Media Beat
Media Beat

Media Beat: May 27, 2019

Canada’s media retrenching

Canadian media companies and their employees continue to seek ways to survive the effects of a digital world that is sweeping their traditional platforms like janitors with their last subway to catch.

On Thursday, Bell Media, which owns the CTV Television Network, announced it was cutting positions at stations in five provinces–Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, and Quebec.

The union representing staff at CTV News said the restructuring will result in a net reduction of staffing.

Just how many jobs is unclear.

Scott Henderson, vice-president for Communications at Bell Media, said Thursday CTV was “expanding our digital news presence with new hires nationally and significant investment in training and equipment."

Bell’s announcement came a day after The Globe and Mail told its employees that it wants to cut $10 million a year from its operating budget and was offering a voluntary severance program. – Terry Haig, RCI

In the digital age, Canada faces an existential crisis with our public broadcaster

Has the political will that was born in the 1930s, and endured through every ensuing challenge, evaporated? The conservative party of Stephen Harper imposed a withering 10-year drought for the CBC, during which time the CBC itself seemed to lose a sense of clear purpose; the Liberals seem dazzled with digital, and the NDP has been muted. The issue seems dormant in Ottawa, but I think still survives in the core DNA of mainstream Conservatives, Liberals and social democrats, and that vision can be revived with clear-eyed leadership and an understanding of our peril.

We are facing the strongest challenge in a century to our national communications and culture. – Mark Starowicz, The Globe and Mail

Vancouver industry to celebrate Jason Botchford, Ed Jurak

Longtime local broadcast engineer Ed Jurak and sports broadcaster Jason Botchford separately will be remembered in celebrations of life next month. Jurak was 75, and Botchford 48 when he succumbed to a heart attack. – Puget Sound Radio

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