There was a time, not so long ago, in Canada when we depended on the editorial decisions of a few at the hub of a few daily newspapers and a couple of television stations, notably the CBC and its rival CTV. Rapidly, these sources are becoming like rotary landline telephones. Sure there are people who use them, but with each obituary, they become fewer.
Finding a new host for The National should not be the CBC's main goal. CBC should address the fact that neither The National nor any other CBC news program is trusted very much by the public. The content of CBC News programs is just like programming at mainstream media, and the public doesn't like either.
My advice to CBC brass is to not pick a replacement for Mansbridge just yet, but go back to the drawing board and see if they can design a new way to report the news that will address real journalistic concerns facing the nation, rather than simply reapplying lipstick to a format that needs to be retired along with its icon.
It's that time of year again, when critics, reviewers, amateur enthusiasts of all things aural pull tiny muscles in their large heads compiling and posting for public consumption their lists of Top Albums of the Year. A female friend once pointed out that these oftentimes inane lists are (strangely, suspiciously) almost always the domain of men. We demand demarcation. We want to know. We need to know.
Dear Ms. Heather Conway, In less than two weeks you will be taking over one of the toughest jobs in Canadian broadcasting. Actually, one of the toughest jobs in Canada. Seems you have every qualification necessary to restore the CBC to its former glory as the people's network -- the epitome, the embodiment, of public service.
You wouldn't ever want to answer your front door to find Wendy Mesley holding a microphone there -- right next to a CBC camera flashing its little red light. Last Sunday, some of the old pre-perky Mesley came back. The following is the last part of of Mesley's interview with Jacques Duchesneau, the former Montreal police chief.
What the hell has happened to Canadian journalists? In Canada, one of the world's most multicultural nations, our main media are controlled by a tiny group of almost entirely white newsroom decision makers who live in a world cut off from ordinary people like you and me. One result of this is that they produce journalism for each other.
Kimberly Gale used to live near the Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant that part-melted down a year ago. She just talks to the camera, sometimes her words covered with quake footage. No script. Just Gale. And somehow, because she's thinking aloud and not merely reading, her report captures a little of the human meaning of the tragedy.