As the BBC approaches its 100th anniversary, the venerable broadcaster is in a pitched battle for its future. The Canadian experience provides a lesson on how not to fund the BBC. Canada abandoned the licence fee in the 1950s on the premise that TV was too expensive to be funded by individual households.
Bloggers' contributions can be extremely important to a news story. But before their information can be used it has to be checked by professionals. Only then, only if the information proves to be correct, can it be trusted and used. But times are tough. Newsrooms around the nation are being cut to the bone. Does that mean citizen bloggers who charge nothing are moving in, taking jobs away from the salaried professionals?
Rex Murphy helped shape the way I think. He was a shining example of the type of strong rhetorician that this country rarely produces. Now, he openly deals in hateful diatribes cast down from the pages of the National Post. This means he has become what his critics have incorrectly accused him of being all along: a shallow, reactionary demagogue. And his latest piece will only prove them right.
Google Rob Ford and you're met with the latest on the "Crackgate Scandal." In what can only be described as a whirlwind of chaos, Toronto's Mayor is in the news again with another bizarre allegation. What needs to happen next is that the Mayor should address the allegations head-on then move on. What Toronto needs to do is start vetting potential Mayoral candidates for 2014 as Ford has made it clear that he'll be running again. When you honestly think about it, our standards are not that high when it comes to politicians; we need to raise the bar.
Once upon a time I wrote a book about being a journalist in the 21st century. I was leafing through its pages last evening, when I stopped at the chapter The Less Things Change... It's about my time, 50 years ago, working as reporter/anchor at a startup TV station in Zambia. The chapter starts by describing how we got our foreign news film back there in the 60s. Even after all these years, much is still the same.
By claiming that erecting a statue of George Orwell in front of the building of the BBC in central London is "too left-wing" an idea, BBC's general-director Mark Thompson is effectively saying that the fight against censorship, the fight for honesty and clarity, and Orwell's "sworn, downright detestation/Of every despotism in every nation," (fine, Lord Byron's words, but they still apply here) are effectively "left-wing" ideals.