Right-wing corporate media bias is pretty strong in Canada. From the type of stories chosen and emphasized, to the spin and language used to differentiate NDP policies from Conservative, it’s hard to consistently hear and read progressive perspectives in this country.
And though ownership and management are by far the most important elements of media bias (like Dennis Skulsky, former Canwest CEO and Publisher, and friend of Gordon Campbell), reporters are also part of the game. Who can forget that former CTV reporters, Pamela Wallin and Mike Duffy, are now Conservative senators?
Today we see another egregious example. Catherine Urquhart, a well known Global TV reporter in Vancouver, has had her bias caught in the proverbial cookie jar. Even though she is part of the larger Kash Heed saga, her own particular role interests me the most. Here’s a passage from today’s story in the Vancouver Sun:
VANCOUVER — Global BC TV news reporter Catherine Urquhart is being taken off the air pending a review into whether she breached any journalistic standards, the station’s news director said Wednesday.
The decision comes after a recently unsealed search warrant revealed an email exchange between Urquhart and former solicitor-general Kash Heed’s campaign manager Barinder Sall.
“I can honestly say Kash would not be SG [solicitor-general] today if it hadn’t been for some key people behind the scenes,” Sall wrote to Urquhart on June 10, 2009.
“There were only truly 3 people that played a major role: Me, Peter Dhillon and yourself and Kash knows this,” he added.
“Peter was the money guy, I’m the brown tanned James Bond strategy girl-chasing guy and you were like the communications director . . . your stories, coverage and timing gave Kash a lot of profile and built him a following from day 1 at West Van and then leading into the election.”
In response, Urquhart wrote: “Hey . . . that’s really sweet of you. Have to say — there were a number of people along the way (cops and reporters — mostly cops) who seemed to have it out for Kash. But I always believed he was a good guy. I’m truly glad it worked out! C” …
Not particularly subtle, eh?
Edited on: Thursday, January 20, 2011 9:49 PM