Radio Topics, April 5th

Happy Tuesday! We have an exciting show lined up. At 8:05, we’ll speak with former Green Party Leader Jim Harris about Elizabeth May’s lack of inclusion in the federal leaders debate. At 8:30, we’ll speak with Eric Darwin of the Dalhousie Community Association about their AGM on Wednesday.

We’ll also touch on some of the following:

Stadium debate delayed.

High School secretary runs into problems with past porn career.

Canada needs program for catastrophic drugs.

More on the polygamy case.

Nunavut looks for a road to many unserviced communities.

Ontario getting shortchanged on energy payments?

The looming crisis of age.

Radio Topics, March 29th

Happy Tuesday! We are off to the hustings, and so for the first show in months we get to be spared election speculation. Instead, we just get to talk about the actual campaign.

At 7:30, we’ll speak with Carleton Paul Adams about the election, with a specific focus on how the media is likely to cover it. It will all be very meta.

At 8:05, we’ll talk with Diana Pepall, Program Manager for Collection Management at Ottawa Public Library, about their new Freegal digital music collection.

We’ll also touch on some of the following:

2004 Harper had a coalition plan. AND apparently an odd understanding of how parliament works?

The beginning of the poll watch.

Income splitting?

Kite flying woes in Toronto?

Burger ban at Sick Kids?

Simpsons episodes pulled because of Japanese Nuclear disaster.

BCE backs down on UBB.

Radio Topics, March 22nd

Happy Tuesday all, and welcome to spring! We’ve got an exciting show lined up. At 8:30, in honour of World Water Day we’ll be speaking with Getu Hunde, in from Ethiopia in partnership with Watercan. We’ll talk about the international crisis in water and sanitation.

We’ll also touch on some of the following:

Its budget day! Will Jack Layton’s price be met?

Lybia gets bombed! And Canada sends jets!

Twitter turns 5.

More on water: Think before you flush.

Bruce Carsons: a scandal with legs?

Apparently it is against equity to ban gay-straight alliances.

Committees find tories in contempt of parliament.

Old people using internets for political news now

Radio Topics, Ides of March edition

It’s a good thing I’m not Caesar. This week at 8:00, we’ll speak with Professor Mark Van Vugt about his new book Selected. We’ll also touch on some of the following:

Election watch:

Day, Strahl retire.

Puff pieces on star candidates begin!

Liberals will fund Quebec Arena. Seriously.

Punish tories, vote Liberal quebeckers!

Other stuff!:

McGill fined for charging too much for MBA program.

Wanna help canlit? Tear down those walls.

Who’d a thought: Japanese Nuclear crisis dampens appetite for new reactors at home.

High building standards save lives.

City won’t buy convent land.

Steve Anderson of on Usage Based Billing

I spoke with Steve Anderson of this morning about the CRTC’s recent ruling that open’s the door for Usage Based Billing. has really led the grassroots (digitalroots?) charge that has seen a massive number of people sign an online petition that has, at least in part, prompted political action. Or at least as much as the Liberal opposition and a promise for Ministerial review counts as “action.”

I’m a bit torn on all of this: on the one hand, I think that it is more-or-less reasonable that heavy users should have to pay for what they consume, and think that there are pricing plans out there that can readily accommodate the vast majority of home users. As an example, I get 90 gb/month with Rogers, and even with Netflix and torrents, rarely get much above 50 gb/month. On the other hand, Bell, Rogers, and the other main ISPs have built a massive infrastructure advantage in large part because they had protected utility monopolies for decades. Startups and smaller competitors really can’t build an alternate set of wiring to compete.

Anderson’s real beef seems to not be that there is metered billing, but that overage fees are too high and kick in too low. He concedes that former upper limits were reasonable, as people rarely hit them, and argues that there isn’t a connection between the cost of providing bandwith and what they charge.

Again, that might be the case, given the infrastructure advantage carried by the status quo companies. But I’m reluctant to tell any business how much their services are worth without great cause, and I have a hard time getting exercised about a $4.75 charge for $40 GB of bandwidth, as TekSavvy suggests is likely.

Radio Topics, February 1st

Happy February! It’s hard to believe that we are already one month into 2011. To celebrate, we’ve got an exciting show lined up to kick off February. Fitting for Ottawa’s coldest month, at 8:00 AM we’ll be speaking to two Carleton students that will be spending much of February in the Antarctic as part of the Students on Ice program. At 8:30, we’ll speak with Steve Anderson of about the recent CRTC decision that will open the way for usage based billing with ISPs.

We’ll also touch on some of the following:

Strollers on the bus:  the fight goes to Human Rights tribunals.

Seattle moves to make permanent tent cities

Cutting starts at the Beaver pond.

So, why have we been hearing double on the bus?

So, things are getting real in Egypt.

Radio Topics, January 15th

Well, it’s certainly winter. Beat the cold by listening to the Tuesday Morning Special Blend on CKCU. At 8:05, we’ll speak with Eric Darwin of the Dalhousie Community Association to talk about the proposed SOHO Italia development. At 8:30, we’ll chat with Adam Caldwell of the South March Highland’s about his group’s efforts to preserve the forest.

We’ll also touch on some of these:

Arctic sovereignty: Canada’s top foreign policy concern?

Increasing gym membership fees if you don’t go?

A reasonable accommodation controversy for the new year!

The NDP shows off its war room gripes about senate appointments.

How are the Lansdowne finances?

The pope is concerned about facebook.

Five years of Harper.

Private money for a Quebec Arena.

Radio Topics, January 18th

Happy Tuesday! I’ve got an exciting show lined up this week. At 7:30, we’ll speak with my good friend (and former CKCU host) Mariee-Josée Houle. She’s got a gig coming up at Café Nostalgica. At 8:15, we’ll speak with Lisa from the new Ottawa events site Couch Assassin. Finally, at 8:30, I’ll talk with Ron Walker of the Canadiana Discovery Portal, which brings google-like searching to historical documents.

We’ll also touch on some of this:

Ireland MPs to vote to oust their PM

Bambi vs. Salt Spring Islands: They have an adorable, if destructive, infestation

CRTC easing ban on misleading news

Queen’s Park vs. zoning requirements

Dire Straits: suddenly relevant again?

JPII gets beatified.

Radio Topics, January 4th

Happy New Year!

I hope that everyone had a good holidays. We are going to ease into the new year with a look back at two of my favourite book interviews from the last year, looking at books that should have been on your Christmas list, even if they weren’t.

We’ll also touch on some of the following:

Mammoth remains have modern uses?

Canada looking to get space-launching capability.

Apparently it takes a heckuva lot to get fired from CBSA.

Liberals have no plan to topple the government. Seriously.

Air and Space Museum to get bigger.

Newspaper discovers that PMBs are getting places.

Jack Pine more unique than we thought.

New cigarette warning labels coming.

Radio Topics, December 21

Happy Tuesday!

I hope that everyone has a chance to take a look at the eclipse tonight- it’ll be the last in North America for a while, and it’ll have been the first time in several centuries that we get to pretend it’s interesting that it happens to also be the solstice. So, stay up late and watch the moon disappear, then get up early and listen to Adam and I on CKCU at 7am- 93.1FM for those in Ottawa, for those elsewhere.

This week I’ll be holding up my end of the funding drive bargain and running up Dunton Tower. The Tuesday Blend raised about $700, so that’s 14 flights of stairs. I’ll be doing that just after the BBC news at 8:00 AM. There’s a better-than-even chance my heart will have exploded by 8:06.

We’ll also talk about some of the following, while playing non-awful Christmas music and Captain Beefheart tracks.

Craigslist pulls prostitution ads; actual newspapers still have them.

Study: Female squirrels aren’t promiscuous because of evolution, they’re promiscuous because they are sluts.

Bell gets big fine for DNC violations.

Harper gets his majority. Just not where he probably hoped.

Good sense prevails: Hockey coach suspension lifted.

Pooled Pension plans?

How much for a polar bear?

Sharks: an endangered species?

Don’t ask don’t tell repealed.