Media Beat: June 30, 2022
CBC can keep its controversial branded content division, CRTC rules
The CRTC's decision comes despite its admission that it heard significant concerns from a host of experts, journalist unions and industry groups. – Christopher Nardi, National Post
TikTok under security scrutiny by FCC
A commissioner with the U.S. communications regulator is asking Apple and Google to consider banning TikTok from their app stores over data security concerns related to the Chinese-owned company.
Brendan Carr, a commissioner with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), has written a letter to the CEOs of both companies, alerting them that the wildly popular video-sharing app does not comply with the requirements of their app store policies.
"TikTok is not what it appears to be on the surface. It is not just an app for sharing funny videos or meme. That's the sheep's clothing," Carr said in the letter. "At its core, TikTok functions as a sophisticated surveillance tool that harvests extensive amounts of personal and sensitive data."
"It is clear that TikTok poses an unacceptable national security risk due to its extensive data harvesting being combined with Beijing's apparently unchecked access to that sensitive data." – Peter Evans, CBC News
‘Selective News avoidance’ a growing trend amongst consumers
This is a phrase we’ll be hearing more often. It comes from the newest edition of the annual Reuters Institute Digital News Report. While most people remain engaged and use the news regularly, many also increasingly choose to limit their exposure to it – or at least to certain types of news. There are a variety of reasons for doing so:
Young Thug and Gunna’s rap songs, social media posts generate criminal charges
Young Thug and Gunna are two of music’s most prolific, playful talents. Despite their mainstream rap stardom, they remain unafraid to shape-shift. For years now, by force of will and pure joy, they have kept the radio interesting.
On May 11 they were arrested and charged in Georgia’s Fulton County Superior Court with conspiracy to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. In an 88-page indictment, Fulton County district attorney Fani T. Willis portrayed Thug and Gunna as members of a criminal organization. The indictment argues that their music wasn’t a cover for their criminal actions but, in fact, their bedrock. Thug and Gunna maintained the “reputation, power, and territory” of their criminal organization, the DA alleges, “by the posting of messages, images, videos, and songs.” The indictment points to content posted on social media as evidence of real crime. It even includes screenshots of Instagram posts. – Amos Barshad, Wired
Radio still dominant audio experience in Australia
Despite changes to the audio environment over the last year, 86% of Australians age 12+ are reached by radio each month, and 37% are reached by podcasting each month, according to The Infinite Dial 2021 Australia, a comprehensive study of digital media behaviour released today by Edison Research.
Podcasting awareness is high, with 91% of Australians reporting being aware of podcasting, significantly higher than the 78% of those in the U.S. who are familiar with podcasting. Monthly listening to podcasts by Australians is almost equal to that of those in the U.S.: 37% of Australians age 12+ are monthly podcast listeners compared with 41% of those in the U.S. The same goes for weekly podcast listening: 26% of Australians age 12+ are weekly podcast listeners compared with 28% of those in the U.S.
Australians aged 12+ report spending over 12 hours per week listening to online audio. This includes listening to AM/FM/DAB+ Radio Stations online, streaming services and podcasts. In the last week, 42% have listened to Spotify, 16% to YouTube music, 8% to Apple Music, 5% to SoundCloud and 1% to Amazon Music. Listeners in Australia are more likely to listen to online audio streaming services in the car than listeners in the U.S. Thirty-nine percent of in-car listeners in Australia have listened to online streaming services compared to 31% of listeners in the U.S. – Edison Research
Duma moves forward on proposed law on banning foreign media
The lower house of Russia’s parliament on Wednesday approved the critical second reading of a proposed law that would allow the banning of foreign news media in response to other countries taking actions against Russian news outlets. – Jim Heintz, Associated Press
Cord-cutting has surged dramatically in the past three months
Undoubtedly related to the economic climate, the percentage of Americans who dropped their cable and satellite service has climbed steadily since March, surpassing 50% for the first time. The largest group – 63% – attribute the decision to the high costs of linear pay TV. Gen Z adults and young Millennials are the most likely to say they did it because they prefer the content on streaming services. What’s remarkable is that 23% of U.S. adults say they are actively considering the snip. This shift isn’t over by a long shot. – Civic Science newsletter