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Amalgamation of the Daily Colonist Daily Times Newspapers

Paul Minvielle

Accession Number Presenter Paul Minvielle
Date November 13, 2013 Location Historical Society presentation at Central Hall
Media digital recording mp3
ID duration 57 min




Unknown Speaker 0:00
Have it. My pleasure today to introduce you Paul. Pominville is a resident of Saltspring Island. And he used to commute to Victoria on a regular basis to work at the times. And the Times columnist, I guess, and he and Paul agreed to come and talk to us about basically the amalgamation of the two papers into what we now know as the Times columnist. So, Paul, I'll turn it over to you, thank you

Unknown Speaker 0:33
welcome to the Saltzman Historical Society amateur hour. I didn't so much agreed to do this, as Bob told me I was going to be there. I also had a little problem with my printer. And unfortunately, I'm making my excuses up front here. So I'm here to talk about the amalgamation, the amalgamation of the Times columnist or excuse me of the daily columns, British colonists as it started out as and the Victorian times. And this was a fella called William Smith, who started the whole mess, he ultimately changed his name I actually worked with with him Smith, but he didn't change his name. So you've never heard of him. This one changed and changed his name, as many of you know, to Mr. To Cosmos, lover of the universe. And you have to admit that if he'd left, his name was William Smith, we wouldn't know who he was. Okay. Before I get into the amalgamation and the effect on people, I think I'm going to tell you a little bit about myself and how I slowly evolved in the business, how my attitudes towards journalism changed over the years. And sort of the attitude I brought to what happened to the times and the colonists. I'll give you a quote right off the bat freedom of the press is a flaming sword. Use it justly hold it high, guarded well. Steve Wilson ringabel, editor of The Illustrated press, Does that ring a bell? Big Town? Remember that? It was originally a radio show. And Edward G. Robinson, I believe, played Steve Wilson, later was on television. And that's when I picked up on it the early days of television and I became a big fan, not realizing that a lot of my attitudes towards journalism towards reporting of the facts came from that show. It was very, you know, very highly principled show and I guess I absorbed all this. So my journalistic career actually started out with a hand printed underground paper at St. Paul's High School in Saskatoon called the O'Neill illustrated press, the illustrator process, which lasted three issues before it was seized by Father excuse me, father, James Mani, who happened to be our teacher. And while he complimented the language or the writing in general, he said, if he ever caught me doing it again, I'd be out on my ear. So much for the illustrated press. But it was my first taste of influencing events through the printed word. I went on to St. Paul's College in Winnipeg, which is at the University of Manitoba, and edited the millennium. Again, it was a bit of, I'm not gonna I'm gonna go through my whole CV here. It's very short. Later I with Paul Resco. In Winnipeg, we started an instrument team and magazine called preview. And I'll tell you that while it was critically well received, it was we didn't we had no business sense whatsoever. If we went broke, keep that little thought in mind, we went broke. I then was working part time on the railroad and making about $400 a month and about an equal amount and tips, which in those days was very good. I gave all that up to start at the Winnipeg Tribune as a copy boy, making $35 a week. And I thought I had died and gone to heaven. Because there's a copy boy, I got to do everything I got to. Up in the editorial end of things I got to run down to see what was happening in advertising. I got to go to the restroom to grab some copies to bring upstairs. I got to know the business and or at least the general parts of the business and how it worked. I was there for exactly three months and eight days I promised that reporting Job didn't materialize. So I ended up with the Brandon son as a sports writer. And I think I have a picture. One of my earliest sources of the brand and I was writing a column called sports world. Just as an aside, I would leave that appeared with my column sports world, world wh IRL and as I was leaving the building the day the column appeared I happen to bump into the publisher and the managing editor Jim Reed, who had hired me to sign a nice and complimented me on the columns. That was very funny and said, and the picture was great. It looked as though you were actually in the newsroom. So I tried to keep a straight face. And then it dawned on both of them that in fact, it was a thing to do a donkey baseball had actually brought the donkey into the newsroom. Anyway, what I learned about sources was you also have to never trust them. Always question what they have to say. From the brand and son, I'm going to show you one more thing. One thing about pictures, they never lie. But you always have to you always have to be careful with pictures. Can anybody tell me what's wrong with this shot? Oh, shoot one. We got one back. How do I go back? It was the earlier one was the photo back right. Oh, not we're going way far ahead. Sorry about that. The picture that I showed you with the shotgun, there was a skeet shooting competition and Brandon.

Unknown Speaker 6:07
I want to go backwards. We're gonna ever we go keep going. When I had hair, I didn't put it on the right.

Unknown Speaker 6:20
And I've never shot a shotgun or a rifle left handed in my life. The picture was printed backwards. So even though we didn't have Photoshop and back in those days, they still managed to mess up. So they weren't exactly what happened. Okay. I will occasionally digress. So bear with me from the brand and son. I went to I started my own paper I had I've been reading a lot about a baron Thompson a fleet, and I decided that it was time for me to become a publisher. Lanigan was the plot has Boomtown the little town that didn't as I came to, on, and again, it was critically well received. A lot of the newspaper guys and Saskatoon where it was printed thought it was phenomenal. But it was as far as a business mind I had no business sense whatsoever. I was more interested in printing the facts as I saw them, and in the process, I managed to cheese off the mayor and the town councillors which who represented approximately half of my advertising base, not a good business move at all. From Lanigan I ended up I decided I wanted to see Expo I managed to sell a paper today humble journal and we went to Montreal for Expo 67. And on the way back stopped in Toronto, and the next thing you know, I'd wangled an interview with the managing editor of the Hamilton Spectator. And the next thing I knew I was a reporter cut spectator. And there were five of the most exciting years of my life, got to cover a lot of things, including some things on organized crime, which anytime anybody ever wants to see what I did on that I can show them. But it was also a little on the dangerous side. And it wasn't, it wasn't the mafia that gave me the hard time it was the Hamilton Police intelligence squad. But that's another story. Another time, a different history. From there, I ended up the Reader's Digest special book division in Montreal and the connection there. And the reason I'm telling you this is that I was editing a book called scenic wonders of Canada. And I looked out the window and I couldn't see across the street. The blizzard was really coming on strong. And I was reading a research report on the Gulf Islands and a Mediterranean like climate. What the hell am I doing here? I took me a while I had to finish the book. And we'll read an I actually came up we left in a blizzard got picked up by somebody out here wearing a short sleeve shirt. And the rest is history. We finally made it out here. And of course, as I was gonna tell you why these are my days of the Reader's Digest. You can see how stressful they were. And of course, I was told It never snows on Saltspring. Somebody I don't know who told me that. But this is outside the old kitchen farmhouse. And that's my little dodge Omni, I think, anyway, certainly snow. I ended up freelancing for a while. And again, freelancing is a tough racket. I was here on Salt Spring and we were renting at the top of each hill. And I just say I would be beavering away at my little typewriter and the writer would poke your head around the corner and say I want to go for a walk. Well, if you're living at the top of the hill and the valley is there, you can hardly avoid a walk. So I ended up a short term enhancer to the BC legislature. And then one day, I was the sea scout leader here and here in Salt Springs. We had friends and instead of going we were going to Esquimalt for jamboree or whatever and instead of going that way we went through Crofton, and at one point my one of my sons noted that dad there's a freighter it's up on the beach I said what So I abandoned my friends and went over and had a look. And I always carried a camera in those days. And sure enough, was afraid or was going into crop and had missed the turn or had lost steerage went right up on the beach, right alongside the third terminal. So I took all the pictures and we went down to Scotland on the way home, I stopped in at the times. And the daily columnist, my friend, Jim Reed, who had hired me, he was the managing editor, and Brandon was working the sports department at the Daily colonists. So I thought I'll just drop the film off. If they get something usable, they can use it. So I went in. And at the time, there was Betty, Betty White Betty, for honors last night. I offered the film I said, as Jim here, and he she she didn't know. And I said, Well, I'll just leave the film. And she said, Well, is it for the colonist or the times? And I said, What's the difference? They're all owned by the same company, right? And she looked at me like I'd lost my mind. And she said, Oh, no, they're quite different. And I said, Oh, I said, Well, in that case, Jim works. Look, I'll leave it for the colonists. This is on a Saturday, on the Sunday, there was my picture of a freighter on Crofton way up on the beach right across the top of the page. And I remember at the time being how funny it was, was when I finally got the check this is back when we're living near Ruth on Creekside drive. I could, I could hardly walk back up the hill, I was laughing so hard this picture which we used to pay for about $10 at the brand and Sons this is many years later. And here's page one picture six columns. I had Yeah, that's gonna be 40 5060 bucks. Why did a check for $5.70 They paid me they paid me sales tax. Why I was I thought it was pretty funny at the time. And the reason that became significant later was that when I got to talk to Jim, they'd had a big, you're probably aware of the big strike they had prior to the amalgamation this is back in. I forgotten the exact year but it was a long bitter strike, and just not too many years prior to the amalgamation at that time. They came out of that contract. The worker, the especially the editorial staff, or the people working for The Guild, came out with a contract that made them the highest paid newsman in North America. Think about the Los Angeles Times The Washington Post, the New York Times, this little paper in the middle of nowhere got that highest. It was a very brief live thing, because there were a lot of contracts that were just coming up. And they didn't take the exchange between the US dollar and the Canadian dollar wasn't all that great. But through all this when Max Bell, who was the head of FP publications from Calgary, when he bought the two papers, he everything was amalgamated advertising, circulation, all the business aspects of things, but he kept the two newsrooms. Now, this was an to entire newsroom. And when they built a new building on Douglas, the idea if you ever go down and see the building, you'll see the large central part, the entire right hand upstairs was to be for the two colonists, or vice versa. And the other side was all for the time. Well, when they went to computers, they realized that was just way too expensive to have this whole. They ended up combining, everybody's using the same computer system, but they all went to one side of the of the building. But there was still this competition. Now. Sometimes along that line, I got an offer of a job. And I ended up on the job was on the Times columnist. And one of the first assignments I got was to go to the one of the Victoria school board. And I sat down at the press table and there was another guy sitting there and I said, Hear from the columnist, he said, right, and I said, Well, why are you here? I'm here come the meeting. And I said, they sent me. He says, Yeah, you're with the time. It was a single company paying all this money. For you know, it wasn't even, you know, how was I going to scoop and we're all listening to the same stuff. And he just couldn't understand why I was confused about it. And I just thought that it would have been a better use of resources to maybe go to a different meeting. One of the meetings that I didn't get to go to because of this peculiar thing they sent me to cover a meeting that was already being covered. They decided to ignore a social credit gathering out in the western communities. A young reporter and I forgotten her name, but she was with the Goldstein Gazette was there and heard them talking about sending newspapers sending letters to the editor, to the times and to the columnist. Does anybody remember that? Dirty checks scandal. They were for those of you who don't remember it, the social credit party in those days, was encouraging its members to write letters to the newspapers, and absolutely very stupid, idiotic letters and purport to be NDP members. And this came out the big scandal and newspaper editors learn to vet their letter writers a little more carefully. I'm going to read and I put those to say, I was having trouble with my printer. This is when we got talking about this competition thing. This this is from Derek Sidious, who was a times fell in the sweater on the bottom there, my good friend, Derek Sinise, we're still friends spent 12 years in China. But he's back. And in an email, he said, I'd have to say the biggest and most lamentable thing that has happened in the past 40 years, has been the amalgamation of the papers and the utter annihilation of a sense of competition that made the places such great places to work.

Unknown Speaker 16:07
The worst assignment anyone could be given would be rewriting the stories that appeared in the other paper, and which didn't quite make it into our own in a timely fashion. The atmosphere there and now is night and day, reminisce on the sound of typewriters. He was telling me to do this, the sound of typewriters remember the blue haze of incinerating tobacco products? Do you remember it? Well, I used to contribute to it. And he says, Remember to the frenzy that drove us to be the first with the news. Okay, that's one attitude that was from a timespan. This one was written by Dave Brown, who ended up as the editor of the or the managing editor of the Times columnist, but at this time, they were just saying how the last issue of the daily columnist have been published. And he said he was also ticked off for the fact that the colonists was the older paper, no 1870, whatever. The 1858 was calling us and the time is much younger paper coated, got first billing, and he was a little ticked off the first product under the merge time colonists logo appeared Tuesday morning. Unfortunately, timeline wise, I can't believe you wrote that the colonists launching predating the times by 26 years, the times got front billing because as the new joint publisher Colin McCullough explained, it's sort of flowed better in cadence and something to have something to have the first one syllable title come first, I'm gonna back up here just a little as the merger was approached, first of all, when I was back east and working for the Hamilton Spectator, I developed a real sense of disdain of your real disdain for the Thomson newspapers. A lot, a lot of that was based on stories I'd heard from people who had worked there, how stingy they were how you had to work your pencils down to a nub. And if you hadn't used both sides of the sheets, and your notebooks and that kind of thing. And I just thought there's no way in this God's green earth I'm ever ever going to work for a Thomson newspaper. Well, I've got my job. As I say, I was reporting. I was gonna mention one of the stories I did do in terms of competition, but I'll get to that.

Unknown Speaker 18:23
I've lost my train. I told you it was amateur hour, what was that?

Unknown Speaker 18:31
Okay, they, it was FP publications had the two newspapers. And then what happened was a Thompson bought the chain bought the FBA chain. And there were all sorts of things going on. and Canadian journalism, papers were being lost all over the country. But at that time, there was no mention of amalgamating the two papers. But so I did get to work for a time under the under the short time under the Thompson chain. And then one day, the managing editor Gordon Bell, who had hired me at the times came by with these brown envelopes, and muttering, he was muttering that what he really wanted to do was handed out to some of the deadwood that had seniority, you didn't want to be handing it out to all the young guys. I don't even their 14 months. And you know what they say about first hired first fired. There were about 60 and don't quote me on the number, but there were about 65 of us who got laid off. So I was both both editorial staffs lost people, but in the end, they ended up with an editorial staff. It was larger than any of the previous singles which I thought was a good thing. It's I it never made sense to me. And even though I got laid off, I could understand why they were doing at a rate it made good business sense. And one of the things that I realized that if you don't have a an economically healthy paper, you can't be doing the kind of journaling Something that Steve Wilson talked about about how can you can't wield that flaming sword if you don't have a platform, and okay, I got to think of what else I wanted to do. Anyway, I got the notice. I want you to know that if you hear if anybody talks to you about this and says there's a story going around that, in fact, on the last day, I got my notice on the last day of July and the last day of August, the end of August was our last day working we got a month's notice. And thanks to a very generous contract, you got a month's pay for every year that you're excuse me for every you're gonna month's paper every year, what year service better than that. Anyway, I got a very lovely severance. And we all went out for lunch. And when I came back, I had to get driven to the ferry. There is a story that I don't believe in, but somebody stood on a desk. And as publisher, editor or publisher call them a colleague emerged from his office, I presume to give him apparently gave him a speech as to what I thought about the whole business. I have absolutely no recollection of that shot whatsoever. I'm getting a little out of sequence and I do apologize. I'm just gonna read a little more from Dave's here the colonists gripes great over to the many years since Max Bella bought both papers in the 50s Was it the publisher of The Times from Stookey eat to McCullough was always the vice president of the papers, thus relegating the colonist publisher to the secondary position within the company that tended to undercut our newsroom for motion as a competing paper at the journalistic level. I say that's nonsense. The columnist always caught most of the attention. Because they were like a squeaky wheel. We're always complaining about something. He says the newsroom wars were sincere, and did wonders for reporters and editors initiative, we all delighted and beating the pants off the times in a story with either a scoop or a major shut down and went to great lengths to keep an exclusive from the gang down the hall. And they did the same. The public's perception was was likely What are you talking about? You're all under one roof. And that perception was rarely dented because few leaders took both papers to make comparisons. Well, the fact is, I think in a lot of ways, they became more, they became more competitive, because they still had competition, especially on provincial matters from the Vancouver papers. And the fact was, after the after the merger, and then getting a little discombobulated there. After the merger, I ended up getting rehired in a non union position. If I had waited to get another job reporting, I would have had to wait until the end went through the rehire list. And as I said, there were 60 Probably 60 guys ahead of me on that list. But they hired me bags and editorial writer, I say was I needed to qualify for a mortgage saw that I'll hang around for a few months. And I retired 19 years later. Now, just a couple of little asides before I was the Press Club.

Unknown Speaker 23:13
Oops, trust card. Get that? I'm gonna go the other way. Over here. Well, I was going to tell you that editorial writing is very stressful. That's the editorial.

Unknown Speaker 23:31
Don bipod on the left, Paul moss on the right, editorial writer, and some goof in the middle who couldn't handle the stress. Okay, let's be frank. We're just going to show you that cow. Now here's a story where we beat the pants off the colonist. Does anybody remember Buttercup, the cow. She got a phone call one morning and Bill back up. The city editor sort of looked over the newsroom. He said Mendell. So I popped over this guy on the phone, said some guy's got a cow in the garage. And I said, lots of people have cows and their grass, you know, trying to make light of it nice. I didn't know Bay. Turned out these people in Oak Bay who were sort of back to the landers but they own this mansion. And they decided that they went they checked out the bylaw and there was no bylaw or preventing the keeping of livestock anywhere in Oak Bay. So they decided they raised some pigs. They had cows while they had the cow Buttercup. She was a jersey of sweet, sweet animal. And they had chickens. They had bees, you name it, they had it. And a lot of their neighbors loved it because they were getting some of the eggs ever getting some of the hundreds. And that's one thing you want to do. And the guy who found wasn't being nasty at all. He just thought it was interesting. Buttercup went national CBC picked it up. CTV Pick that up. So just prior to this, I had spent a long, long time working on a three part series on agriculture on Vancouver Island in the Gulf Islands. I've talked to the chief horticulturalist Alan Butler, I talked to one of the van trikes, who was quite a talker. I talked to everybody. I worked on this series, you would not believe how hard I worked on the series appeared on the editorial page. Nobody said I did the story on but a couple of car we got the call about 10 o'clock in the morning, and the times was an afternoon paper. I wandered out there around 11. And I think I was backed by Trump. I think our deadline was 1245. And I wrote the story basically saying, there's a cow being kept on the ground and obey. And then I would say something else about the fact that they'd had pigs there. And then I wouldn't the next paragraph was in Oak Bay. It's just, it just seems so inconceivable. That story is to say, I wandered into the I happened to be in the washroom and the publisher walking came in to wash his hands and he said, great story on the cow. Thanks, Paul. I've heard you during the series on agriculture. He said, Oh, good. Very good. Okay, now we know where everything is going. I'm just gonna have a quick check.

Unknown Speaker 26:27
Yes. Dirty tricks. And I think I've gotten everything else on here. All the different press things you can see the last one and that? I think, is that it? I think we're done here. Right. That's the last one. Well, on that rather pathetic note, I'm going to invite questions. I do have a lot of notes here. But just for you. Are there any questions? Anybody want to know anything?

Unknown Speaker 26:58
So when they were two separate editorial, theoretically two separate papers, how did they distinguish themselves one of the morning? Your editorial slant?

Unknown Speaker 27:11
Yeah, the columnist was stated the morning. And it's published Sunday to private the time it was an afternoon paper and went Monday to Saturday. And then when they amalgamated the two kickers, they ended up going to seven days a week and thinking was basically wanted to make sure that no other favorite started up on the Monday. Monday magazine was there, but it was a struggle. The only reason Monday, Monday magazine ever survive was that they took all the classified ads from the escort services that the times

Unknown Speaker 27:53
we won't go there. But no, as far as the the competition was concerned. It was It was strange, because when I when I first got there, I'll back up a little land. During the strike, I visited a gym. And then later when they got this brand new building and all the new computers before he showed me how these two totally separate museums as we're all going to be together. So what happened is at the end, I had my desk here, the desk over here. And then we were all signing on to the same computers, but they were all I don't know how they did it. But the other reporters, they couldn't put two separate systems but all of the same main when asked me how to work. It was just I couldn't see if they have been completely separate and done some real recording. Okay, the wrong covering school board meetings is important. But it isn't the sort of thing that you need to report that they could have shared that they should have shared some surfaces and maybe just competed on going out investigated. Find out what the government was doing wrong. And all sorts of material. But they some people just thought the competition was marvelous. And one of that Derek said there was a great atmosphere Well, sure it was but it was it was costing everybody and and threatening. I think it because of the financial well being. We ran the risk of not having any voice to talk many other questions.

Unknown Speaker 29:38
I'm interested. I'm interested to know if you've ever met a senior Thomson

Unknown Speaker 29:48
string you're talking about? No. I talked about the financial All the papers that if you've ever read anything about the types of papers, they had a very rigid shedule of news and was 40%, maybe 60% might be even lower. But you didn't go over that. And if you happen to have a whole lot of really important news development, but you didn't have the added soul to add the extra pages. It didn't simply kind of crazy. He said that only someone said that only a small town newspaper was like owning a cash box that never met some of those models. Well, I wouldn't want to know.

Unknown Speaker 30:43
Exactly. I worked for a small town newspaper, and also new to Thompson. Children my parents build up flying and fishing camp in northern I'm sure they have a safe place on the other side of the lake. Oh, what a tyrant. Tyrants the old man? Yeah, yeah. New Adult. Children. Right. My I'm 66 that the generation

Unknown Speaker 31:22
of the people who came to help us, his name was Paul. Cool. Anyway, there's nothing that he had been his X was $10,000. And they were living

Unknown Speaker 31:39
split. So he bought a house right next door to

Unknown Speaker 31:47
Thompson grew up with on this lake in northern Ontario. Very different. Very wonderful.

Unknown Speaker 31:58
You mentioned competition and what this paper is doing these days, how's the Time column is doing?

Unknown Speaker 32:04
That's a good question. First of all, I don't have any real connections there anymore. But if you've seen a beggar, I think one of the things if you look at the look at the columns, and one of the most profitable, profitable areas, and newspapers used to be classified ads, but we're all using exchange now. What's happened to the classified that's happening all around the world. And it's certainly happening in most places that newspapers are suffering, trying to go for online editions. But when you got the funding to get a few free shots, and suddenly they want money if you want to see anything more, and I don't know how successful that is. Some of the better the New York Times might be able to make it work. But have you subscribed and just as a matter of how many people here do subscribe. I don't forget to what does that tell you?

Unknown Speaker 33:08
Can you speak to it? You know, like what newspapers are making money to go there. I know the you know, having been freelance and also worked for a small newspaper in Alberta. Anybody making money?

Unknown Speaker 33:21
Well, they've all cut corners. Everybody has reduced staff. Strangely enough, the technology that has sort of helped us to get off the ground, the offset press one small example of how things change. When I first went to work for the times, I was petrified that first day, I was only going to get some kind of replacement. But I would have to use a computer. And I've never used a computer, the meters I was just starting to look into the possibilities. This is a 1979 the times and the colonists had already been on their computers for three or four years. And I have to tell you that within two days, I wondered how I never managed to write without today. So late which leads me to the other point is that when we started to do the page, we would type things out and use Shaw electronic copy. And then it was shooting off and it was typeset. Well later when we got into the offset printing, it was just we still had compositors and when I started working on editorial page, I would have to go to the back and they would be the stuff would become graphic and they would be pasting it onto a sheet. This was the original way of doing offset printing. Anybody know the difference between letterpress and offset? Okay, the way all Gutenberg did was he had to I raised the letter, the ink would be smeared on it, and then it would be pressed against paper. Later this was became involved with the line of sight and it got a lot of fancy. But it was all basically the same thing a rollover come down the raised print with the raised print plate for the here with the ink that would come down and become up against the impression cylinder and the paper would go down in between, and they it was pressed, the ink was pressed onto the paper. With offset printing. It did away with having to have raised letter printed, we didn't need line that came out as a photocopy of whatever this was printed or the picture or whatever. And it went onto a sheet and it operates on the oil and water don't mix. Don't ask me to explain that. All I know is that it came out as a thin aluminum sheet with the entire page on this aluminum sheet that goes through the ink rollers. The ink with the offset onto this rubber roller, the rubber roller would then be come up against an impression cylinder and the entire page would come off on paper. It was faster cleaner. And unlike letterpress, where over a long press from the ink would start to fill up those little ease and constant trying to keep the presses of the plates clean. He didn't have that problem with offset with offset was completely fresh. The first fret of the first page that came off was exactly the same as the next one 125,000 copies down the way. The reason I got into that was is that as time progressed, they started having a real hard time dealing with the unions in the back shot. Because the unions in the bad shops have suddenly realized that what we could do now on the computers and so we got these big new apples is we could make up the payments on our stream. Everything was such a technology. And what we've come up with on the entity wasn't wasn't a photographic thing ready to make a plate they get punched. So that was that was that they did away with that entire segment between the people, the editors, sending a copy or sent providing a copy. And a whole raft of people, setting the time putting the time into chases, making the plate better push a packing machine down onto it. And then they poured lead over that they're really complex and quite remarkable process. I don't I just love it. To me when I work with friends and

Unknown Speaker 37:43
families fabulous, eliminated a lot of jobs when I started. I started at Fort Saskatchewan records, court records. That was a very good newspaper in Alberta, a small town newspaper. I started that to cut and paste. So you take the ship first. But of course, those jobs like you're saying

Unknown Speaker 38:09
compositors with a whole a whole raft of skills are suddenly unneeded or unneeded visits. Anyway, it was. Again, this is why they didn't manage. But they've never been able to as I get a lot of my views from TV and from radio. A lot of people big events if you remember when Kennedy was assassinated. It was one of those things where everybody saw what was happening on television. But they wanted more. They just couldn't get enough and we're all running out because we couldn't provide my favorite somebody for keeping them as they were buying papers reading I'm gonna give me a second copy as a souvenir. It's gonna be history.

Unknown Speaker 39:02
Today, I don't know. I still want to see I pay for it. But distresses me to go pay money. I can read the news all too quickly. I wanted to tell you about.

Unknown Speaker 39:18
I want to tell you about the brands. It's not just That's how jobs changed. When I started, there was horse riding.

Unknown Speaker 39:28
And time became promoters. sports editor didn't appreciate that. I was promoted to the police and fire report later at

Unknown Speaker 39:40
the city hall. City Hall report was also fired. He also scored multiple jobs every Friday evening as built into the night on holidays that would fill into the news at the district editor. And I also did a stint on the It was a holiday. I guess the most memorable time I ever had it was as women's Saturday which I truly a woman, so they put me in charge of the women's spaces. But I used to call it the Brennan Center School of Journalism because we got to, we got to do our jobs and graduates were in demand, because they weren't threatened. And they want to pay us to have a show called gear and skits. And in their annual programs, but a fancy commercial got a couple of the Brandon some had run for granted some school journalism graduate. So that was some of the biggest papers in the world and around the world. People that have worked in the ground and Sunday. Anyway, so my thought, Should we talk more about the merger? Yes. Say maybe if you become

Unknown Speaker 40:58
a bit about the editorial, I mean, some of the editorials you wrote some of the controversial ones or some of the ones

Unknown Speaker 41:06
I mentioned, somewhere along the line that I had never worked for a newspaper. And, of course, ended up working for a newspaper. And the end result turned out to be some of my best years in journalism were under the under the cost. They were fair. When I got to work on the editorial page, I was expecting some sort of some sort of pressure. Absolutely nothing of pressure came from within our little group, the three of us. And of course, we know that. But the only time I lost battles on the subject of free trade, I wasn't against free trade, but I was against the free trade agreement. And I lost that battle, but they were called months and I would vote against it and done by the publisher. You know, who was going to win that war. The only time I was ever told a spike in editorial was on the subject of whales that okay, Marina, the artists. And the publisher came in, put it down on my desk and said, You know, I think we've had enough for a little while, I had already done but as far as everything time I got an opening, I was slamming say that it was just a Catholic whale, just we're not, should not be part of it. Although I was when I first visited out here before I moved here, I remember going to the show favoring being absolutely wrong. But later tomorrow, I can't do appreciate orchids more, I appreciate it. Cool. It's not a good idea. And I think the deaths of some of the trainers and some of the things that have happened. But as far as pressure was concerned, no, we were we were allowed to write about anything and everything. And I can tell you a salt spray to salt. The times that a period of time was felling salt, to where I went to garden. Right? Because having worked on a book called Explore Canada, I was accustomed to go official spelling, geographical names conditions.

Unknown Speaker 43:25
And it says we're going to have an album in the library. Instantly it was the toy the time is called the daily column.

Unknown Speaker 43:37
Contract he decided to stick with two words, even though that's not the right word. Tony Richardson hopped out a little bit about few years started over the years where he was politics put himself to work.

Unknown Speaker 43:59
Okay, so we have some municipal elections. And we're going to leave the little elections along standard square miles and then we're right in type the Victoria Merrill thing we would handle that. Well, one that had gone by and I think he would have to find a publisher that no, we really should cover everything, everything in the capital Regional District. And especially when you haven't got a clue as to what they're doing, because they've just been below the radar all the time. Nobody's paying any attention. Victoria Western, so somebody had to go and find out what the issues were, and come up with an informed suggestion as to who you might vote for, and I've never liked the idea of his papers endorsing the candidate. So anyway, that was expect So guess who gets to do the Saltspring it was the CRD representative back when Yvette Balfour Now I happen to like it a lot it's a good thing I was sort of involved in that point the is anybody remember the great sewer debate? It was a fun time but there was also an internal cartoon and then they grew up with that time which shows against all odds is that a very large lovely lady and my books anyway. But she sort of all these big flowing cats this alien race I've done a cartoon on the CID building was like the whole time so you can see it. And then you know, the usual swinging doors and from the back, show me that Velcro 10 gallon, six guns if you strike there's a new sheriff in town. And you can see the CRD staff jumping now over the next couple of years I thought she did a remarkable job initially I was the number one issue candidate but she took on another issue and a constituent winters she thought she heard them she listened to so one of the elections the one that I'm supposed to comment on Frank Richards decides to run so I went to sort of through the background of what had happened and I said basically if both when all said and done is that Melfort has done a good job of representing her constituents and if to be frank Richards is given his background support but the other side in the sewer who is not going

Unknown Speaker 47:11
to bring this community together so that evening I want to sell it to me element because he and all candidates

Unknown Speaker 47:20
and Frank Richard spot door and I'm only here because looks complicated and then I looked at him I realized in that split second that I would never get a job and the cost happens not that I would ever find it now as far as the TC we were given free rein something bucking I was able to write about something I was able to write about it. The only problems we had maybe at school would be

Unknown Speaker 48:09
one of the reasons I'm going to tell you first of all high blood pressure by Dr. Peter Ronald not dated back at that particular time rather than just left them and always managed over the years to talk either out putting high blood pressure medication

Unknown Speaker 48:36
and anyway, my blood pressure at that point was about two months ago. You wouldn't have to go back to work and that's when I made the decision but I'm probably fortified

Unknown Speaker 49:05
next question or something else. Thank you. Prior to my leaving one of the reasons for the high blood pressure, pressure doctor will tell you that was at one point he said I want to go back to work tomorrow. serious risk of an episode in a series you could die in seconds. Got my attention. Prior to all this happening was I never in my career hurt of a publisher. It started with a managing editor, a news editor, a advertising business manager doesn't and then all of a sudden fall well, the publisher, security guys started the amount of now when you see and where the editorial office was, it was the side next front. So that's where they took. And I had a little window that put them onto the hallway. And I could see for a little over several months. And at one point, John by phone had retired, fall loss headed off sick and ultimately died. And I was the acting. So here's Botox was replaced by Peter Bailey. So we were talking about what are you going to fill the job? So I'm still asking. He said, I want the job. God, no. And he said, What do you mean? The department

Unknown Speaker 50:57
what's interesting is that Peter was nice enough to draw the line for our my retirement party, but about six months later, gets the gun. So I tried to get back there. But I'm not sure. But it was just, it was unthinkable. To me that to be a publisher has always been something very, very special. When I was a coffee boy at the beginning. I used to have to distribute papers as opposed to before and I dropped off the publisher first, and his secretary was not very Rossmann, the role? He was a war correspondent. This guy was like a giant among journalists, he was just a legend. covered the day covered. Also, Rosman Robert, just one of the top names, I'll probably take 35 instead of seven, the only good thing you'll do well, and proceeded to check, proceeded to tell me what he thought was wrong. And what should be improved in step, Lisa, now, chatting about Canadian journalists. This is the number one guys in the country talking to a golfer. And, as I said to me, publishers are very special people. And to see not one but two of them fired. So anyway, that was part of what leads to depression. I can tell you this incident while I stayed home. And in that time, but I don't have to work. force comes to worst, we can always sell a farm and get something smaller. And, you know, we rationalize. And as soon as I made that decision, my pressure dropped. It was because of the tension and the stress at work. And I remember,

Unknown Speaker 53:10
just I was going to be announcing it on Friday. I guess on Monday, they will be the managing editor

Unknown Speaker 53:16
here and I've been talking, we'd like you to do the TV slots. And this is one check TV. They used to have an editor there and they were talking about what was going to be in the next day's paper in the theater and I think he'd be very nice. He said, Oh, no, I suppose

Unknown Speaker 53:38
you're going to do it the following Friday, and in my letter of resignation in the theater, because I reported to the publisher. Sometime later, they will be stoning back in the office, you new

Unknown Speaker 54:03
does that mean? Any other questions before I've been talking

Unknown Speaker 54:12
about proofreader? What happened to that?

Unknown Speaker 54:19
I'm reading a lot of novels these days, probably more than I should. But they obviously aren't using many therapists. They're relying entirely too much on spellcheck. So you got it. Have you ever seen that third draft letter guide? It reads perfectly well, but every word is missing the spelling. But the spellcheck, that's because they're not proofreading is expensive. You got to pay somebody to do even my last days before I remember that when the tape one came up. There would be four or five proofs and they would pass out very quick. Anybody who wasn't doing something I'll send you would give him a bathroom. And

Unknown Speaker 55:05
sure enough, he would be printed and after the first 1000 copies came up, the word

Unknown Speaker 55:13
was the art was missing 60 points where you have a proof, and you're in a hurry,

Unknown Speaker 55:25
the mind sees. Again, I don't know whether you've seen some of those things where there are letters missing, a lot of the balance is gone. But you can still meet it because your mind fills in. And that's what proofreading often does. But as I say, you can proofread all your lines, the prices start to roll and begin to be more obvious if it was a neon black. Anyway, I apologize for my somewhat.

Unknown Speaker 56:20
Lot of use of the word expert I'm reminded one of my favorite books of the public library is why experts are almost always wrong. You can do better than I can do better just by flipping.

Unknown Speaker 56:35
If you're interested in the industry, a lot of software history is recorded in the mail or don't preach. papers online. They have searchable archives. And you can put in some string back to the beginning of the settlement in Salt Lake, city review, payment after that.

Unknown Speaker 57:00
And then of course, other times per

Unknown Speaker 57:07
person versus paper