Thank You For Un-Blocking Bulldog Ads

Many thanks to readers of The Bulldog.

In the short time the notice to ask Bulldogois to drop ad-blockers has run (since Sunday), revenue per thousand viewers rose a whopping 252 per cent. So a lot of folks out there are operating ad blockers.

Now don’t get us wrong here. We’re not rolling in money. Far from it. The Bulldog is a labour of love, not filthy lucre.

The last few years The Bulldog has run a PBS-like fund-raising drive during this season. But in a fit of conscience, your agent decided not to. There are other organizations that need the money more than The Bulldog. Not that we don’t need the money but lots of people are doing good work out there to help out Ottawans in need. The Bulldog will struggle through.

That said, media in this town and most everywhere else are on the cusp of oblivion. CityNews not only closed, they tore down the broadcasting tower. Their 25-minute news rotation was very helpful because you could jump in your car and catch all the headlines from Ottawa and beyond. My radio was tuned to 1310 a.m. Me and three other people. As well, as a pathetic baseball fan, I’ve contacted the Toronto Blue Jays to see if another station will carry their games. No answer. The Blue Jays Baseball Network still lists 1310 as its Ottawa broadcaster. That ain’t gonna happen. Strike three. Rogers and out.

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Your agent has no idea how the Citizen-Sun operation continues to publish. Maybe the lenders can’t afford to close it. Or maybe there’s a gold mine in roller skating which now fills the former newsroom. Doubtful they’re getting any revenue from that. And I’m baffled as to how CTV Ottawa continues to produce a serviceable newscast when it no longer dominates the 6 p.m. news slot. The 900-channel universe and the internet saw to that.

But times aren’t tough all over. CBC Ottawa still covers a lot of stuff including city hall and its internet offerings are the best in town … by default perhaps. But then the Corp has the power of the federal government behind it … at least until the new PM takes over the Wellington Street digs.

So all of this is to say times are tough all over the journalism universe. Even some journalism schools are closing. I wouldn’t mind leaving a bit of money to my alma mater at Western but who knows how long that diminished corner of that distinguished school will last (really … how stupid is it to merge journalism with library science there when its journalism graduates are the best publicity Western has. Perhaps as stupid as branding the University of Western Ontario as just Western. The real name of the school is still UWO. Western sounds like a trucking company or a hotel chain). That said, I look around the news universe in Canada and, yes, the U.S., and see Mustangs doing wonderful journalism as some of the best in the field. God bless ’em. Me? I run a kennel.

All this blathering is to say thanks for taking down your ad blockers. It’s perhaps a little thing for you but a big deal for the mighty Bulldog.

Alpo for dinner tonight. It’s gonna be a hot time in the old town tonight.

Ken Gray


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