CBC/Radio-Canada wins award from The Learning Partnership

kidworks-awds-348x230CBC/Radio-Canada is a recipient of The Learning Partnership’s 2014 Canada’s Outstanding Employer Award.

CBC/Radio-Canada is one of 10 companies selected for this honour from out of 75,000 employers across Canada who invited Grade 9 students into their workplaces for Take Our Kids to Work day.

It’s also the fourth consecutive year for CBC to receive this recognition. CBC Maritimes won the award in 2011 and 2012.

“Despite it being a challenging year at CBC/Radio-Canada, we were delighted to continue offering Grade 9s an opportunity to begin planning their future career path,” says Todd Spencer, executive director, People and Culture, CBC. “We are proud to be recognized, once again, by the The Learning Partnership for our continued involvement with them, and in showcasing our innovative services, programs and content for young people.”

CBC/Radio-Canada is recognized for ongoing support and dedication to education, internships and in particular, Take Our Kids to Work day activities. Employees brought their kids to work in CBC/Radio-Canada locations in Vancouver, Calgary, Ottawa, Toronto and Halifax, along with unofficial activities elsewhere across the country.

- David Oille, Senior Advisor, Strategic Communications, Corporate Communications

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Saskatchewan gets their tweet on with CBC

keithEver wonder who it is that follows you on Twitter? Earlier this month, CBC Saskatchewan hosted #CBCTweetUp with the hopes of meeting members of their Twitter community in person and getting to know them better. Over 100 tweeps from Regina’s arts, business, entrepreneurship, politics and community groups visited CBC Regina for a tour behind the scenes at CBC Radio and CBC-TV, to meet the on-air team, enjoy live music, win at CBC bingo and some other fun surprises  Keith Andrade was one of these Tweeple who participated in the event and was generous enough to share some of his feedback with us.

What did you get out of the event? Just how down to earth everyone was. I got to chill with morning show host Sheila Coles for a bit that night and even though she had to be up uber early to hit the airwaves, she was stoked to talk and show love to fans. That was the theme for the whole night! Supper hour host Jill Morgan is super cool. Communications Manager Kerry Fraser? So dope! I even ran into producer Chris Lane aka “The Man” and was really stoked on how approachable these folks were!

Was it worthwhile attending? The best part of any tweetup is the people who attend and this tweetup was just super dope. CBC did an amazing job giving us a most excellent environment to chill and share a laugh. I really hope they do another one in the future. Oh, and there were sweet buttons for all of us to sport and show CBC some love on the streets. This was just a great time.


A big thank you to everyone who participated in the event and a congratulations to the team for organizing a terrific event. Have you ever attended a Tweetup? Share your thoughts and photos with us!

-Sarah Lue, Social Media Advisor, Corporate Communications

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CBC/Radio-Canada’s Annual Public Meeting

postalOn November 19, 2014 we’ll be hosting our Annual Public Meeting (APM) in Montreal.  The APM is a great opportunity for Canadians to come together and discuss their national public broadcaster. The overarching theme of the panel discussion will be tightly linked with CBC/Radio-Canada’s new strategic plan – A space for us allCBC/Radio-Canada: Transforming to reflect you. You’re changing – so are we.

No matter where you live in Canada, you can participate in CBC/Radio-Canada’s Annual Public Meeting. Here’s how:

  • In person. If you’re in Montreal, then you’re invited to attend in person but make sure you register ahead of time because seating is limited. To register, email: apm@cbc.ca
  • Live webcast.
  • Twitter. We’ll be tweeting live from the event and taking questions also. Follow @CBCAPM and hashtag #CBCAPM.
  • Visit cbc.radio-canada.ca/apm for more information

We hope that you can join us.

-Hélène Breau, Communications Officer, Corporate Communications

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Discovering our North through the eyes of Devin Heroux

MEDCBC Calgary Reporter, Devin Heroux, recently embarked on a journey to Iqaluit to join more than 60 young Canadians (from both the North and South) as part of the first Arctic Youth Summit.  This Summit was organized by Global Vision with the intention of generating discussion and proposing innovative solutions to this region’s most pressing challenges. We invited Devin to write a guest post for us about his experience. You can read about his adventure below.

- Marie-Eve Desaulniers, Senior Advisor, Brand, Communications and Corporate Affairs


Upon arriving, our delegation was met by youth from across the north. The purpose of this summit was to have an honest and candid discussion relating to the pressing issues in Canada’s north to help gain a greater appreciation of life in the arctic.

Many things became apparent throughout my discussions with the youth and locals, and from the time I took meandering to different places in the area. Iqaluit is a place full of profoundly proud people who hold tight to tradition. But as important as tradition is, there is also this insatiable need for many to feel connected to Canada. Many times during my conversations with people, they made certain that I knew that they understood what was happening outside of their isolated community. At the public library, where people can access the free internet and computers, there was a lineup to check out the latest video on YouTube and status updates on Facebook.

It’s a tranquil place – a place of serenity. There is nowhere to run to and no rush hour to beat. But there are problems: drop-out rates in schools, astronomically high food prices and alcohol abuse. There is still a feeling among many youth that Canada’s north is being left behind.

The more than 60 youth who took part in the summit are now preparing a communiqué to Prime Minister Stephen Harper, which outlines our findings and suggests solutions. This was an eye-opening excursion for me – one that has allowed me to appreciate this vast country just a little bit more.

- Devin Heroux, Reporter, CBC Calgary

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Building a culture of environmental awareness and sustainability

As we reach out to Canadians with programming on all platforms, CBC/Radio-Canada is also working internally to build a culture of environmental awareness and sustainability. The Corporation’s Environmental performance report for the 2013-2014 fiscal period, now available at cbc.radio-canada.ca/green , provides an overview of the new systems, programs and milestones that are helping us to achieve this goal.

New for this year is a spotlight on environmental sustainability ‘infographic’ that provides a snapshot of our environmental accomplishments and highlights from both a national and regional perspective. It includes details on how much e-waste we’ve diverted from landfill, the reductions we’ve achieved in air emissions and water consumption, and more.

Check out the report to get an idea of what CBC/Radio-Canada has been doing to achieve environmental sustainability and help ensure a better world for future generations.

- Athena Trastelis, Senior Manager, Environment, Organizational Health and Wellness, CBC/Radio-Canada

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Our kids: having fun or hard at work?

toktwToday, they’re doing both at CBC/Radio-Canada as we open our doors to Grade 9 students as a part of Take Our Kids to Work.

The Learning Partnership’s signature program, Take Our Kids to Work is a great way for students across Canada to start planning their future career path, all while discovering more about the work we do.

Be it by seeing our studios, news and control rooms in action, sitting-in on show tapings, learning how to use cameras and read scripts or meeting our hosts, producers, editors, sales and social media experts, etc., the kids who spend the day with us gain insight on both media and workplace skills. And if past experience is any indicator, they’ll have lots of fun along the way.

Since the inception of the Learning Partnership’s Canada’s Outstanding Employer Awards in 2011, CBC Maritimes has been a recipient each year, recognized for the way they’ve connected with students during Take Our Kids to Work.

Stay tuned as we’ll be updating the page with photos from throughout the day of the events in Vancouver, Calgary, Ottawa, Toronto and Halifax, along with unofficial activities likely to take place elsewhere across the country.  You can also follow the activities throughout the day on Facebook or on Twitter via  #CBCkidstowork.

- David Oille, Senior Advisor, Strategic Communications, Corporate Communications

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Un espace pour nous tous : Une vision claire pour l’avenir de CBC/Radio-Canada

Les quotidiens publiés samedi ont largement fait écho au livre Ici était Radio-Canada et aux propos alarmistes de l’ancien directeur général de l’information des Services français de Radio-Canada, Alain Saulnier, qui dénaturent la stratégie dans laquelle nous sommes engagés. Je considère important de rétablir les faits dès maintenant.

Le plan stratégique Un espace pour nous tous propose une vision claire pour les cinq prochaines années. Il a été élaboré avec le concours de quelque 150 personnes travaillant dans tous les secteurs de l’entreprise. Il nous donne les moyens de faire en sorte que CBC/Radio-Canada soit axée plus que jamais sur la proximité de ses auditoires et sur la relation privilégiée que nous voulons renforcer avec chaque Canadienne et Canadien. Et il faut agir de toute urgence! Toutes les grandes entreprises médiatiques publiques ou privées dans le monde sont confrontées à un défi stratégique colossal : les gens consomment différemment les contenus et à des rythmes différents, les joueurs se multiplient, les rôles se modifient, le marché explose et le modèle d’affaires des diffuseurs traditionnels s’écrase. Les références passées ne sont d’aucun secours pour assurer la pertinence de CBC/Radio-Canada dans ce nouveau contexte. Il faut une vision tournée vers l’avenir et c’est précisément la trajectoire du plan stratégique.

Voilà pourquoi je rejette totalement les affirmations à l’effet qu’un manque de vision de la présente équipe de direction ne conduirait ni plus ni moins qu’au démantèlement de CBC/Radio-Canada. Je considère aussi qu’il est faux de prétendre que notre télévision a pris un virage commercial qui nous dénature. Un simple regard aux programmations offertes aux réseaux français et anglais de télévision, au fil des dernières années, démontre la constance de nos orientations programmes. Elles ne sont guidées que par la volonté d’offrir une grande variété d’émissions canadiennes de qualité, et nous y réussissons fort bien. Et nous sommes déterminés à continuer d’offrir une programmation allumée, unique, distincte de celle des radiodiffuseurs privés, d’une créativité ambitieuse et audacieuse.

Nous avons donc effectivement entrepris un processus incontournable de transformation profonde de CBC/Radio-Canada. Le temps où deux ou trois chaînes généralistes dominaient les marchés français et anglais est révolu. CBC/Radio-Canada doit plutôt se doter de structures qui lui donnent la souplesse et la mobilité nécessaires, tout en lui assurant une stabilité financière pour atteindre ses objectifs. C’est là que nous voulons être en 2020.

Je m’en voudrais de ne pas commenter les affirmations et sous-entendus relatifs aux pressions politiques qui s’exerceraient sur la direction de CBC/Radio-Canada. Je tiens à être clair là-dessus. CBC/Radio-Canada est dirigée d’une manière totalement autonome du gouvernement. Les orientations stratégiques définies dans le plan Un espace pour nous tous ont été élaborées par nos équipes en toute indépendance du ministre et des hauts fonctionnaires du ministère du Patrimoine canadien. Ceux-ci n’interviennent pas non plus dans les choix que nous faisons face aux défis budgétaires, dans la gestion quotidienne de l’entreprise ou de son service de l’information. Cependant, il est normal qu’à l’instar de mes prédécesseurs, je reste en contact avec le ministère du Patrimoine canadien qui doit répondre de CBC/Radio-Canada devant le Parlement.

Les exemples d’interventions « décisives » du ministre tirés du livre d’Alain Saulnier et cités dans les journaux relèvent d’interprétations abusives ou erronées. Le cas de Gilles Duceppe à Médium large est révélateur à cet égard. En vérité, il s’agit d’une méprise de l’équipe de l’émission qui a approché M. Duceppe sans tenir compte de la politique journalistique imposant un moratoire de deux ans à l’embauche d’un politicien défait, et sans en aviser la direction de la Radio. Ce n’est donc pas pour faire plaisir au ministre, mais en raison de notre politique journalistique qu’on a prévenu M. Duceppe qu’il ne pourrait parler de politique à Médium large. Il a alors refusé la proposition. D’ailleurs, ce dernier a été invité, l’an dernier, à faire partie du Club des ex, mais a dû décliner parce que les règles du fonds de pension des élus fédéraux lui interdisaient de travailler pour une société de la couronne.

CBC/Radio-Canada est une société publique et comme telle fait partie du débat public. On peut légitimement critiquer nos orientations stratégiques. J’irais même plus loin. Il faut encourager un débat de fond sur cette stratégie. Mais ce débat ne mènera nulle part s’il se limite à voir comment maintenir ou ramener le diffuseur public à l’époque où TVA et CTV étaient nos seuls compétiteurs. Le marché d’aujourd’hui vibre davantage au rythme de Google, Netflix ou de partenariats inédits comme celui annoncé la semaine dernière par Vice Media et Rogers Communications.

Cette transformation ne se fera pas du jour au lendemain, mais CBC/Radio-Canada sera différente en 2020. Les prochaines années seront complexes alors que nous vivrons cette transition et réinventerons nos modèles d’affaires. Les réflexes de plusieurs observateurs sont de nous juger sur la base de ce que nous faisions auparavant, non pas sur ce que nous bâtissons pour l’avenir. Une telle piste de réflexion représente une avenue suicidaire si nous voulons que CBC/Radio-Canada demeure au cœur de la vie de nos enfants et nos petits-enfants!

- Hubert T. Lacroix, président-directeur général, CBC/Radio-Canada
Questions et réponses concernant divers sujets abordés dans les commentaires d’Alain Saulnier

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CBC/Radio-Canada secure broadcast rights for PyeongChang in 2018 and Tokyo in 2020

Earlier today, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced that CBC/Radio-Canada has been awarded the Canadian broadcast rights for the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games and the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

As lead broadcaster, CBC/Radio-Canada will be working with broadcast partner Bell Media, along with Rogers Media, to provide Canadians with full access to all the excitement of the Olympic Games, allowing all of us to cheer on Canada’s best athletes.  Here are some photos from today’s announcement in Toronto.

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Yesterday’s events in Ottawa

A horrifying day in Ottawa, one that’s left its mark on all of us.

I want to commend the professionalism of our CBCers/Radio-Canadiens covering the story – both those who covered it live, and those who are still covering it now – to ensure Canadians had up to the minute information. Their smart, thoughtful coverage has already been held up as an example of the right way to cover a story of this nature (here and here, for example). We are proud of all of you. I am proud of all of you.

For our Ottawa staff, it was a particularly difficult day. All decisions taken by the Emergency Preparedness Team for Ottawa under the leadership of Hugo Hotte, and the National Crisis Management Team, were managed with the security of our staff top-of-mind. We appreciate everyone’s cooperation through what was a stressful, challenging time.

Thank you all for everything you do – for Canadians and for each other.

-Hubert T. Lacroix, President and CEO, CBC/Radio-Canada

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Broadcasting Igalaaq from Iqaluit

Imagine living in Toronto and turning on your evening news to get the day’s top stories for your community. Would you expect your news to be broadcast live from Winnipeg? For 19 years, this is how the community of Iqaluit, Nunavut, received their supper-hour news. CBC Igalaaq, which provides the day’s news for Nunavut and the Northwest Territories in the Inuktitut language, was broadcast from Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, a distance of over 2, 200 km from Iqaluit.

This past May however, following a successful pilot project to cover the Nunavut election with a live event in Iqaluit and the control room in Yellowknife, Igalaaq started broadcasting from Iqaluit.

cbc northThe change required exceptional teamwork. The team in Iqaluit produced radio, and the employees had to agree not only to squeeze a TV studio into their small radio station, but also to take on new TV roles. The radio show producer has become a TV producer — working on the lineup, coaching the TV host in studio, and communicating with the Yellowknife producers. The radio broadcast technician operates the studio camera for TV. The TV host is backfilled by the radio announce operators, who also do Inuktitut versioning, translation and voice-over for the TV show. The radio maintenance technician has added TV studio maintenance to his duties, and two reporter positions were turned into video-journalists, which required training. The project was done with minimal budget and a quick turnaround of just four months.

How was CBC North able to take on new new roles so quickly? “We’re special,” says Regional IT Manager Jeff Gardiner laughingly. Being flexible and overcoming technical challenges is just part of everyday life in the North, Jeff explains. There’s no NGCN infrastructure (the network used between most CBC/Radio-Canada sites) and limited broadband. Transmission is done across satellite and there is a delay in all transmissions, including data. Staff understand how to work around these issues. For example, when the producer in Yellowknife gives the host in Iqaluit the “go,” it’s a second-and-a-half before her voice comes back, so she has to know to jump in and speak right away. The delay also means that there’s latency for captions and graphics, which technical staff know how to take into account.

There are other unique challenges, too. For instance, the control staff in Yellowknife don’t speak Inuktitut, the language being broadcast. And there’s the small issue of the scripts being all in English because the teleprompter and iNEWS can’t display the characters for Inuktitut. This means that the host must do simultaneous translation as she reads the prompters!

Despite all the challenges, Jeff explains that as soon as it was possible to broadcast from Iqaluit, everyone agreed that it had to be done because of the opportunity to fully showcase the land, people and culture of Nunavut in their own language, from their own territory. It’s a commitment to community that keeps CBC North innovating and doing things better.

-Melanie Miles, Writer/Editor, Corporate Communications

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