Russell Crowe as Roger Ailes in sensational new movie about the old Fox
Russell Crowe as Roger Ailes in sensational new movie about the old Fox

Media Beat: October 16, 2019

What Was Said

Spies Like Us

Anyone who's read John LeCarré's spy novels knows that in the UK there are two spy organizations - MI5 and MI6. MI5 is concerned with internal security, MI6 with foreign security. But there is a third spy agency called GCHQ, which is similar to the NSA here in the US.

The former Director of the GCHQ told an audience this week that, “The big revelation over the last couple of years has been not about government intelligence agencies, it’s been about the private sector. It is about the internet companies knowing more about me, you, everyone in the hall than any intelligence agency ever could or should know about us."

“This is truly dangerous. I think it’s a major threat to democracy and it’s uncontrollable.” – Bob Hoffman, The Ad Contrarian

Canada’s media ecosystem is in danger of buckling. Who’s to blame? What do the political parties plan?

Television and the news industry are “in a giant crisis, according to Richard Stursberg, a former broadcasting executive and the author of The Tangled Garden: A Canadian Cultural Manifesto for the Digital Age, published in April. “And the crisis is in large measure because [the Liberals] have allowed foreigners to come into the country and enjoy advantages that no Canadian company has in our own market.” – Simon Houpt, The Globe and Mail

Stingray adds 4K specialty channels in Germany

Canadian music service Stingray is partnering with German cable marketing organisation DNMG to provide three native 4K specialty TV channels, Stingray Festival, Stingray Hits, and Stingray Ambiance to its network operators in Germany.

There are currently more than 10M 4K televisions in the market, with 7M additional sets added per year. The partnership includes both free TV and pay rights for all channels. – Chris Forrester, Advanced Television

CBC suing Conservative Party for copyright breach creates volcanic backlash

The decision by CBC brass to take the Conservative Party of Canada to court for what it says is the 'unauthorized use of copyright-protected material' in an online campaign ad is not winning the pubcaster friends. It started first with two CBC reporters named in the court documents asking that their names be removed as co-plaintiffs in the suit. Brian Lilley in the Toronto Sun blasted the corp, opining that the claim “is not only bad optics, its a bad decision from a legal point of view” and both The Globe and Mail and National Post were critical of the decision and the interpretation of infringement versus fair dealing, citing Michael Geist as an expert source. Geist expounded his view on the matter in an opinion piece in the G&M and on his blog.

Meantime, the Conservative Party issued a statement, dismissing the case as “distraction in the final days of a tightly contested election” and making clear the litigation will be vigorously defended against. And Canadian lawyer, author, musician, political consultant, and commentator, Warren Kinsella didn’t mince words in a piece published, again, in the Toronto Sun, describing the CBC lawsuit against the Conservative Party as biased and that is one word the CBC doesn’t wish on itself in the middle of an election.

Sportsnet takes a drubbing over Hockey Night in Canada coverage

Montreal Gazette sports columnist Jack Todd came out six-guns blazing with a blistering attack of coverage offered by Sportsnet, TSN and, by default, CBC, in games coverage he perceives as biased in favour of the Maple Leafs. Summoning up his fury, Todd writes: "The Maple Leafs are stuffed down our throats 24/7 by the national media, including TSN. Even the print media are not entirely blameless: see last fall’s mind-bending headline: “Is Morgan Rielly greater than Orr?”

"This Leafs-centric system has distorted the entire system of broadcasting and coverage of NHL hockey in Canada. The long-term effects, I would argue, seriously undermine the NHL’s image in this country — as though NBC were to treat the New York Rangers as the only team in the U.S. and their opponents as a bunch of interchangeable generic teams."

Retribution for Roger Ailes in new Bombshell movie

Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman and Margot Robbie fight Fox News from the inside in the new trailer for Bombshell, the upcoming drama about the network and the sexual harassment accusations levelled against its founder, Roger Ailes. The film is set to open Dec. 20.

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