Media Beat
Media Beat

Media Beat, Jan. 03, 2022

Terry DiMonte’s recent pre-Christmas chat with the PM

Liberals to introduce bill forcing online giants to compensate news outlets

The mandate letter to Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez, issued by the PM, also directs him to 'modernize' the CBC.

The letter outlines 18 tasks for Rodriguez but tells him that his “immediate focus will be to ensure artists and cultural industries have the supports they need to recover from the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic.” – Anja Karadeglija, Saskatoon StarPhoenix

The Star’s half-century One Yonge St. digs to be moved

Designers say cubicles and serried desks are out, with space devoted instead to internal “neighbourhoods,” where teamwork can be done more flexibly. Hot-desking — sharing them — is a concept that has not gone over well, from the anecdotal stories I’m hearing. We still want our own designated work spot: don’t take my chair. It will become necessary, however, to blend those working at the office with those working remotely. We’ve generally got the hang of this already, even those of us who are tech-dolts.

On-site bars — recreational niches — will also be a thing, according to some designers. From water cooler to Cosmos and Negronis on tap at 410 Front St. W., the Star’s new address (I think)?

For some, that will take us back to where we started — with a bottle in the desk and a glass raised after deadline witching hour. – Rosie DiManno, The Star

Canadian Internet defamation rulings

Introduction

This Cyber Libel Cases section is a listing of Canadian court decisions involving the publication of allegedly defamation expression via the Internet.

This list is not exhaustive: (a) court rulings are not always reduced to writing; (b) the law reports and electronic databases do not contain all written court rulings; and (c) jury verdicts are not published in the law reports or in electronic legal databases.

The Canadian Internet defamation decisions are currently indexed under the following topic headings:

Jurisdiction
Notice of Intended Action
Limitations Defences
Defamation Damage Awards
Substantive Defences
Pre-Trial Injunctions
Anonymous Defendants
Miscellaneous Cyber Libel Issues

As new Canadian Court rulings are pronounced and listed on this page, new topic headings may be added.

Under each topic heading, the Canadian decisions are listed in reverse chronological order (i.e. the most recent decision is listed first).

Wherever possible, a hypertext link is provided to the full text of a Canadian decision. A link will in most cases lead to a free, publicly-accessible website.

In a few instances, the link is not to another website but to an Adobe Acrobat version of the judgment stored on this website.

A number of decisions have no link. Most are from the Ontario Superior Court of Justice which does not display its decisions on its website.

Most of the Canadian decisions which pre-date April 1, 2004 are discussed in Roger D. McConchie and David A. Potts, Canadian Libel and Slander Actions (Toronto: Irwin Law, 2004). References to relevant pages in the book are given below. – mcconchie law corp

Stash of old CBC recordings to be digitized

When the CBC was moving into its current headquarters at 700 Hamilton St. in downtown Vancouver in 1973, Alf Spence heard they were pitching old reel-to-reel tapes.

But Spence thought they had cultural value — and as a CBC recording engineer, had recorded some of them himself. So he went to the dumpster, dug them out, and took them home.

Many appear to be tapes of old LPs or radio shows, like an 11-part BBC series on the Beatles from 1971.

But others appear to be unique live recordings, such as Ella Fitzgerald at the Cave nightclub in 1968, Jack Benny at the PNE’s Exhibition Gardens in 1943, and jazz trombonist and singer Jack Teagarden at the Orpheum in 1958.

Naturally, there are lots of local performers, including five tapes of jazz pianist Chris Gage, nine tapes of local Dixieland bandleader Lance Harrison, and even a tape of the Kitsilano Boys Band in 1953. – John Mackie, Vancouver Sun

Media watchdog says 45 journalists killed in 2021

The International Federation of Journalists says it was ‘one of the lowest death tolls’ it had recorded for any year.

The IFJ added that media workers “more often than not are killed for exposing corruption, crime and abuse of power in their communities, cities and countries”.

Looking at the tally regionally, Asia Pacific was the deadliest, with 20 killings. The Americas followed as the second deadliest with 10. In third place was Africa with eight.

Europe had six journalists killed, while the Middle East and Arab countries had just one. – Al Jazeera

How Ted Koppel’s trip to ‘Mayberry’ turned into one of 2021’s most striking moments of TV

The veteran newsman and “CBS Sunday Morning” contributor explains how a seeming puff piece about “The Andy Griffith Show” turned into an unsettling snapshot of an angry America. – Emily Yahr, The Washington Post

7 biggest media stories that shaped 2021, from TikTok’s explosion to Ozy Media’s collapse

In 2021, the media landscape was transformed by the ongoing uncertainty as the pandemic dragged into its second year. While some in the digital advertising and publishing business celebrated record quarters in growth and revenue, others have been challenged in the second half of the year with workforce demands and a squeezed supply chain.

“Q4 2020 was a relative bright spot for the ad market last year, with heavy spending on political campaigns and a general return to spending after cutbacks early on in the pandemic. The strong Q4 last year makes for a tougher comparison than the previous two quarters,” Peter Vahle, senior forecasting analyst at Insider Intelligence, told TheWrap.

In the case of Ozy Media, the struggle was due to reasons other than economics, as the Silicon Valley startup sustained reports about its troubling business practices. Facebook, now Meta, found itself in a similar position after a series of exposés by The Wall Street Journal exposed the company’s research on its products’ harmful effects and led to congressional hearings and calls for more regulation. More than a dozen additional outlets piled on with nearly 100 stories based on leaked internal documents from whistleblower Frances Haugen.

This year was also marked by fierce competition and more attempts to consolidate in the media and publishing sector. As ad giants like Facebook and Google continue to gobble up most of the revenue in the digital market, smaller publishers and news companies from BuzzFeed to Vox are going public (often via SPAC) or seeking mergers to stay competitive. BuzzFeed, in particular, took the leap to become the first publicly traded digital media company — and many of its rivals are curious how that is going to pan out.

Here are some of the major stories that have shaped the media industry this year. – Antoinette Siu, The Wrap

The five biggest US media stories of 2021

It was a busy year for the news media in 2021, as the industry moved past the Trump era while not escaping the Covid-19 pandemic.

Most news organizations dealt with a post-Trump slump in ratings and traffic, while a few saw their fortunes soar.

It was also a busy year for media deals and mergers.

Here are the five biggest stories… – Dominick Mastrangelo, The Hill

INTERACTIVITY: Advertising’s hidden enemy

The Ad Contrarian’s Bob Hoffman first posted this column as a LinkedIn article recently.

The advertising and marketing industries had a dream. The dream was that interactive media would revolutionize advertising and make it far more engaging, relevant, and effective. There's been one problem. Nobody's interested in interacting with advertising. In fact, one of the great benefits that interactivity has to consumers is that it helps them avoid advertising.

Historically, interactivity has been the enemy of advertising. Radio advertising became less effective with the invention of the car push-button radio. As soon as an ad came on people interacted. TV advertising became less effective with the invention of the remote. It was a lot more effective when people had to drag their ass off the sofa to change the channel. Today the ability to click away, or scroll past a display ad, or the ability to click "skip ad" on YouTube is a pleasure for consumers and a toothache for advertisers. Interactivity helps people avoid advertising.

Click-through rates on display ads continue to drop. By most reports, they are below one in a thousand. Every attempt at “interactive” TV has been a dismal failure. YouTube has billions of ostensibly "viral" videos. The overwhelming majority of which have never been viewed by anyone but the creator’s mom.

Of course, we never hear or read about any of this. The narratives we are exposed to about marketing activities and the beliefs we have in the success of these activities are profoundly skewed by the bias toward trumpeting success, not failure. Who wants to reveal themselves for the bewildered bumblers they are? Not me. It's wise to be forthcoming about your successes and circumspect about your failures.

This leads to a form of "selection bias" -- an error of logic in which people draw conclusions based on exposure to horribly skewed information. As someone who has a moderately successful newsletter, I can tell you I've been pitched about a million success stories and not a single failure.

For every success story we are exposed to in the trade press, at conferences, or in the business section of the newspaper, there are a thousand untold non-successes we don't read or hear about. These are the non-spectacular stories, created in non-spectacular fashion, by non-spectacular brands. In other words, they are about 99% of everything that happens in marketing.

What marketers seem unable to comprehend is that, at best, advertising is a minor annoyance. It is pretty clear that most people are willing to go to substantial lengths to avoid it. Streaming video now constitutes almost 1/3 of all TV viewing. Much of it costs people up to $100 a year, but part of the value proposition is that it's largely ad-free.

Easy interaction with a medium is not an advertiser's friend. But there is apparently no end to marketers' ability to delude themselves. And also, no end to ad hustlers' willingness to feed these delusions.

There are a few exceptions. Happily, there are some very talented people in advertising who can create ads that are so interesting, beautiful, or funny that people will not try to avoid them. Unhappily, there ain't many of them.

For the most part, the only way to get most people to pay attention to your advertising message is to force them to do it. This is why social media marketing - which started life with a utopian vision of free “sharing” and “conversations” - quickly evolved into traditional paid advertising. Mr. Zuckerberg thanks you.

The lovely fantasy of online advertising -- in which the same person who was frantically clicking her remote to escape from TV advertising was going to merrily click her mouse to interact with online advertising -- is going to go down as one of the great marketing delusions of all time. It has been undermined by an unfortunate fact of nature -- no one in his right mind volunteers for advertising.

By a factor of about a thousand to one, people who can interact with media do so to avoid advertising -- not engage with it.

You’ve been misquoting these inspiring phrases your whole life

Do all those inspirational quotes we see for #MotivationMonday or #WidsomWednesday really exist? And were they really said by the people we are so quick to believe said them? Yes and no. –  Lydia Dishman, Fast Company

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