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July 27, 2020 12:39 pm  #1


"Defunding The CBC" Question Cut Out Of CBC Radio Interview

As many here know, I’m loathe to get into overly political topics on this board, because it tends to get very divisive and ultimately just creates bad feelings. But this story is just too good.
 
It centres around Erin O’Toole, an MP who’s in the running to become the new Conservative leader, replacing the outgoing Andrew Scheer. He appeared for an interview on CBC Radio 1’s “The House” (a show about Canadian government and politics) on Saturday, talking about the race and why he should become head of the party. The interview lasted about 10-15 minutes, and covered a fair amount of ground.
 
But according to Marc Weisblott’s 12:36 blog, at least one question that was asked was edited out of the final broadcast. I can attest to that, since I listen to that show every week and have for a long time. And believe me, I would have remembered this one.
 
It turns out the substitute host this past weekend, David Cochrane, ended his Q&A with O’Toole by asking him why he wanted to defund the CBC, especially the TV and online branches, although he agreed he’d leave Radio 1 alone.
 
The would-be Tory leader was blunt in his reply, which included this statement. “What we don’t need is Canadians spending millions of dollars to create The Family Feud Canadian Edition.” And it went on from there.
 
Unfortunately, no one heard him say any of it, because the CBC decided to edit it out of the broadcast. But the O’Toole team was taping the interview on their side of the mic and posted the missing questions on Twitter, creating an avalanche of controversy, as the typical left and right opponents insulted each other online.
 
You can hear the missing 2:08 segment here.
 
I’m not quite ready to go so far as conspiracy theorists about why this didn’t make it into the show. I’m not a CBC booster by any means and I wouldn’t lose a moment’s sleep if it was forced to pay for itself. But as a guy who produced tons of radio news and documentaries during the early part of his career, I can tell you that there’s only so much time for any given piece. And that might be a reason why this particular question didn’t make the cut. When something has to go, making that choice can be painful, but it’s often a necessity.
 
Still, you do have to admit that one of the issues that didn’t get to air concerned the fate of the CBC itself. Agree or disagree with O’Toole’s position, I wished they’d left it in. It certainly would have gotten my attention!
 
And by the way, for whoever did the captioning on this thing – it’s “Corus” and not “Chorus.” That’s an entirely different song and dance!

 

July 27, 2020 3:58 pm  #2


Re: "Defunding The CBC" Question Cut Out Of CBC Radio Interview

Listening to O'Toole's answer, he is measured and most of the points he makes would be something that many would agree with.  I don't have a problem with CBC producing a program like Family Feud Canada since the private networks in Canada don't currently produce any game shows.  The fact that it is mainstream and on CBC doesn't matter to me, and probably doesn't to most people.  Using the old "is this any way to spend taxpayers money" is irrelevant.  
 
BBC in the UK produces many mainstream shows, that compete directly with private networks as do other public broadcasters around the world. So why would the CBC not do this as well?  Especially when private networks here aren't producing even one game show?

 And CBC TV low ratings?  Well, low ratings for over the air networks is not a problem exclusive to the crown corporation.  Shows having 1.5 to 3 million viewers in prime time on NBC, CBS, FOX, etc. is the equivalent of 150-300 thousand viewers in Canada.  CTV, City and Global are still getting decent numbers but they are the exception for over the air networks in North America.  And they have many built in advantages (sim sub, cherry picking the best US programming) to help them achieve this.  

As far as CBC not airing the segment about themselves may have been as RA suggested for time. How long was the total interview?   Also the producer might have been accused of "making it about them" if the interview ended with the CBC segment.

Political parties tend to record all interviews in studio for themselves, as O'Toole's team did with this, so the producers at CBC would have known that this segment would likely be heard regardless of them airing it or not.  But for some it will still make CBC look like they are trying to hide this, or don't want to give O'Toole the platform, which is fair game too. 

However this topic will not be going away anytime soon, and as I have mentioned before the CBC English TV service my evolve dramatically regardless, if Canada continues to have huge deficits over the next few years.  Economics at some point may force a big change to CBC TV whether Erin O'Toole becomes PM or not.  This would include whether the network actually survives, broken up, or merged with a private company.

 

July 27, 2020 4:19 pm  #3


Re: "Defunding The CBC" Question Cut Out Of CBC Radio Interview

Again, not saying it was cut just for time, but to slightly riff on that topic, it’s funny how that sticks with you.
 
I remember once doing a really stupid 5 minute radio feature about some kind of special new shoes that were supposed to revolutionize the footwear industry. (They didn’t, but no one knew that at the time.) In the course of the interview, the guy who created these things talked about getting “word of mouth.” To which I replied, without really thinking, “you mean word of foot!” And he laughed.
 
It wasn’t a great line, but it was just spontaneous and it worked well in the context of the interview.
 
But when the produced piece went to air, it was nowhere to be heard. I remember going to the executive producer at the time and asking what happened to that line. “We had to cut it for time,” he said.
 
“But that was my favourite part!” I remonstrated.
 
Too bad, it was gone and no one ever heard my less-than-brilliant, really dumb comment. (Maybe I should be grateful!)
 
You can say what you want about cutting things for time, but it’s been more than 40 years, that producer has long since passed away and yet, for some reason, I’ve never forgotten that one specific edit. Some things never leave you.  

We now return you to your regularly scheduled topic... 

     Thread Starter
 

July 27, 2020 4:58 pm  #4


Re: "Defunding The CBC" Question Cut Out Of CBC Radio Interview

They're running it like a business, fam.

 

July 28, 2020 11:41 pm  #5


Re: "Defunding The CBC" Question Cut Out Of CBC Radio Interview

It's CBC policy not to discuss the CBC's possible future funding on its own airwaves.  That could be viewed as advocating for themselves which isn't objective journalism.

 

July 29, 2020 12:10 am  #6


Re: "Defunding The CBC" Question Cut Out Of CBC Radio Interview

What happened to the argument that CBC should never be forced to compete head on with CTV, City TV and Global?  
I thought the stronger argument was that those networks would rather pay taxes for CBC to NOT outbid them for programming content. 
(to name one show, how happy would Global be if CBC outbid them for NCIS, then proceeded from there to steal other shows...) 

Long story short, CBC should be using tax dollars to maintain good content that people want to watch without intentionally biting into the profits of the other guys, give or take a show.

That all being said, if Family Feud Canada is beating out Jeopardy in the ratings, good for them! 
If not, then I am still glad it is there to watch, and I look forward to MORE game shows on CBC.


 

Last edited by Radiowiz (July 29, 2020 12:11 am)

 

July 29, 2020 2:05 pm  #7


Re: "Defunding The CBC" Question Cut Out Of CBC Radio Interview

Several years ago in Thunder Bay the two local tv stations (same owner) had CBC & CTV (a rarity in Canada).  The stations changed networks and now it's Global and CTV.  CBC has no tv presence there at least over the local air there.  

 

July 29, 2020 2:20 pm  #8


Re: "Defunding The CBC" Question Cut Out Of CBC Radio Interview

Prod Guy wrote:

It's CBC policy not to discuss the CBC's possible future funding on its own airwaves.  That could be viewed as advocating for themselves which isn't objective journalism.

I'm not doubting you but I have to wonder - if that's their policy, why in the world would the host have even asked the question in the first place? When assembling a one-hour broadcast on the fly, who has the time to listen to an answer you know you can never use?

     Thread Starter
 

July 29, 2020 8:22 pm  #9


Re: "Defunding The CBC" Question Cut Out Of CBC Radio Interview

JasonY wrote:

Several years ago in Thunder Bay the two local tv stations (same owner) had CBC & CTV (a rarity in Canada).  The stations changed networks and now it's Global and CTV.  CBC has no tv presence there at least over the local air there.  

That's because CBC started insisting that affiliates clear the entire network schedule.  At one time affiliates would use the 7 pm hour in particular to get some US syndicated shows that could bring in better revenue than shows like Just For Laughs Gags.  A CBC station in a town I onced lived in ran Frasier reruns during the 7 pm hour and it was their number 2 revenue show after Hockey Night in Canada.  When syndication at 7 pm beats everything the network does in prime time why would you want to remain a CBC affiliate?.

Last edited by Prod Guy (July 29, 2020 8:33 pm)

 

July 30, 2020 8:51 am  #10


Re: "Defunding The CBC" Question Cut Out Of CBC Radio Interview

Prod Guy wrote:

JasonY wrote:

Several years ago in Thunder Bay the two local tv stations (same owner) had CBC & CTV (a rarity in Canada).  The stations changed networks and now it's Global and CTV.  CBC has no tv presence there at least over the local air there.  

That's because CBC started insisting that affiliates clear the entire network schedule.  At one time affiliates would use the 7 pm hour in particular to get some US syndicated shows that could bring in better revenue than shows like Just For Laughs Gags.  A CBC station in a town I onced lived in ran Frasier reruns during the 7 pm hour and it was their number 2 revenue show after Hockey Night in Canada.  When syndication at 7 pm beats everything the network does in prime time why would you want to remain a CBC affiliate?.

That is the main reason CHCH  dumped the CBC in 1961. Apparently, back then the CBC gave their affilliates Thursday nights to do their own thing. CHCH broadcast Hamilton Jr. Red Wings games. Hockey Night In Hamilton became must see tv. In 1961, the CBC decided to take back Thursday nights. Faced with the loss of revenue and ratings, CHCH management adopted the idea, If we can program one night, why can't we do seven? So they said good bye to the Mother Corporation, bought a boatload of U.S. imports with a pre-release clause allowing them to air the shows several days before the U.S. nets.