National Newswatch

‘Dinosaurs on a melting ice cap:’ The folly of media in Canada

Jan 12 2021 — Jim Sheppard — “If we do not move with our audiences (to digital), we risk becoming dinosaurs on a melting ice cap,” CBC chief executive Catherine Tait told the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission on Monday. It was obvious to most people before COVID-19 – and it should be crystal-clear to everyone today – that the future of […]

Only digital can save journalism in Canada

Aug 7 2020 — Jim Sheppard — In case anyone missed this important story earlier this week, The New York Times made more money in the latest quarter – in the middle of a pandemic – from digital rather than print. If it’s behind the paywall for any of you, here are the relevant paragraphs: As much of its staff worked remotely, […]

The devastating stupidity of layoffs in digital journalism

Jul 27 2020 — Jim Sheppard — Global News is cutting some of its workforce in what it describes as a “significant” restructuring, with the biggest change on its digital platform,, which will no longer have lifestyle, entertainment and social media teams. MSN is laying off digital journalists and replacing them with an algorithm to determine what news stories you can read on its site. […]

The Star leads the way to save journalism in Canada

May 29 2020 — Jim Sheppard — Finally . . . A major media organization in Canada is getting it right. The future of journalism – an essential service in the time of COVID-19 — is entirely digital and the new owners of The Toronto Star have recognized that. Torstar buyers plan to ramp up struggling newspaper’s digital strategy  It’s too bad […]

The newspaper publishers have it wrong, again

May 7 2020 — Jim Sheppard — You may have seen a full-page ad running in major Canadian newspapers today (May 2) entitled “An urgent message to the government of Canada from the publishers of Canada’s major newspapers.” It notes that newspapers “are suffering huge advertising revenue declines because of the coronavirus pandemic.” It calls on Ottawa to implement a tax on Google […]

Will COVID-19 be the final nail in the coffin of the newspaper?

Apr 27 2020 — Jim Sheppard — One of the few positive developments in the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada has been the recognition by both the federal government and the public that journalism is an “essential service.” There are few things more important than distributing information by a wide variety of media so audiences can make the right choices to keep everyone […]