Monday, March 06, 2006

Steve Young At CMW: The “Idiot’s Guide To Differences In Radio Between Canada And The U.S.”

Young, Director of Pop and Rock Programming and Consulting for Jones Radio Networks—Seattle (800. 426.9082), was a highlight of the Toronto convention last week. Here's why:
TOP TEN COMPARISONS BETWEEN RADIO IN CANADA AND THE U.S. (THE IDIOT’S GUIDE)

10. In America, the FCC top priority is for you to own 2000 radio stations. Their second priority is indecency and how to avoid doing anything about it. In Canada the CRTC’s number one priority is to have you play more Canadian content. Their second priority is….see their first priority.
9. In America getting it done today isn’t soon enough. In Canada, tomorrow or the next day will be fine.

8. In America radio management pulls your marketing budget in the fourth quarter. In Canada radio management pulls your marketing budget in the fourth quarter. Actually, that’s not entirely true. In America, they pull your marketing budget in third quarter.
7. In America, a small market might have 30 rated radio signals. In Canada, a large market might have 30 rated radio signals.
6. In America, one program director might be running as many as 5 different radio stations. In Canada, PD’s might actually still be running just one.
5. In Canada you’re expected to spend significant amounts of money in support of Canadian talent development. In America “What’s talent development?”
4. In America, they’re concerned about satellite radio. In Canada, they’re worried about the public being able to pick up grey market American satellite radio.
3. In America, the right wing politicians want to shut down PBS. In Canada, the unions want to shut down CBC.
2. In America, you will often find 5 radio stations in a space suited for one. In Canada, you might find one radio station in a space suited for 5.

And the number one difference between Canada and the United States is that in America, PDs complain that Arbitron might be accurate within + or – 90%. In Canada, PDs complain that BBM might be accurate within + or – 95%.

1 comment:

George said...

Nice list. Here are some other comparisons.

1. In the United States one Program Director duplicates a format in 12 different markets in a chain. In Canada, one consultant duplicates the same format on 12 different markets owned by twelve different companies.

2. In the United States, consultants are failed programmers. In Canada, consultants, like all Canadians, are failed hockey players.

3. In the United States, announcers focus on talking up the top American reality TV shows that evening. In Canada, announcers talk up the top American reality TV shows that evening. (sorry, my bad, there is no difference)

4. In The United States, a portion of talk radio is dedicated to hating whatever government is in power at the time. In Canada, talk radio (the CBC) is largely the stooge for whatever government is in power at the time.

5. In the United States, NPR is publicly funded. In Canada, my Program Director's salary (thus the income tax I pay) partly goes toward the funding of my competition, the CBC.

6. In Canada, most FM Adult Contemporary radio stations are licenced to play 35% Canadian content. In the United States most FM Adult Contemporary unwittingly play 35% Canadian content. (Sarah Mclachlan, Bryan Adams, Celine Dion, Daniel Powter, etc)

Ooops, all for now. This was show-prep time. :)

George Hayes, Fox-fm Radio, Sarnia, Ontario.