CBC Radio One
Satellite: Canada, United States
|Owner||Canadian Broadcasting Corporation|
|CBC Radio (1936–44, 1962–97)
Trans-Canada Network (1944–62)
|CBC Radio One|
CBC Radio One is the English-language news and information radio network of the publicly owned Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. It is commercial-free and offers both local and national programming. It is available on AM and FM to 98 per cent of Canadians, and is also available overseas through Radio Canada International, over the Internet, and through mobile apps.
A modified version of CBC Radio One, with local content replaced by additional airings of national programming, is also available on Sirius XM Satellite Radio channel 169. It is downlinked to subscribers via both Sirius XM Canada and its U.S.-based counterpart, Sirius XM Satellite Radio.
Current listening figures for CBC Radio One stand at 4.3 million listeners each week. It is the largest radio network in Canada.1
CBC Radio began in 1936, and is the oldest branch of the Corporation. In 1949, the facilities and staff of the Broadcasting Corporation of Newfoundland were transferred to CBC upon Newfoundland's entry into Canadian Confederation.
Beginning in 1944, the CBC operated two English-language radio services: the original network became the Trans-Canada Network, and a second network, the Dominion Network, was established with CJBC in Toronto as its flagship. With the exception of CJBC, all 35 stations on the CBC Dominion Network were privately owned affiliates. Its programming tended to be lighter than that of the Trans-Canada Network, carrying more American programming in its schedule. As well, the Dominion Network operated only in the evenings, freeing affiliates to air local programming during the day.
In 1962, the Dominion Network was dissolved and within a few years CJBC became a French-language station broadcasting the programming of Radio-Canada.
In 1960, the CBC began running distinct programming on its three existing FM English-language stations, which were previously providing simulcasts of programming on its AM stations. The stations, located in Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal, broadcast a monoaural FM signal. Programming consisted mostly of classical music. The stations were linked by CN/CP Telecommunications via land-line and microwave. This service was discontinued in 1962, but resumed in 1964 in stereo. Eventually, a national satellite-distributed network of stereo FM stations was established. In 1975, the FM network was branded CBC Stereo, and the AM service was designated CBC Radio.
In the late 1960s and early 1970s, CBC Radio increased its current affairs and documentary content with an initiative known as the "Radio Revolution", using more ambitious, live coverage of news and current affairs including listeners as well as experts. The change began with national shows such as As It Happens.2 The change spread to CBC regional morning shows which developed three hours of live radio combining "survival information", about news, weather and traffic, with interviews and documentaries about local and national issues. CBC Radio Winnipeg was the first to embrace the format followed by Information Morning in Halifax, a move which increased audience and attracted coverage in Time Magazine.3
CBC Radio stopped running commercial advertising in 1974. Until 1995, the network signed off the air between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m. daily – in that year, it launched an overnight program, CBC Radio Overnight, which airs international news and documentary programs.
Until 1958, the CBC was not only a broadcaster, but the principal broadcast regulator in Canada. It used this dual role to snap up most of Canada's clear-channel frequencies on the AM dial. However, in the 1990s, many of the CBC's AM stations moved to FM in response to complaints of poor AM reception. This meant that the old distinction between the AM "Radio" network and the FM "Stereo" network was no longer accurate, even though many of the FM "Radio" stations broadcast in mono only. As a result, in 1997 CBC Radio became CBC Radio One and CBC Stereo became CBC Radio 2. Although several Radio One stations still broadcast on AM as of 2008, most also have FM rebroadcasters in major urban centres within their broadcast area. The channel was added to the Sirus lineup in 2005 and the XM lineup in 2013.
Until early 2007, CBC Radio One promotional spots were announced by Canadian actress Shauna MacDonald, also known as "Promo Girl". Until fall 2005, promos ended with one of two slogans: either "Because sometimes a picture needs a thousand words" or "Hear the big picture". The current slogan is "Canada Lives Here."
Some CBC Radio One programs, such as As It Happens, air in the United States on some stations associated with Public Radio International. Definitely Not the Opera, Quirks & Quarks, The Vinyl Cafe and Q are heard on some public stations in the northern United States. Some CBC-SRC programs are relayed on Radio Canada International for listeners abroad and others, such as the 2010 summer program Promised Land, have aired on Sirius Satellite Radio.
Although each Radio One station broadcasts to a large geographic region through a network of rebroadcasting transmitters, only stations which are licenced as separate broadcast undertakings are listed here. Rebroadcasting frequencies are noted in each station's separate article. Most of these stations are primary production centres (that is, stations which directly produce at least one local program), while other stations' local programming simply consists of local news updates.
† Station has a "nested" FM rebroadcaster in home market
Most schedules include hourly news readings that run from 6–12 minutes on the top of the hour except for major programming like the 6 p.m. news show and Cross Country Checkup. Some mid-day programs include only brief 90-second "information updates".
The Radio One feed on Sirius XM Satellite Radio has no local programming, and repeats other shows in time slots that would normally be occupied by local programming. It carries the first feed of The World at Six at 6 p.m. Atlantic Time (5 p.m. Eastern Time), and also carries The World at Six in its last airing at 6 p.m. Pacific Time.
On statutory holidays, local programming is replaced by special provincial programming or regional programs are broadcast provincewide on a rotating basis. In the summer months of July and August, some programming is temporarily shortened and/or replaced by special summer series. During the CBC's recent labour dispute, most of the schedule was temporarily replaced by a mix of repeat airings of recent CBC programs, BBC World news programming and music from the CBC service Galaxie.
Stations in the Canadian territories air a significantly different schedule with expanded local programming that includes a number of programs in local Aboriginal languages. They still air most, but not all, of the core CBC Radio One schedule, although some programs may air in abbreviated versions. See CBC North for further information.
On January 17, 2007, the CBC announced some changes to the network's schedule to begin in April. Among them, Freestyle and The Arts Tonight were merged into Q, an arts magazine show hosted by Jian Ghomeshi, Global Village was discontinued and some of its features were merged into Dispatches, and Between the Covers moved exclusively online as a podcast.4 Reasons given for the schedule changes are said to be based on audience research, however some negative reaction has been seen.56
More recently, the network has also begun airing some programming syndicated from National Public Radio and Public Radio International in the United States, including This American Life8 and the news series The World and The State We're In.
The network's base schedule is noted here. Scheduling of weekend programs highlighted in red varies from station to station due to time zone differences created by the fact that Cross-Country Checkup airs live across Canada.
- Weekdays: Some stations in major markets begin their local morning programs at 5:30 a.m., preempting the final half-hour of CBC Radio Overnight. Most of the same stations also begin their local afternoon programs at 3 p.m., preempting the strip of programs in the 3:00-hour.
- Saturdays: Due to scheduling issues created by time zone differences, stations in Atlantic Canada air À Propos at 6:00 (all times Atlantic Time), The World This Weekend at 7:00, Laugh Out Loud at 7:30, Vinyl Tap at 8:00, and Saturday Night Blues at 10:00. The remainder of the Saturday schedule continues from 11:00 onward.
- Sundays: Sunday afternoon scheduling varies from station to station, as Cross Country Checkup airs live across Canada at 4 p.m. Eastern time. Additional local arts programming is aired in Atlantic Canada during the 4:00 – 5:00 (AT) hour. The remainder of the day's schedule is pushed back by one hour, with the first hour of that night's edition of CBC Radio Overnight pre-empted.
- In Newfoundland and Labrador, because Radio Noon starts immediately after Q, the final half-hour on Fridays does not air. Instead, an abbreviated localized version of Deep Roots airs at 3:30/3:00. Also, because On the Go starts at 4:00/3:30, the programs listed in the 3:30/3:00-hour are pre-empted. However, except for The Choice and And the Winner Is..., those pre-empted shows can be heard at other times throughout the week. And finally, the second edition of The World This Hour does not air at 5:30/5:00, instead going straight into The Fisheries Broadcast.
Two CBC Radio One stations operate shortwave relay transmitters:
- CBN in St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, with call sign CKZN
- CBU in Vancouver, British Columbia, with call sign CKZU
Both Radio One transmitters broadcast 1 kW ERP signals on a fixed frequency of 6160 kHz. Some DXers have been able to log both transmitters simultaneously, but this is a rare occurrence due to the distance between the transmitters.
- Radio One shortwave relays can be quite difficult to receive due to increased terrestrial noise from modern electrical and electronic systems.
- "Millions of people tune into CBC Radio" Friends of Canadian Broadcasting. August 2010.
- Morris Wolfe, Fifty Years of Radio, CBC Enterprises (1986), p. 36
- "New Sounds", Time Magazine (June 1971)
- "CBC Radio to broaden Radio Two, add arts magazine". CBC News. January 17, 2007. Retrieved January 18, 2007.
- "The new CBC Radio 2 evening schedule: What do you think?". Archived from the original on March 31, 2007. Retrieved April 15, 2007.
- "Thoughts on CBC Radio One Schedule Changes". Retrieved April 15, 2007.
- "CBC cuts hit news, drama, sports, radio". cbc.ca, March 26, 2009.
- "CBC Radio One to air This American Life". Toronto Star, January 4, 2011.
- Première Chaîne, the CBC's French language equivalent to CBC Radio One
- CBC Radio One
- CBC Radio on Sirius XM Canada
- CBC Radio Networks chronological history from the Canadian Communications Foundation's website.