Its 2017: what case can be made for the Government to be in the broadcasting business, competing unfairly with the private sector? The CBC receives advertising and cable/satellite fees-fees greater than CTV and Global but this is not enough for the greedy CBC who also receive more than a billion dollars of your tax money. And now the new Trudeau Government has promised at least an additional $150 million dollars a year to this biased, wasteful government broadcaster. As is, Taxpayers continue to be hosed to the tune of about $100,000,000 (yes, 100 MILLION) of our taxes every 30 days with no CBC accountability to taxpayers as they continue with their biased news service serving only the extreme socialists and anti-Semitics. Wake up Canada!

cbcExposed continues to hear from confidential sources inside the CBC about the "scandal du jour" and we will continue to expose their reports of waste, abuse and bias while we protect our sources. We take joy in knowing CBC-HQ visits us daily to research our stories such as the CBC Sunshine List, ongoing scandals including the epic Dr. Leenen case against The Fifth Estate (the largest libel case ever awarded against the media in Canadian history) where no one at CBC was fired and taxpayers paid the award and legal costs for this CBC Libel action. Writers and filmmakers take note-this is a Perfect story for a Documentary!

cbcExposed continues to enjoy substantial visitors coming from Universities and Colleges across Canada who use us for research in debates, exams, etc. We ask students to please join us in this mission; you have the power to make a difference! And so can private broadcasters who we know are hurting from the dwindling Advertising revenue pool and the CBC taking money from that pool while also unfairly getting Tax subsidies money. It's time to stop being silent and start speaking up.

Our cbcExposed Twitter followers and frequent visitors to cbcExposed continue to motivate us to expose CBC’s abuse and waste of tax money as well as exposing their ongoing left wing bully-like news bias. Polls meanwhile show that Canadians favour selling the wasteful government owned media giant and to put our tax money to better use for all Canadians. The Liberals privatized Petro Canada and Air Canada; it’s time for the Trudeau Liberals to privatize the CBC, not give them more tax money.

What does it take for real change at the CBC? You! Our blog now contains a link to the Politicians contact info for you to make your voice heard. Act now and contact your MP, the Cabinet and Prime Minister ... tell them to stop wasting your money, and ... sell the CBC.

Friday, December 30, 2016

CBC Refuses CRA Request

CBC declines to turn over Panama Papers data to CRA 

News organization's spokesman says policy is to never reveal journalistic sources

The Canada Revenue Agency has formally asked the CBC to hand over offshore tax-haven data from the massive Panama Papers leak, but the news organization is refusing.

The commissioner of the agency, Andrew Treusch, sent an email on Friday to the president of the CBC asking for the data, saying the agency wants to begin work immediately on reviewing the information.

CBC spokesman Chuck Thompson said the corporation rebuffed a similar request from the CRA in 2013 for another massive cache of tax-haven data — and will do so again.

"Simply stated, CBC News does not reveal its sources and we're not about to start now as a result of this request," he said.

Earlier this year, the Panama Papers were made available electronically to CBC News and other select news organizations around the world, and stories about the contents began to appear this month. The blockbuster revelations are having serious political repercussions in some countries, while others are looking at ways to stop the wealthy from stashing cash offshore to avoid paying taxes.

Read the full story here.

Thursday, December 29, 2016

AARC in litigation with CBC

Dealing with addiction during adolescence is complex. Consequently, AARC’s program and its leadership have been the focus of public debate and criticism on occasion. Allegations regarding connections to other treatment programs, the qualifications of AARC’s staff, its unique treatment processes, access, cost and abuse can be found on both digital and in traditional media. These allegations were most notably covered in a Fifth Estate broadcast, aired by the CBC in February of 2009.

As a result of this broadcast, AARC is in litigation with the CBC, various CBC reporters and four ex-clients. AARC maintains that it has discredited all allegations of wrongdoing contained in the broadcast and is proceeding to trial against all parties to recover damages for the losses AARC has suffered as a result of the broadcast.

AARC’s accredited program is delivered through a strict governance model that employs independent oversight and written grievance procedures. AARC promptly addresses all allegations of wrongdoing, whether they are alleged to have occurred before or during treatment, by referral to the appropriate authorities. Allegations of criminal wrongdoing are immediately referred to the Calgary Police Service and the justice system.

Get the whole story here.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

CBC reporter made significant error ...

On November 10, Honest Reporting Canada liaised with senior editors at our public broadcaster calling on CBC Radio to broadcast an immediate on-air correction to remedy a significant error stated by reporter Nil Köksal in a report broadcast the day prior.

Reporting from Istanbul, Köksal erroneously stated the following: “… and an ominous response from the Middle East. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu saying a Trump presidency would effectively end the idea of a Palestinian state, but as they welcomed the political upset, ripples of the Trump reality were felt elsewhere around the world.”

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu did not make this statement that this CBC reporter wrongly attributed to him and he still supports a two state solution in solving the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians. Instead, Naftali Bennett, Israel’s education minister, did. Importantly, Bennett’s views do not represent official Israeli government policy.

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

CBC report unfair and one-sided

President-Elect Donald Trump’s appointment of David Friedman (pictured right) to serve as new U.S. Ambassador to Israel has been met with lots of news coverage in the mainstream media, much of it was myopic and was rife with hysteria, hyperbole, and doom & gloom scenarios.

Instead of informing listeners that many international Jewish organizations and Israeli politicians support his appointment, true to form, media outlets like the CBC cast his appointment as one which was met exclusively with derision.

On the evening of December 16, CBC Radio’s “World at Six” flagship program broadcast a report by Tom Parry which was unfair and one-sided in its depiction of Friedman’s appointment.

Read the full story here.

Friday, December 23, 2016

IS CBC breaking the law?



Would Netflix want to get into the newspaper business? I doubt it. Then, why is CBC so keen on competing with the print media with its online offerings? Is it breaking the law in doing so?

For more than 20 years CBC has offered an Internet website, cbc.ca, but in the past few years this effort has been accelerated. In its recently released strategic plan, called “A Space for Us All,” CBC was coy about its plans to compete with print media.

The CBC strategy calls for TV/radio to be the lowest priorities and Internet and “mobile” services to be given the highest priority ...

Stop the presses! CBC derives all its authority from the 1991 Broadcasting Act, which no where says CBC should be a content company. It should seek listeners and viewers by whatever means. But readers? The Act calls for CBC to operate licenced radio and TV services. By their nature some CBC Web-based services are not radio/TV and are unlicensed and, if they have a role (which they do in audio and video), should not be funded by taxpayers without their agreement. CBC is required by law to release data on the separated costs and revenues of its TV/radio services but has never released financial data on its digital services.

Read the full story here.

PS - The author Barry Kiefl is president of Canadian Media Research Inc., and a former director of research at CBC.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

CBC’s expanding digital presence has unfair advantage

As the parliamentary heritage committee wraps up an important study on the state and survival prospects of local media in Canada, CBC President and CEO Hubert Lacroix took aim at private media outlets who he says have used the committee’s hearings to “argue for a weaker public broadcaster.”

The heritage committee heard from 119 witnesses — representatives of media outlets, professors, union officials and Canadian Heritage staff, among many others. Several of those invited to testify — most recently, The Globe and Mail and Rebel Media — have urged committee members to “level the playing field” between the CBC and Canada’s struggling legacy media companies and new digital outlets.

The Globe’s publisher and CEO, Phillip Crawley, told committees members last week that CBC’s expanding digital presence — funded by tax dollars — and its use of digital advertising gives the public broadcaster an unfair competitive advantage. Crawley suggested the committee look to the United Kingdom, where the BBC is not allowed to accept digital advertising.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

CBC President Hubert Lacroix admits model broken

CBC president defends ad-free proposal, asks Ottawa for $400M to 'unshackle' broadcaster.

Hubert Lacroix thinks the CBC's business model is broken.

Hubert Lacroix: Broken means that even if the current federal government has reinvested $75 million for the first year and $150 million for the next four, those dollars do not allow us, over time, to actually fix the issues that are about ensuring that we can continue giving services to Canadians, as Canadians expect. We're not the only ones to feel that way. Every other conventional broadcaster feels the difficulty of ad revenues moving and of the digital transformation that we're all coping with.

Read the full interview here.

PS - where do YOU think the blame lies?

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

CBC’s pension ponzi scheme

The CBC budget for 2011 was $1.1 billion.

Teeth are being gnashed over the loss of staff and programming, but these cuts pale in comparison to the costs of propping up the CBC’s pension ponzi scheme. How will it fund its current pension solvency deficit of $801 million (2010), which is more than double the $382 million deficit the previous year?

The CBC pension is a mature plan with more retirees receiving money from the plan (9,066) than employees paying into the plan (8,086). Every employee fired from CBC increases the cash required from taxpayers to prop up a plan that is flawed by design.

In our analysis of the CBC pension plan, we discovered that employees invested only $68 million for the ACTRA buy-back but will get an estimated $461 million in additional retirement income.

Read the full story here.

Monday, December 19, 2016

CBC Pension Plan Flawed By Design

In 2010, CBC employees contributed $26.9 million to their pensions, but $51.2 million was added by taxpayers. While the split is supposed to be 50/50, CBC has chosen to ask taxpayers to fund the deficit without asking employees to contribute more.

Much of CBC’s pension problem can be attributed to a highly-controversial decision to allow “retroactive” pensions to employees who previously did not qualify for them. Under a program called “buy-backs,” starting in the early 2000s, members of the ACTRA union were allowed to purchase pension credits in the CBC plan, triggering a lucrative – but underfunded – guaranteed pension.

Read the full story here.

Friday, December 16, 2016

CBC Peter Mansbridge compared to Jian Ghomeshi

Linden MacIntyre has not been barred from appearing on CBC News Network this week despite an internal memo to the contrary.

Jennifer Harwood, managing editor of CBC News Network, sent a memo to some staff late Wednesday stating that interviews with MacIntyre on the network this week have been cancelled.

The memo said the move came about because of MacIntyre’s recent comments to the Globe and Mail comparing the workplace behaviour of Peter Mansbridge to that of ousted Q host Jian Ghomeshi.

In the Globe interview, MacIntyre said Ghomeshi was “allowed to bully and abuse people,” adding that “that’s the way it works, whether it’s Mansbridge, (Peter) Gzowski, whatever. They were not like shrinking violets, either.”

Read the full story here.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

CBC Should Apologize To Alberta MLA

Tom Kmiec, MP
Calgary Shepard

Please find below a copy of the letter I have sent to the CBC Ombudsman calling on the CBC to apologize to Alberta MLA Derek Fildebrandt following his unjust portrayal in a recent article.

Dear CBC Ombudsman,

I am writing to file a complaint about the journalistic content appearing on one of CBC’s platforms. Specifically, I would like to draw attention to a recent CBC.ca news article titled “Calgary anti-carbon tax rally draws about 800, including CPC leadership hopefuls” written by David Bell, which featured a photo of Wildrose MLA Derek Fildebrandt clipped from what seems to be a video, capturing him in a Nazi-styled salute.

Although this photo has since been replaced, and a correction issued regretting the error, I am appalled by the lack of standards that led to such a picture appearing on the CBC’s website. "

Read the full letter here.


Wednesday, December 14, 2016

CBC President Hubert Lacroix wants another $400 million dollars

The president of CBC/Radio Canada said a proposal to increase government funding to the public broadcaster and do away with ads would transform the organization, especially its television programming.

He said CBC will become a "completely different broadcaster."

In a November proposal submitted as part of the government's public consultation about the future of Canada content in a digital world, Lacroix proposed increasing funding to CBC by about $400 million to allow the broadcaster to completely do away with ads.

See the full story here.

PS - are you in favor of giving more tax dollars to the CBC?

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

CBC loses $1 million appeal

The CBC must pay one of the largest defamation penalties ever imposed on a Canadian media outlet after being denied its final avenue of appeal.
The Supreme Court of Canada announced Thursday that it will not hear the case. The top justices never give reasons for refusing to hear appeals.
Two years ago, the CBC was ordered to pay close to $1 million in damages to medical scientist Dr. Frans Leenen of the University of Ottawa because of a story that ran on the investigative program the fifth estate.
It was also told to pay another $200,000 in damages to a Toronto cardiologist, Dr. Martin Myers.
The two doctors had sued the CBC over a story about the safety of heart medication that had been broadcast in 1996.
They accused the investigative report of being malicious, unfair, defamatory and sensationalized.
Read the full story here.

Monday, December 12, 2016

Secret collusion between the CBC and Liberals

Tony Blair was the UK prime minister when Jean Chretien was Canada’s prime minister, so the two of them had many conversations.

Now Tony Blair’s senior aide, Alastair Campbell, has written his memoir, which includes a conversation between Blair and Chretien:

Blair “had a good time with Chretien, who told him the hilarious story of how Opposition leader Stockwell Day made a pledge that if three per cent of the population wanted a referendum on any issue, they could have it, so the Liberals got a TV station to organize a three per cent write-in campaign for Stockwell to change his first name to Doris. It really took off, to the point the Liberals even adopted ‘Que Sera Sera’ as their campaign song.”

What Campbell obviously didn’t know, is that that “TV station” was actually Canada’s state broadcaster, the CBC.

Read the full story here.

Friday, December 09, 2016

Document Compares CBC and BBC

The Liberal government is looking at the British Broadcasting Corporation as it examines the future of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, a newly-released document indicates.

The Canadian Heritage department, whose minister Melanie Joly is responsible for the CBC/Radio-Canada, produced a detailed comparison in April of the two public broadcasters.

The document, obtained under the Access to Information Act, compares the mandate, funding and governance of the CBC and BBC, and looks ahead to coming changes for both institutions.

Read the full story here.

Thursday, December 08, 2016

Kellie Leitch pledging to scrap CBC

Conservative leadership candidate Kellie Leitch is pledging to scrap the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, if elected prime minister.

Leitch made the announcement in a release Thursday, one day after leadership rival Maxime Bernier outlined his plan to “refocus” the mandate of the public broadcaster.

“The CBC doesn’t need to be reformed it needs to be dismantled,” Leitch said in the release.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, December 07, 2016

Irresponsible for CBC to explain the news rather than provide it

The CBC has been plastering bus stops and billboards with ads for its new television season, but the national broadcaster’s most important fall launch is not a scripted series about a family who runs a convenience store. It is a reimagining of a significant section of the news division, the most vital service the CBC ultimately provides to Canadians.

Coming this fall to CBC.ca is an opinion vertical, a space devoted exclusively to commentary and analysis of the day’s news.

As with almost anything the CBC tries, this shift has already drawn criticism. The most consistent has come from media circles, a variation on a common theme against most of CBC’s digital properties – that they have an unfair advantage over their competitors. With the sort of stable funding most media organizations can only dream of, the argument goes, the CBC’s ability to give both writers and advertisers a major national platform makes it much, much harder for smaller, independent news organizations to find a foothold, much less grow to stable size.

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Lots of reasons to take away CBC subsidy

As a subsidized CBC opinion-maker, you ask, what do I think of the CBC’s recent foray into subsidized opinion-making?

My corporate masters have grown increasingly vocal in their own right over the subsidized threat the CBC poses to our beloved industry. The latest skirmish is over the CBC’s recent expansion into the opinion business.

More important, the opinions it is now publishing online are delivered, not in the oral tradition of, say, At Issue, but in textual form — just like, well, like this. You will instantly grasp how this changes everything. It’s one thing for the CBC to be competing with the private broadcasters, as it has since time began, i.e. 1960. But now, heaven preserve us, it’s competing with the newspapers.

The main reason to cut off the CBC’s parliamentary grant is that the circumstances that once justified it have vanished. In the early days of television (and radio) it was technically impossible to charge viewers directly for the programs they watched, or to exclude those who did not. That left two possible sources of funds: either advertising, or the state.

With the advent of pay television, that argument began to dissolve. With the proliferation of first hundreds and now, thanks to the Internet, tens of thousands of video (and audio) sources, it has disappeared entirely.In its own interests, as much as those of the taxpayers, the CBC needs to move the bulk of its offerings (there can be exceptions) to a subscription model.

Read the full story here.

Monday, December 05, 2016

CBC Mourns Closure of Anti-Israel Organization

On November 27, CBC News.ca and CBC News Toronto, both produced news reports which effectively mourned the closure of an anti-Israel Palestinian organization in Toronto called Beit Zatoun, which recently gave a platform to a Holocaust denier.


Untold to CBC readers and viewers is that Beit Zatoun was an organization well known for its anti-Israel activism and which only several months ago, hosted Holocaust denier Ken O’Keefe, giving this notorious antisemitic hate-monger a platform.

Instead, CBC Journalist Laura Howells whitewashed Beit Zatoun as a “community space” known for its poetry, arts and culture, that was a “casualty” to a new development in the area.

Read the full story here.

Friday, December 02, 2016

CBC asks Ottawa for another $300 million

The Canadian Broadcasting Corp. has submitted a proposal to the federal government requesting $318 million in additional funding in order to allow the public broadcaster to move to an ad-free model.

Inspired by the British Broadcasting Corp., the CBC is also recommending that its funding level be “depoliticized” by tying its subsidy to its current five-year licence cycle, indexing it to inflation, and keeping it separate from election and government budget announcements.

Read the full story here.

Thursday, December 01, 2016

CBC’s answer to its privileged status

Here’s how thinking works in the upper echelons of the CBC.

Canada’s public broadcasting network has been under fire for months over its efforts to build a digital presence in direct competition with private newspapers and other media, which are struggling to survive in the face of remorseless technological change. The private operators maintain it’s unfair that the CBC gets generous subsidies to steal business from them. In a world of shifting readership habits and murderous competition, every penny of revenue is vital. The CBC, they note, already enjoys a federal subsidy of more than $1 billion a year, including a $150 million annual boost introduced by the Trudeau Liberals. Private operators, meanwhile, are hemorrhaging money as the strive to keep the wolf from the door.

The CBC’s response: Ask for even more money from the public purse.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Get CBC Out Of The Free Market

How a fawning show-biz interview with Ms. Streisand, an American global mega-star who is merely flogging her latest CD, came to be promoted as a “Canadian exclusive” on The National must boggle the minds of many Canadian nationalists.

On the other hand, the CBC thrives on the contradictions embedded in its corporate mandate, which is to make its services available “throughout Canada by the most appropriate and efficient means and as resources become available for the purpose.” Over the years, the government broadcaster has been able to parlay its public and private funding regimes into a hybrid dual-engine machine fuelled by billions in direct subsidy from federal taxpayers and billions more in advertising dollars out of the private broadcasting industry.

With $1.2-billion in direct government subsidies (2013) and $330-million in declining advertising revenue, the CBC is as far from being a “market-based” enterprise as an enterprise can get. As the corporation’s annual report makes clear, the CBC’s self-described “business model” is “not profit oriented and all sources of funds are used to fulfill its public broadcasting mandate.”

The CBC is a giant non-profit that plays at being a business, taking viewers/listeners and advertising dollars away from private broadcasters.

It is surely time to demolish the lumbering CBC corporate machine. Created almost a century ago, before television even existed and when there were few broadcast choices available due to technological limits, the CBC today operates in a world that has ceased to provide a reason for its existence.

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

CBC's Hubert Lacroix Justification Stuns Senators

Senators said they were stunned to hear the head of CBC justify the earnings of one of the broadcaster’s top executives based on the fact that she is a woman.

After questioning Hubert Lacroix about anchor Amanda Lang’s conflict of interest issues during a Senate communications committee hearing Tuesday, Conservative senator Don Plett asked about another CBC employee who may be in conflict of interest at work – Maryse Bertrand.

Plett said he read that Bertrand, who is the vice president of real estate services and legal services general counsel for the CBC, is also a director of Metro Richelieu as well as on the board of National Bank.

“$400,000 working for CBC, I would assume is a full-time job. If she’s making over $200,000 a year doing other work, how can she properly serve the Canadian public by doing her work in the real estate industry and as legal counsel for the CBC?” asked Plett.

Read the full story here.

Monday, November 28, 2016

CBC Doubles Down On Digital

The CBC is doubling-down on its digital offerings this fall, bringing the largest offering of original content for its online platforms to market, with nine new series.

The enhanced emphasis on digital originals is part of the pubcaster’s transition to becoming a digital-first company, a strategy that CBC president and CEO Hubert Lacroix spoke to at the University of British Columbia earlier this week.

The CBC/Radio-Canada currently sees 15 million visitors to its digital sites each month, according to Lacroix, an increase of three million over the previous year, with half of those people accessing content through their mobile devices.

At yesterday’s upfront presentation, Paul McGrath, director, digital content at CBC said the pubcaster is building out its digital content in a way that’s more similar to Netflix’s category model than TV and radio’s demographic-based one.

Read the full story here.

Friday, November 25, 2016

CBC reinterprets its mandate every few years in attempt to stay relevant

Conservative leadership candidate Maxime Bernier is promising to overhaul CBC/Radio-Canada – an institution he says “seems frozen in time” — by cutting hundreds of millions in funding, streamlining its mandate and getting it out of the advertising market.

Bernier says CBC/Radio-Canada “should stop doing three-quarters of what it still does” that private broadcasters are already doing, including running game shows and cooking programs, sports programming, music streaming and a website devoted to opinion journalism.

It also needs to stop “unfairly” competing with struggling private media in a shrinking advertising market, he says.

With a media landscape that now includes hundreds of channels and millions of sources of information and culture, “CBC/Radio-Canada seems frozen in time,” he said.

“It tries to occupy every niche, even though it doesn’t have and will never have the means to do so, with the result being lower-quality programming,” Bernier told reporters.

Bernier said that CBC/Radio-Canada, in an attempt to stay relevant, reinterprets its mandate every few years and simply moves from one crisis to another.

Read the full story here.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

CBC masquerading as a public broadcaster

The CBC/RC is a made-in-Canada solution for public broadcasting – currently a hybrid of public funding and private commercially-driven content. The CBC was created in 1936, and since then no other country as adopted our model.

Some have said that, if we throw more money at the CBC, we could fix the problem. That’s decidedly unlikely. At its last network licence renewal hearing before the CRTC, a very senior CBC executive described the CBC as “a publicly subsidized commercial broadcaster”. With that mentality, it’s clear that CBC’s senior management just doesn’t get it.

While elements of this new public broadcasting model may generate antagonism in certain predictable quarters, the existing English-language system has clearly failed and its television component is barely used by Anglophone households.

There is, however, no serious suggestion that public broadcasting no longer has a role to play in the national life of this country. But both of our official language communities deserve high quality public broadcasting services. To achieve this, we need to rebuild the English-language component to properly address the needs of contemporary Canada. — and it’s clear this cannot be done by a “publicly subsidized commercial”, “arm of the government” radio and television service masquerading as a public broadcaster.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Can CBC Separate Opinion From News?

Most newspaper commentary I’ve read about the CBC’s decision to start an opinion page has been pretty disapproving. Personally, I couldn’t be happier. The CBC is soaked through with opinion, from every story choice and placement to every meaningfully raised eyebrow, furrowed forehead or meaningful pause from a reporter or anchor.

Purveyors of journalism should strive hard to distinguish opinion from news even if they never will completely succeed. It’s a good thing that, at least implicitly, CBC is going to try. For if it does now formally have a place for opinion, that presumably means it will try harder to keep opinion out of those parts of its content it labels “news.”

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

CBC employees experiencing serious bullying, harassment, and workplace abuse

Following the April 2015 release of the Rubin Report, which detailed workplace abuse and institutional failures at CBC’s Q, many internal changes are being championed by the public broadcaster. Bullying awareness posters are plastered throughout the halls and every employee must take online training to help prevent bullying and harassment.

In media interviews, CBC executives and spokespeople assure the public that institutional changes are taking place.

But CANADALAND has learned of serious bullying, harassment, and workplace abuse complaints at the CBC, throughout its departments. Through conversations with over a dozen CBC employees, our investigation revealed that CBC Radio One, CBC TV Sports, and CBC human resources have all experienced, or are experiencing, allegations of workplace bullying and abuse.

Read the full story here.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Does CBC Unite Canada?

My relationship with the CBC as a listener ended about a decade ago when, during the course of a weekend’s air- time on Radio One, I heard veteran broadcaster Michael Enright make a series of crude anti-Irish jokes that might have provoked a few titters at an Orange Lodge, or been unremarkable banter in polite company almost a century ago, when Toronto was known as the Belfast of Canada.

I won’t bother unpacking the casual and time-honoured code that makes an Irish joke, by inference, a Catholic joke. There’s no point, since Enright has been quite forthright in his dislike of the Church, going back before the 1997 Globe and Mail article where he called it “the greatest criminal organization outside the mafia.” There’s probably some tortured back story here, as Enright went to the same private Catholic boys’ school I attended, but that’s also besides the point.

What is important is that there were thirteen million Catholics in Canada when Enright made his comment. One of the fondest refrains of the defenders of the CBC is that the national broadcaster “unites the country.” It’s a phrase used by Elizabeth May and the Green Party and by the Friends of Canadian Broadcasting, the interest group whose prime function is to refute attacks on the CBC in the public arena. It’s a strange institution that can “unite” a country by attacking the faith of over a third of its citizens ...

Read the full story here.

Friday, November 18, 2016

CBC involvement in amateur sports will be reduced

After losing NHL hockey to Rogers and suffering a shortfall in ratings and advertising for its other properties, the corporation announced deep cuts on Thursday afternoon. Decisions on which jobs will be lost won't be made for a few months, but sports is expected to take a huge hit.

The main reason is CBC's announcement that it is out of the pro sports business and will carry only those amateur sports that can either produce a profit or break even.

"CBC and Radio-Canada will no longer compete with private broadcasters for professional sports rights," Hubert Lacroix, president and CEO of CBC/Radio-Canada said in a statement. "We will also cover fewer events and fewer sports. In addition, our involvement in amateur sports will be reduced. We will only broadcast events that allow us to break even.

Read the full story here.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Is the CBC an Unbiased Source of Canadian News?

Canada’s state broadcaster’s best days are behind it.

Evan Solomon, another of the CBC’s larger-than-life personalities, was fired for a conflict of interest involving his side business as a broker of highbrow Canadian art.

If the reports by the Toronto Star are accurate, Solomon was fired for good reason.

They say he misused his position of power and trust as a prominent Ottawa political journalist, through his television show Power and Politics and radio program The House.

The CBC is supposed to be a trusted, unbiased and ethical source of Canadian news.

Many looked to Evan Solomon’s Power and Politics to break down the issues of the day and get past the political spin.

Solomon was widely viewed — and billed himself — as a tough but fair interviewer and a straight shooter.

In a statement, Solomon said he did not view his art business as a conflict with his political journalism and “never intentionally used my position at the CBC to promote the business.”

In fact, he disclosed the business to the CBC a few months ago.

But the CBC didn’t let him go until a reporter from another news organization pointed out to them why he was in a conflict-of-interest.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

The CBC continues to fail the people

There’s an old saying in journalism that you should never let yourself become the story. These days the CBC has failed too many times on that front.

The public broadcaster used taxpayer dollars to go to court to fight having to disclose documents to the information commissioner.

The Jian Ghomeshi saga is an HR, PR and management disaster — and that’s not including the alleged harm suffered by his accused.

CEO Hubert Lacroix apologized last year for claiming $30,000 in expenses to which he wasn’t entitled.

For an organization that’s supposed to be dedicated to talking about Canada and Canadians, Canada spends far too much time talking about it.

The CBC continues to fail the people it’s supposed to serve.

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Where are the Secret CBC documents

‘Secret’ CBC documents from board of directors meetings haven’t been made public since last August.

And it’s true. Since August 20 2015, the CBC has not published any agendas, minutes or documents prepared for its board of directors, which it normally does as part of its policy of proactive disclosure.

Both the federal election and the high-profile sexual assault trial of former CBC broadcaster Jian Ghomeshi have taken place since the CBC last published board documents.

Read the full story here.

Monday, November 14, 2016

CBC Radio 2 Ordered To Drop Ads

CRTC Orders CBC Radio 2 To Drop Ads: Could TV Be Next?

Here is the good news: the CRTC has ordered CBC/Radio-Canada to end paid advertising on Radio 2 and ICI Musique. The ban begins immediately.

The bad news is that CBC management still seems to think it was doing the right thing when it opened the two radio networks to commercial sponsorship three years ago, with the CRTC's wary approval.

A corporate spokesperson said Wednesday the withdrawal of permission shows "a lack of understanding about the reality of public broadcasting," and "does not help CBC/Radio-Canada serve Canadians."

Read the full story here.

Friday, November 11, 2016

CBC's The National Seems To Never Grow Up

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.

Weirdly, there is a debate happening among those nostalgic about the old dominion that was once Canada, about who should replace Mr. Mansbridge. When he took over the anchor desk, he was typical for the day -- a fatherly, authoritarian figure with a deep voice that could read us the tragedies and bad news of the day while reassuring us that all would be OK.

My view is that there is no longer be a need for a highly-paid person to read us the news headlines. We have it all at our fingertips -- on our smartphones, tablets and computers -- and through a number of platforms and outlets.

Mansbridge does not leave until July 1, 2017, so the mother corporation that is the CBC has plenty of time to rethink The National.

The National is like Peter Pan without the free spirit and mischief making. It seems to never grow up. Its managers are really the Lost Boys of the news game.

Read the full story here.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

CBC's long corporate metamorphosis

I worked at the CBC for nine years, from 2001 to the end of 2009 before I lost my job as a producer on the investigative unit due to budget cuts. I'd joined the CBC as an associate producer at The Fifth Estate and eventually worked at CBC News Sunday as a producer. I owe a lot to the CBC and had the pleasure of working with amazing people on great stories. I still have many friends who work there.

As a result, I saw the beginnings of the metamorphosis of the CBC that begat the Amanda Lang scandal. This change in the CBC's direction began under former CEO Robert Rabinovitch. In 2004, Rabinovitch appointed Richard Stursberg, a millionaire and former head of Telefilm Canada, as vice-president of English services. At the time, CBC English television was in a ratings slump, having been hammered by government cutbacks, competition from other channels and the Internet, as well as uninspired programming.

Stursberg brought a business approach to the CBC, which in practice translated into turning it into a private network backed with public funds.

The CBC was now run like any other textbook corporation, with union-busting embraced. Employee morale sank, stress levels rose, and dread over the constant reality of layoffs and cuts grew. Stursberg emerged as an unpopular if not openly despised figure.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

CBC president Hubert Lacroix wants you to pay more for TV

The CRTC is holding hearings into the future of Canadian television.

The idea is, let Canadians unbundle and just pay for what they want to subscribe to. Lots of Canadians think they already pay too much for their cable bills because they don't watch half the channels. Most of us see this as a way to pay less for TV.

Not CBC, they see this as a way to get you to pay more.

CBC president Hubert Lacroix, the guy who double-dipped on his expenses to the tune of near $30,000 (which he later repaid), now wants to double, triple or even quadruple dip into your pocket.

Lacroix told the CRTC that BDUs -- that would be broadcast distribution units, what most of us call cable and satellite companies -- should have to pay to carry local CBC stations.

Yes, you heard that right. The local CBC stations that you already pay for with the $1 billion-plus subsidy CBC gets each year should now cost you more on your cable bill.

But that's not all.

In addition to all the money Lacroix already picks from your pocket, and his proposal to be paid again for what CBC already gets paid to do, he wants another fund.

CBC is proposing the creation of the local news fund.

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, November 08, 2016

CBC will likely drift and decline for years to come

Early television suffered from a number of technological limitations. The relative scarcity of spectrum meant few channels were available. Signals could not be confined to those who had paid for them, so broadcasters financed their activities by selling advertising time. The result: a handful of networks all crowded around the middle of the road, offering the same, predictable fare, aiming to attract the broadest possible audience.

In such a world, there was a need for a public broadcaster, and for public regulation of the airwaves: ironically, to mimic the sort of diversity of offerings markets usually produce on their own. It was always a rough proxy, though: if advertising insulated television networks from its viewers — rather than selling programs to audiences, networks sold audiences to advertisers — so, in its own way, did public funding.

For a network like CBC that relied on both, it meant a constant quandary: should it aim, like the private networks, for the broadest possible audience, in pursuit of its “national unity” mandate — and, not incidentally, advertising dollars — or should it concentrate on smaller niche audiences, of a kind private networks were not interested in?

With the advent of first cable, then satellite, and finally pay television, however, all of this changed. There were now hundreds of channels, spectrum scarcity was no longer posing a constraint. And since broadcasters could now charge directly for their programs, every taste could be served, narrow or high. On the one hand, this meant there was no longer any case for public funding: the quality divide in television these days is not between public and private, but between pay channels and free. On the other hand, it offered the CBC a way out of its dilemma: converted to a pay channel, or perhaps a constellation of channels, it could concentrate on serving its audience, freed from dependence on either advertisers or politicians.

Increasingly, the CBC’s dilemma is indistinguishable from that facing the private networks, themselves suffering from a fragmented audience and a decline in television viewing.

So the likelihood is that the CBC will go on like this, drifting and declining for years to come. Like Canada Post, like Via Rail and the other stranded assets that litter the public sector, it will limp on, purposelessly, through successive “action plans” and “reinventions,” for no reason other than that no one can be bothered to do anything else — and because no one expects them to.

Read the full story in the National Post here.

Monday, November 07, 2016

CBC management incompetence is root problem

The long series of ill-formed, unaccountable decisions... makes it clear that an inexperienced, government-appointed president and board of directors is a root problem.

The past decade has seen a cornucopia of management incompetence.

CBC has announced a new strategy that could equal the 1992 disaster of moving The National. CBC is making Internet services the top priority and CBC TV the lowest. Radio, too, will be less important than Internet services.

The success of the new strategy will be judged primarily on an internal survey commissioned by CBC, not traditional audience measures from independent surveys.

CBC/SRC.ca's average moment audience for its Internet services, according to comScore, was about 10,000 people in a recent month. This is a small number considering there are 35 million people in Canada; it is in the realm of niche rather than mass media. It is worth mentioning that CBC Internet services are not start-ups, but have been around for 20 years. An hour can't go by without CBC radio and TV reminding you a dozen times to check out CBC.ca, yet the audience remains minuscule.

By comparison CBC English and French TV services, including news channels, had a combined average moment audience of over 500,000 viewers and CBC radio services had an average moment audience of almost 300,000 listeners, according to CRTC reports.

CBC viewers, listeners and readers may be engaged in different activities but these numerical differences are huge. Yet CBC is reducing the emphasis on established mass media, radio/TV, and increasing the focus on niche, digital media, which will compete with Internet behemoths like Facebook and YouTube.

Read the full story here.

Friday, November 04, 2016

Top CBC Official apologizes for harassment accusation

A top CBC official who called for a more respectful workplace has apologized for her own behaviour to one of her senior staff.

Heather Conway, executive vice-president of English Services for the public broadcaster, was recently accused of harassing Neil McEneaney, sources told the Star.

In the wake of McEneaney’s informal complaint, CBC has hired an outside firm to conduct a review of the conduct of senior managers including Conway.

McEneaney took issue with Conway’s behaviour in a meeting over the last two months. The Star was unable to get people at the meeting to describe what happened but sources familiar with it said Conway’s behaviour was “upsetting.” McEneaney made an informal complaint to CBC president Lacroix, sources told the Star.

Read the full story here.

Thursday, November 03, 2016

CBC claims to reach more millennials than Twitter

There was a lot of discussion about the problem, but not much in the way of big solutions during the first full day of the Public Broadcasters International conference in Montreal on Thursday, which host CBC/Radio-Canada is focusing exclusively on how public broadcasters can attract and engage a young audience while fulfilling their mandate.

One thing that CBC and Radio-Canada’s heads of digital showed during their presentation is that the problem with public broadcasters — and broadcasters in general — isn’t that they’re not reaching enough people, but that they’re not getting enough engagement from them. In fact, CBC reaches more millennials than Twitter, Snapchat and other major news sources, but Facebook and YouTube are “in a class by themselves” in terms of time spent, said Richard Kanee, head of digital for CBC.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, November 02, 2016

CBC President Hubert Lacroix was aware of Ghomeshi allegations

Fired over the Ghomeshi affair, a former senior executive is suing the CBC for more than $640,000, saying he was scapegoated and sacrificed in a face-saving effort by senior management.

Todd Spencer, 45, accuses the national broadcaster of blaming him for the public mess over former star host Jian Ghomeshi. Yet, top management – up to and including CBC president Hubert Lacroix – were “deeply involved with and aware of” the investigation that he and others carried out into allegations against Mr. Ghomeshi, he says.

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, November 01, 2016

CBC facing another lawsuit for wrongful dismissal

A former human resources executive for the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. has filed a wrongful dismissal suit against the broadcaster, alleging that senior HR staff conspired to fire her while she was on medical leave and that CEO Hubert Lacroix breached his duties in refusing to review the matter, according to court documents.

The suit is one of at least four pending cases against the CBC alleging wrongful dismissal, and reveals allegations of infighting in the HR department in the months following the revelations that several women had publicly accused former CBC star Jian Ghomeshi of sexual abuse and inappropriate workplace behaviour.

In three of the four wrongful dismissal cases pending against the CBC, the broadcaster is alleged to have either ignored or exacerbated health problems of its employees.

Read the full story here.

Monday, October 31, 2016

CEO of CBC Hubert Lacroix holds one of the top federal arts positions in Canada

Fact: every senior federal arts position in Canada is held by a francophone.

Telefilm Canada: Carolle Brabant, executive director; Michel Roy, chairman of the board

CBC/Radio-Canada: Hubert Lacroix

CRTC: Jean-Pierre Blais

Canada Council for the Arts: Simon Brault, director and CEO; Pierre Lassonde, chairman of the board

National Film Board of Canada: Claude Joli-Coeur

That’s a flush.

Add the federal heritage minister, Mélanie Joly, and the game starts to look rigged.

Read the full story here.

Friday, October 28, 2016

New CBC Tax Dollars Screws Private Media

New federal funding isn’t paying for journalists in the hinterlands. It’s further solidifying the Corp.’s dominance of the mobile news pie, to the loss of everyone.

Back in June 2014, when the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation lost the rights for Hockey Night in Canada, Canada’s private news media’s future was set, more or less, to “Screwed.”

The Ceeb was losing its fattest revenue vein and entering survival mode just as news reportage was migrating to smartphones from newspapers, televisions, radios and desktop computers. It was then, as the broadcaster looked to reinvent itself, that all of us should have demanded its mandate be revisited — for every other news organization’s sake.

Two years later, without that re-examination, the CBC’s future is healthy while its competitors in privately owned print news cling to life. The reason: the CBC’s wholesale migration to the mobile web, by way of which our tax dollars are underwriting print news (and now even newspaper-like opinion) for the price — zero — that most Canadians are willing to pay to read such stuff on their iPhones.

The new federal money isn’t saving the mythical, journalists-in-the-hinterlands CBC. It’s further solidifying the Corp.’s dominance of the Canadian mobile news pie, to the loss of everyone, including the non-broadcast newspapers and news websites, which are so vital to Canadian democracy. And, yes, that means Metro, too.

The CBC’s mandate was last revised in 1991. Unsurprisingly, the words “digital” and “online” don’t appear. Instead, the mandate notes the CBC “should provide radio and television services” (in other words, the “broadcast” part of CBC) and should deliver these services “by the most appropriate and efficient means.”

So when the CBC moves to increasingly monopolize the national, print-based smartphone audience, devaluing what the public thinks such news costs to produce, while simultaneously slashing regional newsrooms (in Edmonton and myriad other smaller markets, it’s a running joke that few hold the high-pay title of “reporter” any longer), I have to cry foul.

While other media struggle to find new ways to pay journalists, the CBC simply continues to lure talent with a publicly funded alternative.

Read the full story here.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

CBC top executives asked to defend perceived competition

CBC’s top executives were asked to defend the public broadcaster’s perceived competition with private media during a hearing of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage on Tuesday.

Asked about future new investments, particularly in local communities, Lacroix and English and French services heads Heather Conway and Louis Lalande were vague.

Conservative MP Peter Van Loan questioned the broadcaster’s programming choices, saying “some critics” believe the CBC “fails to be and should be more of a genuine public broadcaster” by broadcasting more Canadian art and documentaries, and fewer sitcoms and other entertainment programming that tries to “emulate mainstream broadcasters.” He also said “news is not a comfortable fit” with its mandate.

Even Liberal MP Seamus O’Regan, a former CTV broadcaster, questioned the CBC’s investments, particularly its plan to start commissioning online opinion pieces.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Reclaiming the English Language from the CBC

The concept of language as a kind of lens or filter, or even straitjacket, cannot be over-stated. Wittgenstein said that the limits of language are the limits of one's world.

By that token, bilingual or multilingual people have broader vision. It is not what we look at — poverty, injustice, overpopulation, environmental degradation — that is paramount. Rather, it is the linguistic construction built in to filter that reality, to bring it into sharp focus, or make us blind to it.

The question becomes then, whose lens are we wearing? What filter are we looking through? How do we remove it?

When the CBC boasts that the country is diverse we must counter by saying that it is culturally fragmented and without a moral compass. When the CBC says that immigration is the solution we have to demand that they prove that there is a problem. When the CBC states that the population of Newfoundland has stagnated we must declare that it has stabilized. And when they concede that the stratospheric rise of Vancouver property values and the consequent lack of affordable housing is driven by "offshore" buyers, we must insist that they call a spade a spade. It's Chinese buyers, Mother Corp.

We must, in other words, reclaim the English language. Standard, plain English that is, the one with the clear lens. Not CBC-Speak.

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Tax payer funded CBC offers meaningless politically correct mushiness

Issues such as man’s impact on climate change, bloated public sector salaries, union power, immigration, public sector debt, crippling of our economy through dumb policy decisions or inaction and content in our education system is so poorly covered in Canada from both sides of the aisle, if at all.

Whereas in the US, and quoting from the article below ” on almost any day of the year, year in year out, Fox News draws more viewers than CNN.

We are seeing a flight to quality. Non-Fox news fares poorly because it’s mediocre — timid, politically biased and untrustworthy.

Where is the Canadian equivalent of Fox News ?

In my opinion, it is unfortunately missing in our sea of left meaningless politically correct mushiness like CTV or tax payer funded CBC for more balanced reporting on such topics as the last federal election but also:

Read the full story here.

Monday, October 24, 2016

CBC employees overpaid and have questionable performance

News media is undergoing a rapid and beautiful process of creative destruction: digitalization means vastly lower costs, fewer barriers to entry, and a wider variety of competing options for consumers to enjoy. Amid this innovation and weeding out stands the too-big-to-fail albatross, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

Already costing taxpayers $1.04 billion in 2015 and facing rising competition, the CBC's fiscal burden is set to jump by $75 million in 2016 and $150 million in 2017. Regarding the higher price tag of the state broadcaster, Finance Minister Bill Morneau has deflected by saying that “believing in innovation is also believing in the talent and in the creativity of Canadians.” Apologists further contend this is necessary to save the CBC from "extinction."

That begs the question: if the CBC is growing obsolete and people favour other sources, ones that do not cost the taxpayer, how is that a bad thing?

The truth is that the CBC has become a gravy train for elites, with the backing of government unions. These elites have managed to persuade people that they are desperate and hard done by, while the average salary at the broadcaster is $100,528 per year. That is well into the top 10 per cent of all Canadian earners and 23 per cent more than the average earnings of a private-sector TV employee, even before the CBC's luxurious benefits.

Not only are CBC employees overpaid, their performance has been questionable.

While full privatization of the CBC would be ideal, legislators would do well to at least stop the bleeding. That would mean reining in the network to its limited mandate of radio and television, and not bowing to requests for more funding until that is realized.

Read the full story here.

Friday, October 21, 2016

CBC under attack - accused of being uber predator

The CBC came under attack Thursday by executives from legacy and new media, as a panel of MPs looking at how to address the crisis of dwindling revenues in the local news business held its latest meeting.

John Honderich, chair of Torstar Corp., pulled no punches, telling the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage “there is a crisis of declining good journalism across Canada and at this point we only see the situation getting worse.”

Honderich said The Toronto Star, his company’s flagship publication, will have 170 journalists in its newsroom at the end of this year, down from 470 ten years ago. He noted as an example careers advertising, which once brought in $75 million in revenue each year for the company, and now no longer exists as a revenue stream because of free online portals.

“While the CBC has done many wonderful things, it is important you know that, from my vantage point, it is not some wonderful, benevolent entity,” iPolitics publisher James Baxter told the panel of MPs. “It’s an uber-predator.”

“Because of the nature of its web content, the CBC is not competing with Huffington Post and CNN, but instead crushes the Globe and Mail, Postmedia and, yes, iPolitics.”

Read the full story here.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

CBC complaint quashed by Competition Bureau

The Competition Bureau has rejected a CBC complaint about an Olympic television partnership forged by Bell Globemedia and Rogers Communications.

In a news release yesterday, the bureau said the alliance, which plans to bid for the rights to the 2010 Vancouver Olympics and 2012 Olympic Games, does not violate the Competition Act.

"The bureau carefully examined the allegations and found no evidence to suggest that a Bell Globemedia-Rogers partnership would impair the CBC/Radio-Canada's ability to compete for the broadcasting rights," the bureau said.

The CBC filed its complaint in August after a Globe and Mail report revealed Globemedia and Rogers were planning to team up to bid for the television rights to the two Olympics.

The CBC argued that the alliance cornered the market on the two major sports networks -- TSN, owned by Globemedia, and Sportsnet, owned by Rogers. The CBC said the partnership denied it a major Olympic sports cable partner.

The CBC also said the Globemedia-Rogers deal raised issues under the abuse of dominance, mergers and criminal provisions of the act.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Why Was CBC Peter Mansbridge Permitted to Support the Mother Canada Project?

"I decided that you can't cover a controversy by being in one."

That's Peter Mansbridge's revelatory explanation as to why his name no longer appears -- after many months -- as an Honourary Patron of the controversial Never Forgotten war memorial proposed for Cape Breton Island.

Apart from the fact that this is one of the basic tenets of journalism -- along with get your facts right, and don't misspell someone's name -- it avoids answering the really important question in this whole fiasco.

What were CBC executives thinking when they gave Mansbridge permission to become an Honourary Patron of the Mother Canada project?

The very idea breaks CBC's very clear rules on preserving journalistic impartiality.

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

CBC Bungles Upcoming Rollout of Opinion Section

If anyone still thought CBC’s decision to launch an “Opinion site” next month was a good idea, an op-ed published by the CBC today should set her/him sober.

The hit piece—and yes, I’m aware this response is a hit piece as well, but at least it is published on my own independent blog, not paid for by taxpayers—entitled “Canadian Taxpayers Federation has 5 members—why should we care what they think?” was written by Dougald Lamont, a senior policy advisor for Liberal MP Robert-Falcon Ouellette.

Beginning the comedy of errors in this article’s encapsulation of why the CBC should not be in the business of telling us what to think, the public (de facto state propaganda) broadcaster described the Liberal MP’s staffer as “a lecturer in government and business relations at the University of Winnipeg and a long-time Liberal working in policy and communications.” This vague bio fails to disclose that Lamont works for a Liberal MP. CBC simply stating he is a “long-time Liberal working in policy and communications” does not suffice. Why not be crystal clear and put “former campaign director of communications and now senior policy advisor for Liberal MP Robert-Falcon Ouellette”?

Read the full article here.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Quebec Broadcasters Take Aim At CBC

CBC accused of using government funds to 'outpace' private counterparts.

A group of Quebec broadcasters has fired back at CBC/Radio-Canada president and CEO Hubert Lacroix over remarks made during an appearance at the University of British Columbia on Tuesday.

Groupe Serdy president and CEO Sébastien Arsenault, Groupe V Média president and CEO Maxime Rémillard, and TVA Group president and CEO Julie Tremblay released a joint statement Wednesday saying Lacroix had mischaracterized their position as a desire to keep the public broadcaster locked into the “status quo.”

The executives said they are actually advocating for a “thorough review” of CBC/Radio-Canada’s mandate as part of the review of Canada’s broadcast system announced by the Minister of Canadian Heritage.

The statement argued that if there is “no accountability” for an additional $675 million in government funding CBC/Radio-Canada is slated to receive, the “already precarious balance” between the public broadcaster and the rest of the industry “will be destroyed.”

The executives expressed concern the funding could amount to a “blank cheque” for CBC/Radio-Canada to step up its “already ferocious competition” against private broadcasters.

Read the full story here.

Friday, October 14, 2016

CBC being sued by gay Iranian refugee

A gay Iranian refugee living in Vancouver is suing the CBC, along with former CBC journalists Evan Solomon and Farid Haerinejad claiming they outed him in a documentary.

He claims the film Out in Iran: Inside Iran’s Secret Gay World ruined his life.

The 2007 documentary looks at the struggle for human rights of gay activists in Iran, and the climate of fear and violence perpetrated by the state.

The suit centres around a sequence filmed with a hidden camera in a Tehran food court in 2006 that was a hang out for gays and transgender people.

In the documentary, presenter Solomon can be heard stating “We keep our camera hidden, but Mani (a character in the film) has told the crowd that we’re there to film, and there’s group consent.”

On camera after the documentary finishes, Solomon says “And about the people you saw in that item, all of them agreed to show their faces on camera, fully aware of the potential consequences”

Farzam Dadashzadeh, who claims he appears in the film, denies both.

Farzam claims the content of the film, which includes images of homosexuals who had been lashed or hung by authorites, proves its makers were well aware of the consequences for Iranian gays. He alleges they put his life in danger by failing to get his consent.

The CBC say it’s aware of the suit, and considering its next steps.

Read the full story here.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Another lawsuit at CBC for wrongful dismissal

Canadian Broadcasting Corp. fired a senior human resources manager who was in psychological crisis brought about by the “toxic work environment” at the national broadcaster, according to her lawsuit for wrongful dismissal.

Days before she was dismissed last month, allegedly without cause or reasonable notice, Julia Evans, 37, was “experiencing severe bouts of stress, anxiety and depression as a direct result of a toxic work environment engendered by (the CBC).”

Five days after her termination, her doctor said she was “unfit to work” and “instructed her to remain off work as a result of her illness,” according to her statement of claim filed in Ontario Superior Court. She “remains under constant medical care.”

The lawsuit is the third major legal action for wrongful dismissal in the fallout from the Jian Ghomeshi affair and the independent inquiry into bullying and harassment at the CBC.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

CBC 1 Billion Subsidy Gives Unfair Advertising Advantage

Last month, the CBC announced that it has hired talented columnist Robyn Urback away from the National Post to set up an online “opinion vertical,” which sounds like a clearing house for hot takes.

The CBC is a creature of the Broadcasting Act, which was last updated in 1991, the same year the World Wide Web was created. In a strict reading of the act, the CBC has no business setting up an online hot-take factory, any more than it has the mandate to set up a national chain of poutine restaurants.

But MPs have not done their jobs and updated the act, and the previous government pushed the CBC to generate more of its own revenue. So managers have wandered into the internet with their gimlet eyes fixed on acquiring clicks.

In the YouTube era, fewer people are settling in to watch Peter Mansbridge deliver the news every night, and the corporation has to make itself relevent to Canadians if it wants to generate revenue and maintain public support.

So the CBC is offering clickbait.

Unlike the BBC, it sells ads on the internet and is moving aggressively to create web-only content, including opinion columns. The CBC tells me it will pay union scale — 55 cents a word — which will immediately make it a very desirable market for opinion typists.

For those of us trying to make our livings in the independent news business, this is worrying. It may be difficult to compete for ad sales and journalism talent with a news organization funded by taxpayers.

There has been a massive migration of advertising to Google and Facebook and a huge influx of venture capital to unsustainable digital startups, leading to an increasingly desperate struggle for a rapidly diminishing pool of advertising.

None of that is the CBC’s fault, but it’s a big player in that battle for ads, making it harder for newspapers to find a working revenue model.

Want to sell ads or hire a columnist? CBC can outbid you. Want to erect a paywall? Why should readers pay for your product if they can get free stories from the CBC?

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

History of CBC intimidation

Cheryl Eckstein senior, chief executive officer of the newly founded Compassionate Healthcare Network (CHN), has just learned how difficult it is to get out a pro-life message in the face of media opposition.

During a presentation on euthanasia to a parliamentary sub-committee in Ottawa last November, Mrs. Eckstein showed a brief clip from a CBC Fifth Estate programme. Her video clip was a portion of the German pre-war propaganda movie, I accuse, which she chose because of its direct application to the Sue Rodriguez case.

Ten days later, Mrs. Eckstein received a phone call from Kelly Crichton, executive producer at the Fifth Estate, who told her that she had not asked for permission to use the clip and that she had misrepresented the point of the documentary.

“She was contentious, and spoke very fast,” Mrs. Eckstein recalls. “I was to the point of tears when she told me that their lawyers would be contacting me.”

Although Mrs. Eckstein tried to explain to Ms. Crichton why she used the clip, she found that “Crichton was not interested in listening to me. She seemed determined to go on with her verbal battering, insisted that the matter was in the hands of their attorneys.”

In the Ottawa Sun, Peter Stockland wrote that Kelly Crichton “said she only wanted to impress on Eckstein that CBC does not permit ‘unauthorized’ use of its programs, and has a strict policy against their use for political purposes.”

On December 4, Liberal MP Don Boudria rose in the House of Commons to speak as a matter of privilege. Mr. Boudria contended that Kelly Crichton’s call to Cheryl Eckstein has breached the privileges of MPs who have the right to listen to any witness “without intimidation of anyone else.”

The implication of the phone call, Mr. Boudria said, was that the CBC was threatening to sue Mrs. Eckstein.

Read the full story here.

Friday, October 07, 2016

CBC Hubert Lacroix’s answer stuns Conservative senator

Senators said they were stunned to hear the head of CBC justify the earnings of one of the broadcaster’s top executives based on the fact that she is a woman.

After questioning Hubert Lacroix about anchor Amanda Lang’s conflict of interest issues during a Senate communications committee hearing Tuesday, Conservative senator Don Plett asked about another CBC employee who may be in conflict of interest at work – Maryse Bertrand.

Plett said he read that Bertrand, who is the vice president of real estate services and legal services general counsel for the CBC, is also a director of Metro Richelieu as well as on the board of National Bank.

From Metro, Plett said, she will receive upwards of $90,000 a year. From the National Bank, she earns $117,000 a year – and she also works for the CBC.

“You do not tell us salaries, you give us a range—her remuneration at CBC is between 274,000 and 519,000 annually, so I have a suspicion it’s upward of 400,000,” said Plett.

“$400,000 working for CBC, I would assume is a full-time job. If she’s making over $200,000 a year doing other work, how can she properly serve the Canadian public by doing her work in the real estate industry and as legal counsel for the CBC?” asked Plett.

To which Lacroix answered, “Women on boards is a key subject matter in this country. Not enough spectacular women make it to boards of directors of important companies. Maryse Bertrand is a really seasoned executive. We were very fortunate — I was very fortunate — to be able to convince her to leave her law practice and join us.”

That answer angered both Plett and Conservative senator Leo Housakos.

Housakos said he was stunned by Lacroix’s answer – and that people expect Lacroix to live by the same high standards set by the CBC.

“You answered the question Senator Plett asked by simply saying that you find it justified that Ms. Bertrand would make $.25 million to $.50 million a year as a senior executive in an important role at CBC/Radio‑Canada, while serving on a bunch of other boards because she’s a qualified woman and you think that’s a positive thing. With all due respect, that’s not acceptable.”

Thursday, October 06, 2016

The CBC threatened to sue NDP

Noah Richler ran for MP as the NDP candidate in the riding of St. Paul’s in the last election. He had great hopes for raising the level of the debate and, even though his opponent was multi-term Liberal incumbent Carolyn Bennett, of winning. He did neither, and his very entertaining new book, The Candidate: Fear And Loathing On The Campaign Trail (Doubleday, $34), recounts why. He talks to NOW about what went wrong.
  • The CBC threatened to sue the party over a satiric video that tweaked sections of Peter Mansbridge’s interview with Stephen Harper. 
The ego of some of the CBC players is unbridled. That’s an issue. And the CBC’s instincts for survival affects editorial decisions. The political interviews The National has put forward are inexcusably bad – the ones with Harper and (Rob) Ford are just not good journalism. My video did go viral, and it was news, but all they could see was that Mansbridge and The National were being made the butt of some comedy.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, October 05, 2016

CBC President Hubert Lacroix caught by auditors

CBC President Hubert Lacroix was caught by auditors over-claiming his expenses more than $30,000 over a 6 year period. Caught red-handed he was embarrassed and paid the money back. Only discovery by auditors convinced him to pay back the money.

CBC reporters now have to turn their sights internally as auditors reveal the same sort of culture of entitlement that snared Senators Pamela Wallin and Mike Duffy recently.

“We’ve been reporting a lot on ineligible expense claims by public officials, now we have a story in our own backyard,” CBC reporter Rosemary Barton reported on Friday.

This story is the tip of the iceberg of the corruption at the heart of Canada’s publicly funded broadcaster. Much like the BBC on which it is modeled, the CBC is hiding its secrets from public scrutiny through deception and lawyers. The CBC spends more than $3 million every year for external lawyers to hide issues like this, along with an extensive internal legal department.

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

CBC President Hubert Lacroix’s 2020 plan comes under scrutiny

For the last two years as we have struggled to make sense of CBC President Hubert Lacroix’s 2020 plan and his focus on exclusively promoting CBC’s digital presence while gutting television news and programming, and sidelining radio, many of you have urged us to be more outspoken about this sudden and largely unexplained shift in priority that has resulted in an unprecedented number of layoffs, (one in four CMG members have been affected).

Within our own ranks, initially some of my colleagues were reluctant to criticize Lacroix’s vision for various reasons, including a lack of real information. In the intervening months, we have seen an increasing number of media analysts take aim at Lacroix’s 2020 plan, wondering as we have, whether it is an excuse to downsize and cut staff masquerading as an enlightened plan to support digital technology or as a considered attempt at moving the public broadcaster forward.

This issue continues to be crucial as Lacroix is promoting his plan to the new Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly – who worked for him in Montreal in his private practice (mergers & acquisitions specialist), at Stikeman Elliott pre-CBC.

Read the full story here.

Monday, October 03, 2016

CBC Peter Mansbridge's departure is a golden opportunity

Nothing in Peter Mansbridge's three-decade tenure as CBC news anchor so graphically illustrates the problem with television news as his manner of leaving.

In the CBC's official news release, Jennifer McGuire says: "Peter has been paramount to making CBC News the most trusted brand in news in this country."

McGuire's use of the term "brand" gets to the root of the problem.

One of the functions of a good public broadcaster is to experiment, to be creative and take risks in ways commercial media can't or won't. Mansbridge's departure is a golden opportunity for CBC to re-think its news operations and develop new formats more in line with public service less and less defined by the need to make a profit for shareholders.

Read the full story here.

Friday, September 30, 2016

CBC BOD needs new appointment process

A member of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's board of directors has resigned from his position to seek the presidency of the Conservative Party of Canada, The Tyee has learned.

Meanwhile, a CBC watchdog group said Mitchell's move, and the number of other appointees with political ties, show why there is a need for a new board appointment process for the public broadcaster.

The group's spokesman, Ian Morrison, said that while Mitchell did the right thing by stepping down to seek the party presidency, the situation again highlights how the CBC's board can be too easily loaded up with those close to political interests.

Such appointments can cause a problem even after a party is ousted, Morrison said, explaining how the Liberals must now rely on a board appointed by their political enemies to spend a $675-million cash injection to the CBC in coming years.

Morrison said that the Liberals have also done their share of appointing political friends to the CBC board in the past, and argues that many Canadians want change.

Read the full story here..

Thursday, September 29, 2016

CBC needs an adult in charge

As CBC supporters must know by now from bitter experience, you can rely on the public broadcaster. It always lets you down. Always.

Last week’s farcical barring and un-barring of Linden MacIntyre from CBC News Network, where he was due to promote his final fifth estate report, had the air and dynamic of awful workplace panic with an added tincture of spite.

It’s not over, this farce, and it might be getting worse. At this point you have to ask – Is there no adult in charge at CBC?  The childish behaviour has become breathtaking.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

CBC cannot even know what its problems really are

What a cathartic and rejuvenating process the entire Jian Ghomeshi sexual assault scandal has turned out to be, hasn’t it? Admittedly not so much for the victims, who now would seem to number in the dozens, many of them employees at the CBC. Exposed to near daily predations and humiliations of Canada’s most narcissistic public broadcasting star, by all accounts enabled by management, their lives have no doubt been scarred after enduring such a toxic, mortifying workplace.

But putting aside all that unpleasant human devastation, look how positively things have turned out for the CBC and its egotistical, domineering former star. In a statement to staff on Wednesday, the broadcaster’s CEO, Hubert Lacroix and vice-president of “people and culture,” Josée Girard, highlighted how the CBC has grown stronger in the scandal’s wake.

Have a look at the CBC’s own internal investigation, the “Rubin report.”

This is the report, mind you, whose rigorousness was widely doubted, given that it was restricted to probing just two CBC shows, participation was voluntary (and many staff refused), the investigator, Janice Rubin, had a pre-existing relationship with CBC producers, and employees were cautioned not to participate by their union — since executives made it clear their testimonies could be used against them.

Outside the CBC the report has even been called a coverup.

Lacking any real market signals that hold it to account, the CBC might say it’s turned over a new leaf. It might even believe it. But it has no way to know if it’s really fixed its problems. In fact, it cannot even know what its problems really are.

Read the full story in the Financial Post here.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

CBC president Hubert Lacroix and board must go

A petition among CBC and Radio-Canada employees says president Hubert Lacroix and board of directors “no longer have legitimacy.”

The two unions representing the vast majority of CBC and Radio-Canada employees across the country are calling for president and CEO Hubert Lacroix and the board of directors to step down, citing a lack of confidence in their leadership.

“We concluded that they no longer have legitimacy,” Isabelle Montpetit, president of Syndicat des communications de Radio-Canada, told the Star.

Lacroix, who was reappointed to a second five-year term in 2012, was not made available for an interview. Rémi Racine, chair of the 12-member board, did not return a request for comment.

Read the full story here.

Monday, September 26, 2016

CBC’s Peter Mansbridge is the million-dollar anchor

Ever since the late 80s when he used an offer from one of the American television networks as leverage to replace Knowlton Nash as anchor, Peter Mansbridge has been very adept at influencing CBC news management. The National is now built around his persona.

The National was once the leading newscast in the country, handily beating the competition in raw numbers, but also in breaking news stories. Sadly, its best days are behind it and have been for some years. And, Mr. Mansbridge, with all his awards and honours, has presided over this decline.

It’s been reported, but not confirmed by Mr. Mansbridge or the CBC, that the host of The National is paid over $1 million a year; this at a time when the national broadcaster claims to be cash strapped.

So here’s yet another suggestion. Take the million bucks, hire more reporters and editors, go back to the half-hour format that Canadians clearly prefer, and use a staff announcer, a la Earl Cameron, to read the introductions to the reporter’s stories.

Read the full story here.

Friday, September 23, 2016

CBC Fifth Estate film found at fault

After winning his case in Ontario’s Superior Court, Dr. Leenen said, ‘Four years ago we proposed to settle this law suit for $10,000 and an on-air apology. It was refused…The Fifth Estate persisted and took me through 10 weeks of trial.’

The trial judge awarded very high damages for libel against The Fifth Estate and the CBC as well as individual reporters and producers. The CBC appealed. Ontario’s Court of Appeal disagreed with the CBC, and ruled that Dr. Leenen had been libelled. Finally, the CBC tried to take the case to Canada’s highest court, the Supreme Court of Canada.

Read the full story here.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Peter Mansbridge presided over CBC decline

In the matter of Peter Mansbridge stepping down from CBC’s The National, this might seem ungracious and harsh, but it’s about bloody time.

Mansbridge has spent 28 years as anchor and chief correspondent for CBC Television’s flagship newscast and that’s a very, very long time for anyone to be in a position of on-air authority in the TV business, a business that has changed so much. The traditional anchor position, which Mansbridge embodies in every scintilla in his on-air persona, is outdated and, essentially, redundant.

We have, in fact, shown too much deference to Mansbridge and his ilk for too long.

Yet, what Mansbridge has presided over is a decline. The National no longer has anything like the impact and audience it once had.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

CBC Peter Mansbridge Secret Liberal Ties

Why did Peter Mansbridge keep his relationship with top Trudeau Liberals a secret?

Like the fact that Mansbridge jetted to Italy to preside over the luxury wedding of Kate Purchase, Justin Trudeau’s director of communications, to Perry Tsergas, another top Liberal operative?

And why was Kate Purchase’s father, Bruce Anderson, allowed to have a seat on Mansbridge’s exclusive “At Issue” TV panel for years — even though he was in an obvious conflict of interest?

What other private dealings does Mansbridge have with the ruling Liberal Party that he hasn’t disclosed?

This is a shocking story.

But it has been virtually ignored by the mainstream media. Imagine their national freak-out if a top CBC journalist had a personal relationship with Stephen Harper’s communications director — and put his father on a CBC panel. What a double-standard!

How can the CBC even pretend to be independent and unbiased now?

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

CBC root problem is inexperienced President and BOD

The long series of ill-formed, unaccountable decisions... makes it clear that an inexperienced, government-appointed president and board of directors is a root problem.

Looking back, it really began in 1992 when CBC TV took a gamble that ignored its most important asset, the public. Then-president Gerard Veilleux and his board of directors moved the flagship national news program from 10 .p.m to 9 p.m. The president claimed preposterously that people were going to bed earlier; research showed that was untrue, and managers thought there were enough internal checks and balances to stop the move to 9 p.m. They were wrong. The change was made and the audience plummeted to new lows.

CBC has announced a new strategy that could equal the 1992 disaster of moving The National. CBC is making Internet services the top priority and CBC TV the lowest.

CBC/SRC.ca's average moment audience for its Internet services, according to comScore, was about 10,000 people in a recent month. This is a small number considering there are 35 million people in Canada; it is in the realm of niche rather than mass media. It is worth mentioning that CBC Internet services are not start-ups, but have been around for 20 years. An hour can't go by without CBC radio and TV reminding you a dozen times to check out CBC.ca, yet the audience remains minuscule.

CBC viewers, listeners and readers may be engaged in different activities but these numerical differences are huge. Yet CBC is reducing the emphasis on established mass media, radio/TV, and increasing the focus on niche, digital media, which will compete with Internet behemoths like Facebook and YouTube.

The CBC's fateful decision to move the national news and the long series of ill-formed, unaccountable decisions since then, makes it clear that an inexperienced, government-appointed president and board of directors is a root problem. The government's review should address this problem.

Read the full story here.