Media Beat
Media Beat

Media Beat: February 25, 2021

What was said

The last two radio stations that I worked for ended in mind-numbing, soul crushing and heartbreaking experiences. My best experience was Rogers at CFTR, CKJD PD and back at CFTR. The exit from radio at Rogers was the least painful as they supported my shift from on-air and music director to I.T. manager of the Rogers group of stations. After leaving Rogers, there was a large gap of time as I ventured into the I.T. world and one day had the wonderful opportunity to join the launch team at Vinyl 95.3 in Hamilton to do weekends. We had Bob Magee, Colleen Rusholme, John Novak, Gord James, and Derek Bolduc with Jim McCourtie, our P.D. We had a kick ass mix and FM signal that reached well into Toronto and our Digital FM signal was astounding to listen to in cars. A corporate decision to consolidate formats and playlists at all the Corus Stations brought one of the best "Greatest Hits" radio stations to an end as we were still growing. I figured that was my end in radio until this recent opportunity to do weekend mornings at WSRQ came by. I'm told our weekend ratings were great, but again I am off the air. This must be the definition of addiction because even after the crushing pain of dismissal I always seem to go for the bait when it presents itself. – Bob Saint, Facebook

Will I ever learn? Realize this is the new landscape? Probably not.

Hopefully I will find an online solution if another radio opportunity does not present itself.... but for now, I am going to get my hips and knees rebuilt and give them records a rest.

OverActive Media to build $500M eSports, entertainment venue in Toronto

Announced Monday morning by OverActive Media — the Toronto-based ownership group of esports teams Toronto Defiant, Toronto Ultra and MAD Lions — a new $500-million, 7,000-seat entertainment facility is slated to be erected on the Exhibition grounds in Toronto, with an expected completion date of 2025. – Steve Loung, Sportsnet

Top doctor says vaccines could allow toughest restrictions to lift before September

Canada’s chief public health officer says she thinks the need for massive lockdowns could be over before the end of summer, but Dr. Theresa Tam says some of the more personal measures, like wearing masks and limiting close contact outside our households, may be with us longer. – BNN Bloomberg

Facebook to invest $1B in news business after Australia dispute

The social media company added it was in active negotiations with news publishers in Germany and France for a deal to pay for content for its news product, where users can find headlines and stories next to a personalised news feed. – Al Jazeera

Facebook exploring potential news licensing agreements in Canada

Facebook Inc is exploring potential licensing agreements in the coming year with Canadian media outlets and expanding its investment in local journalism initiatives, a source familiar with the company's thinking said on Wednesday. – Reuters

India to regulate social media, OTT & digital news platforms

Under the new Information Technology (Guidelines for Intermediaries and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021, the government plans to mandate social media companies like Facebook and Twitter to erase contentious content as early as possible, but not later than 36 hours, after a government or legal order. – Rahul M, Yahoo News

Thousands of contracts highlight quiet ties between Big Tech and U.S. military

Newly published research from the technology accountability non-profit Tech Inquiry reveals that the Department of Defense and federal law enforcement agencies including Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the FBI, the Drug Enforcement Agency and the Federal Bureau of Prisons, have secured thousands of deals with Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Dell, IBM, Hewlett Packard and even Facebook that have not been previously reported.

The analysis includes contracts from two agencies under the Department of Homeland Security that aren’t law-enforcement related, specifically U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and the Science and Technology Directorate.

Google Cloud spokesperson Ted Ladd said in a statement that the company is proud to work with many federal agencies across the U.S. government. – April Glaser, NBC News

Global military expenditures: in US dollars

The top 15 military spenders in the world in 2019 (latest figures available) were the same as those in 2018, but there were some significant changes in the rankings among the highest spenders. Together, the top 15 countries spent $1553 billion in 2019, accounting for 81 percent of global military expenditure. All but three countries in the top 15 had higher military expenditure in 2019 than in 2010. The exceptions were the United States (–15 per cent), the United Kingdom (–15 percent) and Italy (–11 percent). China’s increase (85 percent) was by far the largest among the top 15. Among the top 15 military spenders in 2019, Japan had the lowest military burden: it devoted only 0.9 percent of its GDP to military expenditure. Saudi Arabia had the highest, 8.0 percent. Among the top 15, the military burdens of Israel (5.3 percent), Russia (3.9 percent), the USA (3.4 percent), South Korea (2.7 percent) and India (2.4 percent) were also higher than the global military burden. Canada ranked 14th on the list, spending $22.2B or 1.3 percent of GDP.

With military expenditure of $732 billion, the USA remained by far the largest spender in the world in 2019, accounting for 38 percent of global military spending. The USA spent almost as much on its military in 2019 as the next 10 highest spenders combined. US military expenditure was 5.3 percent higher in 2019 than in 2018. This is the second year of growth in US military spending following seven years of continuous decline—between 2010 and 2017 spending fell by 22 percent.

The growth in the USA’s military spending between 2017 and 2019 can be attributed to an increase in personnel costs from the recruitment of 16,000 additional military personnel and the ongoing modernization of its conventional and nuclear weapon inventories. However, despite the recent increases, US military expenditure in 2019 remained 15 percent lower than its peak in 2010. – Nan Tian, Alexandra Kuimova, Diego Lopes Da Silva, Pieter D. Wezeman & Simeon T. Wezeman, Sipri

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