Keeping it Real…

Keeping it Real… header image 2

Vancouver TV Ratings Race Tightening … Even More

September 16th, 2014 · 51 Comments

For a business that makes its living reporting, revealing and exposing information … it’s quite curious how secretive television and radio stations are about the DETAILS of their ratings.

You may see or hear an ad here and there boasting that Global’s Newshour etc.  is drawing THREE TIMES the number of viewers of their closest competitor (CTV).  But what they DON’T tell you is that they USED to regularly draw FIVE AND EVEN SIX TIMES their closest rival.

And of course, wherever ratings are falling, the brass blame fracturing of the audience, more channels,  social media, sporting events on other channels, weather.  And they are no doubt quite right, to some extent … but not always.

For example, if folks on the  CTV  Vancouver news set are smiling more  these days, it’s because THEIR audience is increasing … slowly to be sure …but on the way up.

Last Thursday, for example, Global’s Newshour was still Number One, but with only 3.2 ratings points in the all important 25 to 54 age group, according to figures leaked to me.  (If BCTV ever  had those kinds of ratings when I was there, I would have phoned in sick the next day, to avoid the wrath!)

CTV at Six came in with 1.9 ratings points … second place.

But look closely: Global’s Newshour lead was down to LESS THAN TWO TO ONE!

No spin doctor could make that look good.

For the 5 o’clock shows, the gap has narrowed even more: Global getting a 1.9 ratings score; CTV not far behind at 1.2 in the 25-54 age group.

Interesting, Global does best with its News Final, well ahead with 2.2 ratings points; trailed by CTV at a measly 0.1.

And speaking of measly, let’s not forget CBC  local news.

It’s Vancouver News at Five draws its BEST ratings, with a 0.4 score. That’s their BEST!   At 6 p.m., CBC drew only a 0.1 rating in the 25-54 group and, yikes, a “0.0″  …. that’s zero point zero …not even on the board ….  in the 18 to 49 demographic.

And when I criticize their product, some say I’m being too hard !!!

Meanwhile, the growing question now is how much of an anomaly were those Global/CTV ratings last Thursday?

Time will tell, but I am told that so far this month, Global’s Newshour is averaging a 3.7 ratings score at Six … above its 3.2 Thursday rating, but DOWN from its September average rating of 4.2 last year.

What’s pulling viewers to CTV?

Frankly, to me the shows don’t often seem much of a variation, one from another, anymore: maybe that alone speaks volumes!  But there IS one big difference:  Mike McCardell.

Apparently, McCardell IS doing just what CTV hoped he would when they picked him up after he was dumped by Global … or, as Mike LOVES to say “I was FIRED!”

McCardell’s stint with The Last Word  on CTV at 6 has in fact been extended  to five days a week now.

And it’s clear:  people ARE tuning in to watch.

Harv Oberfeld

(Response: Want to hear more on this topic? You can listen to the interview I did with Talk Digital Radio by clicking here.  h.o)

Tags: British Columbia · Media

51 responses so far ↓

  • 1 morry // Sep 16, 2014 at 7:51 am

    Love Mike!

    Hope Global keeps sinking…

  • 2 Gordie // Sep 16, 2014 at 8:18 am

    I used to watch Global morning news when I was getting ready for work, but was getting increasingly unhappy with the poor quality of their “news” stories. Nothing but car accidents, fires, and dog/bear stories..not very interesting. And they only had about 4 or 5 irrelevant stories that they repeated every half hour. A year or so ago I switched to CTV but they were no better so I went back to Global. However, I recently tried CTV again and their morning news was much improved, although still not really that great.

    So I guess my point is that although CTV morning news is not that great, it’s now better than Global.

    (Response: You left out any and every walk, run, bicycling, motorcycling, rowing, swimming, games, picnics, sales and seems anyone else who wants publicity for fundraisers. Good causes, no doubt, but far too many now given far too much time … maybe because they’re cheap, easy to do? h.o)

  • 3 BMCQ // Sep 16, 2014 at 8:18 am


    I do not pretend to know a lot about any Media, I have my thoughts and opinions but I won’t say much on this.

    I will however say that I believe you are 100% about “The McCardell Affect”!!!

    When Global attempted to announce that he was retiring and everything was Roses I was very suspicious!! That very evening I mentioned to my wife that I thought he was being “Pushed”, he did not leave of his own volition!!

    Shortly after that news came out that he was pushed and he did not attempt to hide the fact!! I do not blame him!!

    Very happy to see he is doing well!1

    Global have so many Technical problems that it looks like it is “Bring your Kids to Work Week”!!!!

    Excellent Analysis!

    Thank you!

    (Response: Have to admit, I enjoy the technical glitches: quite funny. I’m certainly no technical expert, but from what I hear, a lot of them happen because a lot is now switched and handled remotely in Calgary (saving money?) …so if the computerized programming is off at all …we see it. But so often? h.o)

  • 4 r // Sep 16, 2014 at 9:05 am


  • 5 harry lawson // Sep 16, 2014 at 9:32 am


    what we are witnessing is a death of a 1000 cuts.

    a conspiracy theorist could call it a deliberate effort to dummy down the news.

    my understanding is that corporate bean counters are micro managing to detriment of the product.

    i rarely watch the tv news now.

  • 6 D. M. Johnston // Sep 16, 2014 at 9:45 am

    McCardell is an institution that stretches between the generations. He brings quirky little stories that get us thinking and that is real journalism.

    Why Global fired him, with their weak news and infomercials pretending to be news, nobody knows.

    Until, the corporate owners understand that news, is news, and not a political slant, people will get their real news at other places. I have mostly stopped watching the news on Canadian News simply because it is now a pablum, spoon fed by corporate masters to the populace. Real news must be gleaned from many sources.

    So the ratings war between Global and CTV is rather meaningless, but I do feel sad for the CBC, a once great institution, neutered by successive government for fear of telling the truth, for telling the truth in Canada, makes you an enemy of the state.

    P.S. And now for something completely different. I think my prognostication for a return to school on the 22nd, looks certain now, unless Photo-op scuttles it.

  • 7 bob // Sep 16, 2014 at 9:47 am

    “But there IS one big difference: Mike McCardell.”

    During the BCTF strike we have been force fed Keith Baldrey parroting the BC Liberal lines – people see through that kind of stenography in a flash and will try something else to find authenticity.

  • 8 Larry Bennett // Sep 16, 2014 at 10:42 am

    I got to confess that I tend to watch Global still, even though we have “norts spews” guy – is it Biff – no, what’s his name – doing a mobile interview with the Mayor of Surrey. I must confess that it is a personality matter with me – I like these jokers – I mean, anything’s better than McCardell! How many times can we listen to him interview some guy doing pumpkin art or whatever? If there is anything consistently wrong on the news hour, it is telling us these heart warming (wrenching) stories about some one rollerskating to —- oh I don’t know, Goose Bay. Just give us the news as plainly and truthfully as they can without all the flimflam.

    (Response: Why do you so often try to make snarky PERSONAL remarks about people? Makes you sound quite ignorant and even personally troubled….and certainly weakens any point(s) you try to make. h.o)

  • 9 Larry Bennett // Sep 16, 2014 at 10:48 am

    Oh, and on the matter of Keith Baldrey – I seldom heard anything he had to say, being too busy trying to figure out what he had perched on his head. He’s since had a haircut, so presumably, it was only hair. Possible here, that I was only envious of his pompadour.

  • 10 Cocoabean // Sep 16, 2014 at 11:05 am

    Don’t these measurements take into account the number of respondents who reported NOT watching any TV during the survey period in question?

    Stand-alone TV is increasingly redundant when online content – news and opinion , including much “TV” – is far more focused and timely…

    I don’t know many people who actually “watch TV” anymore…

    (Response: Ratings reveal numbers of who IS watching and which stations. I guess anyone else who is NOT watching is reflected in the lower numbers of those who are. h.o)

  • 11 morry // Sep 16, 2014 at 11:28 am

    “During the BCTF strike we have been force fed Keith Baldrey parroting the BC Liberal lines”

    So now that the two parties seems to have reached a settlement wonder what SPIN KB will put on it? I don’t watch Global anymore, so let us know.

  • 12 e.a.f. // Sep 16, 2014 at 1:29 pm

    It isn’t just the type of news Global reports, its the words they use. Some news items can be watched on CTV, Global and CBC. Same “occasion/event”, different words. The words Global uses tends to be less “neutral”. I can make my own decisions about things. I prefer more neutral language when news is reported. That is why I like PBS and C.B.C. for international/national items. CTV national isn’t bad for national items either, but not as good as CBC.

    Sometimes to get all the information you need to read blogs, newspapers in other parts of the world, just to find out the real truth about what is happening. Global doesn’t do news anymore. They act, in my opinion, more as an advertising agency for the B.C. Lieberals. Baldrey isn’t a journalist anymore. He’s just a walking, talking, tweeting twerp.

    Lets not forget the two channels on Vancouver Island. They produce some pretty decent stuff. Their anchors may not be as “glam” as others but, if you want news, which I do, they are actually quite good. The do more with what they have than Global does with what they have. They recently did a story about how the steel coming from China and being used to build a bridge in Victoria isn’t up to standard! That is the type of news which is important to taxpayers.

    Of course it might be best if the major t.v. stations hired “real” news people to do the news and keep the execs. out of the news room. Execs went to school to be execs, not journalists.

    As to McCardell, I like the fact he isn’t young, he isn’t good looking, he isn’t going a mile a minute while he talks. He tells a story about every day things. It actually can make you stop and think about things, which in the end, are the important matters. Its all well and good to want to be up on ISIS, trade agreements, changes in law and government. Sometimes, however, its more important to listen to McCardell tell a story about some thing in Vancouver or about a person or a building, which has had endurance, which has persisted through out the decades and is still there. There is all the “big” stuff and then there is the stuff which makes up most of our lives. McCardell talks about the stuff which makes up most of our lives.

  • 13 newsmatters // Sep 16, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    Harvey, don’t forget to include the demo numbers from those watching the simulcast on BC1 when calculating Global’s overall audience numbers. Just to be fair.

    Couple more points: I’m not a fan of the approach CTV takes to its shows in Vancouver. While their populous angle might appeal to a wider audience, it just comes across as fluff and lazy to me. They use their “breaking news” banner on a far too frequent basis. It seems its on almost every night! They’ve cried wolf far too many times. I don’t need to see it across my screen every time there’s a goddamn fire and they have a live shot from Chopper 9. I don’t care. Now, if it was a seniors home on fire, then I understand and see the news value, but the vast majority of fires aren’t newsworthy to me.

    I flip between all 3 supper-hour shows in Vancouver and find that Global’s topper is usually the one that draws my attention most nights. They still have the best team of journalists in the city – an experienced team that I trust (with CBC not far behind). I know that you’re skeptical of the CBC’s new newscast format in Vancouver, but I give them credit for trying something new and different. They’re making a concerted effort to differentiate themselves in our market and that’s something that I appreciate. I actually find myself watching them now more often than I did before. For some stories, especially ones like the teachers strike, I prefer a story that runs longer than 2 minutes and like that they sometimes add a live interview or panel discussion afterwards with the key players (they had both Fassbender and Iker on the other night).

    Yes, I know there have been cuts. There’s been cuts everywhere in the industry, across all news platforms. Journalism is in a state of evolution and news outlets are trying to adjust. It’s the state of the game in today’s world. But when something big happens in our province, I know that Global (and the CBC, for the most part) will be there. In fact, I count on it. The Mt Polley tailings pond disaster is a prime example. CTV didn’t even bother to send up a reporter and they devoted a whole minute to it, 20 minutes into their show, on the day it happened. Embarrassing. Yes, newsrooms budgets are tighter than ever, but both Global and CBC made it happen and sent reporters up to one of the most remote parts of the province to cover a very important story. And they stayed for a whole week. That kind of dedication to cover a story speaks volumes to me and turns me into a loyal viewer.

    (Response: The ratings data I have does not say whether the numbers of any show include or exclude any rebroadcasts or on-line viewership numbers for any of the stations … so they are indeed comparing apples for apples for each …the broadcast on each station surveyed. However if anyone has all the supplemental data from other areas, would be happy to relay that too. As for another point you make …lead stories …I also feel that Global is better at highlighting a story that relates to more viewers, while CTV often used to lead with a limited-interest story that made me click off right away: but I think they’re getting better at that. Whatever it is, the truth is Global ratings should be a cause of concern for those in charge …that’s a pretty huge drop over the years, despite all the population growth. And CTV’s growth puts the lie to any excuses. h.o)

  • 14 morry // Sep 16, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    @e.a.f. // Sep 16, 2014 at 1:29 pm
    Well said. I am in total agreement.
    The only tv news I now watch is The National and some CBC news at night.

    PS is Jas Johal’s hard hitting journalism still on TV?

  • 15 frosty // Sep 16, 2014 at 4:57 pm

    CTV will never “get over the hump” ’till they jettison Tamara….zero credibility. Stick her back on the weather & they have a chance. The new CBC is worse than before. Plus, “Squired” out with Global these days.

    (Response: Not sure about Tamara…maybe people are getting used to her? CBC …what can I say … that I haven’t already? Except seems I was right. As for Squire, saw his “interview” with Dianne Watts … not sure who was most insulted by the puffiest of puff pieces I have EVER seen with a still HIGHLY ACTIVE politician … the viewers or the memory of what BCTV used to stand for in news? It’s almost as if they are TRYING to ridicule their proud past. h.o)

  • 16 ISLAND LOOKOUT // Sep 16, 2014 at 5:40 pm


    It’s good that Mike is the David in the ratings battles amongst the so-called media Goliaths, the bean counters, marketeers, and other assorted well-suited cranks.

    TV-Land ain’t what she used to be Harvey.

    Millions of channels, websites and people poking their fingers at those silly bits of plastic this’n'that all in the name of exactly what?

    When I get the answer maybe I’ll buy one of them critters m’self!

    Always better to be in one of Titanic’s (media outlets) lifeboats than swilling bathwater in the “ship’s” lounge, as the band plays “Nearer My God To Thee…”, in yet another vain effort to conflate those crazy ratings numbers and age groups…and keep my job!

    Good night and Good luck…

  • 17 Paul // Sep 16, 2014 at 5:44 pm

    I stopped watching Global because of Keith Baldery and Chris Galius after hearing them on NW .
    Keith is a mouth piece for the Libs and Chris is so vanilla. Except for Jas Johal their reports on weak!!

  • 18 Larry Bennett // Sep 16, 2014 at 6:30 pm

    Harvey – perhaps I get “personal” and “snarky” because I am quite ignorant and troubled, but no more so than some of the others here. You’re going to tell me that you haven’t heard people (I could make a list of the worst offenders) get snarky with the Premier, her ministers and assistants or absolutely anyone who speaks from the right. I have been told over and again that I am off my meds or smoking something illegal or that I am ignorant or “different” or a dozen other put-downs. It’s all okay, cause I got big shoulders. What we should really be angry about is the fact that the taxpayers are going to get screwed over once more, by the teachers and probably the rest of the civil service. P.S. You seem not to mention my words about “liking” for the most part, the gang over at Global and the fact that I would likely return to watching the local news there, they just don’t seem to take themselves so seriously there.

    (Response: But that’s the thing: you are NOT ignorant … you make some very good points …but you and others who do it too make yourselves seem ignorant when you denigrate people just because you don’t like them or their points of view. Takes down the level of discussion I hope to engender on this blog. h.o)

  • 19 Charles // Sep 16, 2014 at 6:30 pm

    Keeping it Real! I would watch CTV, Mike Kaleen is a reporter, but a weather gal just does not make it in my viewing. Change the mix and perhaps one would gain some more viewers. Lynda Steele comes to mind, she was an anchor in Edmonton.
    I was in broadcasting for over 40 years, and am sad to see the state of TV reporting today.
    Guys like Harv don’t exist today!!

    (Response: I believe there are LOTS of Harvs out there…some working right onw … but they need management who understand what that kind of reporting means, and are willing to give them the lead ideas, research time, camera time and willingness to unleash them on the politicians and businesses who are polluting, allowing lousy developments and wasting huge amounts of money. And not just report on or even ignore press releases OTHERS do trying to expose them. h.o)

  • 20 nonconfidencevote // Sep 16, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    @#13 “newsmatters”
    Wow! If I didnt know any better I’d say you were very tightly involved with the media.
    Your pro “Global CBC ‘ slant seems too biased.

    As for #15 frosty’s comment about Tamara Taggart. Total agreement. She looks like a “Stepford Wife” sitting up there.
    In waaaaaay over her head. Bump her back down to weather and traffic. She’s a liability.

  • 21 harry lawson // Sep 16, 2014 at 8:03 pm

    To all posters

    we may agree or disagree, we may or may not like comments.

    however personal attacks on people is doing a disservice to all on this blog.

    Harvey is kind enough to share this hobby with us.

    we should be kind enough to show respect to all

    with respect to all.

    (Response: Thanks. This blog is VERY widely read by a lot of very well known people in the media, in politics etc. .. and it would be a disservice to everyone to chase them away with juvenile name calling etc. by the few who seem to function at that level. h.o)

  • 22 Larry Bennett // Sep 16, 2014 at 8:10 pm

    e.a.f. – has no compunction whatsoever telling us that Baldrey is “… just a walking talking tweeting twerp” He feels Global to be less “neutral” in its news delivery, saying that is why he prefers PBS or the CBC – More neutral. You know, like refusing to label people who behead non-combatants and charity workers, or cutting children in half, and burying people alive — what they are …terrorists! On the other hand he says McCarldell talks about everyday things, you know – important matters. Really???

  • 23 13 // Sep 16, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    Well Harvey, Ill try to tip toe thru the mine field of left wingnuts without hurting any feelings.
    Sorry just a week attempt at humor.ala BMCQ

    I used to watch BCTV religiously. I now seldom get home from work (thanks to my friends at the port of vancouver) in time to see the 6pm news. If I do get home its auto reflex to turn on BCTV err I mean Global. I dont care much for Galius but I feel sorry for him as he wonders what prop or screen or tech glitch will come up next.
    Im afraid that the internet has taken such a chunk out of the msm that its doomed. As you pointed out the target audiences are of an age that dont listen to am and they think John Stewart is the news. Now and then Ill get a ride from my kids (aged 26, 31, 38) and when I ask them to turn on NW they look at me like Im asking for a kidney.
    BTW your blog is just another nail in the msm coffin as amny people would rather read blogs than turn on tv news.

    (Response: I believe the MSM and blogs could actually co-exist side by side quite well … one reporting the news in an unbiased way and the other allowing for more opinionated exchanges of ideas. Unfortunately too many newspaper, radio and stations and even complete networks have become politicized and practice advocacy journalism … and it doesn’t take long to figure out which ones those are. Plus there have been so many staff cuts and/or poor replacement hirings in so many MSM that even those who WANT to do good stuff don’t often enough have the time, the people, the resources to do so. It’s very sad …and frankly, the future is even scarier. h.o)

  • 24 AndyO // Sep 16, 2014 at 8:59 pm

    I find most of the time I watch CTV, Global on some occasions, but my interest usually has me for the intro news portion then change the channel. It’s too bad that I have to go online to get a more in depth news investigation not just a 1 minute sound bite that the news stations put out. For example, I watched the raw footage of the first Clark/Fassbender meeting addressing the media. It was 17 minutes long, 10 with Clark, and 7 minutes of Q&A. Great questions from the media but when it got on to Global, it was a 10 second sound bite from Clark then Baldrey doing his thing. Anyways, I don’t watch the news all the way through.

    (Response: What’s happening with the ratings seems to indicate MANY people feel like you do! h.o)

  • 25 13 // Sep 16, 2014 at 9:22 pm

    The more I think about it the more I like the idea of Jill Krop talking the anchor job from Mr Galius. She has put in the time. She has the talent and doesnt come across as reading stories she hasnt a clue as what they are about. I doubt that she would be enough to slavage the sinking global ship but maybe it would be worth a shot.

  • 26 mike // Sep 16, 2014 at 9:45 pm

    So Harv, I have been giving the local cbc news a try. I have to say I HATE the format. Its more like a news magazine program. The cameras constantly moving around the studio. I find Andrew Chang irriatating as well. Yeah I think he is too young. They definitely do spend more time on a story. But that is not always a good thing. I don’t need ten minutes of strike coverage!!..YAWN

    I prefer the traditional newscast. Behind a desk. I have given up on cbc and will stick to global and ctv..which aren’t great choices either.

    (Response: I do want to be fair, so I’ve tuned in a few times and I stand by my original piece. Nothing I hate more than any anchor or reporter talking DOWN to me, in a patronizing way ..especially if he’s still so young and inexperienced. Comes off as arrogant … and if his fans don’t like what I say …look at the ratings… for their 6 p.m. newscast. Hmmm! Chang WILL have a great future … but needs a better reporting pedigree first…. and THEN, he’ll have the credibility to attract viewers. h.o)

  • 27 e.a.f. // Sep 16, 2014 at 11:06 pm

    Some times I just get the impression, what people hold against Tamara Taggart is that she is attractive and was the weather person. So what? Does that mean she can’t be smart. Would some like her better if she was less attractive. She reads the news, just like the rest of them. They all pretty much get handed, what they “report”. They’re news readers.

    There is the odd “reporter” who might be considered an interviewer. Some do have interviewing skills, but most, if not with their prompts, they’re all about the same.

    Having Squire Barnes do “interview” is a hoot! Like if having the weather person do the news, is a “problem”; how do they ever thing letting the sports person interview, is a good idea. I suspect they decided to let Barnes do interviews after he got in a couple of good lines, regarding issues a few years ago. Unfortunately they ought to keep him on the sports desk, although I’m not that crazy about him there either.

    Agree Jill Krop is good at her job, as is Linda Steele.

    What I’d really like is someone who or some organization to just report the facts, in neutral words. No commentary, unless its listed as such.

  • 28 Crankypants // Sep 16, 2014 at 11:58 pm

    Does anyone know how these ratings and those for radio are derived?

    If is done in the same manner as polling is done for political purposes then one would have to take them with a bit of skepticism.

  • 29 BMCQ // Sep 17, 2014 at 6:39 am

    H.O. – Seems to me that most people I know tend to watch the same 6:00 PM News year after year, mostly out of habit. In my house we would plead guilty to that. Even though there are things we do not like about Global now we mostly tune in there at 6:00. For us it probably started with Tony Parsons and then continued on from that. Nothing to do with us trying to figure out what Politics go on there. If memory serves, and I know you will correct me if I am incorrect, for years they had a News Director by the name of Bradbury and if I am not mistaken he was very sympathetic to The NDP. Am I wrong or was he not at once time involved with them in some way?

    I will admit we have never watched CBC, always thought they were very sympathetic with the “Evil Ones” from the left!! Must be true because my Wifes Sister worked there and she is as Looney Left as it gets!!

    Slightly off topic but going to CKNW. I have been a loyal listener for many many years. I wake up at 4:45 AM to the musings of callers on the Nory Show moaning on about something their Neighbours Dog told them!! Then NW on my to work and at my desk with Till and now McComb early in the morning. Then Bill Good from the 8:30 – 12:15 and Bruce Allen either in my car or sometimes quietly at my desk. Then the radio was off until 3:00 PM or until I was on my home after work.

    Since the changes there I listen from early on until 10:00 AM then not again the rest of the day unless I am in the car for the 12:00 PM News and Bruce Allen.

    As a matter of fact I even went out and purchased a new Bedside Radio with pre-sets so I can listen to the Sports Channel before I nod off at night, changing it back to NW for my wake up.

    I spoke to the Program Director about so many of my concerns and he more or less told me he really did not care. Told me they were after a Demographic that were not interested in Spector, Palmer, Baldrey, Smyth, Levy, etc. etc. Said they had “Run Their Course”!! I do notice they have Palmer and Smyth back on with McComb currently.

    Seems strange to me that the Genius that is NW Program Director is after a Demographic that really has no money, do not purchase

    Metro Motors Cars,
    Funeral Services,
    Concrete Driveways,
    Homes at Tsawassen Springs,
    Sierra Syl,

    The above are all prominent Advertisers on NW and once those valued Companies figure out that NW is not targeting consumers that purchase their products they will find another Media Outlet for their Advertising.

    NW should be after Baby Boomers and 40 something’s, people that have made it or are on the way to being successful. Something else that should be very very important to NW is the fact that many Baby Boomers are now inheriting very large estates from Parents that pass on. Who knows how large an amount of money that is within ear shot the NW frequency? Could be hundreds of $ Millions each and every year!!!

    This is not just my opinion, almost all of my friends feel the same!

    The rest of my friends that disagree do not know much about anything!! Sorry, just throwing a little Gasoline on the flame!

    My son is 24 years old, lives in The Olympic Village and when I meet him for Dinner the streets are infested with Millenials, I am not too impressed. Only interested in two things, Coffee and Hand Held Devices!!

    Seems absolutely crazy to me but Simi? Eck,?Rex? Ted? REALLY??

    To me nothing more than The “NDP Farm Team”

    If things do not change there NW Radio Ratings will be going down quicker than Gerald Ford disembarking an Air Force One Flight!

    I understand most of you here have problems with the people I mentioned above but trust me you do not have any idea what “Right Wing” is if you think they favour The B.C. Libs.

    Seem crazy to me but what do I know? I am sure some here will tell me not very much!!

    Sorry to drone on but this is something that has been bothering me and I thought I would toss it out for an opinion or two. Not attempting to Hi-Jack the Blog just wondering.

    Everyone here that agrees with me just raise your hands!!

    (Response: Long-term habits are very hard to break …not only in watching TV news, but in so many other ways as well. I believe the real battleground in ratings is for those in their 30s and 40s … those who didn’t care much for news in their younger years, but start to take an interest in things such as taxes, community problems, education issues etc. once they are settled down with mortgages, kids even starting to have health concerns/issues. And they have more money to spend on big ticket items, homes, cars, furniture etc than either seniors or the struggling younger demographic. BUT it’s a mistake to think these potential mid-range viewers will be satisfied with shallow, easy stories like accidents, fires, promotional crap or puffery. h.o)

  • 30 BMCQ // Sep 17, 2014 at 6:52 am

    Should clarify somewhat.
    I do not mind if Jim Sinclair, Iker, or others like them are on a Station. Really would not mind if they had a Show of their own. My problem is with the ones that I mentioned that make a feeble attempt to appear “Fair and Balanced” when they are not!!

    It is not the opposing point of view to mine it is open and honest transparency in Broadcasting.

    Yes, I know someone will point out that some of the ones I have mentioned also pretend to be unbiased but are really in the tank for the “Free Enterprise Parties. Again, not really Right Wing.

    Jim Sinclair, bring him on, I would love to chat with him!!

  • 31 John's Aghast // Sep 17, 2014 at 8:12 am

    Holy Smoke! Get a life people. I haven’t turned the TV on in over 6 months. I get all my news on the radio, while performing other tasks, and from the blogs,
    I seem to be just as conversant with what’s going on as the average person, (Well, perhaps a little more, as the average person is too busy earning a living, taking the kids to hockey practice and dance lessons to have time to be up to date with what’s going on – especially considering the content of the ‘fast food’ TV source.)

    Gotta run now, CBC1 will be on down at the barn.

  • 32 OldIslander // Sep 17, 2014 at 10:14 am

    We’re news ‘junkies’ in our home — we record the island news at 5:00 — both CHEK and CTV. Global National at 5:30; then at 6:00 — Global and CTV. We FF through all the fluff and ads. We’re mid-60′s, so the networks probably don’t much care about us anyway…

    Someone suggested earlier the island news stations are doing a good job — respectfully disagree. There may be 5 to 10 minutes of local news; then they move to national and international, which will be covered in greater detail by other stations at 6:00.

    We tend to watch CTV at 6:00, and then FF through 95% of Global, to pick up anything missed on CTV. The most annoying thing about Global — their evening news is really 1 1/2 hours. Stories are often covered on Global National at 5:30 and not during the 6:00. Often stories are repeated. But if you don’t watch them both, you might miss an interesting story. We FF thru the repeats at 6:00.

    So that’s 4.5 hours of recorded news; we generally watch the pieces in which we’re interested, in under an hour.

    We tried to warm up to Squire doing the Mike’s old spot at the end of Global; we find him painfully bad. Love him at sports and and ‘Satellite Debris’, but my God, he is a terrible interviewer. His goal seems to be, to get his subject to laugh and like him — not to bring out interesting or important information. We always watch Mike.

    Never listen to radio talk; too many ads. Used to listen to CKNW every day but gave it up after Rafe left — couldn’t warm up to any of the subsequent personalities.

    Thanks for this forum, to let the ‘powers that be’ know how we feel.

    (Response: Really interesting perspective from an admitted news junkie … like me. I find it particularly significant that you FF through 95% of Global. That is NOT good for them: speaks to their lack of uniqueness …which used to be the hallmark of their show. And what should be of concern to all of them is the fact that someone who WANTS to watch news now finds they can go through 4.5 hours of programs, but watch UNDER an hour. And that’s not ME saying that …but tells me they are still out of touch with too many viewers who WANT to watch…unless as you say they don’t care about that age category. h.o)

  • 33 Gene the Bean // Sep 17, 2014 at 12:24 pm

    BMCQ – please look up the word ‘succinct’ in the dictionary…..(this is Harveys blog, not a chat room…)

  • 34 nonconfidencevote // Sep 17, 2014 at 4:57 pm

    @#27 Sorry e.a.f.
    What I hold against Tamara Taggart is her self importance.
    When she was first starting out in the local tv biz she was invited to a golf tourney put on for the local women in media. She showed up with autographed pictures of herself to give to the other participants……….
    The second thing I hold against her and any other vapid, deer in the head lights news “reader” is their complete lack of current events that they are babbling about.
    Tamara was prattling away one day with her news cohorts when one of them mentioned that Michael Campbell of CKNW (who they had just interviewed ) was the brother of then Premier of the province Gordon Campbell… “Really? He’s his brother?”

    She’s way, way out of her league.

    But she’s no different than the majority of bobbleheads they have up there on the nightly “news”

    (Response: If that’s true, it’s what meant when I gave her a “3″ on the gravitas scale. Too high? h.o)

  • 35 Barry // Sep 17, 2014 at 5:11 pm

    The following explains why I watch MSM less and less.

    At the top of Global’s 5pm news, what was the top story? Update on the teacher’s strike? No. News on the Mount Polly dam burst? Nah. Maybe something about how friends of the premier get untendered government contracts? Not a peep.

    It was a piece on how a Vancouverite taking a bicycle tour through Argentina was robbed of his bike. The reason this led the news? The victim was wearing a helmet cam that showed what happened! God, got to have those pictures and to [bleep] with any news value!

    If that’s all it takes to kick off the news, maybe the stations should place cameras in random places around town and then collect the best looking crimes of the day! Sounds like something I would have seen in the movie “Network.”

    (Response: Sure it was Global NEWS and not TMZ or ET? h.o)

  • 36 13 // Sep 17, 2014 at 7:09 pm

    @gene the bean, In BMCQs defense, his posts arent much longer than scotty on denman. Besides I enjoy reading the odd post that isnt trying to indicte the entire Liberal cabinet for everything from a to z..
    VC classof 71

  • 37 BMCQ // Sep 17, 2014 at 8:19 pm


    From Hall Monitor to “Keeping It Real Posting Cop”!

    Someone somewhere must be very proud of you!

    Was it not you that informed H.O. a while back that you would not be reading any future comments by BMCQ?

    Could not help yourself?

    I believe H.O. is a “Big Boy” and from what I have witnessed in my short time here he is more than capable of pointing out any concerns or criticism he may have with any one posting here.

    My Spirit Friend thanks you for the Kind Words and Support!!

    They are very much appreciated!!


  • 38 morry // Sep 17, 2014 at 8:26 pm

    (Response: Sure it was Global NEWS and not TMZ or ET? h.o)
    google it. it was YOUR old hunting grounds. PATHETIC!!!

    (Response: Stories like that should be used to get viewers to sty tuned…”Coming up later …”. But when they lead the show with it …tells you what they think of the rest of the material they’re going to throw at you. h.o)

  • 39 E. Johnson // Sep 17, 2014 at 8:38 pm

    I agree with many of the previous comments. In my opinion the newscasts have been dumbed down to the point of being unwatchable. The actual news could fit nicely into a half hour segment with enough time to expand the depth of material on important items. The trivial puff pieces should be eliminated. Does anyone really care about a cat stuck in a tree in south Florida? For many years I appreciated BCTV news and the quality of investigative journalism provided by reporters like you Harvey. Now I seek more and more news from blogs, well researched magazine articles and the remaining newspaper columnists who can actually write a decent opinion piece. Enjoy your blog. Keep up the good work.

    (Response: Thanks. Sometimes there IS a place in the news for stuck animal etc. stories …they’re good as teasers to get you to stay tuned and as a bit of relief from all the heavy politics and mayhem …but now some stations put those stories right up top,in the opening package! When they do that, tells me they either have almost no news judgement (often reflected in falling ratings) or they believe their own viewers are dummies, who will think that’s really news. h.o)

  • 40 R // Sep 17, 2014 at 10:13 pm

    Island news and bbc seem more of interest

  • 41 charles // Sep 17, 2014 at 11:08 pm

    I am in my 30s and I’ve been watching TV news since I was a kid. It’s rare for people my age to even watch TV news but I’ve just always done it out of habit. I actually get most of my real news from blogs on the internet. I guess I watch TV 6pm new hour as a dinnertime ritual. I also watch the news in the morning.

    Since the 1980s, I was watching BCTV and then Global every night. I switched to CTV just a few years ago when they brought on Tamara Taggart. I switched because Global is just terrible. They really do have a lot of technical glitches. No sound or poor sound just forces you to change the channel. They have news anchors who can’t pronounce words and names of BC towns correctly. Worst of all, they seem like a mouthpiece for BC Liberal talking points.

    CTV won me ever. It just feels fresh and new. Yes, Tamara Taggart is not an intellectual or a newshound journalist. She is a blond talking bobblehead. But that’s okay because I’d rather get my news from a bobblehead than a BC Liberal mouthpiece. Ironically, there is a certain genuineness to bobbleheads. I don’t feel like Tamara is trying to deceive me. She is who she is. It’s clear that she has a princess-complex who thinks very highly of herself. She may even be a narcisist. Who isn’t on TV? Who cares? Why should her opinion of herself bother me as a viewer? At least you can spot her for who she is–there’s real genuineness in that that you don’t get from the corporate package of Global news. I remember when there was a story about John McCain playing poker on his iphone while Congress debated bombing Syria and Tamara Taggart commented after the story, “What a goof!” It’s probably inappropriate for a news anchor to make a remark like that but I appreciated it. The leaders of the western world do such outlandish things that sometimes they deserve to be called names on the TV news. Tamara showed her personality. She said what everyone watching that story was thinking. Tamara also was very impressive last week when she interviewed Education Minister Fassbender about the teacher’s strike. The way she tried to pin his evasiveness down and get an answer about legislating the teacher’s back to work was very impressive. She may have been a weather girl but in that interview with Fassbender she came off like a news reporter who isn’t afraid to ask tough questions. I used to dislike Tamara Taggart but I’ve changed my mind. She won me over. I also do like Linda Steele and the weather guy on there is pretty good. I never watch the news long enough to see McCardell. It feels like everyone on CTV respects the viewers and they are trying to give us something we want. I don’t feel like Global respects the viewers–the viewers are almost an inconvenience that they have to try to please with bare minimum reporting while giving them a daily dose of BC Liberal propaganda.

    (Response: When you say Global is Liberal, I assume you’re talking provincial politics. Because their TWO recent fawning stories about Dianne Watts seemed to me more helpful to the Conservatives than Liberal! Can’t wait for their extensive interviews of the NDP, Liberal or Green candidates who run against her in White Rock … just be fair! h.o)

  • 42 Izzy Stone weeps! // Sep 18, 2014 at 9:10 am

    Ron Maurier doing wrasslin’ brought to you by Old Dutch potato chips, Mike Winlaw, Bob Quintrelle, jack Webster, Fotheringham, Marjorie Nichols, David Baines, Pat Burns, Jack Wasserman, “This Hour has Seven Days”…….let your readers add to the list. I’m an old fart, granted, but can anyone point to their equivalents in the last decade? Gawd, even Al Davidson in sports, Jim Taylor, Jim Kearney, Clancy Loranger… those were the days! Jayzus, LG FM in the late 60s And early 70s… what a line-up! CBC radio, Senile 650 and Jim Rome on 1410 is where I park my ears today. It’s true: we didn’t know what we had till it went! BTW, Larry, stick to Sun News… In the words of South Carolina senator Lindsay Graham :” we’re all gonna die”!!!!!!!

  • 43 Larry Bennett // Sep 18, 2014 at 10:22 am

    By the way Harve, I think we can be certain that Alex Tsakumis is ecstatic that Diane is running for the federal seat, though I don’t think he could care less for whom. In fact I wouldn’t be surprised if he isn’t working on her campaign in some form or other.
    And also Izzy I will stay with Sun News and I think even Harve would admit that there is no go-getter for the news, quite like Ezra. Like him or not, he is an old time digger after news, and he usually gets his story. See Nanaimo city council suck-holing for their re-election after Hurricane Ezra passed through!

  • 44 BMCQ // Sep 18, 2014 at 11:42 am

    Recorded and watched CBC – Global – CTV, 6:00 PM News last evening. I do not pretend to be qualified as to how it should be done but it appears to me that most of you here are correct to be concerned about the quality of Local News here in B.C.. Seems that Global which I watch mostly are trying very hard to be “Warm and Fuzzy”. The others I am not sure. Perhaps the Newscasts should be condensed to a “Hard News” Local National, International for a half hour and then have Sports, Human Interest, etc. in the second half hour. Maybe I am wrong but I would like to think that most of “The Great Unwashed do not need “Puff Pieces” to keep them watching between Hard News Stories, do they?

    H.O., Izzy, and others mentioned some pretty impressive names early on this thread and although they were not all my Favourites they had Character, integrity, tenacity, and the ability to follow scent the trail until they had their story.

    Perhaps H.O. could comment but is investigative Reporting a thing of the past in B.C.? A dying concept? A victim of Budget Cuts?

    Might there be an opportunity for an aggressive Station/News Director to take advantage of this vacuum and create a similar type of News Cast of what once was or has time now passed that by?
    Do the people even care? Between Entertainment Shows and Social Media it seems to take up the time of many I see as I move around town.

    I travel frequently and try to take in a little local News when in one city or another. News Casts today seem to be much the same regardless of where I happen to be.

    I know one thing for sure, Old White Guys do not have much of a chance getting hired by any News Dept.!!! Perhaps one of The Social Engineers here should contact “Human Rights Watch”!!!!! I am absolutely positive that they would jump at the chance to come to the aid of a Fifty year old Pudgy White Male!!!!

    13 -

    I am about your vintage and was involved in Athletics with many VC Boys, I am sure we have many mutual friends!

    (Response: Investigative reporting takes as lot of time, a lot of research and requires really good reporters and writers. Frankly, I don’t think most tv news shows have the budgets, time or interest in making the effort very often anymore … BECAUSE the competition doesn’t do it either!

  • 45 Ara Hepburn // Sep 18, 2014 at 2:13 pm

    Thank your for this piece and to the responders. I agree with so many of you.
    In another of H.O’s. blogs I posted we pvr Global so we don’t waste that time. Easier to ff through the doubling of sports time, the cooking/ booze show, the fluff pieces. About 15- 20 min vs 1.5 hours.
    Chris Gailus is terrible. Period.
    We watch, trying to keep the blood pressure down (lots of ‘settle down’ deep breaths) the Liberal News Releases read as is, without any question or fact checking because it’s good to know the ‘manufacturing consent’ that is their reason to be.
    Agree 100% with eaf re their lack of neutral comment. Their careful choice of adjectives re the Lieberals and NDP are ridiculously biased.
    If the NDP get caught being ‘bad’, it’s a long piece and recaps every historical item.
    If it’s the Lieberals, it’s short, neutral and always ends ‘but the NDP did it too and then the reminder historical recap’.
    (Not NDP btw: just would like journalistic integrity vs the blatant bias)
    Got a huge laugh watching Baldrey’s sullen face when the Liberals blinked over the education settlement. Losing in the polls, with the Chinese gov’t complaining, the public finally understanding the E80 clause that attempted to put the Lieberals above the law, among all the other fear-mongering b.s. about their being no money so it meant higher taxes when we are taxed and fee’d to death etc, Clark and co came up with new spin.
    Can’t wait for the day Baldrey is gone. His pro-liberal, anti NDP bias is blatant.
    Squire Barnes is ok at sport, excellent at Satellite Debris and a total Liberal toady in interviews. It’s embarrassing to watch him embarrassing himself.

    CTV at least pretends to be fairer. But again, it’s ‘personalities’ vs ‘news reporters’. Tamara is fluff. I recall the day Norma ____ ?? admitted she wasn’t even capable of waitressing and was let go after 3 weeks.
    So working on tv is now the benchmark for low skilled/ untalented???

    CBC’s Andrew Chang is … too young, lacks experience and historical knowledge… and it looks like has little in the way of research skills.
    Sure miss the days when watching and reading new meant: Comforting the afflicted and afflicting the comfortable.

    (Response: Clearly we see eye to eye on a LOT of what you’ve commented on above! And from other comments on here, so do MANY others …but I wonder if any of the brass at the declining stations are paying attention or even care. CTV seems to finally be getting it …but Global and CBC seem to believe younger, flashier and enthusiastic is better than experienced story tellers … even though their ratings do NOT show that. h.o)

  • 46 Charles B. // Sep 18, 2014 at 2:51 pm

    Sun News works at getting a good story. Wish it was available on Basic Cable. Can’t afford to add another tier of programs I don’t need. As for Tamara, sorry … she has to go. Lynda Steele is a good replacement. As for Global mornings, they need new blood.

  • 47 nonconfidencevote // Sep 18, 2014 at 4:43 pm

    @#41 charles
    Geez Louise! Enough with the ‘Tamara can do no wrong” already. Just get a hotel room.

    She’s a ditz with the warmth of an empty water bottle…….

    Her “watta goof” comment on air merely confirms my observations as to her “vast” and varied command of the English language.
    So eloquent, so unbiased, so …….. Tamara

    Time for her to go bye bye.

  • 48 Larry Bennett // Sep 18, 2014 at 7:00 pm

    noncon – Please see the blogmaster’s rebuke of one, Larry Bennett re: personal matters! Are you ignorant or are you troubled? Or both?
    In furtherance to my complimentary comments re: Global staff, we find tonight that they have received laurels and hosannahs from that great literary journal – the Georgia Straight! You may recall their expertise in personal ads, some very memorable such as guys looking for women to urinate on them, or the guy who wants to meet and pay roofers and pavers to let him smell their feet. As I recall he said it was “non-sexual”. Well we can agree with that perception at least!

  • 49 Ara Hepburn // Sep 18, 2014 at 11:18 pm

    Neglected to say in the earlier post that CTV was smart to hire Mike McCardell.
    Got a smile every time the ad he did re joining CTV with it’s ‘dig’ aired. Marvellous.
    It’s refreshing to end the news time with his human interest stories… the unique and the ordinary, the interesting variety of human life and condition and the stories about Vancouver.
    Mike is one of Vancouver’s gems.
    I contacted him just before Remembrance Day a few years ago about a fascinating veteran selling poppies that I thought he’d appreciate. He thanked me saying no one ever contacted him, he had to go find the stories and this veteran sounded wonderful. He is. Unfortunately for this veteran, Mike’s camera was taken for a breaking downtown Vanc story and he didn’t have time to travel to him before edit and air time.

  • 50 Chris // Sep 25, 2014 at 11:14 pm

    Hi Harvey as someone who just recently discovered your blog let I’d thank you for letting us know what goes on behind the scenes without any spin. My question relates to the format of a news cast, specifically who decides how the show is presented and which stories are aired. Is it the anchor, a producer, a news director? I’ve noticed the early news has changed since Robin Stickley took over which I find refreshing.

    (Response: Each morning, there is usually a meeting of newsroom managers and producers in which the assignment editor tells them which stories the various reporters will be pursing that day, either assigned or self-assigned if they have an idea that gets a “go”. The lineup editor usually works out a pattern for the show … after also monitoring national and international happenings … trying to link similar stories in a chain, while deciding …usually with the help of a second meeting later in the day, to se how things are shaping up …which stories will lead the show etc. I personally always believe the TOP story should be something NOT already covered earlier in the day in newspapers or on radio …but that also impacts on as MANY viewers as possible. Frankly that seems to be lost more and more these days: they lead with stories many of us already know about or they lead with a story that affects relatively few tuning in. THAT’s when I flip channels! h.o)

  • 51 Claudia Ferris // Oct 5, 2014 at 7:56 pm

    My observations on news coverage during the recent strike, in relation to your blog.
    Global gave parents the most TV coverage with 7 minute interviews with anchors like Jill Krop. One big rating problem I see there is that there is no on-line link to a lot of the BC1 material so if you don’t record it, it is gone forever. I think you build viewers when you can link to material. Global still has the best story editors and non-profits appreciate the coverage they give the community. Squire was the only reporter that pulled off asking Jim Iker about his hair.
    Tamara at CTV News was great when she flamed Fassbender for equivocating. Mike Smyth on CKNW and Stephen Quinn on CBC also were great. CBC radio sure is a lot better than the TV. Radio is great for giving you more than :15 seconds to talk about something, which is what makes most TV news not great if you like to get beyond controversy or conflict to solutions.
    I love that Mike MacCardell is still such a valuable commodity. Talent and creativity is still important to ratings.