Media Beat: April 19, 2021

Media Beat: April 19, 2021

By David Farrell

Border lockdowns in Ontario

Police roadblocks go up on the five bridges that connect Ottawa and Gatineau early Monday as Ontario’s strict new stay-at-home order takes full effect.

The Ottawa Police Service announced it will launch around-the-clock checkpoints on the bridges at 12:01 a.m. Monday to restrict the movement of motorists, pedestrians and cyclists. Officers will also be stationed at the Quyon and the Bourbonnais ferries.

Ottawa police will question Ontario-bound travellers while Gatineau police are expected to screen those bound for Quebec, which has also announced interprovincial border control measures. – Andrew Duffy, Postmedia

Writers Guild of Canada diversity report says despite steady progress, gaps remain

A Writers Guild of Canada report says while its members in the TV industry have seen steady progress on diversity issues, gaps still remain.


The organization and its diversity committee have released the first-ever Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Report, which they plan to prepare annually.

The report says the percentage of new guild members self-identifying as diverse has risen steadily, from 14 per cent in 2016 to 33 per cent in 2019. – Victoria Ahearn, The Canadian Press

Life in the Roaring 2020s: Young people prepare to party, reclaim lost pandemic year

As eligibility for the vaccine expands, more and more young people are getting vaccinated. For many, it's been more than a year of lost youth. While the effects of the pandemic may be long-lasting, some young people are getting excited about the opportunities for social interaction this summer. – Eva Tesfaye, NPR

Facebook Outrage of the Week

Last week I wrote about the 2019 breach of half a billion Facebook users' records, including personal information like email addresses and phone numbers. Because of Facebook's incompetence and irresponsibility this information is now available to anyone as hackers have posted it all on the web.

Astoundingly, Facebook says it has no intention of notifying these people that their personal private information is now available to any crook, scam artist, or sleazeball who wants it.

How can a company be so astoundingly irresponsible, you ask? Simple, it's Facebook.


On Thursday, the European Union, through the Irish Data Protection Commission (which has jurisdiction because FB's European headquarters are in Ireland) launched an investigation into Facebook's behavior in this case.

According to GDPR regulations, Facebook was required to notify the Commission of any data breach in a timely fashion, generally assumed to be 72 hours. Although the breach occurred in 2019, to this day Facebook has never informed the Commission of the breach. In fact, according to TechCrunch, the Commission found out about it just like you and me - through press reports.

Facebook claims that it was "old data" and therefore not subject to GDPR. Nice try.

You may remember that in 2019 Facebook was fined $5 billion by the FTC here in the US for privacy violations. It was also forced to enter into an agreement with the FTC to act responsibly in their handling of data. At the time the FTC said...“The Department of Justice ...expects Facebook to treat its privacy obligations with the utmost seriousness.” Yeah, good luck on that one.

A question for the FTC: If this breach doesn't constitute a violation of Facebook's agreement with you, WTF does? – Bob Hoffman, The Ad Contrarian


DIVINE (L) and Karan Aujla
@anmollium / Anmol Raina

DIVINE (L) and Karan Aujla

Chart Beat

Karan Aujla & DIVINE Debut in Top 25 on Billboard Canadian Albums Chart

B.C.-based Punjabi artist Karan Aujla and Indian rapper DIVINE land the No. 22 spot on this week's Canadian Albums chart with their new collaborative release, 'Street Dreams.' On the Canadian Hot 100, Beyoncé's "Texas Hold 'Em" ascends to No. 1, while Canadian pop artist Preston Pablo makes a debut.

B.C.-based Punjabi artist Karan Aujla and Indian rapper DIVINE are making moves together on Billboard's Canadian Albums chart this week, with their collaborative project, Street Dreams, debuting in the No. 22 spot.

The seven-track album, released Feb. 16, blends harder hip-hop and smooth R&B pop, the latter shining through especially on the Jonita Gandhi-assisted "Yaad." It's not Aujla's highest spot on the Albums chart — he reached No. 5 in 2023 with Making Memories, his collaboration with Canadian Punjabi artist Ikky — but it gives him some momentum going into his upcoming performance at the Juno Awards on Mar. 24, where he's nominated for TikTok Juno fan choice and breakthrough artist.

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