Motion Content Group have signed a development and production partnership to create multi-platform content for international distribution via the GroupM-owned investment and rights management company. Bell Media Studios VP Nanci MacLean and Group M Director of Programming Tony Moulsdale lead the initiative.

Postmedia has struck a deal to feature content from Rogers’ magazine titles including Chatelaine, Flare, Today’s Parent, and MoneySense in a monthly newspaper section titled Life by Design.  The section had its debut on Sept. 8 in the Vancouver Sun, Calgary Herald, Edmonton Journal, Regina Leader-Post, Saskatoon Star Phoenix, London Free Press, Windsor Star, Ottawa Citizen, and Montreal Gazette. On the 12th the section was included in the National Post.

Game of Thrones’ Season 7 premiere on July 16 conquered the record books for HBO Canada with the episode garnering an average of 1.7M viewers, according to Numeris data provided by Bell Media. The season opener is up 13% over the season 6 launch.

Rupert Murdoch has taken the right-wing US channel Fox News off air in the UK after 15 years. His US media group 21st Century Fox said it would withdraw Fox News from Sky in the UK on Tuesday because it no longer regarded the service as commercially viable. Fox is currently under regulatory scrutiny for its $15.5B deal to acquire Sky Plc.

— Research commissioned by online video solutions provider, Brightcove has revealed that eight in ten European retailers anticipate a future as a media company, with 85% already looking for ways to target consumers with content in their living rooms – as they look to take on traditional broadcasting giants. Research conducted among 200 retail business decision makers showed that 61% of retail brands are already offering what broadcasters refer to as ‘lean-back’ content services – mainly ‘TV-like’ online video experiences – and a further 33 per cent have plans to do so within the next two years.

— A proposal to boost Radio New Zealand's role in the media market and pay $38M to launch a pubcaster channel has attracted criticism from media conglomerate Fairfax New Zealand.

— Cable channels owned by Discovery Communications, Viacom, AMC Networks, A+E Networks and Scripps Networks will make up part of a new streaming service aimed at viewers who don’t like sports. The service is expected to launch before month’s end and is anticipated to have an initial monthly fee of $20.


Arnold Amber, a long-time CBC journalist, television producer and union leader, died on Labour Day at age 77. Amber won three Gemini Awards for producing news specials for the CBC. In 2014, he became the first person to receive a lifetime achievement award from the Canadian Committee for World Press Freedom in recognition of his work helping journalists around the world.

Worth Noting

During hurricanes, emergency officials turn to ham radio

Operators of amateur radios, also known as ham radios, play a vital role in the gathering of information during storms like Irma — Jon Santucci, The Stuart (Fla.) News

Philipsburg and Princess Juliana Airport, Saint Maarten, after the storm

Telecom giants square off in sports broadcast arena

Bell and Rogers continue to vie for coveted audience in changing industry — Patrick Blennerhassett, Business Vancouver

NFL’s opening night was a TV rating disaster

TV ratings for the NFL’s Thursday night opener tanked — again — falling for the fourth straight year — Richard Morgan, New York Post

Going grey: Sports TV viewers skew older

According to Nielsen television viewership data of 24 sports, all but one have seen the median age of their TV viewers increase during the past decade — Sports Business Journal

Facebook was willing to bid $600M on cricket. What other live sports will it want?

Rupert Murdoch’s Star Sports won the bid for TV and streaming rights over Sony for a total of $2.6B. While the Facebook offer was tiny compared to Star, it showed that the company was willing to pay for live sports — Awful Announcing

Cold War spy codes and their secret numbered stations

If you tuned into just the right shortwave radio frequency in the 1970s, you might hear a creepy computerized voice reading out a string of numbers. It was the Cold War, and the coded messages were rumoured to be secret intelligence broadcasts from "number stations" located around the globe — Wired


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