I don't often do the solo show thing unless I have something to share. There are times when going to conferences is hard. It's hard to listen to radio talk about the 93 percent reach it has when we know people are listening less and less every day. (In Canada that number is 85 percent, but no one dare say that that might be because of archaic Cancon rules that radio's competitors don't have to carry) There was also the time in 2013 when four radio leaders are talking about the need for the FM Chip to become active in cell phones so people can listen on their cell phone. As the debate is going on, I am wondering why no one is pointing out that two of the four companies on the stage are employed by phone carriers. An hour went by on this discussion and it surmounted to a waste of time. In 2016, four radio leaders in the U.S. could not name one innovative initiative their company had taken for radio in the last 6 months. In 2017, there was the executive who wondered where the future radio execs were going to come from. Perhaps it was lost on him that middle management's role had been significantly reduced over the previous decade.
There is a word for all this behaviour. Denial. I have no problem pointing it out. Some might call it cynical, I believe its the truth. I don't mind being called the village idiot so long as the truth is recognized.
So it was refreshing this week to hear James Cridland take the stage at Canadian Music Week's Radio Active summit and offer some words of reason of advice for Canadian radio to get together, collaborate and come up with solutions to update itself. No one really knows if this about ownership, Cancon, or its relationship with the CRTC, but James suggested that Canadian radio could start with a lobby group and go from there.
In this episode, I speak about how complacency has become the norm where I live and also in Canadian radio, and I am only betting on the latter to make changes.
If you would like to read the highlights from James Cridland's keynote, Sharon Taylor assembled a nice summary.
Her Notes from Day 1 of the Radio Active Summit.
Her Notes from Day 2 of the Radio Active Summit.
Finally, if Matt saw you at Canadian Music Week and invited you on the show, you can book yourself in here.
I made mention in the show about a piece from Perry Michael Simon from All Access discussing regulatory changes in the USA regarding ownership. I believe the same applies to Canada. You can read it here.