6 Biggest Canadian Media Retractions in 2020

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(Newswire.net — January 5, 2021) — Coronavirus has brought a lot of social unrest among several people thirsty for information, increasing the demand for news. However, the media industry has been highly affected by the pandemic since the media is getting meager advertising revenue. 

Many employees have lost their jobs because the media houses could not afford to pay them. The federal government would have helped this industry rise, but it also struggles with the slowing economy. That makes it hard for media houses to access capital.

A good example of a media company that suffered during the pandemic was the Ottawa Sun, especially after accusing Eugene Melnyk. But after apologizing, most Canadian newspaper headlines read, “Newspaper apologizes to Senators owner Eugene Melnyk.”

Biggest Canadian Media Retractions in 2020

The current health crisis has already made local news producers more vulnerable, but efforts are being made to find a permanent solution to media houses. Let us look at the most affected media houses that did not choose to retract in 2020.

Here are some of the biggest Canadian media retractions in 2020. 

  1. Postmedia Network Inc. 

This Canadian newspaper house has been hit hard by the pandemic, and it had to lay off about 80 employees. The process will also close about 15 community publications due to financial constraints that came with the pandemic. 

The revenue impact that came with the pandemic has been significant. The CEO says that the media house has tried its best to sustain the business even through tides. They are fully utilizing all government subsidies, but there is still a lot of financial strain. 

Some of Postmedia Network Inc.’s branches are Kingsville Reporter, Lasalle Post, Lakeshore News, and Tilbury Times. Town Media Events, which produced consumer events like wine expo and Gourmet, will also shut down. 

About 30 people might lose their jobs permanently, and 50 of them came from their sales operations. That continued for about three months, after which the company is yet to re-evaluate its decision. 

Although it is a hard decision to make, the CEO states that it is the only choice they have at the moment. The company is optimistic that they will emerge from the situation and come out strongly. 

  1. Torstar Corp.

Torstar got rid of about 85 positions in the company due to financial strains caused by the covid-19 pandemic. That was an effect of the lack of revenue the company used to get from advertising. 

Eleven of the positions that will be slashed from the company are in the editorial department. This department publishes several newspapers, including the Toronto Star. The CEO stated that the company is facing financial constraints that covid-19 has caused many businesses, so they had to lay off some workers.

They do so to minimize costs, as they ensure the delivery of high-quality journalism to communities. The company took advantage of the 75 percent wage subsidy given to companies that have been hit hard by the pandemic. 

The company also benefitted from the government’s $595 million media bailout. These funds have not yet been released, and they will be given out in the form of tax credits. 

  1. Quebecor Media

Quebecor announced that it would have to temporarily lay off some of its employees and its subsidiaries due to the economic strains of covid-19. They said that it was also a measure to reduce the virus’s spread, as advised by the World Health Organization. 

This decision from the company came a few days after the government announced the closure of non-essential businesses. Workers that will be affected by the temporary layoff will get financial assistance and support. 

Employees with less than $54,200 salary got a two-week salary advance as they wait for the government assistance programs. Those earning more than that got over 80 percent bonus on their salary. 

These temporary layoffs affected about 25 percent of TVA group employees, which is equivalent to 482 positions. The temporary layoffs affected both permanent and temporary employees.

  1. Glacier Media

The president and CEO of Glacier Media, a Canadian business information and media products company, shared a memo indicating the company’s expected temporary layoffs. This decision was due to the impact Covid-19 has on the business world. 

Temporarily laying off employees and cutting salaries helped the company fight the strong economic strain that came with the pandemic. However, this company has not stated the number of employees that will be affected by these changes. 

There has been a reduction in revenues and cash receipts, which is another reason this company has decided to slash off its employees to see themselves through the crisis. 

Other ways the staff has suffered is by reduced working hours and cut-off of salaries. That has not only affected the staff but has also gotten to the management team. 

When things return to normal, the company hopes to re-hire the temporary laid-off employees and return their regular wages. While the other temporary changes are being implemented, things like medical and other benefits remain available. 

  1. Black Press Newspaper

Like other businesses and media houses, the Black Press Newspaper has also been affected by the pandemic. It is a private media house, and some of its branches like the Vernon Morning Star closed down due to the pandemic.

However, the CEO confirmed that the other branches would continue to publish the newspaper. The staff will get more information through emails or calls and messages through the office number. The Morning Star newspaper will move to one print edition. 

Black Press Newspaper residents will continue to get updates through the company’s website and social media platforms. The management of Black Press urges its readers to stay safe and positive. They want the readers to remain safe and healthy but up to date with the local and international news. 

  1. Saltwire Network

This private printer of newspapers laid off 109 of its workers because of the reduced advertisement revenues due to covid-19. It has permanently laid off its employees, meaning they will not return to work until the company stabilizes. 

Out of the 109 employees, this company has laid off, 61 are in Nova Scotia, 23 in Prince Edward islands, and 25 in Newfoundland. The employees who have served a long time in the company will benefit from health and other benefits. 

Final Words

The pandemic did not spare the private media rooms too. Since both the public and media houses are suffering from the impacts of Covid-19, the government should intervene and offer subsidies. Otherwise, these temporarily laid employees, and retracting media houses will never go back to where they were before.