jPod in a coma

First, jPod fans had to live with the frustration of figure skating pre-empting episode 11 on March 21st. When they settled in to watch the show on the 28th, it went straight into episode 12, episode 11 seemingly lost forever.

Episode 13, the grand finale, aired April 4th and is leaving many fans confused and frustrated with it’s open ending. It’s like the CBC doesn’t care about the show at all!

18 comments:

  1. Anonymous
    Posted April 14, 2008 at 3:10 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    One note: the actress that plays Kaitlyn is from Denmark, so it is not technically an all-Canadian production, but that is okay. I think we need to keep away from such a fever-pitch of Canadianism, yes, Coupland is a Canadian born in West Germany, but let’s focus on just doing what it takes to bring back the show, okay?

    Truly,

    Mike Wrathell

    An American who gets Windsor’s Channel 9 from the other side of the Detroit River……with a great grandfather who was born in Owen Sound…..

  2. Anonymous
    Posted April 12, 2008 at 12:52 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Dear Sir/Madam:

    I am writing to you to express my dismay over the CBC’s decision to cancel the
    television program jPod. This show is a very intelligent, funny show that was never
    given a fair chance by the network. Firstly, the show was not advertised very well,
    and I know a number of people who are now currently fans, but who had never even heard
    of the show until about 2 weeks ago! Secondly, on top of the poor advertising for the
    show, its timeslot was changed very shortly after its premiere. I ask you, how do you
    expect a show to attract any kind of large audience when very little advertising is
    done, and then the show’s regular air time is changed soon after its initial showing?

    I urge you to reconsider your cancellation of the show and renew it for at least a
    second season. Even if your television numbers seem low, I would definitely point you
    in the direction of the internet numbers. I know of many friends who view the show
    online due to the poor timeslot in which jPod now finds itself (Friday nights). The
    demographic for which I’m sure the show is targeted is unlikely to tune in regularly for a show at that hour.

    Again, I would like to express my disappointment in the network for choosing to cancel
    the show, and I would ask you to reconsider your decision.

    Thank you for your time.
    Sincerely,

  3. Anonymous
    Posted April 10, 2008 at 3:21 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Dear CBC,

    It is with a heavy heart that I find myself urging you to reconsider the cancellation of the television show jPod.

    jPod resonates with Canadians on many levels: from readers enthralled by Douglas Copeland’™s novel, to interesting cultural references inserted naturally throughout the show. It appeals to us through its setting in beautiful Vancouver city, and by the sense of national pride arising from international exposure (exposure which jPod has already garnered online).

    For these reasons, we should support this predominantly and distinctively Canadian masterpiece.

    Your claims that jPod does not have an audience are simply not valid, unless you mean the ’śtraditional’ť fixed-timeslot audience that is becoming obsolete with the evolution of television, especially among younger viewers. Surely you realize that, with a Friday timeslot, a large number of fans have turned to PVR or to watching the show online?

    In fact, looking at empirical evidence (from a purely personal perspective), I personally know 13 people (9 unique households) who watch jPod, and not a single one is watching on your scheduled timeslot. Instead we have turned to the wonderful online service provided by CBC. For this reason, I am convinced that jPod has at least as many non-traditional as traditional viewers. Both types of viewers should be included in the ratings since it is the responsibility of CBC to reach out to viewers where they are, including on the Internet.

    In defense of the low Tuesday ratings achieved by jPod during the early episodes, you must realize that most people were unaware of the show at that time. With few reasons for young people to watch the channel (a fact lamented by CBC and which CBC is attempting to address), any on-channel promotion for jPod was therefore ineffective, since the target market was simply not watching. Instead, perhaps the most effective means of promotion so far has been word of mouth. I, for one, did not discover the show until halfway through the season, through word of mouth, and the same holds true for thousands of others throughout Canada. Word of mouth simply takes longer than 8 episodes that were afforded to jPod prior to its cancellation. It would be a shame to cancel a show of this caliber before giving it a chance to reach its audience.

    Furthermore, anyone who discovers the show through word of mouth is, by definition, an online viewer because that is the only way to catch up with missed episodes. You begin to understand when I say the online audience is comparable in size to the traditional audience.

    Thus, if you accounted for all your online/PVR viewers, then jPod’™s ratings could very well be in the same ballpark as that of The Border (600 or 700 thousand). This provides compelling evidence for CBC to re-consider the renewal of jPod for another season, and I strongly encourage you to keep this uniquely Canadian show alive.

    Sincerely,

  4. Firefly
    Posted April 10, 2008 at 1:34 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I honestly hope the CBC is paying attention to the discontent of viewers being voiced here. I also noticed that jPod is #1 on the CBC Search Engine, does this not say to them that their decision to cancel was short-sighted?

    The CBC continues to ignore the fact that the Television Landscape is changing, busy lives mean more and more are watching TV at their own convenience by either recording it on DVR’s, or Online Streaming. How very sad for Canadians that “Our National Broadcaster” continues living in the
    70’s and will most likely become obsolete. Years from now we’ll look back and know that right here, right now, is when the CBC killed any chance of surviving The Brave New Tech-Driven World. My 17 year old son who chooses the internet as his main soure of Entertainment, and watches nothing on TV except for sports, holds nothing but contempt for the CBC after cancelling jPod, and I’m sure this sentiment holds true for many others his age. When will the CBC realize that cancelling jPod goes so much deeper? His Demographic being ignored by the network does not bode well, “Generation X-Box” will give you no Loyalty in the future – why should they?

    I can guarantee he won’t be lining up to watch Wild Roses or The Session. (Which is probably moot anyways, he doesn’t have one of those little boxes that counts him in the ratings.) The Ceeb announced these new shows coming out next year here: http://www.cbc.ca/arts/tv/story/2008/04/09/cbc-shows.html and others are chiming in with their disappointment and unwillingness to have faith in them because of the “Cancel Happy” CBC. I do not take comfort that Kirstine Layfield is touting her own horn, why be proud of alienating a whole generation?

    Andrew, I read your awesome blog regarding the cancellation, it’s how so many of us feel. I also wrote about it:
    http://firefly-alternativegirlfriend.blogspot.com/2008/04/oh-injustice-of-it-all.html

    I also wonder why the CBC is not even acknowleding our anger. Ignorance is Bliss?

  5. Sowff
    Posted April 10, 2008 at 12:59 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Let’s not give up, though, people.

    Boycott CBC and Tim Horton’s!

    More gore! More gore!

    Mike.

  6. Mike Wrathell
    Posted April 10, 2008 at 12:55 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Such a shame, eh? I was beginning to think Canadians have better taste than we vulgar Americans, better ketchup, better novelists, better teevy……but, alas, maybe it is a curse Native Americans have given to all European-founded nations on the continent to be shallow fuckwads, incapable of appreciating truth and beauty….

    Mike.

  7. Anonymous
    Posted April 10, 2008 at 12:46 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    It is a darn shame. I missed three epidodes, including 11, and now they cancel it.

    On a postive note, Kaitlyn never went into a coma in the novel JPod. Not sure what the young woman’s name was in “Girlfriend In A Coma” was, but maybe Mr. Coupland was running out of gas if he had to “borrow” plotlines from other novels of his, thereby bastardizing the teevy show, turning it into a monstrosity, a travesty of what his true artistic potential is…….but, maybe that is okay to keep the teevy series going with fuel from his other novels, what do you think, John Q. Public and Jane Q. Public?

    Also, just so you know, as an American in Metro Detroit who watched from Windsor 9, I am unable to see the episodes I missed online. Unless I go to Windsor and some internet cafe…..CBC has set up net-fencing to keep Americans from watching the show online…I guess BBC and NBC do that, too….so if everyone does it, CBC feels justified in doing so themselves….just thought you should know…..

    By the way, I am an artist, too.

    Also, by the way, Enterprise was saved for a year by a viewer drive. CBS was going to cancel it after the third season, but it won a year’s reprieve. We can do this! Maybe if we boycott Tim Horton’s until they offer to be a sponsor to save the show! That is something concrete we can do! I know it is unfair to Tim Horton’s but don’t you think the podsters would think it was cool? And, of course, we could try to boycott the NHL Playoffs, too, but that might be asking too much!

    Peace,

    Mike Wrathell

    http://ultra-renaissance.com (my art page)

  8. Andrew
    Posted April 10, 2008 at 11:17 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I’ve written my own blog on this after hearing the news at http://othrwrds.blogspot.com/2008/03/misadventures-of-staff-of-eccentric.html

    Thanks for writing to the cause.

  9. Anonymous
    Posted April 10, 2008 at 6:37 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    CBC,

    The cancellation of Jpod is truly unfortunate, and came at a time when the shows popularity was on the rise.

    Until Jpod, there was no television series that I watch on CBC, asides from Hockey Night in Canada. Jpod is such a refreshing and witty show and appeals to a younger demographic.

    I understand that it all boils down to ratings, which translates to dollars and cents, but I do not believe Jpod had a fair chance to prove itself.

    I did not hear of Jpod until 5 episodes in from a coworker, nor have I seen any advertisement for the show prior to its premiere. Fortunately, all the shows were online, and that is the only way I’ve been watching the show. The Friday night time slot is terribly inconvenient, but not an issue for consumers like myself when Jpod can be seen the next morning without commercials!

    I believe many do the same. With the rise of streaming video online, it is no surprise that those in the younger demographic no longer turn to the tube, especially on a Friday night.

    With this in mind, I urge you to consider renewing the show for a 2nd season. It deserves another chance given it’s growing online fanbase.

    Regards,
    Karl

  10. Enik
    Posted April 10, 2008 at 5:01 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Okay, every single person who has ever watched 5 mins of jPod has written in. You can stop now. Your comments are greatly appreciated and will mysteriously vanish during the next groupwise Mailbox Detox. Thank you for writing to us, and for supporting CBC, Canada’s Olympic/curling/hockey/baseball network.

  11. Anonymous
    Posted April 9, 2008 at 8:14 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I don’t have many words, but as a young adult, jPod made me proud of Canadian television.
    Finally, a show about people my age who aren’t rich brats, aren’t into clubbing and are actually shown holding jobs.
    The setting was also very refreshing, compared to most Ontario-centric programming. Even my parents (who haven’t read Coupland) would stay in to watch it on friday nights.

    Please reconsider the cancellation, jPod is a terrific show.

  12. Anonymous
    Posted April 9, 2008 at 8:08 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I wish the CBC would open their eyes and realize that jPod is a true Canadian original and not another tired American knock-off that they can just toss out with the trash (no offense MVP).

    It’s only because of jPod that I’ve actually started watching other programming on the CBC. This show is bringing a whole new generation (jaded from an overload of American media) back to the CBC. jPod was only starting to gain momentum and find its audience before the network decided to pull the plug. Why does the CBC always have to sabatoge itself? Put a little faith in your young viewers!

    -Monica

  13. Miranda M.
    Posted April 9, 2008 at 7:03 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I was thrilled when the CBC debuted its series based on the local writer and artist, Douglas Coupland: jPod.
    At first I was skeptical that any series could live up to this brilliant, witty novella, but the CBC came through in flying colours. They found superb writers, effective producers, and an unbelievably talented cast. The show was absolutely outstanding.
    Imagine my surprise and dismay when, three weeks into the series, the time slot was changed to one of the weakest nights for ratings: Friday night. I have since been told that the show’™s audience actually increased when it was moved to Fridays. That fact is hugely to the show’™s credit: just think how well it could have done if it had been left on the ace timeslot following Rick Mercer.
    The ’ścancellation’ť of the show came as a devastating shock. When I called the CBC audience relations to ask why, I was told that not enough people were watching.
    Apparently the CBC neglected to count me. And all of my friends, family, and coworkers who watch the show devotedly.
    They also neglected to count any of the 4,000 plus members of the Facebook jPod Group members.
    And apparently, they did not count any of the thousands of people who watch every episode by podcast , nor did they count the many thousands who view the show across the world via ’śbit torrent’ť.
    From a recent post on his blog (March 18, 2008), Michael Geist, who writes about law and digital technology wrote ’śCanada’s public broadcaster is increasingly willing to experiment with alternative forms of distribution, but also because it may help crystallize the net neutrality issue in Canada.’ť
    (from Michael Geist’™s blog: http://www.michaelgeist.ca/content/view/2767/125/ )
    Yet the CBC failed to count all these viewers, because they weren’™t viewing through ’śconventional’ť methods. But wait ’“ isn’™t this the new generation? Arent’™ these the young, dynamic, open minded new viewers that the CBC is so hungry for?? Isn’™t this the audience of tomorrow??
    These are the people who need to be counted. They need to be counted on. They are this country’™s tomorrow, and they are watching jPod today.
    If you look at the profiles of the members of the jPod groups on Facebook, and elsewhere on the internet, you see young, savvy, clever, and very aware people. They are the audience the CBC wants, the audience they need: They are the audience CBC dreams of. CBC has the opportunity here to earn their goodwill and admiration ’“ to give jPod another chance and produce a second season.

  14. Anonymous
    Posted April 9, 2008 at 6:56 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    The finale had such a great ending. However, it’s so sad that there will be no more jPod because the closing minutes really had me curious and wanting another season. It’s a shame that CBC has decided to end this all Canadian quality programming because it truly was an accomplishment.

    The CBC cannot look just a t ratings in their decision to cancel jPod. Plenty of viewers were obligated to watch the show online since the target audience tends to go out on Friday nights. HAs the CBC ever stopped to consider this?

    jPod finally did what the CBC had been unable to do for a long time; reach out to younger Canadians. They finally gave people in my age group a reason to watch them and now they will lose many viewers who they tried so hard to get in the first place. I hope someone at CBC reads this post and all others and something gets done about the cancellation of jPod. THis show was not given the chance it deserves to succeed

  15. Will Parker
    Posted April 8, 2008 at 11:46 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    My wife and I live in Seattle, and we loved the CBC — until the recent spate of cancellations. JPod and Intelligence were the best TV shows we had ever seen, and the bloody CBC had to cancel them.

    (Well, guess we’ll just have to annex Toronto to get control of the rogue regime at the CBC. It’ll be a sacrifice, but I’m sure the rest of Canada will thank us.)

  16. Chad Adams
    Posted April 8, 2008 at 12:03 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Another Open Letter

    Dear CBC,

    It is with a heavy heart that I find myself urging you to reconsider the cancellation of the television show jPod.

    jPod resonates with Canadians on many levels: from readers enthralled by Douglas Copeland’™s novel, to interesting cultural references inserted naturally throughout the show. It appeals to us through its setting in beautiful Vancouver city, and by the sense of national pride arising from international exposure (exposure which jPod has already garnered online).

    For these reasons, we should support this predominantly and distinctively Canadian masterpiece.

    Your claims that jPod does not have an audience are simply not valid, unless you mean the ’śtraditional’ť fixed-timeslot audience that is becoming obsolete with the evolution of television, especially among younger viewers. Surely you realize that, with a Friday timeslot, a large number of fans have turned to PVR or to watching the show online?

    In fact, looking at empirical evidence (from a purely personal perspective), I personally know 13 people (9 unique households) who watch jPod, and not a single one is watching on your scheduled timeslot. Instead we have turned to the wonderful online service provided by CBC. For this reason, I am convinced that jPod has at least as many non-traditional as traditional viewers. Both types of viewers should be included in the ratings since it is the responsibility of CBC to reach out to viewers where they are, including on the Internet.

    In defense of the low Tuesday ratings achieved by jPod during the early episodes, you must realize that most people were unaware of the show at that time. With few reasons for young people to watch the channel (a fact lamented by CBC and which CBC is attempting to address), any on-channel promotion for jPod was therefore ineffective, since the target market was simply not watching. Instead, perhaps the most effective means of promotion so far has been word of mouth. I, for one, did not discover the show until halfway through the season, through word of mouth, and the same holds true for thousands of others throughout Canada. Word of mouth simply takes longer than 8 episodes that were afforded to jPod prior to its cancellation. It would be a shame to cancel a show of this caliber before giving it a chance to reach its audience.

    Furthermore, anyone who discovers the show through word of mouth is, by definition, an online viewer because that is the only way to catch up with missed episodes. You begin to understand when I say the online audience is comparable in size to the traditional audience.

    Thus, if you accounted for all your online/PVR viewers, then jPod’™s ratings could very well be in the same ballpark as that of The Border (600 or 700 thousand). This provides compelling evidence for CBC to re-consider the renewal of jPod for another season, and I strongly encourage you to keep this uniquely Canadian show alive.

    Sincerely,
    Chad Adams

  17. Anonymous
    Posted April 6, 2008 at 3:24 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    When will you people wake up? It’s not about the programming at the CBC, it’s about the money stupid. Isn’t that right Dick? It’s always about the money, and you’re at-arms-length so they can’t touch you.

  18. Firefly
    Posted April 6, 2008 at 2:12 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    An Open Letter to the CBC,

    Watching the Finale of jPod just fuels my disappointment that it was so prematurely cancelled. Adding insult to injury, a whole episode was completely skipped and the Series was left off in a Cliffhanger! An ALL-CANADIAN production and brilliantly scripted, jPod is a funny, smart, story-line driven program set in Vancouver. It features talented Canadian actors and is based on genious Canadian Author Douglas Couplands’ book by the same name. Mr. Coupland was obviously instrumental in translating the book to television, and he pulled it off famously!

    ‘Podsters’ are not happy with the CBC’s decision not to bring back this phenominal ‘Made In Canada’ show, as evident from the http://www.savejpod.ca website, calls to Audience Relations, Petitions, and Facebook groups, which even many actors from the show are participating in, all trying to appeal to you, the ‘Powers that Be’ at the CBC, to Save jPod! If anything, our dedication must show you what promise this show has! I can’t even remember that last time Canadians got their knickers in such a knot over the cancellation of a Canadian produced show.

    jPod gave Canadian viewers a welcome change from typical American prime time fare and we embraced it! Kirstine Layfield herself talked about how the CBC is taking notice of things. From an article in the Globe and Mail http://www.insidethecbc.com/moredramaandparc on 30/05/07 and also posted on the CBC Website:

    After years of so-called high-impact miniseries that largely left viewers cold, CBC Television has unveiled a slate of fall shows that it says reflects a new belief that audiences like to be given time to really get to know TV characters.
    Kirstine Layfield, executive director of network programming, promised a ’śnew direction at the CBC’ť and acknowledged that ’śthe audience had changed.”
    ’śPeople like to meet characters. They like to fall in love with them, and stay with them for a while. Our goal is to increase the number of people coming to the CBC,’ť

    Well Kirstine, we fell in love with the characters from jPod, why don’t you let us stay with them for a while?

    Your network also offered full episodes online, thousands upon thousands have been watching jPod on their computers, you offered it, and it is truly successful! After all, if you missed it Friday Night while you were out, that’™s where you’™d catch it. jPod is also being watched online internationally via Torrents, complaints from jPod’s cancellation are coming from as far away as the UK, Germany and New Zealand, as well as from the U.S. The times they are a changing, and Online Viewership should surely be taken into account! Fans have also stated advertising included in online episodes would not bother them in the least, as long as they get to see the show. The Power of the Internet has made it possible for Fans to rally around their cause in the likes modern society has never seen before, instanly bringing people together to Fight for what they believe in. People are already abandoning their televisions in droves in favour of on-demand viewing, and The CBC is underestimating jPod’s Internet Viewership, as well as the demographic desirability of its relatively young audience.

    Contrary to popular belief, not all Canadians are American television “Big Brother” watching Sheep, grazing on ‘Reality’ driven tripe sure to knock ones IQ down a few notches. jPod gave us a wonderful reason other than HNIC to tune back in again! I had been so impressed with the CBC for finally giving those of us not from the ‘Tommy Hunter Era’ an alternative, something uniquely Canadian to induldge in. Now, I am left with nothing but disappointment and an unwillingness to have faith in any new shows you roll out, as I fear you will just prematurely cancel them like you did with jPod. Looking back, I should have learned my lesson and bailed on you after ‘The Tournament’ was canned. Fool me once….

    In my opinion, failure here comes not from slow ratings, but from it’™s changed airing to the ‘Friday Night Death Slot’. The result is devastating – moving it to Friday Night was a horrible decision, even High School Marketing students know about Target Audience. Why on earth would it be aired when jPod’™s biggest demographic is most likely not at home?! I feel like jPod was purposely thrown under the bus. Also, not giving jPod the Time any new program deserves to find it’™s feet, (Remember a little show called Seinfeld?) especially when many people had abandoned their TV’™s and viewership was lower in general during the U.S. Writer’™s Strike, was another blow. Missed out on were countless sponsorship opportunities, Dell being the most obvious one as their computers are featured prominantly in the show, and not enough promotion. (The only reason any of my friends knew about jPod was because I told them about it, as a fan of Mr. Coupland.)

    Chris Haddock, producer of Intelligence, in an article from The Canadian Press, points out flaws in the Ratings System and the lunacy of the CBC gauging a show’s popularity, especially among young viewers, on the weekly BBM ratings since so many young television fans don’t own their own homes and so cannot be counted, and many of them watch TV on the Internet:

    ‘The ratings themselves have been questioned very profoundly all over the world about their accuracy and their relevance because you have to be a homeowner.’ ‘So university students don’t get counted, a person who is a renter doesn’t get counted, a lot of people under 30 don’t get counted, so it’s absurd on many, many levels. I mean do you have to buy a home to get counted in the ratings?’ Spot on, Mr. Haddock.

    I can’t blame the producers of jPod for feeling screwed over by the CBC and voicing their upset over the cancellation and lack of promotion. I can however, feel alienated and furious over responses like this:

    When reached for comment, the CBC stated unequivocably “as far as we know, faeries are no more real than all those extra J-Pod viewers who would have come out in droves if only we’d had more spots.” Classy.

    I know in the grand scheme of things waxing on about a cancelled television show may seem trivial, but as a busy Mom, my time is valuable and I must choose how I invest it wisely. I am becoming increasingly disenchanted with the offerings available in today’s sad Television Landscape and only the best of the best makes it into my schedule. jPod is worthy, and every week I look forward to that one hour of wildly entertaining television!

    When the Canadian Broadcasting Corporations’ aging demographic has gone on to greener pastures, ‘Generation X-Box’ may very well hurt from the sting of cancellations so deeply that CBC will not draw ratings, but contempt and refusal of any further viewer support towards new productions. Just my opinion? Possibly. But last night I overheard my Teenage Son who had some very choice words regarding the cancellation of jPod. Alienating a whole Generation of Viewers – that will be the Legacy left by the Stursberg/Layfield Era. Your choice to not bring jPod back for Season Two will not be forgotten, and may go down as one of THE worst short-sighted decisions ever made by CBC Television. Then again, it may not even phase you – the Canadian Tax Payer Funding is in your bank regardless.

    Signed,

    ~jPod “Faerie” S.


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