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Ainslie Cbsc Letter

Ainslie Cbsc Letter

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Published by Torontoist
Councillor Paul Ainslie's letter to the CBSC.
Councillor Paul Ainslie's letter to the CBSC.

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Published by: Torontoist on Oct 18, 2013
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10/18/2013

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Constituency OfficeScarborough Civic Centre150 Borough DriveScarborough, ON M1P 4N7Tel: 416-396-7222Fax: 416-396-4286
Councillor Paul Ainsliecllrainslie
 
Toronto City Hall100 Queen Street West, Suite C52Toronto, ON M5H 2N2Tel: 416-392-4008Fax: 416-392-4406Email: councillor_ainslie@toronto.caWebsite: www.paulainslie.com
Friday, October 18, 2013The Canadian Broadcast Standards CouncilP.O. Box 3265Station D, OttawaK1P 6H8By email: info@cbsc.caBy telephone: (613) 233-4607 or toll free at 1-866-696-4718By fax: (613) 233-4826To whom it may concern:
Re: Complaint to the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council about
The City with Mayor Rob Ford 
on Bellmedia CFRB-AM NewsTalk 1010 in Toronto.
 
My name is Paul Ainslie and I am the elected municipal City Councillor for Ward 43- ScarboroughEast, in the municipality of Toronto.
 
I am a listener and supporter of CFRB-AM NewsTalk 1010 and have appeared on the station from timeto time to discuss issues related to politics and current events in the city. As you know, this station has arespected tradition and reputation for promoting public discourse on all matters. I also believe theowners of CFRB-AM NewsTalk 1010, BellMedia and its other various outlets, including the CTVTelevision Network, have a similar tradition and current practice.I am also a supporter of free expression on public airwaves and in the public interest. I believe it is rare but acceptable for public officials—ranging from police, fire and budget chiefs to elected representativesand holders of high office—to participate in or host various media programs as long as they are in the public interest, and do not become a platform for selective or open campaigning to the detriment of the personal reputation of others who may be running for election or re-election.I want to be very clear here: there is a profound difference between elected or appointed public officialsin having a public platform for balanced discourse and a bully pulpit to advance their own agenda, andto malign others for their own benefit.
The City with Mayor Rob Ford 
is a talk show hosted by current Toronto Mayor Rob Ford and his brother Doug Ford, a city Councillor. The Ford brothers talk with guests and callers about Toronto politics and current events. The program airs Sundays from 1:00 to 3:00 pm on CFRB-AM NewsTalk 1010.
Councillor Paul Ainslie
Toronto City CouncilScarborough East - Ward 43Chair, Toronto Public LibraryBoard
 
I state the following for the record:The incumbent Mayor of Toronto, Rob Ford, has recently indicated, unequivocally, he will run again for re-election in the 2014 municipal election;The incumbent Mayor of Toronto and his brother, an elected Councillor named Doug Ford, not only actsas co-host the CFRB-AM NewsTalk 1010 Radio show
The City with Mayor Rob Ford 
 but also as his brother’s chief spokesperson, political confident, and co-promoter. In effect, the two brothers share aseries of common goals and objectives.The official municipal election campaign in the City of Toronto begins in January, 2014.On Sunday, October 13, 2014, Mayor Rob Ford and his brother Councillor Doug Ford engaged in blatant political campaigning and used the public air waves through their radio program to not onlyspread false and defamatory comments which misrepresented my position on a vote at the Toronto CityCouncil, but also threatened to use various political techniques against Councillors who voted in particular ways and called elected representatives various names including “wimp”. The complete podcast for your review is located here: https://soundcloud.com/the-city-with-rob-ford/the-city-oct-13-hour-2-podcastIt is clear to me that the current Mayor, Rob Ford, and his brother, Councillor Doug Ford, are using the public air waves as a bully pulpit to advance their own political gain. I believe this is contrary to thespirit and intent of providing these two individuals access to the public airwaves in the public interestfor public discourse.I believe that:Whereas the Mayor and his elected brother have stated unequivocally they share an agenda and acommon desire to see the Mayor advance his political agenda;Whereas the Mayor has indicated unequivocally he will run for political office in 2014;Whereas the Mayor and his brother have an unfair advantage over all other mayoral candidates or Councillors in their bids for election/re-election in 2014 by using the two hour program as a bully pulpit;And, whereas on October 13, 2013, the Mayor and his elected brother as co-hosts of a radio programusing public airwaves did malign, distort the truth, slander, attack and threaten myself and others whomay or could run for re-election in the 2014 election Toronto municipal election campaign;I believe the following codes of conduct have been breached in whole or in part:
Clause 5 – News
It shall be the responsibility of broadcasters to ensure that news shall be represented with accuracy andwithout bias. Broadcasters shall satisfy themselves that the arrangements made for obtaining newsensure this result. They shall also ensure that news broadcasts are not editorial. News shall not be selected for the purpose of furthering or hindering either side of any controversial public issue, nor shall it be formulated on the basis of the beliefs, opinions or desires of management,the editor or others engaged in its preparation or delivery. The fundamental purpose of newsdissemination in a democracy is to enable people to know what is happening, and to understand eventsso that they may form their own conclusions.
 
 Nothing in the foregoing shall be understood as preventing broadcasters from analyzing and elucidatingnews so long as such analysis or comment is clearly labelled as such and kept distinct from regular news presentations. Broadcasters are also entitled to provide editorial opinion, which shall be clearly labelledas such and kept entirely distinct from regular broadcasts of news or analysis.Broadcasters shall refer to the Code of Ethics of the Radio and Television News Directors of Canada("RTNDA") for more detailed provisions regarding broadcast journalism in general and to the CABViolence Code for guidance with respect to the depiction of violence, graphic reporting of delicatesubject matter or the use of explicit language in news and public affairs programming on television;
Clause 6 – Full, Fair and Proper Presentation
It is recognized that the full, fair and proper presentation of news, opinion, comment and editorial is the prime and fundamental responsibility of each broadcaster. This principle shall apply to all radio andtelevision programming, whether it relates to news, public affairs, magazine, talk, call-in, interview or other broadcasting formats in which news, opinion, comment or editorial may be expressed by broadcaster employees, their invited guests or callers;
Clause 7 – Controversial Public Issues
Recognizing in a democracy the necessity of presenting all sides of a public issue, it shall be theresponsibility of broadcasters to treat fairly all subjects of a controversial nature. Time shall be allottedwith due regard to all the other elements of balanced program schedules, and the degree of publicinterest in the questions presented. Recognizing that healthy controversy is essential to the maintenanceof democratic institutions, broadcasters will endeavour to encourage the presentation of news andopinion on any controversy which contains an element of the public interest; and,
Clause 9 – Radio Broadcasting
Recognizing that radio is a local medium and, consequently, reflective of local community standards, programming broadcast on a local radio station shall take into consideration the generally recognizedaccess to programming content available in the market, the demographic composition of the station'saudience, and the station's format. Within this context, particular care shall be taken by radio broadcasters to ensure that programming on their stations does not contain:(a) Gratuitous violence in any form, or otherwise sanction, promote or glamorize violence;(b) Unduly sexually explicit material; and/or (c) Unduly coarse and offensive languageAs such, I believe that the program of 
The City with Mayor Rob Ford 
should be removed from theairways immediately and that no other such program should be offered or continued for the Mayor and/or his brother as they have a) not demonstrated the responsibility necessary to use the publicairwaves for a true and balanced discourse of and about information concerning the city of Toronto; b)are using the public airways to damage and attack the integrity of others with impunity; and, c) are usingthe public airways to actively campaign for political office and use it as a bully pulpit to unfairly haveadvantage over potential opponents in the upcoming 2014 election.Let me close with a further concern.I am, as I said, a strong supporter of CFRB-AM NewsTalk 1010, its owner BellMedia, and CTV and itsvarious outlets including CFTO and CP24.

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