NOT SORRY is fond of unsympathetic loudmouths, so it’s a good week when Kevin O’Leary makes the headlines. It seems the entire oil sector is on Shark Tank so he’s offering one million dollars to the scrappy industry provided they subvert democracy. Not happy with disrupting the electoral process (an industry in need of disruption), O’Leary is mulling a run at the Conservative Party leadership: “I thought at some point, someone is going to say to me, if you can be such a critic, why don’t you do better? Why don’t you try it? I thought to myself, hmmm, maybe I should.” They are going to ask you so why not ask yourself? His inspiring leadership and disruptive behavior has already encouraged some Albertan citizens to lead a ‘kudatah’ which is:
a) a Western pastry;
b) a country-western version of Kumbaya or
Breaking: journalism is not profitable, day 980 194. (And not diverse, day one billion.) This week’s big bad news was the release of Postmedia’s first quarter financials, which have more minus signs than Canada’s stock market. Analysts at RBC have now set their target share price at zero dollars. While Postmedia is the most dramatic example, this is happening at every company. Legacy media — that is, people who insist on printing their news on paper — are struggling to not lose money now that the Internet is officially here to stay. For some unfathomable reason, a few of them are banking on tablet apps. The advertising of which seems to revolve around, “Fingers. How about ‘em?”
Meet the Postmedia Finger Family. pic.twitter.com/GJeR39k9oE
— Steve Ladurantaye (@sladurantaye) January 5, 2016
Journalism is even less profitable in Halifax, where negotiations between the Chronicle Herald and the union for the paper’s staff have broken down. In case of a possible work stoppage, the paper has reached out to freelancers — many of whom are recent journalism school graduates and thus are doomed to be poor until time ends. The union is threatening to shame any freelancers who do this work, which will mean they’ll struggle to find work in journalism again, so it’ll be the same as it ever was. The Herald has also decided to remove the bylines of the union’s members from their writing. In response, the Halifax Typographical Union is doing what any reasonable person would: being sassy via the protest song “Say My Name” sung by female liberation activists Destiny’s Child.
It’s not all bad news! There are some jobs in journalism. Many of those jobs involve leaving journalism. (The king is dead, long live the king!) For example, James Cudmore is leaving the CBC to work for the Ministry of Defence after spending years as a defence reporter. I think he just wanted to finally wear a tie like a grown-up. Or maybe it’s a long con to find out whether there really are aliens. In other good news, the National Post’s Jen Gerson says there are no retirement parties in journalism; everyone leaves long before it gets to that. Good. Work parties are the worst.
— Les Perreaux (@perreaux) January 14, 2016
Point: Ottawa is the worst. Counterpoint: Ottawa is the best, despite being the worst. Counter-counterpoint: the editor-in-chief of the Ottawa Citizen would rather leave journalism then ever live there. Point again: if you carry explosives in your luggage at the Ottawa airport, you’ll get to meet PUPPIES! And the darkest wings of our government! And back: The mayor of Ottawa is exactly as popular as a Buzzfeed UK writer. Hard to tell if that is a point in favour or against. Consider it a draw. In sum: Ottawa — it’s there; stop complaining about it.
NOT SORRY is a CANADALAND production. It is written by Vicky Mochama who picked the wrong year to join journalism. Support CANADALAND and put “Vicky’s dental and vision” in the notes. In your inbox every Friday. Subscribe. @ Us.