Bell has announced the launch of Lucky Mobile, a low-cost prepaid mobile alternative with monthly plans starting at $20. Initially available to consumers in Ontario, Alberta and B.C., beginning Dec. 4, Lucky Mobile will offer service in 17 zones covering most major cities including Toronto, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver and surrounding areas. In addition to talk and text on its cellular network, Lucky Mobile will introduce an app that enables talk and text over Wi-Fi in 2018.
Rogers Communications Inc. is considering selling assets including the Toronto Blue Jays and its stake in Cogeco Inc. to free up capital for increased investment in its wireless network. Chief Financial Officer Tony Staffieri made the comments at the UBS Global Media and Communications conference in New York. Rogers currently owns about one-third of Cogeco and a fifth of the media company’s cable unit Cogeco Communications Inc.
The Supreme Court of Canada has agreed to grant Vice Media leave to appeal following a ruling by Ontario’s highest court that reporter Ben Makuch turn over notes to RCMP related to interviews he did with a suspected terrorist in 2014. RCMP and the Crown have already successfully argued in two levels of court that journalists have no special rights to withhold information crucial to an investigation. Makuch and Vice Media, backed by a coalition of groups including Canadian Journalists for Free Expression, argue the RCMP demand will compromise the willingness of sources to speak to journalists. The SCOC will likely hear the case in late Spring or early next Fall.
CBC’s ombudsman has found that while provocative and controversial, an Opinion piece by Neil Macdonald published on cbc.ca in which he labelled Israel “an apartheid state” did not violate CBC journalistic policy. Responding to a reader’s complaint that challenged Macdonald’s assessment, ombudsman Esther Enkin writes “one can be highly critical of the government and its policies, as are many Israelis and that it does not arise from anti-Semitism.” You can read her full review here.
Robyn Doolittle, award-winning investigative reporter with The Globe and Mail, will host next year’s CJF Awards on June 14 at The Fairmont Royal York in Toronto. This year’s gala includes a Special Citation to honour New York Times reporters Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey for their investigative work on the sexual assault and harassment allegations against Harvey Weinstein.
Aboriginal Peoples Television Network and the Canadian Association of Journalists have announced the inaugural APTN/CAJ Reconciliation Award, which responds to part of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s call to action “to develop media initiatives that inform and educate the Canadian public, and connect Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Canadians.” Submissions will be accepted from individual journalists, who may submit a portfolio of up to five pieces in any format, published or broadcast in Canada in 2017. The deadline for submissions is Jan. 15. Up to five finalists will be named in the spring of 2018, with the recipient announced at the CAJ conference in Toronto this May.
The Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO) has opened nominations for its annual Media Awards, which recognize outstanding journalism highlighting nursing and health issues. Reporters, editors and producers are invited to nominate their work in one of 10 categories for print, broadcast and online media. Nominations must be submitted no later than Jan. 12.
RTDNA Canada is now accepting submissions for Regional and Network programming awards. New awards this year include Best Podcast, Excellence in Innovation and Excellence in Social Media. The final deadline for submissions is Jan. 31.
RTDNA Canada is inviting nominations for its Lifetime Achievement Award recognizing individuals who have distinguished themselves through outstanding service and continued excellence during the course of their career in journalism or news management. Nominations of individuals with at least 30 years of service, are being accepted until Jan. 2. Past recipients include Debbie Cooper and Jim Haskins (Atlantic), Keith Leslie, Scott Metcalfe and Mutsumi Takahashi (Central), Gord Gillies and David Spence (Prairies), John Daly and Celia Walters (BC), and Charles Adler and Terry Milewski (Network). Find more here.
The 2018 Canadian Telecom Summit takes place June 4-6 in Toronto. The theme for the 17th annual conference is Innovation and Disruption in ICT: reinventing and securing our business and personal lives. Find more here.