Using big data analytics for social good and broader perspectives

Gender Gap Tracker makes big data public to motivate media to achieve gender parity among experts

Using big data analytics for social good and broader perspectivesAn Iranian big data engineer, a Spanish computational linguist and a Canadian social activist walk into a research lab. They don’t miss the drinks they could order if they’d gone to the bar, because they’re on a mission to change the world. We hear a lot about how artificial intelligence is taking away jobs and…

Quoting more female sources can help engage audiences

New online tool gives fitness tracker-style incentive for media to achieve gender parity in their sources

Quoting more female sources can help engage audiencesCould the incentivizing power of a fitness tracker be adapted to help achieve gender equality in the media, enhancing Canadian democracy in the process? After a year of collaboration with a team of big data scientists, we’re about to find out.  Despite the increasing attention paid to the importance of women’s voices, in news media…

Journalism takes another hit in wake of Mueller, Covington fiascos

The damage done to public trust in journalism by not following basic rules of journalism is, at this stage, incalculable

Journalism takes another hit in wake of Mueller, Covington fiascosLast week’s sickening media meltdown means it is back-to-basics time for journalism on this continent. The need for reportorial rehab began when major news outlets repeated a BuzzFeed report – based on unnamed sources – that the Robert Mueller investigation had been told by Michael Cohen that U.S. President Donald Trump directed him to lie…

Postmedia announces Q1 loss; Paul Godfrey stepping down as CEO

Postmedia announced Thursday the appointment of Andrew MacLeod as President and Chief Executive Officer

Postmedia announces Q1 loss; Paul Godfrey stepping down as CEOCanadian newspaper giant Postmedia announced Thursday the appointment of Andrew MacLeod as President and Chief Executive Officer, replacing Paul Godfrey as CEO of the media company. “It is with tremendous confidence that I recommended to the Board of Directors that the timing is right for Andrew MacLeod to take on the Chief Executive Officer position…

Can we restore public trust in journalism?

Too many journalists tolerate peers who, through undisciplined abandonment of standards, undermine their craft’s credibility

Can we restore public trust in journalism?It’s long past time that journalists paid attention to the millions of Canadians who don’t trust the news the way we used to. Sure, we could have lost faith because of the #fakenews narrative that has flowed north across the border. Or from learning that many of the characters influencing public reaction to events on…

The silencing of a vital conservative voice

The closure of the Weekly Standard puts an end to an independent and influential U.S. vehicle for conservative thought

The silencing of a vital conservative voiceOne of America’s finest conservative publications, The Weekly Standard, is no more. That’s not a line I ever thought I would have to string together, but it’s true. Last Friday, MediaDC, a subsidiary of Philip Anschutz’s Clarity Media Group, announced that the opinion magazine would cease operations. Created in 1995 by William Kristol and Fred…

The clear and present danger of climate change

Who best to convey this message of impending calamity in contemporary society?

The clear and present danger of climate changeWhat’s the best way to ensure that humanity gets the severity of our impending climate crisis and acts to forestall or prevent its full-scale onslaught? The question is particularly pertinent given that the science is well founded and the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is well informed – even while the oil and…

Why you should build your brand from the inside-out

Having a clear purpose helps organizations stand out from the crowd

Why you should build your brand from the inside-outOne time, while presenting a brand strategy to a client, I could feel myself tearing up. After several years of uncertainty about their direction, they finally had clarity about their real value, and their offering to the market. Their excitement – mixed with joy and relief – was palpable. This new strategy, they said, captured…

Legacy media is in a zombie state, so why waste public money on it?

Leave reporting to independent innovators who build the public trust honestly. Any government subsidy surely undermines that trust

Legacy media is in a zombie state, so why waste public money on it?A little over nine years ago, in the midst of the chaotic collapse of the Canwest media empire, CHCA-TV of Red Deer, Alta., died. It was considered shocking at the time that a legacy TV station (it launched in 1957) could actually close. Other stations – CHEK in Victoria and CHCH in Hamilton – were…

Bad news makes headlines, good acts make humanity

For all the advances in the last century, a legacy of wars, gulags and holocausts remind us that things were never good

Bad news makes headlines, good acts make humanityThe news is usually bad. And right now, things look dire. So I don’t blame my friends and colleagues who have stopped reading the morning newspaper. Shutting the drapes on the storm raging can return a sense of normalcy to the breakfast table. As somebody who can’t stop reading the news, I can say that…

The truth about the roots of most terrorism

When Muslim attackers and terrorists claim they’re acting to defend and advance Islam, westerners put their fingers in their ears

The truth about the roots of most terrorismGreat news! The Washington Post says, “Terrorist attacks are quietly declining around the world.” Citing a University of Maryland report on terrorism, the author points out that there are fewer terrorist attacks since 2016. So nothing to see here, folks – move along. Not so fast. I’m not sure we’re quite ready to celebrate the fact…

Revenue continues to decline for newspaper giant Postmedia

Decreases in print advertising and circulation revenue cited, while digital advertising rises

Revenue continues to decline for newspaper giant PostmediaCanadian newspaper giant Postmedia says it will “continue to identify and undertake ongoing cost reduction initiatives in an effort to address revenue declination in the legacy print business” after the company reported on Thursday net losses for both its fourth quarter and year-end for fiscal 2018. Postmedia said revenue for the quarter was $158.7 million,…

We have power – if we’re willing to wield it

The corporate world controls politics only if voters allow it. Let's make educated choices at the ballot box

We have power – if we’re willing to wield itWatching corporate-sponsored mainstream news can be confusing and frustrating. I have great difficulty sitting through report after report about Russia tampering in U.S. elections. Why is this news? What did they stand to gain? Haven’t the Americans been tampering in elections in other countries for generations? Though millions accept the nonsensical issues that dominate the…

Restricting Toronto mayoral debaters is wrong

Fair and equitable election coverage is necessary to maintain broadcast licences, not to mention Canadian democracy

Restricting Toronto mayoral debaters is wrongYou’ve heard of stage diving and photo bombing, but Faith Goldy has pulled a new one: stage storming. “Good morning, sorry to interrupt, I must have missed my invitation in the mail,” she said, having taken the stage to a Toronto mayoral election debate to which she was not invited. The candidate was armed with…

Social media is fully weaponized, open discourse be damned

The Eden-like public square was swiftly overrun by a cacophonic rabble dedicated to crushing ideas to which they’re opposed

Social media is fully weaponized, open discourse be damnedThe Internet may very well be the innovation that liberated access to ideas, but the social media it spawned is swiftly evolving into the jackboot that suppresses them. To put what’s happening today to an increasing number of editors into perspective – Ian Buruma of the New York Review of Books is just the latest…
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