Image via Mediamorphosis

With media concentration in Canada we’re seeing more and more partisan broadcasting.

Only Bell/CTV stations talked about Bell Let’s Talk Day this week. The initiative to fund raise and increase awareness for mental health issues took cross promotion went to ridiculous levels when hosts read boiler plate corporate talking points about the money raised by the company when they introduced guests on the topic. There was nothing genuine or authentic about it, it sounded like a direct corporate initiative.

Bell owns TSN as well as a number of sports talk radio stations across the country. They are in the process of being rebranded from The Team to TSN Radio.

Rogers owns Sportsnet and sports talk radio stations across the country. They are being rebranded from The Fan to Sportsnet Radio.

Only Entertainment Tonight Canada talks about Big Brother.

Only eTalk talks about Amazing Race Canada.

Rogers owns CityTV and does live hits from their radio stations and the CityTV show hosts appear on the radio shows.

Rogers sports radio and tv stations across Canada talk about the Toronto Blue Jays because the broadcaster owns the team. In the off-season, the Blue Jays do a promo tour of Canada visiting only .. Rogers owned radio and tv properties.

Keith Pelley, president of Rogers Media, noted that, on the day the Jays signed Mr. Dickey last December, that evening’s edition of Sportsnet’s flagship news show Connected did 14 minutes on the knuckleballer’s move from the Mets to Toronto, while “the competition, whose call letters I forget, did two minutes.”

Rogers hopes that owning the content can help lift its non-media businesses. In recent days, the company has been running full-page newspaper ads proclaiming that, “This week, it pays to be a fan,” which tell Rogers subscribers they can watch the Jays “live on your laptop, smartphone, or tablet,” with its Anyplace TV app. “You can’t do that with [Bell’s] Fibe.”
[The Globe and Mail]

When radio host of Kid Carson moved to the Rogers owned property Sonic, the defection was to be promoted on their television property, City-TV. A much hyped documentary about him changing radio stations was to air last spring. Part of the documentary was shot at his old radio station, owned by Bell. A legal battle to block the infomercial ensued. Ultimately, it was kept off the air.

Instead of broadcasting information that is relevant across companies, it’s turning into a myriad of cross-promotion.

It’s not to fault the broadcasters, leveraging the networks you have in different media for cross-promotion is smart use of your businesses. BUT .. with the cross-promotions accuring in silos, and the battle lines being drawn across company lines, there is little room for true cross-promotion.

If everyone is an independent, everyone talks about what is relevant to the audience. When everyone is consolidated, they only talk about what is relevant to the company.

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