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Last CBC-made youth show gets the axe

CBC management has quietly cancelled Morgan Waters, the critically acclaimed spin-off from The X, the TV show for teens cancelled last year. Morgan Waters is a six-minute program that runs during the afternoon youth timeslot from Monday to Thursday. It is produced on a shoestring budget in Toronto. Seven jobs are being eliminated as a result and no replacement show has been announced.

“It is open season on CBC TV productions,” says Lise Lareau, national president of the Canadian Media Guild. “TV management is in the final stages of dismantling CBC-made programming. There will be soon nothing left of entertainment television production inside the CBC.”

The cancellation of Morgan Waters comes less than two weeks after CBC cut Vancouver-based ZeD TV and also follows the announcement that the TV design department will be closed. CBC’s children and youth programming is now almost entirely bought from private producers. Key exceptions are Street Cents and the links in the popular Kids’ CBC.

Morgan Waters never got any promotional or advertising support and didn’t get a chance to build a strong following, even though it represents a virtue of public broadcasting. As TV Guide has noted, the show works because “the humour is smart and it makes those watching realize they’re smart too. If public broadcasting isn’t supposed to do that, what should it be doing?”

“The Morgan Waters cancellation appears to be more evidence that CBC management is proceeding with its own agenda for English television before the government and people of Canada have a chance to give their views on the public broadcaster’s mandate,” says Lareau.

The Guild is ensuring that the rights of the employees affected by the show’s cancellation are being respected.

To get more information on the Guild’s campaign to save CBC Television, go to www.stopthesellout.ca .

For more information, contact the Guild (info@cmg.ca) at 416-591-5333 or 1-800-465-4149.

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