Calgary radio station’s move from rock to talk has CRTC cringe

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A federal regulator says it still hasn’t found what it was looking for after a station switched a classic Calgary rock radio station to a talk format.

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Corus Entertainment’s decision to convert its Q107 FM from rock music to simulcasting its 770 CHQR AM news and talk shows was made last month without the necessary broadcaster and license, the Broadcasting Council said. and Canadian Telecommunications (CRTC).

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“According to commission records. . . there are no rebroadcast stations licensed to simulcast the programming of the commercial AM broadcaster CHQR Calgary,” says a January 24 letter that CRTC chief radio analyst Laurent Robillard-Cardinal sent to Karen Gifford, director principal of regulatory compliance and licensing for Sender.

“The licensee has not requested a license change to require that CFGQ-FM be permitted to work in the special format.”

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The letter goes on to say that Corus only owns the transmitter licensed to broadcast its 24/7 news/talk format in Banff.

And as it stands, the FM station can only air content from its AM counterpart 42 hours a week, the CRTC says.

In order to comply with federal regulations, Corus was asked to submit information on seven questions – including “Does the licensee intend to keep both stations operational?”. – and to announce the number of hours of the news/talk format the station plans to broadcast on the FM station per week.

He gave Friday as the deadline for submitting the requested information to the CRTC, and a deadline for “further intervention” was set for February 13.

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Last December 16, it was announced that QR107, which has been broadcasting classic rock music for 19 years and whose predecessors date back four decades, would change its format in early January.

In sometimes emotional farewell parties, the station’s DJs, who were soon to be laid off, said goodbye by airing only listener requests that day.

With much fanfare and kudos from politicians, CFGQ FM began airing content on January 9 which was also carried by its sister station AM.

Nowhere in Robillard-Cardinal’s letter does it indicate that CFGQ FM must cease broadcasting, but it concludes by saying: “If you do not receive a response within the time indicated, the Licensee will be in a situation of no -apparent compliance. federal regulations.

On Friday, CFGQ FM aired its usual news content.

The CRTC did not respond to requests for comment Friday, and a Corus spokeswoman had little to say.

“We can confirm that we have received questions from the CRTC regarding CFGQ-FM and CHQR and we will be happy to provide answers shortly,” Rishma Govani said in an email.

“Corus is proud of the extensive news, local and regional programming that its Calgary radio stations have provided the community over the years.

[email protected]

Twitter: @BillKaufmannjrn

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All talk about the recession is starting to sound more and more like CEO fearmongering

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CEOs were cautious when announcing the layoffs that made headlines last week. They blamed one thing above all else: an impending economic downturn.

The CEO of PagerDuty, a cloud computing company, said on January 24 that the organization was cutting 7% of its jobs “to weather the current economic uncertainty” despite the company’s “strong growth” over the past two years and that its growth has improved the operating margin. . Amazon has decided to cut 18,000 jobs “given the uncertain economic climate,” CEO Andy Jassy told employees Jan. 4. Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Nov. 9 that the company would cut 11,000 jobs due to the “macroeconomic slowdown.”

But the question that many economists were asking today (February 3) was: what economic slowdown?

The jobless rate in January was 3.4%, a 50-year low, as the US economy added 517,000 jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than double the 188,000 economists expected. Apart from the news sector, which includes both technology and media and lost 5,000 jobs last month, almost every other industry added thousands of jobs – or hundreds of thousands in the case of leisure and hospitality businesses.

“I worry that business leaders will look around and see that everyone is taking preventative action, and that’s why they’re also taking preventative action,” says Elizabeth Crofoot, senior economist at Lightcast, a company analysis of employment data. “There is a risk that we are heading into a recession if everyone pulls back a bit.”

A recession, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), is a “substantial decline in economic activity” that spans all sectors and lasts more than a few months and is officially identified by the agency. But many of the data points the NBER uses to call a recession, including job growth and gross domestic product, have been strong lately. U.S. gross domestic product grew 2.9% in the fourth quarter of 2022, following a 3.2% growth rate in the third quarter. And in December 2022 there were 11 million vacancies, the government said earlier this week, more than in any of the previous four months.

That said, by most standard measures, the US economy is doing well. And the parts that seemed weak are directly related to how CEOs feel. About 98% of CEOs surveyed by the Conference Board said they expected a recession in the United States at the start of the fourth quarter of 2022. The reasons for this are not entirely clear, but could relate to how the federal government has responded to recent inflation.

Many economists cite inflation as a reason to worry about a recession because the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates to fight inflation, which will increase the cost of borrowing. But inflation is also a sign that the economy is strong enough. Inflation, broadly defined, occurs when too much money drives out too few goods; in recent months, wealthy American consumers have spent so much money that businesses have been unable to keep up. (CEOs have also likely contributed to inflation by raising prices.) The Federal Reserve responded last year by raising interest rates at the fastest pace since the 1980s. That makes borrowing more expensive. – for consumers who might want to buy cars or houses, but also for large companies.

And that might help explain the CEO’s scare tactics a little better. Interest rates are at their lowest since around 2010, making borrowing costs extremely low for businesses. Rising interest rates have made borrowing more expensive for businesses, while a tight labor market has forced them to raise wages. According to Bureau of Labor statistics, workers earned an average of $33.03 an hour in January, up from $31.63 a year ago.

As a result, companies are “not ready to take the same risks as before,” says Crofoot.

CEOs have been rewarded for their risk aversion in recent months. Amazon’s stock price rose 25% after the job cuts announcement, helped in part by this week’s report that the company posted 9% revenue growth in the fourth quarter to 149, $2 billion. In its latest earnings report, Meta also reported higher earnings than analysts expected. The stock price is 75% higher than it was on Nov. 9 when the layoffs were announced.

Around 11,000 Meta employees may have lost their jobs, but Mark Zuckerberg’s net worth has also recovered as a result. He is now worth about $70 billion, according to Bloomberg, about $20 billion more than in November, when he warned of an economic slowdown.

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War in Ukraine. Heavy hit to Russians, long range missiles… talk of the night

On the evening of Saturday, January 28, 2023, the Ukrainian Defense Ministry published data on the estimated losses of Russian troops over the past seven days.

According to Kyiv, Vladimir Putin’s forces lost 5,350 soldiers (600 on 22 January, 720 on 23 January, 690 on 24 January, 910 on 25 January, 780 on 26 January, 850 on 27 January and 800 on 28 January) . Moscow’s losses since the beginning of the Russian offensive on February 24, 2022, are 125,510 men.

For these human losses, Russia would have lost, for one day on Saturday, seven tanks, four armored vehicles, eight artillery vehicles, one rocket launcher, six drones, 26 vehicles and fuel tanks, one helicopter and one fighter plane.

This precise count, updated regularly by Ukraine, is part of a psychological and media war waged by Kyiv to try to destabilize Moscow’s military and push the Russian population to oppose the go-away policy. Kremlin battle.

Kyiv asks for missiles

An adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said Kyiv is in talks with its allies to obtain the long-range missile, which Ukrainian officials believe will prevent Russia from destroying the country’s main cities. required to stop.

Ukraine has received battle tanks from its Western backers and is seeking fighter jets to repel Russian and pro-Russia forces that are slowly advancing on the front line.

In a video released on the evening of Saturday, January 28, 2023, Volodymyr Zelensky said that Ukraine was seeking to prevent further Russian attacks against Ukrainian urban areas and civilians.

“Ukraine needs long-range missiles […] To keep its missile launchers away from the front line and deprive the occupier of the possibility of destroying Ukrainian cities.Zelensky said.

American Aircraft and BHL Grandstand

The US press has focused in recent days on the sending of American and European tanks to Kyiv. According to CNN, “Tanks for Ukraine once seemed unthinkable”and wonder if fighter planes could be “to be next”, hill reports that the Pentagon is not “no announcement to make” about it, but “Don’t even deny”,

in wall street journalMichael Makowski and Blaise Mizztel Highlights “Reserve of the Arsenal of Democracy” In Israel, a little-known US weapons depot that has become essential storage for the Biden administration in the context of the war in Ukraine, but which is in need of a fresh update.

The American Economic Newspaper devotes an article to Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich and his effort, “won not”of “Save Ukraine, its reputation and its destiny”, “They are becoming less likely to be arbiters” And its assets are under pressure.

eventually wall street journal A text, signed by Bernard-Henri Lévy, was published on Friday evening in its “Opinion” section. The latter requests Kyiv’s entry into the Atlantic Treaty. “Bringing Ukraine into NATO is as much in our own strategic interest as it is in our moral duty”Writes BHL.

North Korea denies arms supply to Russia

North Korea denied supplying weapons to Moscow on Sunday, January 29, 2023 after Washington accused it of giving rockets and missiles to Wagner, the Russian paramilitary group engaged in Ukraine.

Last week, White House Security Council spokesman John Kirby released US intelligence footage purportedly showing Russian train cars returning from North Korea loaded with military equipment, including rockets for Wagner.

A senior representative of the North Korean government condemned “a foolish attempt at justification” Future arms shipments from Washington to Ukraine, which on Thursday promised to deliver 31 Abrams tanks to Kyiv.

Quoted by the official press agency KCNAKwon Jong Gun, director general of the Department of North Korean American Affairs, dismissed it “a rumor created from scratch” and warned the United States that they would expose themselves “really undesirable consequences” If they continue to spread it.

“Trying to tarnish (North Korea’s) image by making up something that doesn’t exist is a grave provocation that can never be allowed and can only trigger a backlash”,