THE GALLEY             Quill
Newsletter of
the Media Club of Ottawa


May  2016
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           N E W S......

from and about Members and Friends

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Dawn E Monroe posted a photo in her Timeline of  Mona Louise Parsons,
a Canadian who supported the Dutch resistance by rescuing downed Allied airmen during WWII.

Note: Cllick on the link above  to see the photo and to read more

 Val Knowles*:

June Coxon:

Jayne Simms-Dalmotas:

Janet Webb:

Iris ten Holder:

Shirley Van Dusen:

David French*:

Joe Banks;

Helen Bednarek VanEyk:

Margaret Virany:

Henry Heald:

Jim Watson**:

Rosaleen Dickson**:

Patrick Meikle*:

* former member
** honorary member

Lately radio and television stations have added the state of today's journalism to their programming.

 February 28
The Power of the Press
On the Sunday Edition of the CBC radio's morning program hosted by Michael Enright

February 18, 2016
Source: new
The headline for an online article by Peter Wilby is Creative Distruction, Rupert Murdoch and the Rise and Fall of the Independent. To read it go to Britain's Current Affairs & Politics Magazine:

 February 13, 2016
Source: Ottawa Citizen, page A5:
 Panel to Explore Radio's Digital Renaissance is the headline of an article by Mathew Pearson. He writes that serial, and podcasts like it, are fuelling radio's digital renaissance by attracting listeners who tune in while on-the-go. The article was prompted by a panel discussion in Ottawa with a number of CBC on-air personalities about radio's changing landscape. The February 13 live event was also webcast.

.Local News and other news items

17th Annual Kesterton Lecture: Spotlight on Journalism

by Iris ten \holder

On February 4, 2016 the Atrium room at Carleton University was packed to overflowing.  When I say room, I mean the size of three rooms side by side. The conversation between Robin Bresnahan, the morning host at CBC and Martin Baron of the Washington Post took place 'onstage'..

 Martin Baron,  the investigative reporter portrayed in the movie 'Spotlight', who brought the Boston sex scandal of the Catholic Church to light, now shared wisdom gained from the experience, and also discussed the many challenges journalists and media face in a digital era.

The conversation touched on many aspects of the issue of the Boston Catholic sex scandal and gave Mr Baron ample opportunity to explain what investigative journalism means to him, its importance and the time it can take. He also explained that although he generally has more humour than portrayed in the movie, the time of the scandal was a very tense one and the portrayal was factual.

 The matter of PTSD for the journalists who were part of the investigative team was brought forward during questioins and he humbly said that this was not recognized at the time of the investigation, to his regret. Baron took time to talk about the business (financial) aspect of newspapers as well as the changes brought about by the advent of digital media.  It was an evening well spent.

Susan Harada. Associate Director of the School of Journalism and Communication, Head of the Journalism Program, and Associate Professor introduced the speaker and ensured the audience was comfortable.

Later all joined in the Atrium just outside the room to chat, drink wime and enjoy tasty snacks.

For more information click the links below and watch the entire session at



Student Demand for Mobile Education

Glove and Mail, November. 19,  201 5, page B9  - Learning Untethered - Universities and colleges take steps to respond to student demand for mobile education. "As a student in her second year of a two-year accelerated massage therapy program at Lambton College in Sarnia, Ont., Lynette Hyatt's main work tools are her hands, her practical knowledge of anatomy -  and increasingly her iPad," writes Suzanne Bowness.

Her article goes on to explain that "Lambton's move to mobile began with enhancing its WiFi capability, equipping classrooms with interactive whiteboards and Apple TVs, and embracing a mobile version of D2L, the school's learning management platform, as well as a set of apps."

The five-column article  describes similar mobile initiatives at other universities and colleges and quotes a professor at the Centre for Distance Education, who has published many books on mobile, saying institutions need to prepare for big changes. "Students today and in upcoming generations are very mobile literate so we'd  better make sure our courses can be delivered on mobile devices," he says.November 16, 2015

Review of
New book by John Stackhouse

November 14, 2015, The Globe and Mail, page R12. Break the News is the title of a five-column book review of John Stackhouse's book Mass Disruption: Thirty Years on the Front Lines of a Media Revolution. The review, written by Clive Thompson, is subtitled 'It's no secret the media industry is in turmoil. But could the story have been different?'

".....As former Globe editor-in-chief, John Stackhouse reports in his new book, when the paper analyzed its online traffic, they found that fully 40 percent of the paper is read by fewer than 1,000 people," writes Thompson. "This benighted, much-ignored category includes baseball, tennis and theatre reviews - basically, a lot of arts and culture coverage...... Why is this cultural category so I'll-read?, he asks. "There are a lot of factors at work, but partly because the Internet is abrim with commentary, some of it extremely good....."

Clive Thompson is the author of Smarter Than You Think: How Technology is Changing  Our Minds for the Better.


A Like-Hate Relationship: Social Media's Impact on Community News from an Editorial and Business Perspective

By Cynthia Cee

The Honeywell Room in Ottawa City Hall was filled on April 18, as the Media Club of Ottawa gathered to hear Glen Gower speak on the impact social media is having on the way local news is presented.

Gower is a communications and marketing consultant as well as publisher of, an independent news website with a focus on the community of Stittsville.

Journalism students, their professor, local editors and other media types listened as Gower used as a case study to show how social media is shifting the distribution and advertising model for community news, for better or for worse.

He outlined his findings as a like/hate relationship, showing advantages and disadvantages in the new social media trend. He also pointed out the two main areas of the old business model that have been the most affected by this new media trend: the way news is reported and the way income is generated.

“In terms of reporting local news, people now completely bypass mainstream media,” Gower said. “The unsettling part is the amount of unsourced and rumoured reporting that comes from informal citizen journalism. It can be borderline libelous”.

He gave a local fire as an example. Someone puts the news on a neighbourhood Facebook group page and people start to post things.

“So there's no fact checking or authentication of quotes?“ commented a member of the audience.
“Exactly. You hit the nail on the head,” Gower said. “These reports aren't necessarily factual. They wouldn't hold up to journalism ethical standards, which raises real concerns. That's the issue.”

He added that this is especially true in community news. “It’s important to be extremely fair, use accurate quotes and have a real level of ethical accountability.”

The second part of his talk dealt with how to sustain a newspaper business as it interacts with the new media.

“Social media is a speedy way to access readership for young entrepreneurs, especially for community news outlets,” said Phi Hoang Trinh, first-year journalism student, Algonquin College. “But to fully use it as a marketing tool requires understanding of the distribution process and income models.”

Gower explained that for centuries, publishers have generated income in two ways, by advertising and by selling subscriptions to their product. The classified section used to be the bread and butter of a publication, Gower said, but now people have shifted to using online selling sites like kijiji.

He added that small businesses are advertising through Facebook, a large US company. “Where’s the small business ad revenue going? To Facebook,” Gower said. “It’s money leaving our community and our country and our economy and going to a large California firm.”

The second income generator was subscriptions. “There is still a struggle for people to pay for work done and presented on the internet,” Gower said. “The hope is to charge people $5 a month or $50 a year to sustain the man-hours and expense still spent to produce a newspaper – even though it is online.”

Gower also stressed how distribution is different with a strictly online paper. Where he may save money in printing, there is no actual newspaper to distribute to houses or coffee shops or stores.

“Our greatest challenge is to make people aware that we exist and to help them to find us online,” Gower said. He relies on people or sites such as Facebook to continually remind people to go to StittsvilleCentral and read the paper.

So the question becomes how to remind people you’re still here. “This is where social media comes in,” Gower said. “To know a method to harness that would be great. The business model just isn’t there yet.”

Gower is positive about the new untapped opportunities social media is providing. He cited an example where a hard-to-isolate Rogers Cable signal problem in Stittsville was found by residents, who posted the locations of affected houses on a map using social media.

He added that there is still a craving for local news, since mainstream media has cut back and shifted their focus to larger, international stories. He believes that local news covers what no one else does.

After Gower’s presentation, people lingered to munch on sandwiches and sweets, drink coffee and juice, and ask him questions. There was also a discussion among the students and media professionals that stayed behind.

“Using social media is especially relevant for our demographic,” said Sarah Ferguson, first-year journalism student, Algonquin College. “As millenials, social media is a big part of how we know what’s going on. Having the opportunity to learn ways we can distribute our stories through social media is important. It’s not going away anytime soon.”