April 15 Editorial


Now that the CRTC has finally taken a stand in announcing the long-awaited “pick-and-pay” will be available to television consumers by the end of next year, a number of broadcasters are crying the blues that they won’t be financially viable without the benefit of being part of a bundled TV package.

So what’s the problem?

If a network or channel can’t independently operate in the black, with no tangible business plan to eventually be self-sufficient, then it should be doomed to fade to black rather than taking a free ride in it. If saving culture and heritage or any number of special- interest programs and channels is of utmost importance to viewers, let the masses decide. We don’t need government, or an arm of it, telling us what we should be watching, and we most definitely shouldn’t be forced into paying for bundled TV packages from distributors in order to prop up failing channels. Private business enterprise is based on earning sufficient revenue and staying on a budget to remain afloat.

The same rules should apply to television broadcasters. If viewers, and by extension advertisers, are not there, neither should the channel be.

The struggling retail sector continues to scratch and claw for its bricks and mortar survival, but mounting evidence shows several other major retail chains are heading down the same path as the ill-fated Future Shop stores, which resulted in the sudden loss of 1,500 jobs across Canada late last month. The vast increase in online shopping, combined with less than stellar corporate decision making, has sped up conventional retail’s demise. Unfortunately, for those employed in the sector, it’s not going to get any better.

We may live in a global society but it still doesn’t seem right that the world’s most iconic baseball bat – the Louisville Slugger – is now in the hands of a Finnish company. Hillerich & Bradsby, the company that made bats for baseball greats including Babe Ruth and Ted Williams, sold to rival Wilson Sporting Goods for $70 million. Wilson’s parent company is Amer Sports of Helsinki.

Did you know? In Japan it is acceptable to fall asleep on the job. Apparently by dozing off, conventional wisdom carries the belief that an employee has been working so hard that they’ve reached a level of exhaustion in giving so much of their mind, body and spirit all in the name of the company. If that’s the case, I’ve seen some people who’ve generously gone above and beyond the call of duty here in Canada.

Angus Gillespie