RIP Pierre Juneau (1922-2012)
Pierre Juneau, who championed Canadian content on radio and TV as the first chair of the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, has died. He was 89.
As president of the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. from 1982-1989, Juneau also presided over the creation of CBC Newsworld, now CBC News Network.
Pierre Juneau was president of CBC from 1982-1989 and presided over the launch of the national network's all-news channel. (CBC)"Pierre Juneau was a passionate defender of public broadcasting and a fervent promoter of Canadian content," current CBC president Hubert Lacroix said in a statement mourning Juneau's death.
"He was instrumental to shaping policy that allowed Canadians to build their own industry and their own content. We still feel his influence today."
Juneau began his career in 1949 at the National Film Board, where he rose to become head of its French-language production.
Appointed CRTC head in 1968 by his longtime friend Pierre Elliot Trudeau, Juneau created the first minimum standards for homegrown fare on television and radio. The rules were controversial — private AM radio stations objected to a requirement of 30 per cent Canadian music content.
'Canadian broadcasting should be Canadian.'
— Pierre Juneau, after creating the first rules for homegrown content as head of the CRTCJuneau, a cultural nationalist, stuck to the policy saying, "Canadian broadcasting should be Canadian." It was a philosophy he applied throughout his career, which included important positions throughout the Canadian broadcasting hierarchy.
Juneau's CRTC regulations, soon called "Cancon," helped build the music and television production industries in Canada.
Junos named for Juneau
The Juno Awards, Canada's music awards launched in 1970, were named after Juneau because he implemented the Canadian content regulations.
As CRTC chair, he also insisted on 80 per cent Canadian ownership of radio and television networks and the fledgling cable industry.
“At that time, just to give you a few examples, the main anglophone station in Montreal was British-owned,” Juneau said in a 2011 interview with industry group CARRT. "The main francophone station in Quebec City and the anglophone station belonged to an American organization – and it was like that all over the country."
Acting CRTC chair Leonard Katz said Canadians are "indebted to the leadership [Juneau] provided" to the agency as its first president.
“We join Canadians in celebrating his legacy as the architect of Canadian content regulations and the dynamic cultural industry that has since flourished,” Katz said.
'He worked to make certain that Canadian artists have a voice in their own country.'
— Maureen Parker, Writer's Guild of Canada's executive director The minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, James Moore, said Juneau "made a considerable contribution to the Canadian media landscape."
Liberal Leader Bob Rae said Juneau was "instrumental in developing regulations that assured we would see and hear Canadian creations broadcast from coast to coast to coast."
"Canada lost one of its greatest advocates for Canadian music and culture," he said in a statement.
Writers Guild of Canada executive director Maureen Parker said Canadian screenwriters are grateful for Juneau's work.
"He worked to make certain that Canadian artists have a voice in their own country," he said. "His legacy can be seen and heard daily in Canada’s vital and vibrant TV, film and music — he made it possible for Canadians to choose Canadian content in their entertainment."
Friend of Trudeau
Pierre Juneau was a longtime friend of Pierre Trudeau and briefly a member of his cabinet. (CBC)Born Oct. 17, 1922, in Verdun, Que., Juneau met Trudeau while studying at the University of Paris and co-founded political magazine Cité Libre in Montreal with the former prime minister.
Juneau was also a co-founder of the Montreal International Film Festival and served as its president until 1968.
Trudeau wanted Juneau in his government and appointed him as communications minister in 1975 even though he did not have a seat in the House of Commons. Juneau was forced to leave his post within a few months after losing a byelection, but he later became a civil servant in the communications department.
He went on to become CBC president in 1982. In 1987 he spearheaded the creation of CBC's 24-hour English-language news channel, then called Newsworld, in his drive to promote Canadian content.
Closely allied with the Trudeau Liberals, Juneau clashed with former prime minister Brian Mulroney over budget cuts to the CBC and over Mulroney's decision to split his job and appoint both a part-time president and a full-time chair of the CBC.
He was twice invited to step down but stayed until the end of his seven-year term in 1989.
Under Juneau, the CBC consolidated its reputation for news and public affairs, increased its Canadian content and shifted toward independently produced dramatic content.
However, the broadcaster lost viewers as cable TV offered more options to audiences and became more dependent on advertising.
In 1994, Juneau was appointed to head a government inquiry into the future of the CBC.
Juneau is an officer of the Order of Canada.
You know, 40 years later, I still haven't figured out if CAN/CON ws a good or bad thing.....
Doug, it is very interesting that you said that. I was just thinking about how back in the 70's when it really took effect, it angered a lot of us. Living close to the border ,we listened to radio stations like CKLW, the Big 8. It seemed like all of a sudden in 1977 or around that time, after a certain hour in the evening the station broadcast signal became very week and we could barely hear it. We were just over the boarder! That killed CKLW and I believe some of the other very popular stations like CHUM. With television, it took a while before we noticed any difference in programming etc. I think I noticed the commercials became more localized to Canada first.
Originally Posted by Doug-Morgan
After all these years now, I think it may have been for the best. I am sure it benefitted Canadian Artists most.
We can thank Juneau for a lot of great (Canadian) films that might otherwise never have been made, a lot of high-quality TV, and TV News.
.....that's a debate that's been going on as long as there has been CAN-CON. Anyone remember The Dorians? "Help For My Wating" was the perfect example of a CAN-CON song that hit the CKLW chart. An although I don't have the original vinal copy of Janis Joplin's "I Got Dem Ol' Kozmic Blues Again Mama!" LP, I believe there was a note on the back of the cover that it qualified as "Canadian Content" because bass player Brad Campbell was Canadian.
It is my understanding that the CRTC does allow exceptions for radio stations that broadcast jazz, oldies, adn classical formats, and that stations licensed to Windsor (Ont.) only have to meet a 20% standard.
(BTW, since we're on Canadian Radio-TV, I firmly believe Fred Davis was a much better host on Front Page Challenge than Dave LeBlanc....)
Fred Davis was better. Ok now regarding Windsor, they may have been held to a lower percentage of Canadian Content, but after 7 pm in the evening the signal towers or what have you, were rotated back towards Canada causing much difficulty in hearing stations like CKLW (which were considered local stations to listeners in Detroit, Toledo and maybe Cleveland). I listen CKWW Windsor-Detroit Oldies almost daily now via the internet. I can tell that they are playing some, if not all of CKLW's music library. They play Canadian artist that have some pretty popular records in the region (Great Lakes,etc) in the 60's and 70's.
I thought it was kind of ridiculous when they would shift the signals back towards Canada in the evenings. It killed CKLW the powerhouse station of North America.
The group, Chairman of the Board was considered Canadian Content artists because member Harrison Kennedy was from Hamilton and later on Toronto.
In looking at CKLW coverage maps both day http://www.radio-locator.com/cgi-bin...atus=F&hours=D
and night... http://www.radio-locator.com/cgi-bin...atus=F&hours=N
it looks like it hasn't changed much since "back in the day". Their pattern always had that big kick in near London, Ont., and barely reached the outskirts of Jackson with their .5 .
And yes, Cleveland listened to CK to the point that when WIXY (?) needed a night guy, they hired Steve Hunter from The Big 8. Why? Because he was #1 in the time slot in Cleveland. Didn't work. 18 months later he was back in Windsor.
You are right on the money with what you posted. It makes sense that the broadcast pattern had a big boost near London, Ont. Guess what? London, Ont is almost directly north of Cleveland and I know the lake played a part in Cleveland having good reception of southwestern Ontario stations like CKLW. CKLW is the station that united the entire region. DJ's in many cities in their coverage area tried to emulate if not out and out imitate the Big 8 Jocks. When I visit home, I tune in to CBC television, but never even think of listening to radio broadcasts anymore. It would be just too frustrating because I would be thinking of how great it all was back when I was in high school. Thank God for the internet. I can tune into stations just about anywhere in the World and get great quality sound.
Originally Posted by Doug-Morgan
Love Child and I'm Livin In Shame were Canadian Content because of R Dean Taylor; and RDT's songs were massive hits in Canada due to Canadian Content.
Perhaps Canadian content helped to carve a Canadian identity; the one that existed in 1968 sure wasn't as strong as the one out there now..............one of a strong, fiscally stable country, with resources, that looks after it's own people. Kind of has a dolt of a government now.
But Canadian content these days would be a total waste of time.
It gets confusing sometimes. WJR has 50,000 wats ERP but is a "clear channel" station, meaning there are no other stations in the U.S. or Canada broadcasting on 760. I'd listen to Tiger games coming home from work in Colorado Springs sometimes on 'JR. CKLW also has an ERP of 50,000 watts, but 800 is not a clear channel frequency, so it is required to adjust its pattern to "protect" (especially at night, when signals travel farther) other stations that broadcast at 800 kHz. Their directional pattern was skewed, pumping more signal in directions where there was no interference.
Since we've began discussing the after effects of Can-Con, I have been "rediscovering" some great music I grew up listening to that many in the U.S. may not have heard. Just this morning on CKWW(they broadcast from the studios of the old CKLW) they played this song and I never knew it was by a Canadian artist, Shawne Jackson of Toronto, "I'm Just As Bad As You":
My brother (who still lives in the Detroit area) maintains one of the reasons Barenaked Ladies became so popular was Can-Con airplay in Canadian "border" cities like Toronto, Windsor and Vancouver.
I believe your brother is right.
Originally Posted by Doug-Morgan
Hey guys............this might seem odd, but Canada isn't still doing Canadian content is it????