Toronto — In order to appease its audience and deliver a better experience the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation has announced that it will be asking Facebook followers and readers if they consider the story they’re interacting with to be “news” or “newsworthy.”
Beginning in August, every story CBC posts on Facebook will include the question of newsworthiness. Those who interact with the poll will receive a follow-up email depending on their answer. This announcement comes after the national broadcaster has had to wade through millions of “How is this news?” or “Slow news day, CBC?” comments on all manner of stories from entertainment to politics to cats being saved from trees.
“As a publicly funded corporation it’s our duty to find out what people consider worthy of their time,” said CBC social media specialist Peter Black. “Do they want to know if a puppy was rescued from the fires out west? The short answer is, ‘kind of’…” Black added that Canadians are very discerning with what they read online, “or at least in the headlines.”
Black said that when a reader decides a particular story is not newsworthy and takes the time to detail exactly how it could have been better, CBC will issue an apology to the reader and fire any reporter responsible. Anyone who can prove their precious time was wasted in reading a CBC story could also be eligible for compensation of up to $10 million.
Readers are excited about the new system.
“I’m so sick of seeing so-called ‘news’ on Facebook that doesn’t pertain to me in the least,” said Haligonian Sheryl Steeves. “I always comment and let them know when they’re off base, but with the poll I can really make the facts about my opinions known.”
Black explained that most readers of CBC are exactly like Steeves.
“People could just scroll past stories they don’t care about, but they seem more interested in telling us they don’t care and why. That’s the reason for the large reward. We feel it’s only fair that the disenfranchised reader be duly compensated for the hardship of having to think about their fellow Canadians.
“We want make sure that Karen in Winnipeg doesn’t have to learn about something that’s happening with the Nova Scotia health-care system, or Chad from Toronto won’t be bothered by an amber alert story about a kid in Nunavut.
“We’re learning that they just don’t care.”