Last Sunday, I spent Jesus's apparent day -- for the first time in nine weeks -- without Breaking Bad. Without Walter White or any of his tics, tendencies, or tacky style. Unlike most who watched Bad, I liked Walter White all the way. I liked him at the beginning, I liked him at the end, and I liked him at his worst.
It's a nice theory to embrace for those outside of the U.S. as it reinforces a vision of Americans as insular and frightened of the world when other nations' TV schedules are often a little more pluralistic. It also means that when non-American productions fail in the U.S. market it can be blamed on American xenophobia, as opposed to any weakness in the production itself.
It's no wonder that studios, videogame companies, and large brand-holders are beginning to realize that an investment in an intellectual property must have a return from multiple media platforms. Hollywood's most influential players have taken notice with directors like Peter Jackson and James Cameron embracing transmedia.
A recent study by Nielsen shows that advertisers, big and small, are turning to the Internet to push their brands. Though many respondents said they still plan to use online advertising for direct response, more and more are spending money on digital brand advertising to promote their company, product or service.
Tuesday marks the opening of another critical public hearing at the CRTC. It will be considering applications to expand the mandatory distribution of channels on the basic TV service. But, bottom line, if our own federal government refuses to kick in a few more million a year to show just how important Canadian culture is, then why should the rest of us?
On Friday, the puppet poultry establishment, Chick-fil-a, released another statement opposing same-sex marriage, this one printed on Mike Huckabee's website. Honestly... you're a chicken store. You sell undercooked squawk. Nobody cares what you think about gay marriage so stop shoving it down our throats.
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.
There's a thread running through today's news broadcasting -- that to one extent or another, the big three of Canadian TV news are captives of the teleprompters which sits in front of their cameras and shows them the words they're paid a lot of money to read at us. Here's a summer report card of how they're doing.
We stand on the verge of another sure to be historical event. The thousands who gathered in the streets to wave the flags and scream and shout, this tradition that started with a great street party on St. Clair in Toronto in 1982, it was all a result of what people saw on TV. Soccer is now regarded as a valuable sports property. But all of this came from very humble beginnings.
A former CBC colleague-turned-journalism professor very politely questions the ethics of my writing this column for HuffPost. Surely, he suggests delicately, the internet in general -- and aggregators like HuffPost in particular -- are killing traditional mainstream, general-interest journalism. And, in the process, seriously damaging democracy. My reply...?