Media Beat
Media Beat

Media Beat: August 28, 2019

Media's decline threatens democracy, Quebec hearings told

Hearings into the future of Quebec’s media kicked off Monday with a blunt warning democracy itself is at stake as more and more news organizations fade into the sunset for financial reasons.

But there were also complaints American web giants like Google and Facebook were not invited so they could be questioned about the millions in advertising revenues they gobble up on the backs of Quebec media without paying any taxes or royalties to content producers. – Philip Authier, Montreal Gazette

Canadian municipalities are lobbying federal government over digital content at libraries

Edmonton joins Toronto, Ottawa, Halifax, and several other municipalities who want the federal government to investigate the problems multinational publishers are posing for libraries when it comes to accessing digital content, particularly electronic books.

Experts say e-books cost libraries a higher amount than print books. – Fakina Baig, CBC News

CBC selects Triton Digital to power its podcast monetization strategy

With 11.4 million monthly downloads of their podcast content, CBC/Radio-Canada is truly considered to be one of the world’s leading podcasting publishers, and by using Triton’s Tap Ad Server, CBC/Radio-Canada will now offer dynamic ad insertion and enhanced targeting capabilities with parameters such as location, device, format, and genre. – Business Wire

‘It’s about time’ for Indigenous culture on children’s TV

Molly Mabray lives in the Denali region of Alaska, in the fictional village of Qyah, where her parents run the local trading post; her mother is also a bush pilot. Molly loves herring eggs and blueberries; she is super curious; has a dog, Suki; and a vlog, where she records videos about her Alaskan life. Molly is also Gwich’in, Koyukon and Dena’ina Athabascan – marking the first time the lead character of a national U.S. animated series is Indigenous, according to the team behind Molly of Denali. It’s also a first for CBC Kids, according to the public broadcaster. – Marsha Lederman, The Globe and Mail

Postmedia's employees should stand up to their right-wing bosses

Although there are many people to blame for the dangers Postmedia poses, including governments that stood by as it built its monopoly, responsibility now falls on their employees to take a stand and disrupt their far-right plans. – Davide Mastracci, National Observer

Where are all these weird anti Canadaland stories coming from?

You may not have noticed, but odd corners of the American press have been coming down hard on Canadaland. In the span of just over a week, three op-eds in three U.S. outlets have decried fake news as a pernicious force spreading around the globe, and pointed the finger at Canadaland (and me specifically) as among its purveyors. – Jaren Kerr, Canadaland

The media has become gossip, clickbait and punditry. This threatens democracy

We cannot sit by and allow corporations, billionaires, and demagogues to destroy the Fourth Estate. – Bernie Sanders, The Guardian

Bernie Sanders goes after Facebook, Google in plan to revive 'real journalism'

Sanders said, if elected, he would appoint officials who would enforce antitrust laws “against tech giants like Facebook and Google, to prevent them from using their enormous market power to cannibalize, bilk, and defund news organizations.”

“Their monopoly power has particularly harmed small, independent news outlets that do not have the corporate infrastructure to fight back.” – Brittany De Lea, Fox News

From Animal Farm to Catch-22: the most regrettable rejections in the history of publishing

Ah, the heyday of publishing – big desks, lots of cash, martini-soused three-hour lunches, trying to appease your government. That was the world in which TS Eliot, then a director of Faber and Faber, was living in 1944, when he rejected George Orwell’s Animal Farm for its criticism of Stalin, who was then Britain’s wartime ally. “We have no conviction,” Eliot wrote to Orwell, “that this is the right point of view from which to criticise the political situation at the present time.” He did, however, say he was “very sorry” to pass on it, as it would likely mean Orwell wouldn’t send them his next book – which would end up being a little novel called Nineteen Eighty-Four. – Sian Cain, The Guardian

Developer who started a church to worship AI indicted for stealing AI

The idea behind Anthony Levandowski’s religion is that one day — “not next week or next year” — sufficiently advanced artificial intelligence will be smarter than humans, and will effectively become a god. – Tristian Greene, TNW

Will the next pop music hit be completely AI generated?

Nothing is more human than creativity. Humans have the ability to think, process, and create original and beautiful poetry, literature, works of art, and music. In particular, music is a powerful art that is as core to the human experience as communicating. However, recently, artificial intelligence has increasingly been making headway into some of the more creative pursuits, and music in particular. While currently humans are only capable to create music from scratch, it’s becoming increasingly clear that AI is already serving as an augmented intelligent assistant. But in the near future, AI-powered systems might get enough power that they can create and perform entire compositions on their own. – Kathleen Walch, Forbes

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