The applause is deafening

If you’re familiar with the tactics of CBC Communications you know that a full page ad in the Globe and Mail is considered by them to be the pinnacle of interaction and indicative of a job well done. Usually it also signifies desperation.

So I was surprised to see a full-pager in the Globe this weekend. Had things gone so badly so quickly?

One blogger estimates the cost of the ad at about $30,000, and wonders if that money might have been better spent on classical music. Why would the CBC spend so much money “trying to convince us how cool their new Radio Two programming will be?”

The answer, of course, is in the names on the list of applauding supporters. These are not classical music people. These are people who will enjoy the new Radio 2. They might be able to convince some other people to listen to the new Radio 2. They might even be able to make a little money off the new Radio 2.

In other words, it’s over for you, old Radio 2. You had a good run.

Time to move on.

22 comments:

  1. Anonymous
    Posted April 13, 2008 at 11:42 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    the cost of that ad is estimated by the Georgia Straight to have cost just around $50,000 according to this article. Seven (7) such ads would cost the same as one season with the current budget (too low in my view) of the CBC Radio Orchestra. As of this writing, they are very close to having spent that much on this desperate ad campaign.

  2. Anonymous
    Posted April 3, 2008 at 9:04 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    With respect to the ad, which I saw, some questions came to mind: Why does the CBC believe it has to carry the burden of playing more Canadian Content [up to 75%] than private radio? The higher percentages may restrict the quality of the music, not expand it.

    and…

    What kind of partnership is suggested by having Record Company execs sign-off on the decision? Perhaps they’re feeling insecure about the new formatting in the first place. LeonT

  3. Anonymous
    Posted April 3, 2008 at 3:21 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Yeah, both. Only us old folks are kvetching and the other old folks are programming the network. I think that was the point.

  4. Allan
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 7:27 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    The answer is both.
    Only you and I know what’s cool, anonymous.
    So point to something new and different in the television arm. And please, let’s not go to Gomeshi. The arts magazine stuff is easy pickings – Canadian artists are desperate for attention. And it’s always done by the self-trained wannabe who has no perceptible talent themselves.
    That’s fine and has it’s place if that’s really the best Canada can do.
    But why does news and public affairs have to be so lifeless as well?

    Point to the new, not the repeats of last years ideas. Is MVP new? JPod?
    What opened up television for you in a new way, showed you its greater potential. Made your heart beat faster and almost stop at the same time. Spoke to your deepest thoughts and most urgent concerns. Made life seem so absurd yet so worthwhile?

    The schmucks here kvetch about everything and each other.
    But it’s far from sad to watch. There have been many proud moments, and a lot of funny ones to experience.
    Including yours.

  5. Anonymous
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 6:11 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    you schmucks sit and whine about the status quo, then you sit around and whine about it when they try anything new and different. who exactly is really “a bunch of old guys thinking they know what cool is”? cbc programmers, or the tea makers kvetch committee? sad to witness indeed.

  6. Anonymous
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 4:56 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    CBC management has always held their real audience in contempt. They imagine a fantastic young, “New” Canadian audience that will tune in to, and adore, without question or complaint, the dreck they put up for them. It’s a bunch of old guys thinking they know what “cool” is. It is sad to witness.

  7. ww
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 2:23 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    As a complete outsider – does anyone at CBC ever find out whether any of these changes results in higher numbers listening? I mean – how does one know? Are you trading one demographic for another or not…If one could be sure that one let go the older crowd to pull the younger one in it might just make sense… but do we know that? I really think this is the same problem the churches are dealing with… They just BELIEVE what they are doing will pull in a younger set- but they are missing the elephant in the room. I say -satisfy the customers you KNOW you have.

  8. Anonymous
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 6:14 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I’m sure going to miss Tom Allen, and I won’t be tuning into Radio 2 much after Labour day.

    (Music and Company was the perfect alternative to the self-important hectoring so characteristic of Metro Morning.)

    OK. Here’s to You was rather cloying, and Studio Sparks – though it played wonderful music – was something of an antique conceptually.

    I have a lot of time for and interest in the music Matt Galloway plays on his wonderful drive home show. So, if this is where Radio 2 is headed, I can understand the case for change.

    But the idea that classical music is for snobs is bunk. Maybe if Radio 2 had programmed more classical music with the openness, wit, style and – yes – passion that Tom Allen brings to Music & Company, there would be no need change the mix.

    And while I’m at it, I miss Joe Cummings on Tom’s show, too.

    Sigh..

  9. Johnny Happypants
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 5:42 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Many of the artists who signed this have been contributing to Radio3 for years. They just found out Radio2 pays.

    The other artists are wondering why Metro Morning never plays their songs to promote their events when they are in Toronto. Someone needs to tell them about the Metro Morning plan to sabotage The Current by playing a song so horrible at 8:25 that people in Toronto are forced to turn off their radios.

  10. Anonymous
    Posted March 31, 2008 at 10:49 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    If they wanted less classical and a younger audience, why was Brave New Waves practically the first show cancelled?

  11. Anonymous
    Posted March 31, 2008 at 4:49 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Only a small minority want to see the status quo. Radio 2 has to change radically, because hardly anybody is listening. The issue is more the way this was done, if gradual change and renovation had been part of the game plan then all this agro could have been avoided. Manipulating those music industry people to shill for a management plan was tactless and will, I suspect, blow up in someone’s face.

  12. Graham Broad
    Posted March 31, 2008 at 3:26 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Ah, crap. Music and Company has been part of my morning ritual for a few years now, for two reasons: it’s an unpretentious classical music show (very hard to find – nothing, except possibly wine, breeds snobs like classical music does) and because between 6 and 9 am it’s basically impossible to find anything else on the FM dial that doesn’t consist of being screamed at by d.j.’s who are not funny. Good thing I bought a dock for my iPod.

  13. Anonymous
    Posted March 31, 2008 at 2:38 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    During the lockout, Radio 2 played canned music – no hosts, no variety, just muzak. Ratings didn’t change. No one cared.

    If that doesn’t demand change, I don’t know what does.

  14. Anonymous
    Posted March 31, 2008 at 1:31 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    a little surprised to see Buck65 in there, when most of the shows that play his music (and all of the shows that broke him early) have been cancelled.

  15. hugh
    Posted March 31, 2008 at 7:36 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    well, shouldn’t CBC R2 reflect a broader swath of Canadian music excellence?

    The ad is needy, sure, and I don’t have much faith in CBC management to make good decisions about programming.

    but the idea that R2 should be a platform for a wider band of Canadian music sounds feasible to me. will it work? probably not.

  16. Mary Soderstrom
    Posted March 31, 2008 at 6:29 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    The people who are opposing the Radio Two changes aren’t only those interested in classical music, they’re people interested in serious music. That takes many forms, from innovative stuff to baroque to Gregorian chant to…well, just about anything but the dishwater that is will be forced upon us by the changes.

    As for classical music having a miniscule following: have you looked at the BBM numbers for the classic-only stations in Toronto and Montreal–they’re considerably stronger than Radio Two’s.

    Mary

  17. Anonymous
    Posted March 31, 2008 at 5:20 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I would like to see exactly how the question was put to these good folks and how they were told their answers would be used.

    CBC: Do you endorse a broader reflection of Canadian music excellence on CBC Radio 2?

    Jully Black: Um, sure. Why not?

    CBC: We’re going to use this quote in an ad. Is that ok?

  18. Anonymous
    Posted March 31, 2008 at 4:59 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Okay, so let me get this straight, folks. Though I am a huge fan of many existing R2 shows (esp Tom Allen!), nothing in the CBC Radio mandate talks about providing exclusively ‘classical’ music. Audience size of the existing programming is loyal and vocal -but miniscule. All the other Canadian musicians who deserve air time, but don’t fall in to narrow “classical” or Katie Malloch’s “jazz/R&B” definitions are to go….where, exactly? Oh Radio 3? Hey, I love Radio 3, but give me a break – it’s not the same as national exposure on conventional radio. So, I guess my question is – if it is soooo wrong for Radio 2 to change, where are all the listeners for its existing format? What’s wrong with broadening the notion of music on Radio 2? Why are you so against these other artists getting air play?

  19. Anonymous
    Posted March 31, 2008 at 4:00 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I would like to see exactly how the question was put to these good folks and how they were told their answers would be used.

  20. Anonymous
    Posted March 30, 2008 at 10:19 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    In other words, it’s over for you, old Radio 2. You had a good run.

    And the problem with this is?

  21. Allan
    Posted March 30, 2008 at 9:56 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Let’s compromise.
    Appetite For Destruction performed by the Winnipeg String Quartet.

  22. Allan
    Posted March 30, 2008 at 8:56 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

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