Never-never land

Robert Fulford takes us inside, if you can stand it, Mother Corpse:

[…]
Broadcasters who came to the CBC with dreams of making great programs instead find themselves conscripted into a nightmare of sclerotic bureaucracy in which everything matters more than broadcasting. What counts most is the endless, baffling shuffle of titles and responsibilities, a byzantine turf warfare.
To work at the CBC is to live in a world of memos, usually concocted by bosses whose insecurity dictates that they write in incomprehensible gibberish. Memos explain that the bosses want to “Ensure that all managers have development plans based on leadership competencies according to identified timelines,” which are “part of ongoing efforts to better align resources and workflow with evolving needs.” (I’ve lifted two sentences from two different –but both actual–CBC memos.) The tone is deadening, joyless, self-defeating…

Mark C.

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8 thoughts on “Never-never land

  1. ” “Ensure that all managers have development plans based on leadership competencies according to identified timelines,” which are “part of ongoing efforts to better align resources and workflow with evolving needs.” ”
    I don’t mean to break your spirit, but the above quote could come from any one of the major corporations that I’ve worked for in my time in the private sector.
    Welcome to corporate life.

  2. RAdio Canada is worse. The whole Quebecois culture is based on the notion that you must have a sense of humour and a vulgar one at that. Any guest on their programmes must be prepared to be punked or ambushed with ridiculous questions.

  3. Well, hold on a minute. That’s classic damned if you do, damned if you don’t.
    Have to agree with SLM, though (twice): standard management-speak indeed. If those folks were actually doing the programming, I’d be worried.
    But a remedial tutorial on George Orwell would, in any case, be strongly advised.
    “Ensure that all managers have development plans based on leadership competencies according to identified timelines” = Get the work done well and on time.
    “part of ongoing efforts to better align resources and workflow with evolving needs.” = When the job changes, try to keep up.

  4. Agreed though. CBC Radio is okay during about 8AM-10AM, sometimes. Otherwise, for music, I’m over at… well, anywhere on the dial but 99.1

  5. “But a remedial tutorial on George Orwell would, in any case, be strongly advised.”
    I smell Politics and the English Language. It’s been over thirty years since I read that essay, but still remember and love it.
    SLM:
    99.1 is essentially talk radio, howver CBC Radio 2 seems to be the big fiasco. What used to be mostly classical music (with some jazz thrown in) is now a hodgepodge of whatever the producers think might attract a younger audience.

  6. John B.:
    Indeed.
    http://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/orwell46.htm
    “When one watches some tired hack on the platform mechanically repeating the familiar phrases — bestial atrocities, iron heel, bloodstained tyranny, free peoples of the world, stand shoulder to shoulder — one often has a curious feeling that one is not watching a live human being but some kind of dummy: a feeling which suddenly becomes stronger at moments when the light catches the speaker’s spectacles and turns them into blank discs which seem to have no eyes behind them.”
    It’s a fabulous read. Every blogospherian (myself included) should read this essay every six months or so.

  7. The CBC would actually attract young people if stopped trying to pretend to be hip. I don’t want them to be hip. I want them to play stuff that isn’t crap.

  8. Dawg: Thanks for the link – I didn’t realize it was on the web. My personal favourite is his translation of the excerpt from Ecclesiastes.

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