Canucks and Beyond
With the exception of the Movie People*—who are no doubt thrilled to have zero problems getting uninterrupted shots of Sara Orlesky on the air—everything else broadcasting out of Ottawa’s Scotiabank Place has run into the brick wall of the building’s badass, non-existent wifi signal.
Hockey coverage in 1998 must have sucked, because this has been a massive pain in the a$$.
I usually like hockey trade rumors; even if they’re wrong, they’re fun fantasies of what could be without being burdened too excessively by things like ‘reality’.
As a Canucks fan, I particularly appreciate temporary escapes from reality. When rumors run amok about the likes of Olli Jokinen and Ryan Malone coming to Vancouver, I’m entertained. I separate myself from that troublesome inner-knowledge that “Canucks fans are never that lucky.” And it’s pleasant for as long as it lasts.*
But escapes from reality are one thing—manipulating hockey fans to drive website traffic and sell newspapers is another thing all together.
Or maybe it’s not even that sinister. Perhaps some reporters are just stupid.
From the Associated Press, a new profit scheme for anyone who wishes to cite excerpts from their articles:
You’ve got to be kidding. Can’t Stop the Bleeding notes, “Time will tell if other wire services follow suit, but despite the challenges this will present to CSTB, I’m confident the sports blogosphere’s leading lights will soldier on.”
Indeed they will. And they will be happy to do so without citing or linking to AP materials posted at any website on the internet—and sites who pay for AP feeds on their website will lose part of the traffic that drives their advertising dollars.
Great plan, AP.
For a story of such uniquely-Canadian relevance, the controversy over The Hockey Theme leaving the CBC had a notable international tone.
Madeleine Morris lives and works in Vietnam and also happens to be the daughter of Dolores Claman, the much-discussed (and frequently reviled) composer of the The Hockey Theme who currently resides in the UK.
It was Ms. Morris who was left to undertake the task of defending her mother’s position, and with all the wailing despair over the loss of Canada’s de facto national anthem, I don’t think many people were listening.
In my own case, it was only after a former CBC employee contacted me with more information that I got curious enough to seek out Ms. Morris and ask for her side of the story.
From TO411 Daily:
CBC, in conjunction with leading music producers Nettwerk Music Group, will conduct a nationwide search, inviting Canadians to write and record an original song for CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA. Then, in a debate that is certain to dominate conversations throughout the country, fans and a jury of experts will choose the best new composition.
CBC will offer $100,000 for the winning song, which will then become the new “official theme song” of CBC’S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA and will be heard in every broadcast. A portion of the new theme song’s royalties will be donated to minor hockey in Canada. Details surrounding the contest will be announced next week.
Awesome. I’m as sorry as the next fan that Canada is losing its de facto national anthem, but this is exactly the right way for CBC to replace it; if the fans choose it, they can’t freak out about the choice.
Besides, it’s like a hockey fan’s version of Canadian or American Idol—except in this case, I actually give a damn.
The PR war between the composer of the HNIC anthem and the CBC is no longer just a negotiation for the hearts and minds of Canadians in a panic about losing their favorite Saturday night pop-song.
Nope. Now it’s a political matter.
From the opposition Liberal Party’s own press release:
Conservative Heritage Minister Josée Verner must stand up for one of Canada’s most famous musical traditions and do what she can to ensure the CBC keeps the Hockey Night in Canada musical theme, Liberal Heritage Critic Denis Coderre said today.
“The Hockey Night in Canada theme is a part of Canada’s culture that goes beyond sport,” said M. Coderre. “This is a great opportunity for the Heritage Minister to finally get off the bench by defending an important Canadian tradition.”
But before I make too much fun of the Liberal Party, I’ll point out that Denis Coderre’s wish already came to fruition yesterday… at least the level of provincial politics. In Alberta, Conservative Premier Ed Stelmach already tackled this critical, national issue…
A story in The Province the other day speculated out loud on the poorly-kept secret that Joey Kenward—currently the voice of the Vancouver Giants as well as their Director of Broadcaster and Media Relations—is tops on the list to be the partial-replacement for John Shorthouse at TEAM 1040 next year. Shorthouse, of course, was recently awarded Jim Hughson’s old chair at Sportsnet Pacific.
Looking for more information on Joey Kenward, I came across a brief biographical piece originally published by the Nanaimo Daily News in 2006. At the time, Kenward remarked:
“I certainly make no bones about wanting to be in the NHL one day and I’d love to be able to broadcast the Olympics, those are two goals I have set for myself. But I realize there are really not a lot of jobs available and the people [that] have those jobs are really good.”
Ambitious guy that may just have nailed a major career goal. Here’s more about him from the same article written by Scott Brown:
But others already have ideas for replacement songs for the famous broadcast.
So first here are some musical options for next season to start us off, then hopefully readers can provide other brilliant ideas.
But the economics of technological change is reviving my love of hockey. When we moved back into our renovated house at the end of March, we also bought ... a 40” LCD 1080p high-definition TV. We hooked it up on a Sunday, and what was the first thing we saw when we turned it on? A Penguins-Rangers game. In Pittsburgh. And the Pens won.
All I can say is this: woof. Hockey is fabulous in HD. Of course I’m watching my Penguins (and I got home from my woolly weekend in enough time yesterday to see them win the series against the Rangers in overtime, yay!), but I’m also watching the other series. Because it just looks so freaking awesome in HD.
From John Dellapina’s Blueshirts Blog:
Finally, for all those from other media outlets and newspapers who have sarcastically dismissed our initial web story about Sean Avery’s hospitalization since the Rangers refuted it Wednesday afternoon, I wonder:
Was your initial reaction that the story couldn’t have been correct or did you simply race up to the MSG Training Center to get player reaction? And, did you call the hospital and/or Avery’s representatives to get the real story or did your “reporting” simply consist of taking the team’s word for what happened?
Fortunately, the intrepid men an women of the press who have exposed baseball’s steroid problems didn’t similarly regurgitate what they were told by people who understandably want their businesses viewed as beyond reproach.
Geezus. My congratulations, Dellapina—for entirely missing the point.
About Canucks and Beyond
Alanah McGinley has been blogging hockey since 2003 (with a notable gap in time through 2010, kicking it with new baby Lucy while living knee-deep in chaos while reading "parenting for complete idiots" during every spare minute) sharing opinions, rants and not-so-deep thoughts with anyone who will listen.
In addition to writing Canucks & Beyond and helping manage Kukla's Korner, Alanah was one of the founders and co-hosts of The Crazy Canucks Podcast. She has contributed pieces to FoxSports.com and the New York Times Slapshot blog, as well as other stray destinations in cyberspace.
So that's me. Who the hell are you?
Alanah's Twitter: [@alanah1]