Wednesday, November 12, 2008

A Suggestion for the CRTC

Today, Canada's Global TV laid off 560 employees, or 5% of its workforce. I feel absolutely terrible for those who lost their jobs. One of the things this will effect is no more local staff in Kelowna. Instead, their news will now come from Victoria.

This got me wondering . . . if another company could provide a solid business plan to the CRTC, assuring them that they could profitably run a television station from Kelowna, shouldn't it be in the CRTC's mandate to immediately give them this opportunity?

The privilege of being a broadcaster in Canada seems to have been taken for granted the past few years. Locally here in Vancouver the most noticeable example in my mind is the radio station, CKNW. They let go of the brightest and most tuned in to the community, David Berner, and now have mediocre, yet high-paid talent in Bill Good, Christy Clark, and Philip Till. (For the record, I think Jon McComb is superb!) This is combined with the fact that the amount of minutes of advertising per hour has increased dramatically. All of this is happening on extremely limited public airwaves, which are essentially leased from you & I. Were the best interests of Vancouverites put at the top of the list with these changes? I think not.

Getting back to Global, I do have empathy for their financial woes but if another entrepreneur could run a local station more profitably, clearly paying their people less, but providing local coverage, then wouldn't it be in the interest of the citizens of Kelowna for this to occur?

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