CKNW Hosts/Producers Don’t Communicate?


It is a glaring example.

I’m not a regular NW listener anymore, but I happened to be tuned in between 9 and 10 this morning, the last hour of Jon McComb for today.  Jon’s topic was a provocative one, which I responded to viscerally, namely the role of teachers as First Responders in making sure kids from low income families have enough to eat, and get the counselling and emotional help they need.  The impact was such that listeners could see the vital role, outside of the classroom, which teachers play in the lives of some students, and how vulnerable those students may become as the strike continues.

At the end of the hour, Simi Sara came on to converse with Jon, and told him the first hour of her show would concern the role of teachers on the East side of Vancouver who help make sure their kids get a good meal or two, and help with students’ emotional issues.  The exact same topic the NW listeners had just been consumed with for the past hour!

Is there not some degree of communication between producers at least, to vet the topics under consideration, to avoid such brutal conflict as this is an example of? I can’t believe a frontline, so-called ‘A-list’ station like CKNW, does not have a protocol to make sure this doesn’t happen!  OUCH!


  1. ‘NW is becoming a muddled up mess. They run clips of former shows (the day before or clips of the morning in the afternoon of the same day) as they flog a particular topic to death.

    And the inane babble that they are now featuring between show hosts and producers leaves one wondering if they are having difficulty getting guests to come on their shows to fill up the air time

  2. Back when I interviewed with CKNW in the early 2000’s, I was told there was a minimum one producer for each talk show host, along with a producer pool of 3 or 4 who helped make sure that the topic load was spread around.

    I assume with cutbacks, that each talk show host still has a producer or two, but that general pool is long gone, leading to redundant topics on different shows.

  3. I think they are just trying to slash and burn to setup a wholesale overhaul in a year when the ratings tank the big one.

    Notice their current personnel changes didnt hire anyone but just shifted the current hosts around a bit and had them work an extra hour.

  4. The extent of my ‘NW listening these days happens while riding the “loser cruiser” each afternoon for between 40 and 55 minutes depending upon traffic. I am actually enjoying listening to Mike Eckford. I enjoy his energy and the way he handles the hot topics of the day.

    I do wonder however, how the hipster lingo, references to things like “beer pong”, banter with the 18 year old sounding “producers” and hot new music clips are going over with the average ‘NW listener?

    I realize of course that ‘NW is looking for younger listeners and really could careless if “the old farts” are diggin’ the new sound BUT is this going to attract the younger audience they hope for?

    I somehow doubt it. Those PPM’s will be really interesting.

  5. With the longer shifts for the on-air talent, re-using other air checks is probably a blessing. 3 more minutes they don’t have to fill.

  6. I find it increasingly difficult to listen to any of their programs on NW. The producers chime in too much like they have something important to say, which they rarely do. The four hour shifts must be very challenging and repeating segments from previous programs that are not worth listening to. Lastly, haven’t heard anything from promotions, no contests, there is no fun on NW any more.

  7. What I find hilarious is how they continue to pump and flog the TED Radio hour that’s on for a couple of hours on the weekend when no one is listening. They promote the hour long program more than the new shifts they created with the remaining hosts.

  8. Hi. Lurked here for quite a while, but had to post today, as I’ve been curious what other listener’s reactions were.
    In short…I agree with most about Simi’s show basically rehashing what Jon’s show had just featured, but frankly, that’s been going on for quite a while. I’ve called her show “The morning Recap” for the past year, simply because it’s guaranteed that at least one segment of her show is going to feature a replay of Jon’s (and previously Bill’s) interview with a guest from that morning…The run with it further, possibly with the intent of puting more of a female perspective? Not sure.
    On the hand, I am happy that Jon McComb finally has a show where he has more room to stretch his legs on some of the more in depth topics, but I truly detest the banter with the producers. I wish they would get the hint that people tune in to here the On-Air Talent…..Not the idealistic cookie cutter producers.

  9. I have to agree with the comments about producers. The only one that comes even close to having something valuable to say is Jessica Gares who was Bill Goods’ producer. She has done some good work. But the rest just leave me cold – especially the one that comes on with Drex. Frankly, I will no longer listen to Drex until she is gone. And what’s with the supposed sports guys chiming in on other topics? I’ll never understand why they let guys like Dan Russell and Stu Walters go and yet kept a guy like Dave Sheldon. His so-called sports casts are a joke and yet now he’s supposed to be an expert on other topics? Say goodnight ‘NW. And don’t forget to turns out the lights!

  10. Fortunately, in the part of the province where I live, we don’t have a CKNW to brood or bitch about. Is that all you Vancouver people talk about !

    From now on, I am going to avoid certain posts on PSR where brooding about ‘NW is the only identifiable sport.

    How many years has this brooding been going on, good gawd ! F*cking tired of it !

    By the way, I do not listen to CKNW, nor the rest of your major market, but I have noticed that NW has steadily increased their PPM ratings for two consecutive books.

    No mention about that, though, so if you think that NW is going downhill, you’re WRONG.

    People still listen to it !

    I do agree that two radio talk shows in a row generally should not discuss the same topic, EXCEPT if the story is VERY important.

    In that case, you then attack the subject from different angles. If Simi Sara is doing that, not an issue !

  11. quote from Just Sayin: “I do agree that two radio talk shows in a row generally should not discuss the same topic, EXCEPT if the story is VERY important. In that case, you then attack the subject from different angles. If Simi Sara is doing that, not an issue !”

    The teacher’s strike is a VERY important issue, and Simi could have approached it from a different angle. The point is she didn’t .. it was DUPLICATION RADIO .. caused by a flaw in their procedures/policies/controls.

    CKNW gets as much attention as it does because it has been a major market leader for six decades or more. And those of us who were around in its heigh day are sorrowed by its slow slide and disintegration.

  12. CKNW is all over … it’s on life support. They had better figure what worked in the past and start to reinvent themselves or it’s all over. First get rid of the banter with the producers… they have nothing of substance to contribute. Take some lessons from the guys that made that station sing! It’s a crying shame….

  13. Producers are producers because they have an inquisitive nature and not the pipes to be considered for on-air jobs. Producers dig for stories and people to tell them at a time pre-arranged with the interviewee. THEN, the show host does the on air interview BY HIM or HERSELF! No further input from the producer is required.
    The trouble at ‘NW is the producers have no experience in getting the important interview AND they get no guidance from someone in authority as to how to do their job properly.
    Having producers on the air to discuss nose-picking and tattoos (in the garden or elsewhere) are not required.
    Please, in the future, less from the producers and a major change at the top.


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