Getting News in Cobourg

Or should it be “Getting News in the 21st century”? For a century or so, the way to get news was from a daily newspaper but newspapers are gradually going out of favour and instead there are multiple online sources. But it seems people are lazy and want all their news to come from one source – just like a newspaper was expected to have all the news. Some rely on Facebook or Google to collect all their news on one page – more on that below – and others rely on a portal like Yahoo news. But the only sure way is to look at multiple on-line sources: multiple sites and multiple newsletters. In this post, I will review what’s available in Cobourg and include some news you could have had earlier if you had been following my advice.

News you might have missed

Today’s Northumberland is an active web site with Pete Fisher as its main reporter. His latest story is that the Henley Arcade Friday night gathering of drug addicts has finally been shut down.  Pete reported on this late Friday – well before anyone else (go here)

He also reported on an incident on 31 August on King Street outside Victoria Hall where a drug user told a councillor “fuck you – I fucking want to kill you.”  See Pete’s report here.

As of September 2nd, these news items were not published anywhere else – the lesson to be learned, make Today’s Northumberland one of your favourite web sites (bookmark or favourite).

Other Cobourg News Sources

I have created a page that lists all Cobourg’s news web sites – go here. It also indicates which sources have newsletters.

The bad news is that getting news is no longer as simple as reading a daily newspaper or even simply relying on a single online source.  You have to work at it.

An alternative view on news from Facebook and Google

Note: the following includes my opinion so is not 100% a reporting of facts.

If you have been following the National news, you will know that the Trudeau Government is trying to force Facebook and Google to pay large newspaper publishers $234M per year.  The reasoning is that Facebook and Google benefit from content by newspaper publishers when they link to their online news articles.  It’s not the entire content that Facebook and Google “steal”, just a link to a sentence.  In my opinion, this is backwards – it’s the newspapers that benefit from the links because of the additional traffic created for their web sites.  If anything, the newspapers should pay Google and Facebook!  But in the world of web sites, no-one ever pays for a link – it’s the way the Internet works.  I don’t pay Pete Fisher because I linked to his stories and he does not pay me for the additional traffic I direct to his site.

Since Facebook gets very little value for providing links to news publishers, it has elected to stop news publishers linking from their facebook pages to their news sites.

Right now, if you go to the Facebook pages of local news publishers, you get a mostly blank page. As well, you see this note:

People in Canada can’t see this content
In response to Canadian government legislation, news content can’t be viewed in Canada.

Here’s a list of affected local Facebook pages:

My page and Graham Beer’s page (Cobourg Media) are not affected presumably because they don’t link to a news web site and mine is virtually blank anyway.

If Trudeau wanted to get Facebook and Google to subsidize traditional news publishers, then he could simply tax them then give the money to the publishers.  That’s really what he’s trying to do.

A note about Comments

Anyone commenting is encouraged to first read the rules of commenting on this page. The rules are mostly common sense.

To stay on topic on this post, you can comment about the Henley Arcade drug site shutdown, the Facebook news issue, or getting news in Cobourg.

Update – 4 September

On 89.7 FM, Robert Washburn interviewed Northumberland County CAO Jennifer Moore and social service director Lisa Horne on September 1 about what was happening on the encampment issue from their perspective.  Not much new information but confirms some details.  Go here.  [Thanks to a couple of readers for the pointer].

Print Article: 

 

58 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas
5 months ago

Thanks John

Ken Strauss
5 months ago

There is a lengthy article posted on Today’s Northumberland regarding the numerous criminal acts and threats to public safety by the encampment dwellers. See https://todaysnorthumberland.ca/2023/09/05/northumberland-county-council-endorses-clearing-encampment/

Dave
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

John Draper has supplied this link Ken in the next Blog subject at the bottom of the page.

MAL
5 months ago

I just learned that Missy Tweaky Easy McLean is employed at the Northumberland Help and Legal Centre. Yes, that Help and Legal Centre that is generously supported by The United Way. And many local donors. I was one of them – until today. SHAME

Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas
Reply to  MAL
5 months ago

So your goal is to make sure Missy joins the ranks of the unemployed?

Anyhow some facts for you—Northumberland Legal Clinic has been around since 1991 and its jurisdiction is anti-poverty law.

The Legal Clinic of Northumberland is mostly funded by Legal Aid and NOT the United Way.

The Help Centre of Northumberland is funded in a big part by the United Way and Missy does NOT work at the Help Centre.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas
5 months ago

If we’re talking about The Help and Legal Centre of Northumberland then most of its funding ($677,712 in 2022) comes from the province. Plus $163,988 came from the county in 2022. Only $228,902 came from other charities in 2022.

The legal advice for the encampment criminals is being paid from our taxes!

Sandpiper
5 months ago

How many out there really think that reporters today don”t research the issues out there enough and or report all the facts or do you think they Cherry pick the Topic write a good story that Might seem of interest to the public and yet leave out a lot of Fact that we should know .

Dave
5 months ago

Yes, keep those letters up to the people in charge. I recall the area I lived in growing up. A rough area yes but still with values. Get a job, support yourself. In the late 60s our housing began to see an influx of new residents. From downtown we knew what they were. I well remember going to the fields with our baseball bats. One, two three strikes you’re out ….. I was a good bat swinger having played for the local teams. However the people of the area were not letter writers often with lower educations. These new tenants moved in. Today the area is a drug infested haven people with people that make their living selling drugs, or are addicted to drugs, often in the news. A place today I would never want to live in. Shootings, overdoses. Politicians often come from a different social clique unaware of the nitty gritty and falling for we must help them. In the end we lost the war hope it doesn’t happen here. Get your pens out and write to the people governing what is happening here. Safe injection site. encampments, excuses. If you want a neighbourhood you feel safe in without dealers and people making excuses do write in and make your voices heard. Otherwise expect to read about a 13 year old prostitute, she was a niece of a guy I later worked with – dead of a drug overdose from the readily available supply. At that time 15 years after I moved from my home area. Get the pens out – the pen is mightier than the sword!

Kevin
5 months ago

The timing of shutting down the Henley Arcade ‘protests’ is interesting but could just be a coincidence. In the past couple of days I have heard tenants of apartments and condos had a meeting to deal with the increases in crimes. This morning I was told of a small encampment on private property. Some ‘campers’ left but others refused and police are negotiating, whatever that means. But why should anybody believe me? The problem with relying on social media for news is there is so much fake news. I have no reason to question the integrity of John Draper nor Pete Fisher but some people, such as me, who comment here have not earned the same reputation. It is in the best interests of news papers to have accurate stories from quality journalism. The news papers help journalists accountable. Social media makes money from advertising. Having high on-line traffic is of benefit but that can mean the quality of the ‘news’ is not as high. The more control the government has of news the closer we are to ‘Big Brother’ and the harder it is to know the truth.

This is not news, just my opinion. With the condemning of one home 5 people were displaced, up to 20 were camped on the beach, they were washed out in the great Friday night Ribfest storm but returned a couple days later and now there are up to 40 of them (I think some people are misleading us). The death threats of Aug 31 upset a councillor (understandably so) but is anybody really surprised this kind of thing happened? Allowing the use of illegal drugs allows the users to obtain drugs. Drugs cost money which leads to crimes. Is anybody surprised crimes increase with increase use of drugs? Is anybody surprised honest, tax paying citizens and holding meetings and dealing with encampments on private property? How far do you think it will go? Just watch! Hopefully the police and our political leaders continue to act against drug use to protect all of us, including drug users.

Dave
Reply to  Kevin
5 months ago

Pete Fisher reported the closing of the drug activities at Henley Arcade was due to multiple community complaints which I can well believe. I would think their e-mails and calls to Council and By-law would have been overwhelming as well as meetings in the community with citizens.

marya
5 months ago

Todays Northumberland, endorsed by John Draper, adds stories throughout the days. Today, there is an another article about two people from Peterborough being apprehended on John Street, Cobourg.

Peter de Auer
5 months ago

The problem with local news ( apart from the separate subject of delivery ) is the challenges of generating “content“. As with all media, the demand is there but generating it not easy, or possibly cheap. Developing a model has been tried, but no one to date appears to have succeeded. To my knowledge, the Globe and Mail has the only successful business model, but that one would be difficult to implement here. Peter de Auer

Danjean
5 months ago

I miss Pete Fishers reports on traffic & local news!

Newbie
5 months ago

This is one of Googles concerns with BILL C18, and I have to agree. (I hope this comment does not get deleted).

Sabrina Geremia
Vice President and Country Managing Director, Google Canada: Our concerns with Bill C-18, the Online News Act.

“The Online News Act would give regulators unprecedented influence over news.
The bill gives the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) unprecedented, sweeping new powers to regulate every aspect of the Canadian news industry. The CRTC would be responsible for determining who is a journalist, what is an eligible news business, and how much money will be directed to each entity — decisions far outside its expertise as a broadcast regulator. It would oversee and govern all negotiations between the news publishers and technology companies, including setting mandatory terms, while also resolving any resulting disputes and having the power to issue penalties. The bill would also give the CRTC virtually unlimited authority to demand information from both platforms and news business.
The bottom line is that the CRTC would have enormous power when regulating the news Canadians rely on, with few if any checks and balances.“

Dave
Reply to  Newbie
5 months ago

A very interesting post Newbie. Canadian newspapers state they are struggling. Journalists state their salary is often low. Fewer to seek this career and good news reporting.
In a nutshell if you eat the steak, (the technology companies) perhaps you should expect to compensate the purveyor of the goods.
Comes down to money and fair practice. Hopefully the technology companies will negotiate with the media outlets who produce the news rather than disasterously block Canadian content as they must compensate the source which currently they are not doing.

Ken Strauss
5 months ago

It’s not the entire content that Facebook and Google “steal”, just a link to a sentence. In my opinion, this is backwards – it’s the newspapers that benefit from the links because of the additional traffic created for their web sites. If anything, the newspapers should pay Google and Facebook!  

Linking versus copying was carefully considered and clarified when Canada’s copyright act was revised last century (1997).

I completely agree that the newspapers benefit far more than Facebook. Who would visit a newspaper website if they were not prompted by Facebook or the results of a Google search?

Dave
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

I would imagine the newspapers are disturbed and hurting for cash as Google and others allow access to the on line paper which then allows so many free articles to be read. When it reaches the number say 10 the website will advise you have reached your quota of free articles. However clear the history from the browser and you can start all over again reading the newspaper absolutely free again and again as long as you clear the browser history rather than purchase a digital or paper subscription. And so the newspaper collects absolutely nothing for their paper.

Dave
Reply to  Dave
5 months ago

I will add some paper do not have free articles and when one tries to access it will display a subscription notice required. Depends on the designer of their websites. I learned long ago nothing in life is free so see nothing wrong should a newspaper not wish to give away their news for which they pay all staff to produce.

Dave
Reply to  Dave
5 months ago

Lastly neither Northumber News nor Today’s Northumberland require a digital subsecription to access their newspaper articles so Link away.

Dave
Reply to  Dave
5 months ago

Feel like Columbo. It is the newspaper’s content so if a link is provided it will access the beginning of the article but not allow you access if set up that way. See no reason the newspapers should give away any part of their content to prove a point absolutely free. That’s all folks.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Dave
5 months ago

The limit and the enforcement of the limit has nothing to do with Google. Any problems are due to the incompetence of the newspaper’s website developer.

Dave
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

I guess then Ken we are all incompetent in not purchasing Clubs, tracking devices, locking outside access doors to condos/apartments, not having security cameras, extreme lighting of outside areas etc. to prevent theft from marauding, invasive criminals. Google allows the intrusion, some newspapers with great loss of revenue may not be able to afford the services of such web designer just as many can not afford to purhase these recommended safety devices.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Dave
5 months ago

Dave, your comments make no sense. Google merely makes it easier to find online information rather than providing unauthorized access to newspapers. If they don’t want visitors a newspaper can keep Google from indexing their website. Why do you think that Google causes a loss of revenue for newspapers?

Dave
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

Why buy a cow when the milk is free? All news services are accessible through various browsers, never heard of a major newspaper that wasn’t, even minor ones are. What newspaper, the purveyor of news would remove themselves from the search engines? Todays closed paper distribution, many going broke as people read them for free due to enabled circumventing.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Dave
5 months ago

BS! Enabled circumventing” is better described as incompetence on the part of the publisher. If a newspaper puts their content online without restriction they obviously want to have it read by everyone. Do you have any understanding of how the WWW actually works?

Dave
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

Ken – Your conversation is getting ruder with each reply. So I’ll end our discussion right here as you are unable to exchange ideas without swearing or belittling.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Dave
5 months ago

A discussion with one who appears to be unaware of many decades of copyright law and commercial practices is challenging. For an example from the past, should Yellow Pages pay a business to list them in their directory or should the business pay Yellow Pages?

Dave
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

Ken it is not as simple as that. Read Bill C-18 and some of the negatives. Perhaps there will be nothing to link to as the advertising is going over to Facebook and other media that make use of the links provided by the Search Engines. The newspapers don’t benefit at all and have lost their advertising to the technology using the links. Seldom if ever would I ever agree with Trudeau but some compensation seems in order.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Dave
5 months ago

Agreed that compensation is in order — newspapers should have to pay Google for advertising.

Even this blog gets some revenue from adverts; why should newspapers get a free ride?

Dave
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

Don’t think they need the revenue Ken. Google and Meta – Facebook have a global income of $1 Billion. This will take effect Dec. 2023

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Dave
5 months ago

Dave, I believe that you are seriously mistaken regarding the global income for Meta and Google.

Regardless, what was your point? Do you feel that successful companies that provide a valuable service should be penalized to support those that are less competent?

Dave
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

Have you not read Bill C-18 yet Ken? That is where the income information for Google and Meta-Facebook came from – $1 Billion income globally each. That is the criteria for asking payment be made for the “link tax” to be distributed to news outlets from which they are drawing their information.

Dave
Reply to  Dave
5 months ago

Sorry Ken – I am presently building a model of the Titanic probably representative of where we are all going between one thing and another in society today. Enjoyed our spar – have a nice day Ken.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Dave
5 months ago

Perhaps you should consult a more reliable source of financial information than Bill C18. The net profit for Meta was about $23.2B in 2022. Google had a net income of about $59.972B in 2022.

Again, why do you feel that successful companies should subsidize losers?

Note that this blog is the best source of information in Cobourg yet Meta doesn’t think that it is even a news source so links are acceptable and it would not benefit from a tax on their services.

Dave
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

Thanks Ken neglected to read “at least $1 Billion” and here you tellme they make $23.2 Billion and $59.972 Billion. All from providing links to the source of issuer of the news. Facebook apparently as people like to sit on Facebook and Tic Tok – and if they see a link to a news article they click on it read it and leave the website. Therefore advertisers have moved to these sites away from the producers of the news who produce only news and have lost their revenue to site that provide entertainment of all kinds.
Apparently only 11% of the population pays for subscriptions to newspapers. Their advertising source is gone and subscriptions.
Wonder who Google and Meta will connect to once they have killed off the newspapers employing trained journalists? Perhaps some fake news guru with enough money to set up a website and spew out his fake news?
Frankly I don’t like Trudeau and this can be said for my entire life time. But I do feel concerned for the future of real news produced by real newspapemen. (people if you like)

Rational
5 months ago

Henley Arcade Shutdown

I am pleased that CPS shut this illegal site down. But why did it take five months? I hope this stays this way but I have my doubts. Let me explain by some recent exmples:

Firstly, the Mayor and Town Council passed a motion that denounced the actions of an illegal consumption sites such as that being run by Missy McLean back in March 2023 in Victoria Park and by the fireplace store. But as Missy McClean states on her TweakEasy facebook page in June 2023 the Town Clerk of Cobourg provided permission to hold these illegal sites if they were called protests. The Mayor and Town Council would have known about this or if they did not they surely must have seen or heard what was going on at Henley Arcade. Then why did this take five months before they did anything? Was the denouncement just smoke and mirrors?

Secondly, a Councillor had their life threatened on August 31st by two drug addicts as the Councillor tried to protect a bank employee – just as they were going to speak on behalf of Missy Mclean. But no charges taken against the drug addicts.

Third, Missy McLean posts today on her twitter that she is confused why they got kicked out of Henley Arcade when the Town is still, as of last night, lighting Victoria Hall up in purple in support of its movement.

Fourth, does the Mayor and Council really see and understand that Cobourg’s problems are getting worse because they have dragged their feet and allowed McLean and Horgan to imbed its pro drug initiative. I say this because the message that it is not their responsibility and right in the middle of all this a self promoting video of Cobourg is broadcast on CTV yesterday. Maybe the timing would have been better once they have a handle on the Cobourg drug scene and expanding encampment.

By-Laws are laws that and must be enforced – not given work arounds and second and third chances with the McLean/Horgan group. While the CPS say often its a By-Law issue, and that may be the case, CPS should still show up and support By-law Officers.

A question – given what’s going on are Leadership burying their heads in the sand and not being effective?

Mark Mills
Reply to  Rational
5 months ago

As Mr. Fishers reported a councillor ( not sure which one) was traumatized by an illegal drug user. The next day the police and by law staff took action against the enablers at Henley Arcade. Why didnt council , police , by law staff take action months ago when their constituents were being traumatized????!!! …..we now understand how things get done, I guess!

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Rational
5 months ago

Does yesterday’s closure of the weekly Henley Arcade drug event signal the permanent end of such in Cobourg or was it merely a carefully staged change of venue to give the illusion of action?

Informed
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

Unfortunately these misguided people are likely formulating another plan of action at this time. Similar to Covid. In the background looking to mutate and spread while we let our guard down.

Newbie
Reply to  Informed
5 months ago

Informed, I very much agree. Her support is not so much from Cobourg citizens, but the “groups” she belongs to (and their are many loud ones). Her 3 minute speech on Facebook live was a call out to these supporters, to stand in solidarity with her and contact police and Town. I believe the Town and police are going to be flooded with horrendous emails next week. This is why I feel it very important to show your loud support toward the action taken on Friday, if you agree with it.

marya
Reply to  Newbie
5 months ago

Consider it done, as of Saturday morning, to a wide range of people.

Newbie
Reply to  marya
5 months ago

How do you mean marya? Are you talking about showing support toward the action by bylaw and police on Friday?

Newbie
Reply to  Newbie
5 months ago

Today’s Northumberland?

marya
Reply to  Newbie
5 months ago

Thanks, Newbie. If You are asking if I wrote a letter of support to todaysnorthumberland.ca I just did that as well.

marya
Reply to  Newbie
5 months ago

Definitely in support of all municipal officials on Friday, Newbie!

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Newbie
5 months ago

 “very important to show your loud support toward the action taken on Friday, if you agree with it.”
 
Then show up Friday, Nov 8, 7-9pm to demonstrate and celebrate the liberation of the Henley Pedestrian Arcade. Make placards “Safety First” “Free Passage” “Safe Passage” or anything appropriate for local consumption. The citizens of Cobourg take back the night and mark the downtown turf as crime-free. Take Back the Town. The more people, the more likely it will garner national news. Let it begin in Cobourg, and let the civic cohesion spread to other communities to oppose the legalization of hard drugs and promote the expansion of rehab facilities. Going forward to next year’s federal election.

Rational
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

Another coincidence is that the Arcade drug parties were shut down the same day that the CTV Cobourg promotional feature was released on the CTV Good Morning show.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Rational
5 months ago

Curious that that the CTV promotional piece spoke at length on Cobourg house prices but didn’t mention that beachfront camping was free for visitors. Also no mention that consumption of illegal drugs is acceptable everywhere but alcohol consumption in a parked car is subject to arrest.

Sonya
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

Interesting. So it’s against the law to drink and drive but not against the law to do drugs and drive? Now I’m really confused.
So I can’t drink beer on the street but I can smoke crack on the street?
No wonder people are confused about the laws.

Gerry
Reply to  Sonya
5 months ago

I don’t know if your comment about doing drugs and driving is sarcasm or your belief. If the latter, you are mistaken.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Sonya
5 months ago

According to a recent article in Today’s Northumberland a woman was arrested for drinking in her parked car.

Yes drinking beer on the beach is illegal but taking drugs is apparently OK.

Informed
Reply to  Ken Strauss
5 months ago

Just remember any illegal drug that can kill you instantly is ok to possess and take anywhere you wish. Anything else is punishable. Brutal

Newbie
Reply to  Sonya
5 months ago

The Chief and Mayor have more than fumbled their way through this situation. But—I myself am grateful for their action on Friday night. This is a positive and I think people should be showing them their support for this. That, I believe is what they need to hear right now. The Mayor, apparently believes in “tough love”.

Our bylaw and police officers are bound by directives and legislation, from “higher ups”. I do not think their job is easy.

THANK YOU to our officers, Mayor and Council for this move—please continue in this direction and listen to your constituents. SAFETY, PROTECTION and ENFORCEMENT. MANY stand in solidarity with you and your ACTION FRIDAY night.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Newbie
5 months ago

I completely agree starting to enforce our bylaws is a very long overdue step in the right direction. We should all hope that Friday’s action was just the first step of many to come.

Sonya
Reply to  Newbie
5 months ago

I agree. I am very grateful to our council, bilaw and police for shutting down the Henley arcade drug site.
Yes listen to the people.
Safety, protection and enforcement and we will stand with you.

Dave
Reply to  Sonya
5 months ago

The blatant in your face group at Henley Arcade rubbed this in many’s faces. The Chief was invited and attended our complex this past week to hear our concerns. He wrote them down. Henley Arcade was one, adding it to his To Do list and promising action. We have finally got enforcement here of other issues that have been plagging this complex
I don’t see “Tough Love” from the Mayor. His interviews with Pete Fisher leave me wondering just what it is he said. Around the marypole is my description.

marya
Reply to  Rational
5 months ago

Yet another coincidence, perhaps, according to an article on Northumberland News is that The Help Centre is now asking for donations because their annual Federal Grant for the last ten years of $75,000.00 has stopped. The Grant has been defined as being “redistributed to another community.” Can this be due to the submissions of complaints to Town, Provincial and Federal Officials about the Centre’s recent associations with some other questionable groups, or are our thoughts completely offhanded?

Informed
Reply to  marya
5 months ago

Maybe it was given to another community to spread the BS around so Cobourg isn’t the catchment for everyone in Northumberland County and the overflow for municipalities outside Northumberland County.