Friday, September 20, 2013

Bad news for BlackBerry = busy week here

It has been an epic week in my little world of media, dominated by two main - and unfortunately very challenging - stories:
  • Rumours of impending mass layoffs at Waterloo-based BlackBerry; and
  • News that a photo of Rehtaeh Parsons - a 17-year-old girl from Dartmouth, NS who committed suicide in April after she was raped and photos of the assault were widely distributed via social media - was inadvertently used by an online dating site in an advertisement on Facebook.
Because of BlackBerry's status as Canada's top and most visible tech company, the rumors have sparked major headlines as everyone tries to figure out what this could mean for the firm's future. I wrote this article for Yahoo Canada Finance to try and answer that very question:

BlackBerry reported layoffs darken already-murky future

I also did a ton of media through the week in support of both stories, including:

CBC News Network. Spoke via FaceTime with Heather Hiscox on the national News Now program.
CBC Radio. News reports by Tracy Johnson at the national news desk and Matt Kang of CBC Kitchener-Waterloo. The two main stories ran on the CBC website:
Radio Canada International. Interview with Lynn Desjardins for worldwide distribution. Story here.
Global National - report by Jennifer Tryon. Video here.
CBC Radio. Interviews with CBC Radio stations across the country, as part of the Syndication unit:
Newstalk 770 CHQR Calgary. On our weekly Tech Tuesday segment, Angela Kokott and I talked about this week's iOS7 rollout.
AM640 Toronto. Spoke with Bill Carroll about the next stage of Canada's wireless spectrum auction, and how new limits on roaming fees might - or might not - benefit Canadian consumers.
News 889 Saint John and News 919 Moncton. Spoke about the Twitter IPO with Tyler McLean of the McLean In The Morning show.
CJAD 800 Montreal - Andre Carter, and my regular Friday weekly tech segment with Barry Morgan
570News Kitchener - Gary Doyle
CKNW Vancouver - Phillip Till
AM980 London - Craig Needles

There were a few other stories mixed in through the week, including an appearance on CBC's The National newscast in a report by Aaron Saltzman on AdTrap, a device that promises to block all online ads before they get to your computer (video here), a discussion with 570News Kitchener's Gary Doyle on how annoying technology has become, and CTV News Channel interviews with Jacqueline Milczarek on the hype surrounding the new iPhone 5s/5c (video here) and Todd van der Heyden's Tech Talk segment (video here).

I also guested on Devon Peacock's weekly Roundtable on AM980 London - notable because it had nothing to do with tech. Devon, former city councillor Roger Caranci and I spent much of the lunch hour Monday solving London's municipal and community woes and building a shiny, happy future for everyone who lives here. It was a great discussion that apparently ticked more than a few Facebookers off. Good: nerves were meant to be pinched a little.

My weekly tech segment, Clicked In, with anchor Scott Laurie on CTV News Channel, aired Sunday night with a closer look at Apple's iOS7 (video here). If you missed my chat with Canada AM's Todd van der Heyden re. the Twitter IPO, here's the video.

More to come. I think I need to build a clone.

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