Scott Tucker and Maura Grierson add some energy to Corus's Hamilton FM
Scott Tucker and Maura Grierson add some energy to Corus's Hamilton FM

Media Beat: March 27, 2019

Corus adds energy to freshen up Hamilton FM

On-air duo Scott Tucker and Maura Grierson made their return to morning radio Wednesday as Tucker and Maura in the Morning, kicking off the relaunch of Energy 95.3 (CING-FM), serving Hamilton and the Greater Toronto area.

Tucker and Maura were last heard co-hosting mornings on Virgin Radio (CKFM-FM) Toronto before cutbacks canned the top-rated duo last Nov.

The Corus-owned CING-FM outlet had branded itrself as 95.3 Fresh Radio since 2015. It previously held the Energy 108 moniker from the mid-1990s to 2002 and before that used the call letters CING-FM and Y95.

The station’s revamped lineup also sees former morning show co-host Colleen Rusholme return to the airwaves to host afternoon drive from 2 – 6 pm. Emily Szabo hosts middays from 9 -2 pm. Repackaged highlights from the morning show air from 6 – 7 pm., followed by Dave Blezard from 7 pm-midnight.

Huawei denies it’s a mole for China interests

The Globe and Mail, citing a top company official, reports that Chinese telecommunications giant would not heed a direct order to use equipment it manufactures for espionage in foreign countries, even if the demand came from the General Secretary of the Communist Party.  The story goes on to outline specifics about its investments in research at Canadian universities and that installing spyware in its components would be “stupid and foolhardy”.

It’s a battlefront worth hundreds of millions of dollars to provide the nation with fifth-generation mobile networks that will give users blazing fast connections and provide robust data capacity to meet heavy demand from new applications, such as self-driving cars, telemedicine, and remote-control machinery,

Earlier this month, Huawei invited foreign media outlets to visit its facilities and meet staff as the company attempts to push back accusations that it spies for Beijing. The G&M story was filed by Asia correspondent Nathan Vanderklippe from Shenzhen, a tech city in the Guangdong province of China where the company employs 60K workers. Globally, the company reportedly employs 180K workers.

Snowden’s ‘Angel’ now Canada’s newest refugee

Newly arrived refugee Vanessa Rodel, who helped shelter whistleblower Edward Snowden in Hong Kong, pleaded with Canadian officials at a media conference on Tuesday to grant asylum to others who assisted the American whistleblowing fugitive's flight from American pursuit two years ago.

At that time, when Snowden fled to Hong Kong after divulging classified documents from the U.S. National Security Agency, Rodel and a handful of others banded together to help in the whistleblower's early days as a fugitive.

The information Snowden leaked exposed the scope of massive government surveillance operations. He currently lives in Moscow and is wanted in the US on charges related to the leaks.

Others who helped Snowden – a single Sri Lankan man and a Sri Lankan couple who have two young children – are still awaiting word on whether Canada will take them as refugees.

Snowden himself tweeted a message of thanks in French on Monday which, when translated, reads: “After so many years, the first of the families that helped me is free and has a future. But the work is not done. With solidarity and compassion, Canada can save them all.”

Apple’s big event offers a bundle of copycat services

As anticipated, Apple’s “It’s show time” event was a shiny showcase outlining its plan to push away from reliance on hardware and devices and toward its already-lucrative services business.

The new services hit the Cupertino, CA stage in a kaleidoscope of mediums, including a news bundle encompassing 300 magazine subscriptions for just $10 per month, a full revamp of its Apple TV app that bundles multiple premium channels and streaming services into one place, and a new Netflix-style streamer of original programming called Apple Plus. In addition, Apple showed off its new gaming service, Apple Arcade and — because why not? — even a new fancy credit card tied to Apple Pay that’s made from titanium and backed by Goldman Sachs.

The newsstand subscription service (Apple News Plus), announced by Apple CEO Tim Cook Monday, counts the Toronto Star, La Presse, CTV News, Global News, and St. Joseph’s Press folio of magazines amongst its Canadian suppliers.

Apple News is available for free in Canada effective March 25, Apple News+ is available in Canada for $12.99 a month. Customers can sign up for a free one-month trial, and the plan automatically renews after the trial ends. To sign up for Apple News+, customers must update to iOS 12.2 or macOS 10.14.4. Through Family Sharing, up to six family members can share one Apple News+ subscription. – Sources: Digital Trends, Apple, CNBC

Telelatino group repurchases full control from Corus Entertainment

Three longstanding shareholders together with the President of Telelatino Network Inc. (TLN), have completed the buyback of the 50.5% interest in TLN acquired initially by Corus Entertainment Inc. Going forward, the company will officially is to be known as TLN Media Group.

TLN President Aldo Di Felice stated, “With this consolidation, we have created ownership certainty and can focus on the future development of ethnic media in Canada. The Di Battista, Rosati and Joseph Vitale families are well known for their business success, community involvement, and charitable efforts. They were early investors in TLN and have remained committed supporters for three decades. I am pleased to partner with them and continue to develop TLN Media Group into an even more influential Canadian independent multicultural media organization. We are proud to be serving ethno-culturally diverse communities and Canadians at large. Bridging cultures and communities has always been our strength. Now more than ever we intend to play a growing role in the development of Canada’s multicultural society."

An unverified source pegs the buyback at $19M.

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