00:00:01 Speaker 2
Who’s behind it?
00:00:02 Speaker 2
What’s it about?
00:00:03 Speaker 1
And it’s OK, it’s for the Canadian.
00:00:03 Speaker 2
Tell me about the project.
00:00:06 Speaker 2
I’m going to interview you for a minute.
00:00:07 Speaker 1
00:00:08 Speaker 1
It’s for the Canadian Communication Foundation and.
00:00:10 Speaker 2
00:00:11 Speaker 1
It’s a group headed by Sydney Martinez that’s trying to they’re trying to set up an archive of journalists who have made.
00:00:13 Speaker 2
I Remember Sydney, Yeah.
00:00:18 Speaker 1
A significant contribution.
00:00:19 Speaker 1
To the broadcasting industry, just to put it online and have it as kind.
00:00:22 Speaker 1
Of a resource they’ve already.
00:00:25 Speaker 1
Gotten all the different radio and television corporations and then a history of them.
00:00:29 Speaker 1
Trying to do this.
00:00:32 Speaker 2
OK. And where’s Sidney working?
00:00:34 Speaker 1
He’s in Montreal.
00:00:35 Speaker 1
And I think he’s saying the project I’m not.
00:00:37 Speaker 1
Sure. What He’s.
00:00:37 Speaker 1
Doing other than that, but I’m interviewing him on the 7th.
00:00:42 Speaker 2
00:00:42 Speaker 2
And so the Canadian communications, what is it, foundation, who’s behind that?
00:00:45 Speaker 1
Foundation ,Ross Mccree.
00:00:48 Speaker 1
Not sure if you know.
00:00:49 Speaker 1
Yeah, I’m not really sure.
00:00:52 Speaker 1
I was just think I was.
00:00:53 Speaker 1
Some students were Ryerson to head up the interview.
00:00:57 Speaker 2
I see. OK.
00:01:01 Speaker 2
Go ahead then.
00:01:07 Speaker 1
Significant news events that’s happened throughout your.
00:01:09 Speaker 1
Career that you remember.
00:01:16 Speaker 2
Well, I mean, do you want background on me as a, as a, as a, as a journalist or a radio person?
00:01:22 Speaker 2
I mean, do you want a chronology of of?
00:01:27 Speaker 2
And then fitting into that chronology, there are various things that might happen.
00:01:31 Speaker 2
There could be of interest so.
00:01:34 Speaker 1
Yeah, sure. Just.
00:01:35 Speaker 2
I mean, I guess one of the questions I have is, are you looking for a little footnote that’s two lines long or are you looking for two or three pages?
00:01:42 Speaker 2
I mean, what are you, what what are we trying to accomplish here?
00:01:45 Speaker 2
For hours or I could go.
00:01:47 Speaker 2
For three minutes, you know.
00:01:48 Speaker 1
00:01:49 Speaker 2
What do you want?
00:01:49 Speaker 1
Well I would like a chronology of where you’ve been and what you’ve.
00:01:52 Speaker 1
And have it spit into that but.
00:01:55 Speaker 1
00:01:56 Speaker 1
As much time.
00:01:57 Speaker 1
As you need but.
00:01:58 Speaker 2
Yeah, but what?
00:01:59 Speaker 2
But there’s an end result.
00:02:01 Speaker 1
00:02:02 Speaker 2
What are you looking for?
00:02:03 Speaker 2
Are you looking for a little snippet, or are you looking for something sensational?
00:02:07 Speaker 2
Or are you looking for a whole series of things over a period of 20 years?
00:02:11 Speaker 1
Oh well, it’s just.
00:02:12 Speaker 1
Kind of things that matter to you throughout your career like it’s an archive.
00:02:15 Speaker 1
It’s anecdotal, so it would just be events that you’ve that have picked out and stood out for you.
00:02:21 Speaker 1
Throughout your career.
00:02:23 Speaker 2
OK, well, I suppose you would want me to talk about some unusual things, yeah.
00:02:31 Speaker 2
I started in broadcasting when I was 12.
00:02:37 Speaker 2
And the way I started out in broadcasting is that the I was involved in the Boy Scouts and the Boy Scouts had a radio program on CBC.
00:02:46 Speaker 2
And I applied to participate in that and.
00:02:53 Speaker 2
The Boy Scout Radio program was put together by volunteers.
00:02:58 Speaker 2
Some of the biggest names in broadcasting in those days and and it was a well listened to radio program in the days of network radio.
00:03:07 Speaker 2
This is back in.
00:03:09 Speaker 2
In the early 50s and.
00:03:12 Speaker 2
So as a 12 year old I was participating on regular weekly radio broadcasts on what was called the Dominion Network across Canada.
00:03:21 Speaker 2
So that was kind of fun.
00:03:22 Speaker 2
Then after two or three years of doing that.
00:03:25 Speaker 2
The CBC came to me and asked me if I would like to turn professional and be a professional broad.
00:03:30 Speaker 2
Master at the ripe age of 14 and and I agreed.
00:03:35 Speaker 2
And so throughout my high school days I had a 15 minute network radio program on the on the Dominion Network with a very well known sportscaster.
00:03:50 Speaker 2
Time Doug Maxwell.
00:03:52 Speaker 2
And and we did a weekly 15 minute radio program across Canada.
00:03:56 Speaker 2
So that’s what got me into radio and it helped to finance my life through high school days.
00:04:02 Speaker 2
And when I left.
00:04:04 Speaker 2
When I left.
00:04:05 Speaker 2
Tool which would be in the late 1950s. I went to CJOY in Guelph and then to CFOs and sound and did my apprenticeship and small Boondock radio stations in Ontario for a year or so, and then in 1960 I came to Ottawa with CK.
00:04:28 Speaker 2
As a newscaster.
00:04:31 Speaker 2
Was with Ckoi from 1960 to 1963.
00:04:36 Speaker 2
During that period of time, there were a couple of highlights.
00:04:39 Speaker 2
One was that I was on duty when President Kennedy was shot in Dallas, TX, and of course I rushed.
00:04:49 Speaker 2
To go on air with bullet and bullet and bulletin and what I said was at 2:00 o’clock this afternoon, President Kennedy was shot while riding on his motorcycle in Dallas, TX.
00:05:01 Speaker 2
And then I said Ohh, that should be well riding in his motorcade in Dallas, TX.
00:05:06 Speaker 2
So anyway that.
00:05:07 Speaker 2
Blooper became quite.
00:05:10 Speaker 2
Famous in Ottawa and I became known as the person who.
00:05:15 Speaker 2
Announced that President Kennedy had been shot while riding on his motorcycle in Dallas, so that was.
00:05:21 Speaker 2
One of the highlights of that period of time, but the other major thing that happened to me in that period is that I became host of one of the first talk shows in.
00:05:33 Speaker 2
In North America, it was called the Livewire show.
00:05:37 Speaker 2
On Ckoi, which I did for two or three years and it was one of only two hotline shows in North America now today.
00:05:46 Speaker 2
Of course we have hotline shows everywhere and some.
00:05:50 Speaker 2
Stations do nothing but hotline shows, so that was quite interesting and.
00:05:56 Speaker 2
In those days, a hotline show host was such a novelty that he became quite well known and famous in his own community.
00:06:08 Speaker 2
What was interesting was that because of my involvement in that program, I was recruited.
00:06:15 Speaker 2
At one point to run for mayor at the tender age of 20 and declined to do so.
00:06:21 Speaker 2
But I became the campaign manager of.
00:06:25 Speaker 2
The person the candidate, Don Reed, who defeated Charlotte Whitton, who was a famous.
00:06:32 Speaker 2
Mayor of Ottawa.
00:06:33 Speaker 2
And he ran against Charlotte Whitton and Charlotte Whitton’s brother-in-law, a fellow by the name of Frank Ryan.
00:06:45 Speaker 2
Beat them both and then Frank Ryan died of a heart attack the day after the election and Frank Ryan was also the owner of radio station CFRA and CFMOTO.
00:06:57 Speaker 2
It was interesting because some years later when I joined CHUM, I was part of a team from CHUM that acquired and bought CFR and CFM one in Ottawa and has become a key station in the Chung.
00:07:13 Speaker 2
Group since then so.
00:07:19 Speaker 2
In 19, from 1963 to 1974, I.
00:07:25 Speaker 2
Was the parliamentary correspondent for.
00:07:29 Speaker 2
Chong, in Toronto and one of the first.
00:07:34 Speaker 2
Radio broadcasters to be admitted into the Canadian Parliamentary Press Gallery and.
00:07:47 Speaker 2
As the Bureau chief for CHUM on Parliament, Hill was asked to put together a national radio.
00:07:54 Speaker 2
Network of stations across Canada. Radio stations across Canada and we put together the Canadian contemporary news system in the mid 1960s.
00:08:06 Speaker 2
And it was the for a while, the largest private.
00:08:10 Speaker 2
Radio news network in Canada actually, that was the point at which I met Sid Margulies, who?
00:08:17 Speaker 2
I believe at the time was working for in the mid in the mid to late 60s was working for CFRB in Toronto and they followed by putting together the standard broadcast.
00:08:28 Speaker 2
Network as a rival to the Canadian Contemporary news system, so we were.
00:08:33 Speaker 2
We were mortal enemies and competitors there for period of of time and standard and.
00:08:40 Speaker 2
Contemporary news or constantly trying to out scoop each other with news stories from Parliament Hill and so forth.
00:08:46 Speaker 2
And that’s how I first met Matt Sydney.
00:08:54 Speaker 2
While on Parliament Hill with CHUM, I became part of the acquisition team of CHUM the.
00:09:02 Speaker 2
Purchased and developed.
00:09:05 Speaker 2
A network of radio and television stations across Canada, which later became known as.
00:09:10 Speaker 2
The CHUM group.
00:09:11 Speaker 2
Which now is is a cross country significant player and in private broadcasting.
00:09:19 Speaker 2
My part in that was to help put together the Atlantic.
00:09:28 Speaker 2
ATV in Atlantic Canada, which now covers all of the provinces in Atlantic Canada, most cities down there.
00:09:35 Speaker 2
And and also the acquisition of CFRA and CFML in Ottawa and of course.
00:09:41 Speaker 2
Those seeds have grown into a very strong and powerful radio and television.
00:09:47 Speaker 2
System right across Canada.
00:09:49 Speaker 2
In the CHUM group.
00:09:50 Speaker 2
So I was part of the early days of that.
00:09:54 Speaker 2
While on Parliament Hill with CHUM.
00:09:57 Speaker 2
And because of my.
00:09:59 Speaker 2
Hotline show background on ckoi in the early 60s.
00:10:07 Speaker 2
I would substitute on a regular basis for Larry Solway when he was on CHUM on a program called Speak.
00:10:14 Speaker 2
Your mind, Larry, was eventually fired from CHUM for telling a joke with some sexual innuendos on the station.
00:10:23 Speaker 2
Larry wrote a book about it after he was fired, called the day I invented sex.
00:10:29 Speaker 2
And I I did the Larry Solway show from Ottawa.
00:10:34 Speaker 2
Toronto listeners never knew I was in Ottawa, but they put a a line from Ottawa to Toronto so that I could do the hotline show in Toronto as if I was there in Toronto.
00:10:45 Speaker 2
So that was kind of an interesting early development of the use of technology.
00:10:52 Speaker 2
In terms of being able to solve a problem on radio, all sorts of things were done on radio in those days where the listeners who.
00:11:00 Speaker 2
Left to use their imagination, I remember when.
00:11:04 Speaker 2
Hal Kelly and Joe Crysdale used to do Toronto Maple Leafs baseball games.
00:11:11 Speaker 2
In Toronto, from Toronto, but they would do the away games by faking it in the broadcast studios, and they would.
00:11:21 Speaker 2
They would knock a pencil against a wooden desk if there was a weak base hit, but if it was a home run they would have.
00:11:30 Speaker 2
Tape recordings of crowd applause and cheer, and they’d be clapping their hands and faking it even if the game was in Cuba, Havana, Cuba, they’d be broadcasting the game as if they were there in Havana, but in fact they were working from Toronto.
00:11:44 Speaker 2
So in those days you could use a lot of imagination on radio to create.
00:11:51 Speaker 2
Images in your listeners mind as to what was what was really happening.
00:11:56 Speaker 2
That was the great thing about radio, of course, is that the listener was required to use as an imagination.
00:12:00 Speaker 2
With television, you just sat there and watched everything.
00:12:06 Speaker 2
Some of the highlights when I was a parliamentary correspondent, I traveled the world with John Diefenbaker as Prime Minister Lester Pearson.
00:12:16 Speaker 2
And later, Pierre Trudeau.
00:12:19 Speaker 2
Had a lot of experiences along the way.
00:12:22 Speaker 2
I broke some major news stories during the 10 years that I was.
00:12:27 Speaker 2
On Parliament hill.
00:12:29 Speaker 2
One was Canada’s recognition of the Vatican and the Pope.
00:12:33 Speaker 2
Until that time in the late 60s, Canada did not recognize the Vatican, but I broke that story.
00:12:42 Speaker 2
Broke the story about the Canada US Auto parts agreement.
00:12:47 Speaker 2
Which was the forerunner to the first North American free trade agreements.
00:12:53 Speaker 2
One of the most interesting events that I covered.
00:12:58 Speaker 2
And I actually became part of the event, in a sense, was when Charles de Gaulle came to Canada during Centennial celebrations in 1967.
00:13:10 Speaker 2
In those days, the Quebec government wasn’t separatist but was behaving as if it was a separatist government.
00:13:17 Speaker 2
And so they invited.
00:13:19 Speaker 2
Canada invited Charles de Gaulle to.
00:13:23 Speaker 2
To visit Canada, Lester Pearson did as Prime Minister invited Charles to Galda visit Canada as part of the Centennial celebrations, but de Gaulle insisted on visiting Quebec before coming to Ottawa, and he started.
00:13:37 Speaker 2
He landed in Quebec City and.
00:13:43 Speaker 2
They had a motorcade that traveled from Quebec City along the ceremonial route to Montreal, and as that motorcade.
00:13:55 Speaker 2
The Quebec government turned out crowds that were larger and larger and larger so that you could sense, as the motorcade was traveling from Quebec City to Montreal, that this groundswell of public interest and there were loud speakers hidden in the trees and ceremonial music, and the gall stopped at every little.
00:14:15 Speaker 2
Village along the way and.
00:14:18 Speaker 2
By the time he arrived in Montreal, there was an enormous crowd of probably 20,000 people gathered outside Montreal City Hall and.
00:14:30 Speaker 2
I was following in the motorcade with the rest of the press corps and most of us by the time we reached Montreal anticipated that some momentous event was about to happen.
00:14:44 Speaker 2
So as de Gaulle went inside Montreal City Hall, I looked around and found out in the public square, the only payphone that could be seen for miles around, because I anticipated there would be a major story of some sort happened.
00:14:59 Speaker 2
And sure enough, de Gall went inside Montreal City Hall up onto a balcony, and that’s where he shouted.
00:15:08 Speaker 2
Vive la Quebec libre.
00:15:10 Speaker 2
And of course that that expression in a speech.
00:15:17 Speaker 2
Just caused a frenzy in this crowd of about 20,000 people in front Of Montreal City Hall and we as journalists knew it was a huge and a very important moment in Canadian history. While I was standing beside the only pay phone. And so I filed my report.
00:15:34 Speaker 2
In Toronto, about this vda, Quebec lead expression.
00:15:39 Speaker 2
And then what I did is I dismantled the telephone and I took the I took the receiver apart and took the Electro magnets out of the receiver so nobody else could use the payphone, stuck them in my pocket and and headed for a hotel room.
00:15:54 Speaker 2
Where I could write stories.
00:15:55 Speaker 2
Meanwhile, all the rest of the journalists were stuck in the square with.
00:15:58 Speaker 2
This surging, frenzied crowd all screaming and they couldn’t file their stories.
00:16:03 Speaker 2
So we had a scoop of about 2 hours over everybody else.
00:16:07 Speaker 2
Nobody could get the story out.
00:16:09 Speaker 2
Canadian Press picked it up and flashed it around across Canada and.
00:16:13 Speaker 2
Around the world.
00:16:14 Speaker 2
And so it became.
00:16:17 Speaker 2
A huge story that caused big problems in back in Ottawa for Prime Minister Pearson.
00:16:27 Speaker 2
I remember the next day de Gaulle was supposed to go.
00:16:31 Speaker 2
On a ride on the brand new Montreal subway and didn’t go and the reason he didn’t go is he was getting on a plane and going back to France because Pearson kicked him.
00:16:42 Speaker 2
Out of the country.
00:16:45 Speaker 2
And that was a major diplomatic.
00:16:50 Speaker 2
In not only Canadian history, but for the Canadian Prime Minister to kick out of the country, the President of France for saying V the Quebec League.
00:17:02 Speaker 2
Was a major incident around the world and.
00:17:08 Speaker 2
Set the stage for as you know.
00:17:10 Speaker 2
The election of.
00:17:11 Speaker 2
The separatist government in Canada that remained in power for the better part of.
00:17:17 Speaker 2
20 some odd years, so that was a very important moment in Canadian history, and I was fortunate enough A to be beside a pay telephone and B to have learned how to take a receiver apart so nobody else.
00:17:27 Speaker 2
Could use it.
00:17:28 Speaker 2
So that was.
00:17:29 Speaker 2
A another highlight.
00:17:33 Speaker 2
Am I on the right track here?
00:17:35 Speaker 2
Am I going on too long or what?
00:17:48 Speaker 2
When I was in the press gallery, I was also involved during a period of time in which there were real scandals in Canada.
00:17:57 Speaker 2
And real scandals on Parliament Hill that were far.
00:18:01 Speaker 2
Worse and far more.
00:18:06 Speaker 2
I guess it’s the way.
00:18:08 Speaker 2
00:18:08 Speaker 2
Then the sponsorship scandal of today, or any of the things that we’ve seen over the.
00:18:13 Speaker 2
Past few years.
00:18:15 Speaker 2
And as a radio journalist, and one who had.
00:18:20 Speaker 2
Been involved in some pretty big stories.
00:18:22 Speaker 2
I had the opportunity.
00:18:25 Speaker 2
To get involved in the investigation of a number of and breaking of a number of these scandals, and because of my background as an investigative reporter.
00:18:38 Speaker 2
I was involved in quite centrally involved in the RAVARD affair, the Gerda Munsinger.
00:18:46 Speaker 2
Second furniture scandal involving.
00:18:49 Speaker 2
The cabinet minister and a senator and and and and all of that whole era of that lasted about five years and caused huge problems for the the Pearson government.
00:19:00 Speaker 2
Just one thing after another and that scandal era.
00:19:06 Speaker 2
People tend to forget, but it was far worse and the.
00:19:10 Speaker 2
The implications of criminality were far worse than anything that has been experienced in recent years.
00:19:17 Speaker 2
In Canada, we’re all shocked and upset about the sponsorship scandal.
00:19:20 Speaker 2
It’s nothing compared to.
00:19:23 Speaker 2
Some of the things that went on back in the in the mid 60s in this country and there were jail terms and.
00:19:29 Speaker 2
00:19:30 Speaker 2
There were deaths and there were murders and and all of this connected directly or indirectly, to people in fairly high places.
00:19:43 Speaker 2
So Canadians tend to forget a lot of their history.
00:19:48 Speaker 2
And I’m sure Sidney can bear out because he was around during those days that we went through a pretty ugly period of time.
00:19:54 Speaker 2
In this country.
00:19:57 Speaker 2
And so it’s important to keep in perspective what what we’re experiencing now as a country and in terms of what’s going on in Parliament Hill.
00:20:04 Speaker 2
While it’s serious, it’s nowhere near as serious as some of the things that are going on in those days.
00:20:11 Speaker 2
In 1972, oh, also when I was in the press gallery because I was one of the first radio journalists on Parliament Hill.
00:20:22 Speaker 2
00:20:26 Speaker 2
From the I was one of the only private sector, radio and TV people in the.
00:20:34 Speaker 2
00:20:39 Speaker 2
I was approached from time to Parliament, was going through a process in which it was debating.
00:20:48 Speaker 2
Whether it should televise House of Commons proceedings in those days, there was no radio and TV.
00:20:54 Speaker 2
There were no microphones, TV, cameras, anything allowed in the House of Commons.
00:20:59 Speaker 2
And so there was about a three-year debate as to whether among parliamentarians as to whether they would allow.
00:21:06 Speaker 2
The House of Commons to be televised, and because I was one of the very few.
00:21:11 Speaker 2
Private sector broadcasters in the press gallery in those days I was called frequently to testify before parliamentary committees.
00:21:22 Speaker 2
As to what the effects might be if the parliamentarians allowed the televising and the broadcasting of parliamentary debates.
00:21:30 Speaker 2
So, rightly or wrongly, I was considered something of an expert on this subject when really all I was was a.
00:21:38 Speaker 2
A radio and TV correspondent, but nevertheless radio and TV people were such.
00:21:46 Speaker 2
Rarities and so few in numbers that those that were around were considered by the parliamentarians to be to have some special knowledge of the subject.
00:21:55 Speaker 2
And so in a sense, I and maybe one or two others of my colleagues played a.
00:22:04 Speaker 2
Fairly significant role in the positive decision to admit radio and TV into the House of Commons.
00:22:09 Speaker 2
We’re able to convince them that.
00:22:10 Speaker 2
It wasn’t going.
00:22:11 Speaker 2
To turn the institution inside out and upside down and we were able to emphasize some of the positive points about the whole thing.
00:22:19 Speaker 2
And so consequently, after they made the decision.
00:22:24 Speaker 2
To allow television and radio coverage of House of Commons proceedings, they realized that they really had no facilities on Parliament Hill to do interviews and no studios and nothing of that sort.
00:22:37 Speaker 2
And so I was asked to.
00:22:41 Speaker 2
If I would volunteer some of my time to work with the House of Commons people to design.
00:22:49 Speaker 2
00:22:51 Speaker 2
Radio studios in the center block of Parliament Hill, where interviews took place after Commons sittings and then eventually.
00:23:02 Speaker 2
That became quite inconvenient to drag parliamentarians down to floors and had them interviewed, and so Scrum was developed and now today most of that is done by just setting up a microphone and collaring the Prime Minister or whatever as they go to and from their offices.
00:23:19 Speaker 2
And so that was interesting.
00:23:20 Speaker 2
Being part of that.
00:23:23 Speaker 2
00:23:26 Speaker 2
Of both broadcasting the House of Commons and some of its committee meetings now, and the installations of the design and installation of proper broadcasting facilities on Parliament Hill.
00:23:38 Speaker 2
Late in the 1960s, the government decided to build a new Department of External Affairs.
00:23:47 Speaker 2
Very large building for.
00:23:50 Speaker 2
00:23:52 Speaker 2
And one of the issues that arose was the need for proper broadcasting and meeting facilities in this, Lester B Pearson building.
00:24:01 Speaker 2
This is now known, and I was asked to help design those.
00:24:08 Speaker 2
Which I did with assistance from CHUM engineers and others. And then as a result of that experience in the early 1970s, the government was planning a visit to Canada in 1973 of the Queen’s Royal visit.
00:24:23 Speaker 2
And the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting and so.
00:24:28 Speaker 2
In 1972, Chum was approached by.
00:24:33 Speaker 2
The Prime Minister’s Office, Mr. Trudeau, to see whether they chum would lend me to the government for a year to help plan this.
00:24:45 Speaker 2
Royal visit and Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting and my responsibility was all of the broadcast.
00:24:51 Speaker 2
The the media facilities and arrangements which in those days.
00:24:55 Speaker 2
We were just starting.
00:24:57 Speaker 2
The broadcasters were just starting to make their presence felt, the politicians realized.
00:25:02 Speaker 2
That radio and television were a far more powerful medium than print.
00:25:08 Speaker 2
And but we were still in a bit of a novelty in terms of being broadcasters.
00:25:13 Speaker 2
And but there people recognized that for.
00:25:17 Speaker 2
Broadcasters, to be effective in terms of reporting on events they needed to have proper facilities and arrangements.
00:25:24 Speaker 2
And so in 1972, IW was loaned.
00:25:29 Speaker 2
By the government to foreign affairs to help plan and manage the.
00:25:37 Speaker 2
All of the media facilities and arrangements for 800 journalists coming to Ottawa from around the world to cover the royal visit in the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in those days. That was the biggest international conference ever held in Canada.
00:25:51 Speaker 2
And it gave Pierre Trudeau an opportunity.
00:25:55 Speaker 2
For the first time to make an impact, a major impact on the international stage and that’s what he used this occasion to do.
00:26:04 Speaker 2
And that’s really how Pierre Trudeau became.
00:26:07 Speaker 2
Internationally known as a Prime Minister, was through the international coverage of this Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting and the royal visit so.
00:26:17 Speaker 2
That happened in 73 and at the end of 1973 I decided that planning conferences was the thing I wanted to do for the rest of my.
00:26:25 Speaker 2
And so I got chummed to back me and setting up this company in the conference planning business because there were no conference planning firms in those days and we were the first in North America.
00:26:37 Speaker 2
To to establish a conference planning firm, CHUM owned the company or most of the company, in 1974 when we.
00:26:46 Speaker 2
Started in business and in 19 at mid 1970s I bought out chums interest and here we are. That’s that’s the life story.
00:26:56 Speaker 1
There was there any specific moments that confirmed for you that news was providing a valuable service to the community?
00:27:08 Speaker 1
00:27:15 Speaker 2
I think news has always provided a valuable service.
00:27:18 Speaker 2
To the public.
00:27:20 Speaker 2
It’s one of the reasons why I got into the news business because I wanted to be.
00:27:25 Speaker 2
To be part of that delivery system of.
00:27:30 Speaker 2
Of news and public affairs clearly broadcasting.
00:27:37 Speaker 2
When I got involved.
00:27:40 Speaker 2
Was not very heavily involved in news.
00:27:42 Speaker 2
00:27:44 Speaker 2
Broadcasting was essentially the very early days of television.
00:27:49 Speaker 2
Which was almost entirely American, and radio was almost entirely preoccupied with.
00:27:56 Speaker 2
Popular music and very little public affairs, except for the CBC, the CBC and pretty much a monopoly.
00:28:03 Speaker 2
On news and public affairs and private.
00:28:06 Speaker 2
Private stations really weren’t playing much of a role at all, and when I became involved in, excuse me in.
00:28:17 Speaker 2
The early 60s.
00:28:19 Speaker 2
People were beginning to realize that radio was a very flexible medium.
00:28:24 Speaker 2
It was a very immediate.
00:28:26 Speaker 2
Medium, far more immediate than the newspapers which were.
00:28:31 Speaker 2
Published news stories that were sometimes days old, but certainly at least one day old.
00:28:35 Speaker 2
By the time you read it.
00:28:38 Speaker 2
Radio could not yet television, but radio could broadcast live.
00:28:47 Speaker 2
Give people news.
00:28:49 Speaker 2
00:28:51 Speaker 2
Television wasn’t that flexible in those days.
00:28:53 Speaker 2
In those days, you had to film.
00:28:58 Speaker 2
Television cameramen used film.
00:28:59 Speaker 2
They didn’t use videotape.
00:29:01 Speaker 2
Videotape had been invented, and that film had to be processed before it could be then shipped from.
00:29:09 Speaker 2
Let’s say it was a news story in Ottawa.
00:29:11 Speaker 2
It had that.
00:29:14 Speaker 2
The news had to be filmed by film cameramen.
00:29:17 Speaker 2
Then that film had to be processed.
00:29:19 Speaker 2
Then it had to be edited, and then it had to be flown.
00:29:22 Speaker 2
Sometimes it went by bus to Toronto and the centers that broadcast the major national.
00:29:27 Speaker 2
00:29:28 Speaker 2
So there was a significant delay.
00:29:30 Speaker 2
00:29:33 Speaker 2
Pictures could be taken on film and then actually shown on television hours and sometimes longer than that.
00:29:41 Speaker 2
And of course it was the.
00:29:45 Speaker 2
It really wasn’t until the Gulf War, in 1990 that television became as immediate.
00:29:51 Speaker 2
As it did become with CNN using satellites to literally broadcast a war live to people prior to 1990.
00:30:02 Speaker 2
Live broadcasting of television from hotspots around the world was practically non-existent.
00:30:07 Speaker 2
It was the Gulf War in.
00:30:08 Speaker 2
00:30:09 Speaker 2
Made them so between 1960 and 1990, when news on radio became the medium. I mean, that was the way people really got their news if they wanted to hurry. It was radio television.
00:30:22 Speaker 2
It’s still a very ponderous.
00:30:26 Speaker 2
Medium in which to get your news and newspapers were being buried in terms of competition. They were days old by the time you got your news story so radio. This was of this the period from 1960 to 19.
00:30:41 Speaker 2
80 I guess was a was an absolutely key period in the development of radio news.
00:30:47 Speaker 2
It was exciting to be part of.
00:30:49 Speaker 1
Well, that goes straight into my next question this evening, African technological developments and how they’ve changed field of news said.
00:30:55 Speaker 1
His film to tape.
00:30:56 Speaker 1
And then buses to my place and satellites and.
00:31:02 Speaker 2
And and I’ve described to some extent, you know that period as it pertained to my career and the contribution I was able to make to it, the broadcasting of the House of Commons and parliamentary proceedings was a major development in bring.
00:31:19 Speaker 2
The whole democratic and parliamentary system, much closer to Canadians because it was immediate.
00:31:25 Speaker 2
Once you got television cameras and radio, and there people could watch debates, especially the most important ones.
00:31:32 Speaker 2
And didn’t have to rely on newspapers and other media to get their news. They could actually watch it as it was happening. And of course that that evolved from the late 1960s.
00:31:43 Speaker 2
Through the 70s and as you say, the conversion from film to tape and from buses to satellites was all took place during that period of time.
00:31:54 Speaker 2
And so those of us who were involved in that period.
00:31:56 Speaker 2
Of time were part of it.
00:31:58 Speaker 1
And your particular posting is news network stories as you saw them in the competition.
00:32:03 Speaker 1
So that’s all they.
00:32:05 Speaker 1
Did and they actually on that.
00:32:08 Speaker 1
News network stories, as you saw.
00:32:10 Speaker 1
Them in the competition.
00:32:15 Speaker 2
Well, we were the first.
00:32:20 Speaker 2
The CHUM group.
00:32:22 Speaker 2
And the Canadian contemporary news system.
00:32:26 Speaker 2
Was really the first privately owned private sector.
00:32:32 Speaker 2
Radio and then eventually television news network in Canada, Standard Broadcast News.
00:32:37 Speaker 2
Which was launched by CFRB was really a reaction to that.
00:32:43 Speaker 2
But prior to both of them, either contemporary news or standard broadcast news, there was a cooperative.
00:32:50 Speaker 2
Radio news network called Broadcast News, which was started by Canadian Press, but it wasn’t privately owned, and it tended to be very, very conservative and quite non competitive.
00:33:01 Speaker 2
It was like Canadian Press, it focused.
00:33:05 Speaker 2
Strictly on broadcast news, essentially in its early days, started by taking Canadian Press stories, which were written for newspapers and rewriting them for radio.
00:33:16 Speaker 2
And then over a period of time broadcast news.
00:33:21 Speaker 2
Actually hired some reporters and radio reporters who actually got out and did interviews and wrote stories and did news clips and this sort of thing, but.
00:33:35 Speaker 2
Broadcast news was initially and remained for many years.
00:33:40 Speaker 2
Very sort of primitive, and I would say non competitive.
00:33:45 Speaker 2
00:33:49 Speaker 2
New service, contemporary news, I think, tended to be.
00:33:54 Speaker 2
00:33:57 Speaker 2
And quite colorful.
00:34:00 Speaker 2
Along the sort of lines and image of CHUM in those days.
00:34:05 Speaker 2
Standard broadcast news tended to be the embodiment of CFRB, a little bit more conservative.
00:34:13 Speaker 2
Very good though and very well financed.
00:34:17 Speaker 2
00:34:20 Speaker 2
CFRB and standard broadcast news were certainly very able competitors with contemporary news, and the two of them really went out of tooth and nail.
00:34:30 Speaker 2
They were the major competitors, as were the two radio stations CFRB and CHUM in Toronto.
00:34:35 Speaker 2
CFRB in those days was the leading radio station in Toronto.
00:34:39 Speaker 2
Chum was a an upstart.
00:34:41 Speaker 2
Highly competitive, very colorful and.
00:34:44 Speaker 2
A bit on the flamboyant side and as we put these news networks together, it was very highly competitive, and Sidney Margulies was.
00:34:55 Speaker 2
The head of the standard broadcast news.
00:35:01 Speaker 2
Bureau at a time when I.
00:35:04 Speaker 2
Was head of the Canadian contemporary news system and.
00:35:07 Speaker 2
So we yeah, we.
00:35:09 Speaker 2
Engaged in all sorts of competitive situations over the years.
00:35:11 Speaker 2
It was kind of fun.
00:35:15 Speaker 1
Oh, if they need any pictures of you, would you have to have here or lives?
00:35:17 Speaker 2
Oh yeah, sure.
00:35:18 Speaker 1
Or don’t have done would.
00:35:19 Speaker 2
Be great. Cover it. Good.
00:35:23 Speaker 1
Anything else you can do?
00:35:24 Speaker 2
No, I think that covers it for.
00:35:25 Speaker 2