Sunday, July 31, 2011
Saturday, July 30, 2011
Friday, July 29, 2011
Thursday, July 28, 2011
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
More than nine million Canadians now own a mobile phone on Rogers Communications Inc.’s wireless network, but they aren’t doing much talking. Rogers reported a modest decrease in second-quarter profit, earning $410-million, down 9 per cent from the year before. The results beat the estimates of Bay Street analysts, but also exposed a worrying decline in the average monthly bill for wireless customers, which slipped 4.8 per cent. Cellphone users are texting more and making greater use of e-mail, the Web and Internet video on their handsets, giving a boost to data revenues. But there is a concern that more customers are not using their Rogers phones to actually talk, crimping an important source of wireless revenue. The trend is industrywide.
Marvel, the fabled comic-book publisher that slid into bankruptcy protection in 1996 but has since become a multibillion-dollar action-flick factory, has a string of big-screen punch-ups on the marquee this year, including Thor; Captain America: The First Avenger; and, next summer, a new Spider-Man. With such a rich stable of comic-book heroes to exploit, the $4-billion that The Walt Disney Co. paid for the company in 2009 looks like a bargain.
Except for one problem. Behind the onscreen explosions and feats of strength is a quieter but no-less-fiercely fought legal battle over the copyrights to some of Marvel’s signature characters, including the Incredible Hulk, the X-Men, the Fantastic Four, Iron Man, Thor, The Avengers, and even Spider-Man.
It’s a fight that threatens Disney’s profits from Marvel’s movie mayhem, and strikes at the heart of the risk-averse economics of 21st century Hollywood, where studios are increasingly choosing recognizable superheroes or other “branded” characters for big-budget action films, banking on existing fan bases.
The Marvel case began in 2009, when the heirs of comic-book artist Jack Kirby (pictured) – three daughters, Lisa, Barbara and Susan, and son Neal – sent Marvel “termination notices,” seeking to regain the copyrights to characters and stories created or co-created by their father, as well as a percentage of all profits from their use, beginning in 2014.
Click on the title to read the whole story by the Globe's Jeff Gray.
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Monday, July 25, 2011
Click on the title to read the whole CBC story.
Sunday, July 24, 2011
One British newspaper has already been felled by the escalating scandal over the interception of public figures’ voice mails.
Now storm clouds are gathering over the Trinity Mirror group, the publisher of Britain’s left-leaning Mirror tabloid, amid allegations that phone hacking was rife there as well.
James Hipwell, (pictured) who used to work at the Mirror, said hacking was a common tactic among his former colleagues.
“It was seen as a bit of a wheeze, slightly underhand but something many of them did,” James Hipwell was quoted as saying by The Independent on Saturday.
“After they’d hacked into someone’s mobile they’d delete the message so another paper couldn’t get the story,” Hipwell said.
The allegation isn’t exactly new. Hipwell, who was fired from the Mirror in 2000, first aired the claim nearly a decade ago. His dismissal from the Mirror, coupled with a conviction for market manipulation several years later, may have also gone some way toward denting his credibility.
The Weather Network had its broadcasting licence renewed until 2018 by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission Friday, but the national regulator might as well have put the word ‘forever’ in place of an actual date.
By virtue of its new position as operator of a National Alert Aggregation & Dissemination System (NAAD), which the channel’s parent company, Pelmorex Communications Inc., offered to create in 2009 in exchange for a guaranteed spot on all basic cable TV packages, The Weather Network is now a permanent fixture of Canada’s media landscape.
“The company has essentially assured its future in the eyes of the CRTC by having this clause added to its licence,” said Carmi Levy, an independent technology analyst. “Because now it is virtually impossible for the CRTC to ever realistically consider revoking The Whether Network’s licence for fear of jeopardizing Canada’s emergency broadcast capability.”
Saturday, July 23, 2011
Brian Vallée, former CBC "fifth estate" producer, Toronto Star reporter, author and advocate against violence against women, died on Friday of cancer at age 70.
His many accolades include an Oscar in 1983 for John Zaritsky’s documentary, Just Another Missing Kid. Vallée was a researcher and associate producer on the film.
Kathy English, the Toronto Star's public editor writes, after a man complained that a Star story showing charges against him that were later withdrawn, kept showing up on Google:
"In surveying more than 100 editors across North America, I found that few news organizations consider the withdrawal of charges a valid reason to remove the original reports of those charges from their websites and archives.
“'It’s not our job to expunge a story saying someone was convicted of a crime simply because a court expunged the conviction,'one editor said.
"'We’ll publish a follow-up on the court disposition but we won’t take the story down that was accurate when it was written any more than we would rip it out of the print editions in our newspaper library.'
"Still, news organizations do have some responsibility here. The Star has a policy that stipulates it must report the outcome of any criminal charges it has reported.
"There had been no follow-up reporting on this man’s case when this came to my attention.
"The newsroom has now verified that these charges were withdrawn. In line with the Star’s practice, a note has been appended to the top of the Star’s original online report to make it clear when this man’s name is searched through Google that the charges were dropped."
Click on the title to read the whole story.
Friday, July 22, 2011
The story by Paul Collins:
"It was 1 a.m. on a hot July night when detectives marched into the offices of the New York World. “Where’s the head?” they demanded.
"In the summer of 1897, that question meant just one thing in Manhattan newsrooms, and it wasn’t a request to meet the managing editor. The head everyone sought was of William Guldensuppe, a masseur who had disappeared in late June from his Hell’s Kitchen apartment. He’d reappeared scattered in pieces along the Lower East Side, the Bronx and Brooklyn. What was still missing, though, was his head — which, rumor had it, a jealous lover had hidden inside a block of plaster.
"To William Randolph Hearst, the crime was a perfect opportunity to trumpet his newly launched New York Evening Journal. Hearst offered a whopping $1,000 reward to solve the crime, and even formed a “Murder Squad” of reporters who were ready to resort to flashing badges and pistols to make citizen’s arrests. Yet his stunts were merely improvements on the carnivalesque populism of rival publisher Joseph Pulitzer. . . ."
Click on the title to read the whole column.
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Monday, July 18, 2011
Sunday, July 17, 2011
Saturday, July 16, 2011
Friday, July 15, 2011
Thursday, July 14, 2011
Wednesday, July 13, 2011
Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Monday, July 11, 2011
Sunday, July 10, 2011
Britain's bestselling Sunday tabloid the News of the World signed off with a simple front page message: "THANK YOU & GOODBYE," leaving the media establishment here reeling from the expanding phone-hacking scandal that brought down the muckraking newspaper after 168 years.
Journalists crafted the newspaper's own obituary before sending the tabloid's final edition to the printing presses Saturday night, apologizing for letting its readers down but stopping short of acknowledging recent allegations that staff paid police for information.
"We praised high standards, we demanded high standards but, as we are now only too painfully aware, for a period of a few years up to 2006 some who worked for us, or in our name, fell shamefully short of those standards," reads a message posted on the tabloid's website. "Quite simply, we lost our way. Phones were hacked, and for that this newspaper is truly sorry."
Rupert Murdoch, whose media empire owns the paper, arrived in London on Sunday.
Buying the News of the World in 1969 gave Australian-born Murdoch his first foothold in Britain's media. He went on to snap up several other titles, gaining almost unparalleled influence in British politics through the far-reaching power of his papers' headlines.
Now he is facing a maelstrom of criticism and outrage over the sequence of events set off by allegations the paper's journalists paid police for information and hacked into the voicemails of young murder victims and the grieving families of dead soldiers.
Saturday, July 9, 2011
One woman called the decision "wholly classless." The Canadian Press opted not to distribute a similar photograph.
Pictures Editor Graeme Roy says the image would have "served no purpose" beyond embarrassing Prince William's wife.
See the photo in question in the Daily Mail. Link:
The CRTC is considering re-opening the discussion on setting rules for online broadcasters, the start of a process that could affect what kind of videos that users can get online. The regulaor this week ended a fact-finding period as it looks at starting public consultations on so-called over-the-top services like Netflix and YouTube two years sooner than planned.
Over-the-top refers to internet use over and above surfing and email, like streaming television or movies through online video services.
The regulatory body dealt with the issue in 2009 and decided there was no need to regulate such services, but that it would hold new public consultations in 2013 and issue an updated decision in 2014.
The fact-finding period is unusual, since it isn't a full public hearing, said internet law expert Michael Geist, who holds a Canada Research Chair in internet and e-commerce at the University of Ottawa.
"It's not clear exactly what that is," he said. "It's either consulting, in which case it's a full public process, or it's not."
Geist said he expects the CRTC to announce by sometime this fall that it will hold hearings into the issue.
Friday, July 8, 2011
From front-page splashes to slim stories buried inside, readers of London and New York newspapers owned by News Corp were greeted on Friday with varied coverage of the shutdown of Rupert Murdoch's weekly News Of The World.
The Sun, which dominates the British tabloid market during the week in the way the News of the World did on Sundays, splashed the closing of its 168-year-old sister paper due to a scandal involving controversial reporting tactics under the front-page headline "World's End."
Friday's front page exposure marked a departure from The Sun's previous practice of making little mention of the phone-hacking scandal.
Murdoch's Manhattan-based tabloid, the New York Post, buried its Friday story inside its business section with a slim nine-paragraph story on page 29 under the headline "The End of News of the World." Rival the New York Daily News ran a page 3 story: "Die, Tabloid, Die!"
Terry DiMonte, known to Calgary radio listeners as the morning man on classic-rock station Q107 FM, is heading back to his longtime home in Montreal. DiMonte made headlines in 2007 when he left his gig at CHOM-FM in Montreal -a city where he was regarded as an institution after 23 years on the air -to take a job at Q107.
DiMonte was lured to the Calgary station with a guaranteed five-year contract (which saw him earning a rumoured $450,000 a year). It was a big investment that perhaps didn't pay off for Corus Radio, the company that owns Q107, as that stayed a middle ranking station in the local ratings, by and large.
Kevin Newman, the former lead anchor on Global's national newscast, has been hired as the co-host for CTV's Question Period as well as Bell Media's "Digital News Evangelist," the network announced. He starts on Aug. 22.
As the co-host of Question Period, Newman will join long-time co-host Craig Oliver.
When Newman announced last year that he was leaving Global, there was speculation he was a candidate to replace retiring CTV National News lead anchor Lloyd Robertson. That job went to Lisa LaFlamme, who takes over from Robertson in September.
The Telegraph's Josie Filmer writes:
"As a recent graduate, I’ve had an extraordinary week of work experience at The Daily Telegraph. The appalling News of the World phone hacking scandal revealed the worst excesses of tabloid journalism, and has culminated in the closing down of one of the most widely read newspapers in the English-speaking world. Now, it seems, David Cameron is set to wage war on Britain’s free press. Fleet Street is reeling in shock.
"There seems to be a consensus that the Prime Minister has today questioned the very foundations of this industry. Instead of defining journalism as a public service – whose job was to keep a check on those in power – he used one newspaper’s illegal phone hacking to launch an attack on the Press more generally. He even, disingenuously, compared the scandal to that of MPs’ expenses.
"This week – and the mess that could follow – gives student journalists a lot to think about. We have all been asked by friends and parents: “Are you not concerned about the future of the industry?” Now it’s more urgent. The rise of the internet and unregulated bloggers, who comment scurrilously on current affairs, has been seen as the greatest threat to traditional media. But today an even greater one emerged from the opposite direction. How will the press be regulated by the Government? What will this regulation mean for the content newspapers have produced, in one form or another, since the 17th century? . . ."
Click on the title to read the full story.
Thursday, July 7, 2011
Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Monday, July 4, 2011
Sunday, July 3, 2011
Friday, July 1, 2011
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- The Kate Middelton angle you hadn't thought about
- Journalism (and carping) are alive and well
- Cameraman didn't realize he had captured Norway ki...
- Less chat means less profit for Rogers
- Battle brews over Marvel’s copyrights
- Rogers beats expectations in Q2
- Val Sears to edit new online newspaper in Almonte,...
- Britain’s Mirror newspapers dragged into phone-hac...
- The Weather Network secures future with new clause...
- Brian Vallée dead at 70:
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- Rebekah Brooks arrested and held by police
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- CRTC considers hearings on rules for online video
- "Die, Tabloid, Die!" N.Y. Daily News crows.
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- Excellent PBS history of U-K Murdoch scandal
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