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October 5, 2019 10:27 pm  #1


Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

It's a sad commentary that CFRB, the station that once went by the slogan, "Ontario's Authoritative News Voice," has for many years since the Bell takeover, pre-taped its top of the hour newscast on the weekends. It appears the reader leaves around 7 or 8 PM on Saturday and Sunday, and instead of carrying the Canadian Press - which is national, but at least up-to-date - has her record a few casts to be played back for the rest of the evening. 

It doesn't take a genius to see how easily this could turn into a disaster, especially if there's a police shooting or some other major accident on the roads that could close a highway. Normally, they get away with it. But I don't think they should be doing it this weekend of all weekends.

For one thing, Nuit Blanche is on in Toronto and many parts of the city will be packed with people for the event, which runs all night all over the place, leaving plenty of room for trouble. 

But even if that goes smoothly, there's the issue of the looming CUPE school strike, set for 11:59 PM Sunday. Officials have repeatedly warned that they expect this thing to go right down to the wire. If there's a last minute settlement, there's a chance schools will be open on Monday morning. If not, parents will be scrambling to make alternate arrangements.

But a pre-taped newscast won't have that vital information.  

I can't help but wonder if they'll keep someone on live to cover this story which is of urgent interest to hundreds of thousands of people across the GTA. Or will listeners have to go to the Internet or 680 News to find out? Either way, in an era of penny pinching at Bell Media, this seems like an inopportune few days to try and save on overtime.


"Ontario's Authoritative News Voice?"  Certainly not on the weekends. And likely not in a long, long time.

 

October 6, 2019 6:17 pm  #2


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

Seriously Mike Bendixen?

Aren't you supposed to be the boy wonder?

For God's sake, Canadian Press, like all national media, is essentially a Toronto newsroom! If there's a last minute development in the CUPE strike/non-strike, they will lead with it. They all will. And there will be CFRB running old news and old weather.

To save $14 an hour.

It appears you have no shame, just like your BellMedia masters.

And I use "masters" advisedly.

 

October 6, 2019 8:09 pm  #3


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

There are several ways to tell when it's taped, even when nothing new is happening.  

->Odd phrasings. (As in Saturday night at 10 PM, when I heard "Nuit Blanche" starts after 7 PM." It was three hours later and a live newscaster would never say it that way.)

->You're referred to the website for "the very latest." 

->A lack of dated references. For example, you won't hear about how something happened "this afternoon" or is expected to be revealed "tomorrow," because that would be dated if it runs after midnight. Instead, they'll put the day of the week ("the meeting will take place on Monday") or use "this weekend" for an event that happened on Saturday or Sunday.

->The news anchor does not introduce the traffic report but lets the traffic guy ID himself. They never do this when it's live.

And perhaps the biggest giveaway of all:

->The anchor does the weather but never gives the current temperature. 

     Thread Starter
 

October 6, 2019 9:28 pm  #4


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

They may have read this RA. Kim Geddes just did a live 20 minute 'breaking news' hit to cover the CUPE  worker settlement.

 

October 6, 2019 10:41 pm  #5


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

I doubt they got the idea from here. It's good to see they can make an exception when it matters. I'll be curious to see if Geddes is just there for a few minutes and records the rest of the night's newscasts or if she continues live for a while with updates. 

In this case, it was easy - they knew a decision was coming one way or the other by midnight. News by its very nature is usually unpredictable. It's rare you have this kind of a known deadline. What would they do if there was a fire at say, the CN Tower late on a Sunday night, that caused a huge amount of damage or some other calamity? Would someone come in early or would it "wait until morning?" 

Anyway good on NT1010 for at least having the presence of mind to have a mindful presence on this night.

Monday promises to be another busy news day. Not only is the only English election debate scheduled, but climate change activists are threatening to occupy the Bloor Viaduct (and perhaps other busy bridges) during the morning rush hour. So it will be a field day for all-news and talk stations, with all hands on deck. 

     Thread Starter
 

October 7, 2019 12:05 am  #6


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

Just to finish this off, 'RB went with The Canadian Press national newscast at midnight. But at least their lead was the Ontario school settlement. I suspect Geddes might have done her report remotely, since she likely has a big day on Monday. But at least they covered it.

Despite that, I still believe that pre-taping news from 8 PM until roughly 5:30 AM the next day is a terrible idea . Especially for a news talk station.

For the record, GNR 640 also used the CP feed, resulting in both competitors using the same newscast at the same time. That's just sad for the major market in the country.

     Thread Starter
 

October 7, 2019 7:48 am  #7


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

I remember the time BEFORE the CP newscasts (then BN) started in 1979. In those days, they ran major news summaries every four hours or so and news capsules in between plus tons of separates. The wire literally never stopped until it closed at 3 a.m. They would reset the numbers to zero and start the new day's file 40 minutes later. BN was well-staffed in the overnight period - a main-desker, an assistant editor, a summary writer, a cable editor, a sports editor (who left at 5 a.m.) and an audio editor (who came in at 4 a.m.). Now I believe it's just the newscaster and the audio editor with main-desk duties split between the Edmonton and Halifax bureaus. One thing's for sure, they don't close the wire any more.


"Life without echo is really no life at all." - Dan Ingram
 

October 7, 2019 9:03 am  #8


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

CFRB isn’t the only one doing some pre-recording when it comes to news elements.
 
The Canadian Press also pre-tapes its national newscasts, but only a few minutes before they air. It's why you may hear different sections of it airing on different stations at the same time. The reason has more to do with its distribution method than saving money, but it’s why you’ll never hear a partial score of a game already in progress during a sports update – because what if someone scored in the meantime?
 
So instead it’s “The Jays are playing Boston, with Clay Buchholz starting.” But no indication who’s winning until after the game is over.
 
Far less explicable is what is going on at Global. I’m convinced that they pre-tape their major weather package on the weekends and for the life of me, I can’t figure out why. Ross Hull will be sitting there chatting live with the anchor, then throws to the forecast, at which point they go to the pre-recorded piece.

So far, it hasn’t screwed up that I’ve seen, but since the guy is right there anyway, the reasons for putting it down before the show is, frankly, baffling.
 
You can tell it’s pre-done because they never give the current temperature, which is, of course, perhaps the most pertinent fact you can provide on a weather segment. If anyone knows why they do this, I’d be very interested to learn the reason.

     Thread Starter
 

October 7, 2019 9:36 am  #9


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

Re: Global news weekend


I believe it is because presenters like Hull, Carla Bosacki and more are needed to do facetime for other regional news broadcasts.

https://www.canadalandshow.com/global-news-troy-reeb-on-multi-market-content/

 

October 7, 2019 10:16 am  #10


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

I think I read about this a while ago, but forgot about it. And it could be the reason they do it, I suppose. But you might think that a Global station that's actually IN Toronto, Canada's major market, might be able to find the 5 minutes it takes to do a live weathercast.

It's bizarre. I guess I'm old fashioned. While there are obvious segments of news that have to be pre-produced - like the SOTS for reporter stories - I can't help but think the rest of a newscast should be entirely live. It's a cost cutting move, of course. But maybe there are some things that shouldn't be tampered with. I suggest an actual real live newscast is one of them.

Pre-taped news is like "plastic silverware" - an oxymoron.  

     Thread Starter
 

October 7, 2019 10:50 am  #11


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

My news comes from the Internet.  My parents get their news from the radio. 

 

October 7, 2019 11:26 am  #12


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

i'm pretty sure the "average" listener wouldn't say; "hey, this newscast i'm listening to isn't produced at the station... (gasp) it's a national newscast! forget about that! i'm changing channels!"
is this just vanity over accuracy? me thinks so.

 

October 7, 2019 12:46 pm  #13


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

RadioActive wrote:

CFRB isn’t the only one doing some pre-recording when it comes to news elements.
 
The Canadian Press also pre-tapes its national newscasts, but only a few minutes before they air. It's why you may hear different sections of it airing on different stations at the same time. The reason has more to do with its distribution method than saving money, but it’s why you’ll never hear a partial score of a game already in progress during a sports update – because what if someone scored in the meantime?
 
So instead it’s “The Jays are playing Boston, with Clay Buchholz starting.” But no indication who’s winning until after the game is over.
 
Far less explicable is what is going on at Global. I’m convinced that they pre-tape their major weather package on the weekends and for the life of me, I can’t figure out why. Ross Hull will be sitting there chatting live with the anchor, then throws to the forecast, at which point they go to the pre-recorded piece.

So far, it hasn’t screwed up that I’ve seen, but since the guy is right there anyway, the reasons for putting it down before the show is, frankly, baffling.
 
You can tell it’s pre-done because they never give the current temperature, which is, of course, perhaps the most pertinent fact you can provide on a weather segment. If anyone knows why they do this, I’d be very interested to learn the reason.

IPre-recording the newscasts WAS about money - they wanted to save on satellite fees. Pre-recording can be a problem sometimes. When American Pharaoh won the Triple Crown it took place in that shadow period between the taping of the newscast and the actual airing. So it wasn't reported in the top-of-the-hour newscast.
 


"Life without echo is really no life at all." - Dan Ingram
 

October 7, 2019 3:54 pm  #14


Re: Will CFRB Learn The Dangers Of Pre-Taped News?

the original hank wrote:

i'm pretty sure the "average" listener wouldn't say; "hey, this newscast i'm listening to isn't produced at the station... (gasp) it's a national newscast! forget about that! i'm changing channels!"
is this just vanity over accuracy? me thinks so.

yup