A new hope?

Ever since I appeared on the Search Engine radio show I’ve received many weird and wonderful emails from around the world. I consider myself very fortunate.

And ever since I appeared on the Search Engine radio show I’ve been thinking about what the president said about me, about you, about this blog and about communication in the CBC.

If you don’t have a radio, or if you don’t have any speakers on your computer, what he said was that any discussion about the CBC, in any forum, anonymous or not, as long as it was constructive, was valid and valuable, and he would follow it. And you won’t be fired.

I’m going to take him at his word. Can open communications lead to better programming? Hubert thinks so, and I’m inclined to agree with him. That’s why I’m still here.

So let’s do it.

If you have something to say, I would encourage you to go ahead and say it, however and wherever you feel comfortable doing so. Maybe you want to talk to the man, face to face. Give him a call. Maybe you want to write him an email. Maybe you want your own blog. Maybe you want to post something on mine.

That’s fine with me. All I ask is that you speak your mind, as honestly as you can. I could care less about your real name, or your job, or your position. Google owns this site and I have no tricks to tell me who these anonymous writers are. I go into it blind. Just like you.

In the meantime, I thought that regular readers might want to see some of the emails I’ve been getting. Seeing how its nearly Family Day, let’s start if off with something sent to me from a relative of the real Alphonse Ouimet:

I don’t mind at all that you use his name, I rather think he woul think it is quite flattering. It was just so strange to see his name, how should I say, still active. My grandfather loved communication in all its forms, I think he would of been interested in your work.

From my Mom:

My thoughts on the anonymity thing … Why would you give up your anonymity? What`s in it for you or for your reader?

It seems to me that Jesse has confused “anonymity” with “pseudonymity”. Ouimet is a penname, a pseudonym, we know where to find her and what to expect from her. We can address her thoughts and get her to answer us. When she goofs and posts a picture of Hitler, we tell her she`s misstepped and get her to take it down. Internet geeks deal with pseudonymity all the time — when I buy on email, I dont know the guy I`m buying from but I expect him to produce the goods.

From Hugh:

creepy. holy shit. just started listening … i’ll tell you what I think afterwards. but: ha ha ha ha…

From Jim Gunn:

cbc has always been or has exhibited an incestous and venal culture subservient to the drones and clones be they from toronto, or be they from ottawa, or be they from the slightly satanic city of montreal.

From Juliet:

I am juliet I heard you on the radio today and found you worthy to be mine as some one whom i can lay on her armsas long as love is concern, caring and teassing you all the nightlong, If you are interested in knowing more and for me to send you some pictures of mine awaiting to hear from you.

From someone who has been talking to Nicholas Campbell:

After CBC cancelled Da Vinci, we were led to believe there would be at least one Da Vinci TV movie, maybe even one a year. Is it true that the first movie not only was shot, it’s been in the can and unbroadcast for a year?

And from anonymous:

In one stroke, and by accident, you’ve managed to go over the heads of the Chambers/Enkin/Dube types that were so concerned about cranking out a policy … I find it very hard, now, to imagine any blogger getting fired for something they blog that fits within the CBC Blogging Manifesto.

And finally, this comment was one of my favourites, and kind of makes it all worthwhile:

I found this blog because of the Search Engine piece. As an simple listener, I just wanted to say that everything about this has given me hope. The fact that this blog exists gives me enormous hope. The fact that the head cheese himself reads and responds in real words (not vetted exec-speak) gives me hope. The fact that whole thing was aired for all the world to learn about, in and of itself, is a Big Deal.

15 comments:

  1. Blistering Barnacles
    Posted February 20, 2008 at 8:56 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    OK Thanks, I’d read your interview, but not listened to the show! I thought you did fine. Mr Lacroix too.

  2. Ouimet
    Posted February 20, 2008 at 8:21 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Go here BB:

    http://www.cbc.ca/searchengine/blog/2008/02/anonymous_blogging_at_the_cbc.html

    and listen to the show, or download it and make your family listen to it.

  3. Blistering Barnacles
    Posted February 20, 2008 at 8:12 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Ouimet, thanks for letting me know, I missed that. Which program? I live on the wet coast (sic).

    Your mom sounds great.

  4. Ouimet
    Posted February 20, 2008 at 6:14 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Hey BB did you hear your name on the radio? Bet you never thought THAT would happen.

    Talked to my Mom about a guest post. She said it would be a “hoot.” So who knows?

  5. Anonymous
    Posted February 19, 2008 at 5:35 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Won’t be fired?
    How about suspension?
    See
    http://www.cnw.ca/en/releases/archive/February2008/14/c2495.html

    where an Radio Canada International employee was suspended for going to the House of Commons’ Heritage committee with his concerns about RCI?

    One can’t speak freely about the CBC/SRC without dire consequences.

  6. Jesse
    Posted February 19, 2008 at 8:04 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Thanks for the correction, Rob. I’ve noted it on our blog.

    -Jesse

  7. Rob
    Posted February 18, 2008 at 11:43 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I just listened to the Search Engine show and am really happy that there is so much discussion going on about the Tea Makers, management and direction of the CBC but I’m really bummed about LeCroix’s original comment and Jesse’s continuation of the falsehood that the Barenaked Ladies made the song Lovers in a Dangerous Time famous! Back in 1984 when Bruce Cockburn original recorded it reached #25 on the Canadian charts. Sure the Ladies version went to #16 in 1992 but the song was on a tribute album to Cockburn. I like the Barenaked Ladies but credit needs to be given where it is due. That song was a hit when it was original recorded by Cockburn and the Ladies did a nice cover of it which helped make them famous not the other way around.

  8. Anonymous
    Posted February 18, 2008 at 9:10 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Anon 7:21 – And that complaint has been well-founded.

    We have lucked out by having some senior bureaucrats with programming experience (and we’ve had bad luck with others) but overall I think we’ve seen greater success and a greater appetite for meaningful change (unless it’s been motivated by sweeping cuts) under leaders whose experience we could trust.

  9. Anonymous
    Posted February 18, 2008 at 5:21 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    It is discouraging that veterans of the CBC so often discount the prospect of meaningful change. The complaint that the senior bureaucrats, with no expertise in programming, never pay for their frequent mistakes has been constant for decades.

  10. Anonymous
    Posted February 17, 2008 at 9:10 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    “If you have something to say, I would encourage you to go ahead and say it, however and wherever you feel comfortable doing so. Maybe you want to talk to the man, face to face. Give him a call. Maybe you want to write him an email. Maybe you want your own blog. Maybe you want to post something on mine.
    That’s fine with me. All I ask is that you speak your mind, as honestly as you can. I could care less about your real name, or your job, or your position. Google owns this site and I have no tricks to tell me who these anonymous writers are. I go into it blind. Just like you.”

    But “CBC Audience Relations” already gets lots of phone calls, letters and emails with blistering faxes to follow, and look what it has got us.

    It’s not the feedback, but the listening on the direction side of the CBC.

    I’ve heard Alex Frame blanch when the subject of Michael Enright being on the air at all, on New Morningside, or Sunday Edition brought continuous attacks on a local noon CBC Radio phone in.
    Didn’t make a bit of difference.

    Jian Ghomeshi and his endless smarmy repeats isn’t helping CBC radio listenership.

    The loss of much of the better children’s programming in the afternoon has pushed young viewers away, at a time when they could control the dial.

    CBC seems to exist for the benefit of a few managers rather than the audience.

    Sending things to Me LaCroix seems to be the same as sending to Rabinovitch,Beatty. Manera, Vielleux, Armstrong, Johnson, Juneau, etc.

    The CBC bureaucracy just stifles, not encourages, or says “lets put on a show” as in the Rooney-Garland movies.
    Instead of repeats, lets put on a show, live, faulty, awkward, learning as we go and give us something to listen/watch.

  11. Anonymous
    Posted February 17, 2008 at 2:56 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Anon 1:39 – More like Emperor Palpatine.

  12. Allan
    Posted February 17, 2008 at 11:40 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Even with my coat on about to go out the door I can’t resist writing a comment.
    I noticed that Hubert was not afraid to join the forum, while the George man has yet to make an appearance in the blog world anywhere in the entire history of the internet.
    I notice that Antonia Zerbisias is now an “ad” on the Toronto Star web/front page, which seems in some way odd, that she’s 11 lbs lighter after a month, and has taken the mantle of a general in the continuing struggle for women’s rights. Not much there for a male audience though.
    I wrote to Anti-Blog Blatchford this morning about Tea Makers, and was reminded of her remark about our meeting

    Dogs among blogs

    CHRISTIE BLATCHFORD

    One morning this week, out with the White Prince for a walk, a guy on
    a bicycle passed me. We nodded or grunted at one another, it being too
    early for anything more.
    A few minutes later, he circled back and
    said, “Blatchford?”

    Perhaps we could meet later in the day, Christine. What did you have in mind?

  13. Anonymous
    Posted February 17, 2008 at 11:19 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    A new hope.
    Does that mean that Dick is Darth Vader?

  14. Anonymous
    Posted February 17, 2008 at 9:21 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Jeepers, for a moment there Ouimet, I thought you were going to come out of the closet. Either way is fine with me. Thanks for being there. I was delighted to read the quote from your mom. A guest post from her would be grand.
    Yes, perhaps this is the new hope.

    Blistering Barnacles

  15. Allan
    Posted February 17, 2008 at 8:58 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Friends are generally thought of as people who will help us freely, and are good company, with like-minded motivation, and motives and values.
    It’s why Tea Makers qualifies as the best friend the CBC ever had.

    You’ve given me a lot to think about by opening up this way.
    Yet again.


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