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February 5, 2021 11:29 am  #1


Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

It won't affect what you see here, but viewers in Regina and Saskatoon will soon be watching their local news from a place that is most definitely not local. The nightly newscast in both cities will be coming out of Winnipeg starting in March - not even in the same province.

There's been more and more of this going on at Global in the past few years. I believe much of Montreal's news shows come out of Toronto. And sometimes they don't even pretend. Anyone who's watched Global News At Noon in Toronto has seen Anthony Farnell give forecasts for the city, as well as Peterborough and Montreal. IIRC, a lot of the stations get their local weather from out of town, to save the cost of hiring anyone locally. (Although Anwar Knight and Tom Brown are both suddenly available, if anyone's looking.)

My question: is this a healthy trend? Should a local newscast have to come from the city where it's being broadcast? I'm not talking about a national newscast, but isn't there something about those fronting the show being at least slightly familiar with the city they're highlighting every single night? 

I know technology makes this possible, and yes, I'm old fashioned, but I can't help thinking local news should be, oh, I don't know, LOCAL? 

At least the linked article below makes it clear that no jobs were lost in this transition, so that certainly beats Bell this week.

Global restructures Manitoba & Saskatchewan news operations  

 

February 5, 2021 12:10 pm  #2


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

The concern I have with these newscasts is the lineup for the show is probably determined well in advance because they have to pretape it before it airs so the news isn't up to date and god forbid if breaking news was to happen, then what? 

If you watch Global Montreal's News at Noon, you're in for a real treat. The local anchor in Montreal does the news for the first few minutes, then hands it off to Farah in Toronto and they continue on with Global Toronto's News at Noon broadcast. I suspect the handoff is pretaped and that's why Toronto viewers also see Montreal weather.

Global Saskatoon's weekday evening shows have been done from Regina for a few years now, and I have no doubt this will not be the end of their MMC experiment. Perhaps at some point, we should expect most of their small-market station newscasts to be done out of Toronto.

 

February 5, 2021 12:15 pm  #3


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

For the broadcast itself, I'd bet the vast majority of viewers wouldn't even be aware. Good point above though about the process affecting the newscast's timeliness.

The biggest negative to me is that especially in the smaller communities, the news anchors are active community participants, which strengthens their (and their station's) brands and builds trust.

Last edited by RadioAaron (February 5, 2021 12:16 pm)


 
 

February 5, 2021 12:25 pm  #4


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

RadioActive wrote:

It won't affect what you see here, but viewers in Regina and Saskatoon will soon be watching their local news from a place that is most definitely not local. The nightly newscast in both cities will be coming out of Winnipeg starting in March - not even in the same province.

There's been more and more of this going on at Global in the past few years. I believe much of Montreal's news shows come out of Toronto. And sometimes they don't even pretend. Anyone who's watched Global News At Noon in Toronto has seen Anthony Farnell give forecasts for the city, as well as Peterborough and Montreal. IIRC, a lot of the stations get their local weather from out of town, to save the cost of hiring anyone locally. (Although Anwar Knight and Tom Brown are both suddenly available, if anyone's looking.)

My question: is this a healthy trend? Should a local newscast have to come from the city where it's being broadcast? I'm not talking about a national newscast, but isn't there something about those fronting the show being at least slightly familiar with the city they're highlighting every single night? 

I know technology makes this possible, and yes, I'm old fashioned, but I can't help thinking local news should be, oh, I don't know, LOCAL? 

At least the linked article below makes it clear that no jobs were lost in this transition, so that certainly beats Bell this week.

Global restructures Manitoba & Saskatchewan news operations  

I suppose there's a couple of things to take away from this news:

- Lisa Dutton, currently at Global Winnipeg, was a former anchor at Global Saskatoon when the station was doing better in the ratings (I believe they were #1 in Saskatoon in the late 2000's). Some viewers in Saskatoon will know who she is, and she knows Saskatoon/Saskatchewan. Plus, I believe there's been a bit of turnover in the anchor chair at both Global stations in Sask where the evening anchors have moved on to bigger markets shortly after getting assigned to the anchor chair.

- Yes, it's sad that the evening news isn't presented in Saskatoon or Regina, but at least it's not being presented out of Toronto (at least on weeknights). Plus, having the local news being presented elsewhere is a trend that's happening around the world. Stations in the UK, Australia, and even the United States are moving to this method. If it keeps the same number of reporters on the ground, and more importantly, keeps producers in the local newsrooms and have them make the final editorial decision on what goes in the newscast, I can understand the rationale for having the anchor somewhere else. 

- "No job losses". Hopefully that's true, and in fact it appears some of the "MMC" work that was being done in Toronto is going to Global Regina, so there's good news in that sense. And Global has committed to keeping the morning shows in the 3 affected markets live and local, as well as keeping its local sports reporters (something that CTV or CBC doesn't have I believe).

 

 

February 5, 2021 12:32 pm  #5


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

It looks like they will have reporters filing local stories from Regina and Saskatoon.  So the fact the news package is anchored from Winnipeg really doesn't impact the actual coverage from those two cities as much as you would think.  And they will be able to go live to those communities for reports. 

Regina and Saskatoon until fairly recently had three local TV newscasts for each city.  CBC, CTV and Global all had separate news for the two cities.  Amazing since Regina CMA is 235,000 people and Saskatoon CMA 295,000. A friend of mine's family moved to Regina and they were amazed that the city had three local television stations and a lot of local radio considering the size of the community. He was working for the local daily newspaper. 

Much larger cities in Canada have maybe one or two local channels but these two had three each.  So again the market conditions are dictating what happens. These are two fast growing cities with generally good economies, however with the pandemic continuing  revenues have been hit hard.

   

 

February 5, 2021 12:35 pm  #6


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

Global has a interesting way to do this...   I'm not a huge fan personally as local is always better...  and I'm not a fan at all of the virtual sets they have used for years, but it's better than not having anything which would have likely happened..

They do most of their markets now in an non-linear fashion.    The anchor pre-records their segments for all the markets they cover ahead of time.   The producer for each market can move things around on the fly and can also break in live if need to.    So should something happen in market A that they need to go live to, there is likely someone available to hop on live.   Where the story is shared, you will see the background be generic and they can run the same anchor cut in multiple markets.    

It's like generic voice tracking for TV really.        I have to give give them some credit...   even though they are working anchors like crazy... this is a out of the box thinking to still provide service and reporters on the ground that otherwise would likely have been cut.    Sometimes things get messed up (wrong intro with the wrong story), but mostly it's working.    It also is the way they provide different local feeds on their digital all news channels on their app.

They did a behind the camera explaining how this works a long time ago now...      Do I think it's providing the best service to the markets no longer having in market productions done?  No.... but I think it's better than dropping casts on weekends, cutting reporters and cutting production value.    That would be worse.    

Last edited by radiokid (February 5, 2021 12:36 pm)

 

February 5, 2021 5:43 pm  #7


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

RadioActive wrote:

It won't affect what you see here, but viewers in Regina and Saskatoon will soon be watching their local news from a place that is most definitely not local. The nightly newscast in both cities will be coming out of Winnipeg starting in March - not even in the same province.

There's been more and more of this going on at Global in the past few years. I believe much of Montreal's news shows come out of Toronto. And sometimes they don't even pretend. Anyone who's watched Global News At Noon in Toronto has seen Anthony Farnell give forecasts for the city, as well as Peterborough and Montreal. IIRC, a lot of the stations get their local weather from out of town, to save the cost of hiring anyone locally. (Although Anwar Knight and Tom Brown are both suddenly available, if anyone's looking.)

My question: is this a healthy trend? Should a local newscast have to come from the city where it's being broadcast? I'm not talking about a national newscast, but isn't there something about those fronting the show being at least slightly familiar with the city they're highlighting every single night? 

I know technology makes this possible, and yes, I'm old fashioned, but I can't help thinking local news should be, oh, I don't know, LOCAL? 

At least the linked article below makes it clear that no jobs were lost in this transition, so that certainly beats Bell this week.

Global restructures Manitoba & Saskatchewan news operations  

The bar keeps getting lowered over time. Once that bar gets lowered it stays lowered. "Fake Local" has replaced real local and the former is not coming back. Profits, that's what it's all about.
 


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

February 11, 2021 6:22 am  #8


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

Then is then and now  is now, but in the 1990s when the CBC in Alberta ran Edmonton supper hour News as a simulcast of Calgary, and later completed reversed the process, it was a Ratings disaster, even though neither situation lasted very long.  I'm not sure that they ever really recovered the viewers they lost with those two major mistakes.

 

February 11, 2021 11:45 am  #9


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

jon wrote:

Then is then and now  is now, but in the 1990s when the CBC in Alberta ran Edmonton supper hour News as a simulcast of Calgary, and later completed reversed the process, it was a Ratings disaster, even though neither situation lasted very long.  I'm not sure that they ever really recovered the viewers they lost with those two major mistakes.

CBC Alberta News - Open - YouTube

The province-wide newscast eventually added an anchor and weather presenter from the Calgary studios. I remember talking to someone who used to work at CBC Edmonton during that time, the Calgary producers and the Edmonton producers would have a daily battle as to which city got the top story.

I watched the Global Toronto and Montreal 11 PM newscasts last night, and while both were presented by Tracy Tong in Toronto, each station showed a different story lineup. Montreal's A-block was actually 15 minutes long and had only Montreal/Quebec news; Global Toronto's A-block was only 10 minutes and it only had Toronto news in it. The Saskatoon/Regina/Winnipeg newscasts will probably be done the same way. 

 

February 11, 2021 12:24 pm  #10


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

jon wrote:

Then is then and now  is now, but in the 1990s when the CBC in Alberta ran Edmonton supper hour News as a simulcast of Calgary, and later completed reversed the process, it was a Ratings disaster, even though neither situation lasted very long.  I'm not sure that they ever really recovered the viewers they lost with those two major mistakes.

I've read that situation almost happened in Ontario when the cuts happened in 1990, and it would have involved the elimination of CBLT's local newscast. The proposal, as I understood it, was to have a single Ontario-wide newscast anchored from Ottawa, with reporters based in Toronto and Windsor. They went ahead with eliminating the Windsor newscasts at CBET, but Toronto was spared in the end. They did go ahead with centralizing French TV news in Ottawa though, but that probably made some sense at that time.

The idea was that there would be one English local newscast per province. That's (at least part of) why PEI, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick all retained their own programs while Alberta was consolidated into one.

CBC Ottawa has been the perpetual #2 in Ottawa, and such a move would have also harmed their local coverage, further benefiting the then-powerhouse of CJOH.

Last edited by MJ Vancouver (February 11, 2021 12:30 pm)

 

February 11, 2021 12:35 pm  #11


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

MJ Vancouver wrote:

jon wrote:

Then is then and now  is now, but in the 1990s when the CBC in Alberta ran Edmonton supper hour News as a simulcast of Calgary, and later completed reversed the process, it was a Ratings disaster, even though neither situation lasted very long.  I'm not sure that they ever really recovered the viewers they lost with those two major mistakes.

I've read that situation almost happened in Ontario when the cuts happened in 1990, and it would have involved the elimination of CBLT's local newscast. The proposal, as I understood it, was to have a single Ontario-wide newscast anchored from Ottawa, with reporters based in Toronto and Windsor. They went ahead with eliminating the Windsor newscasts at CBET, but Toronto was spared in the end. They did go ahead with centralizing French TV news in Ottawa though, but that probably made some sense at that time.

The idea was that there would be one English local newscast per province. That's (at least part of) why PEI, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick all retained their own programs while Alberta was consolidated into one.

CBC Ottawa has been the perpetual #2 in Ottawa, and such a move would have also harmed their local coverage, further benefiting the then-powerhouse of CJOH.

Ottawa is a interesting market...  for TV at one point had 3 choices... but there is only 2 left for English news.   With only 2 choices, and one gets public tax money...  is it really a competition?    Windsor only has 2 choices (CTV2 and CBC, but really most people watch Detroit in that market. Much better coverage, more reporting, and better production values.   Detroit stations will come over to the Canadian side to cover major stories as well.   Sadly the Canadian side stations look so small market in compairison. 
 

Last edited by radiokid (February 11, 2021 12:39 pm)

 

February 11, 2021 1:39 pm  #12


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

MJ Vancouver wrote:

jon wrote:

Then is then and now  is now, but in the 1990s when the CBC in Alberta ran Edmonton supper hour News as a simulcast of Calgary, and later completed reversed the process, it was a Ratings disaster, even though neither situation lasted very long.  I'm not sure that they ever really recovered the viewers they lost with those two major mistakes.

I've read that situation almost happened in Ontario when the cuts happened in 1990, and it would have involved the elimination of CBLT's local newscast. The proposal, as I understood it, was to have a single Ontario-wide newscast anchored from Ottawa, with reporters based in Toronto and Windsor. They went ahead with eliminating the Windsor newscasts at CBET, but Toronto was spared in the end. They did go ahead with centralizing French TV news in Ottawa though, but that probably made some sense at that time.

The idea was that there would be one English local newscast per province. That's (at least part of) why PEI, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick all retained their own programs while Alberta was consolidated into one.

CBC Ottawa has been the perpetual #2 in Ottawa, and such a move would have also harmed their local coverage, further benefiting the then-powerhouse of CJOH.

The way it sounded back in 1990 was that CBLT, as a station, was completely shut down. Any remaining operations (local news) was transferred to the network.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H1YkbQRAqJU

I am wondering why didn't Global and Citytv didn't jump into the Ottawa market sooner. In the case of Citytv, why didn't they just get CHRO to carry all the Citytv programming (and even rebrand CHRO to Citytv) instead of trying to program 2 stations. It wasn't like Citytv was running ads just for Ottawa. 

 

February 11, 2021 2:19 pm  #13


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

ED1 wrote:

MJ Vancouver wrote:

jon wrote:

Then is then and now  is now, but in the 1990s when the CBC in Alberta ran Edmonton supper hour News as a simulcast of Calgary, and later completed reversed the process, it was a Ratings disaster, even though neither situation lasted very long.  I'm not sure that they ever really recovered the viewers they lost with those two major mistakes.

I've read that situation almost happened in Ontario when the cuts happened in 1990, and it would have involved the elimination of CBLT's local newscast. The proposal, as I understood it, was to have a single Ontario-wide newscast anchored from Ottawa, with reporters based in Toronto and Windsor. They went ahead with eliminating the Windsor newscasts at CBET, but Toronto was spared in the end. They did go ahead with centralizing French TV news in Ottawa though, but that probably made some sense at that time.

The idea was that there would be one English local newscast per province. That's (at least part of) why PEI, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick all retained their own programs while Alberta was consolidated into one.

CBC Ottawa has been the perpetual #2 in Ottawa, and such a move would have also harmed their local coverage, further benefiting the then-powerhouse of CJOH.

The way it sounded back in 1990 was that CBLT, as a station, was completely shut down. Any remaining operations (local news) was transferred to the network.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H1YkbQRAqJU

I am wondering why didn't Global and Citytv didn't jump into the Ottawa market sooner. In the case of Citytv, why didn't they just get CHRO to carry all the Citytv programming (and even rebrand CHRO to Citytv) instead of trying to program 2 stations. It wasn't like Citytv was running ads just for Ottawa. 

Ottawa, for its size and its significance, is probably the worst-served English TV market in Canada in terms of local content. It's a market almost as big as Calgary or Edmonton with a level of service lower than Saskatoon. There are around 10 English markets smaller than Ottawa that have a local Global station (notwithstanding where the news anchor is physically located).

The same thing could be said of some mid-size markets across the country. How London and Kitchener-Waterloo to this day have such limited TV presence from Canada's major broadcasters is beyond me.

Last edited by MJ Vancouver (February 11, 2021 2:23 pm)

 

February 11, 2021 2:47 pm  #14


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

CBC Ottawa does not have a weekend show.  During the NFL season, with CTV carrying doubleheaders, there is no early show.
So, the capital of Canada, does not have local news until 11:30.

 

February 11, 2021 5:08 pm  #15


Re: Changes At Global Out West. Does This Make Anyone Uneasy?

Ale Ont wrote:

CBC Ottawa does not have a weekend show.  During the NFL season, with CTV carrying doubleheaders, there is no early show.
So, the capital of Canada, does not have local news until 11:30.

At one point in 2015 they even tried eliminating the weekday 11:00 show in Ottawa, replacing it with Toronto's 11:00, promising that there would be Ottawa stories included. I watched the first five of them, four of the shows did not have a single Ottawa story, and one of them had a brief, visuals with a voiceover but no report. The anchor also seemed unaware that the show was airing outside Toronto.

The Ottawa 11:00 was restored pretty quickly. I was one of probably many people who sent in a complaint about the lack of stories outside Toronto that were included in the so-called provincial news.

CBC Ottawa did produce province-wide newscasts on holidays back in the 90s, and they usually included a good split of Ottawa and GTA stories.

Last edited by MJ Vancouver (February 11, 2021 5:11 pm)