Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Ciao Bella

This week we celebrated the long career of a favorite staff rep. Kathy Viner fought for better pay, pensions,benefits and working conditions for CMG members for nearly 30 years. (And loved every minute of it! ahh) So she says. Union work can be both satisfying and frustrating. Satisfying in that you really do make the world a better place, and frustrating because there is so much to do. Many of us start off as volunteers helping colleagues through a bureaucratic maze,
but working for a union is also a challenging, rewarding career that many people would love as much as Kathy did. (She's off to Italy now to enjoy her freedom!) Ciao Bella.

Monday, August 22, 2011

A Sad Day

Jack Layton was a charismatic politician who spoke up for the kind and gentle side of politics. He was all heart, brains and compassion. An outspoken friend of the working class, if you met him in person, he was impossible not to like. We'll miss his cheery welcome at the Labour Day Parade in Toronto, I don't think he ever missed it. He was an enthusiastic supporter of public broadcasting and a voice for reason and compassion in many public debates. We will miss him.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Embracing Change

An outdated term I try not to use anymore is visible minority. In cities like Toronto and Vancouver more than half the population is culturally mixed. (Stats Can predicts 60% will be
" visible minorities" by 2031.) So obviously the term is just plain wrong. We know from recent news reports the UN disapproves. But put yourself in your neighbors shoes, who wants to be called a viz min? Remember not so long ago when we stopped using fire and police MEN and started using firefighter, police officer; or calling actresses - actors. We can find a better way again.
Great article in Vancouver Sun

Friday, August 5, 2011

Forget Free Work

Should young journalists work for free (as unpaid interns)? A brave young journalist
has publiclly criticized the industry for its increasing and selfish reliance on free labour by forcing young journalists to work as unpaid interns. Bethany Horne's personal pet peeve is it only allows students from families with money to get into jouranlism because anyone who needs an income can't afford to work for free...and that this defeats industry attempts to hire more diverse staff. It's a bold, thoughtful article that has generated heated debate, and may encourage companies with a conscience to reexamine the practise.

From The Canadian Journalism Project

One for All

The digital revolution is dazzling in the speed it has changed our lives. CD are on their way out already (remember when they were new), not to mention the family bonding over the evening news. Now everyone watches on their own time, on their own personal platform. This increasingly diverse delivery has techie guru and author Don Tapscott musing on the difficulties of sharing common interests in the public good in the future. In a thoughtful article in the Toronto Star recently Tapscott opines that alone is a significant reason to support a strong, national broadcaster. Of course I agree!