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CMST 1A03 (355)


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McMaster University
Communication Studies
Alexandre Sevigny

hgLecture 16 CMST 1a03: Introduction to Communication Alex Sévigny, PhD, APR, MCIPR (Winter Term, 2013) ITC – C. Dornan: “Printed Matter: Canadian Newspapers” ITC – M. Bowden: “The Story Behind the Story” “In the end, all news is local.” Most Canadian newspapers are local monopolies. Economic imperatives eradicated the locally-owned title. Southam was the first newspaper chain,  Started with the Hamilton Spectator, then the Ottawa Citizen, Calgary Herald, Edmonton Journal, Winnipeg Tribune and Vancouver Province What bothers critics is that local near-monopolies are owned by corporate entities, leaving citizens with little alternative as a source of social intelligence The fear is that partisan control over public expression would amount to control over public opinion and therefore to control over the political process itself. The Special Senate Committee on the Mass Media (the Davey Committee) in 1970 was concerned about concentration in newspaper ownership From the 1980s to the 90s, industry grew: Sun Media entered Southam‟s markets, The Globe and Mail satellite-printed its national edition, the urban broadsheets began to publish on Sundays, and the Financial Post went from a weekly to a daily (The National Post). Conrad Black‟s Hollinger Corp made everyone afraid of newspaper ownership concentration, but vertical integration of the industry scared everyone when Hollinger was sold to CanWest in 2001. By 2002, almost every major Canadian daily newspaper was the property of a parent owner with interests extending far beyond newspaper publishing. Quebecor:  Quebec newspaper titles  Quebecor World printing  Videotron cable company  TVA network  Sun Media Bell Canada Enterprises  The Globe and Mail  CTV  Bell Sympatico Internet 57% of Canadians (skewed toward older people) read a paper on an average weekday 64% of Canadians read a newspaper on the weekend 83% report having read a newspaper in the past week News is a running chronicle of what is important to us at any moment Newspaper editorial staffs are much larger than their television counterparts Newspapers are the antennae of the economy: a softening of newspaper advertising can be the first foreshadowing of an economic downturn The three types of newspaper advertising:  Retail ads purchased by businesses exactly like the local city newspaper itself. (47% of newspaper ad income)  Classified ads (34%)  National ads (20%) Two reasons for newspapers‟ reliance on advertising;  Newspapers cost less than a cup of coffee and 80% of revenues come from advertising  Costs of producing, manufacturing and distributing a newspaper are fixed This means that newspapers cannot cut circulation or newspaper size since these are the barometers of the advertising rates The National Post example of the effects of cost-cutting National editorial policy at the CanWest: In March 2001, David Asper used the Southam chain of papers to chastise the national media for hounding Jean Chrétien about Shawinigate.  Incessant questioning of the PM’s dealings amounted to a form of “public mischief,” a criminal act, and argued that “our national political affairs have been hijacked by mischevious unfair scandal mongering.”  April, 2001 speech to the Calgary Chamber o
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