Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 9th 2015 Contents A25
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Comedian Bill Cosby received a
standing ovation in Canada, at the end
of his first live performance since
November, despite protests outside the
The Cosby Show star personally
thanked fans "for giving me the
opportunity to bring laughter back into
The 77-year-old has been accused by
at least 15 women of sexual assault
dating back to the 70s and 80s. Three
more victims came forward on
The star, who has not been charged,
has denied previous claims, calling them
"fantastical" and "uncorroborated."
The comedian's show in Kitchener,
Ontario, was the first of a three-date
tour in Canada.
More than a dozen protesters
gathered outside the Centre in the
Square on Wednesday, with placards
stating "rape is no joke." Some barred
the entrance to the venue, before being
asked to move by security.
Some ticket-holders had said they
would boycott the performance. The
2,000-seat venue was about two-thirds
Bill Cosby receives standing ovation despite protests
he general view is radio in the
Caribbean is dead. What started
as a history of listening to hourly
BBC news reports (which often
served as alarm clocks for many), to hear-
ing well-articulated Caribbean voices
announcing community segments or
hosting discourse on national issues has
now been ravaged by rowdy DJs, accom-
panied by raucous popular music.
Many belonging to the era of Rediffusion
or the AM band believed that radio had a
particular connection unlike now. But for
Julian Rogers, radio is not dead. What mat-
ters more is quality.
Rogers, who made his name in
Trinidad as a probing yet endearing
talk-show host for the early-morn-
ing current affairs programme,
TV6 s Morning Edition, is Barbadian
by birth. During his stay here, back
in 1998, then prime minister Basdeo
refused to renew his work permit.
On his return in 2005, he was content
manager and head of news for the
rebranded state-TV/radio, now known
as CNMG (Caribbean New Media
Now living in Antigua, Rogers has
fulfilled his dream to open his own
radio station---Rogers Radio Caribbean.
The fact that he is heading into an envi-
ronment that already has 20 radio stations
is not a daunting one for him.
"I don t see any threat in any real terms...
What the audience expects or demands is
a quality product. May the best man win.
Everybody has to find a way to survive,"
With 50 years in the media, advertising
and public relations, Rogers dream has
always been to run his own radio station.
Setting it up was dictated by the ability to
raise money to fund it.
"I was looking at the market and where
to set up," he said. He applied for a radio
licence in 2005 when he returned to Bar-
bados. Not too long after, he returned to
Trinidad to develop the CNMG brand. In
2009, he moved to Antigua, returning to
Observer Radio (where he worked in 2001
as general manager) until 2012.
"After that, I was not sure what I was
going to do next. Six to eight months later,
setting up a radio station was where I want-
ed to be," he said.
Understanding the milieu in which radio
works now, he uses the technology to his
benefit. "You can do work inside a building,
or outside a building. There is a lot of flex-
ibility," he explained. "I have a studio with
a supporting newsroom set up. I am also
planning a TV station."
At CNMG, he often used the phrase
"converged newsroom." He encouraged a
synergy between the TV and radio stations,
with the hope that the team of reporters
would understand that they could be flex-
ible in any medium, providing what he
called real news in real time. In Antigua,
his philosophy remains the
"We have no choice to converge. This
does not only apply to the journalist. The
journalist we are looking for must possess
multiple skills. Even specialists must have
skills. It s a one-man creative force to pro-
duce. This applies to the station. The
younger the journalist, the more comfort-
able they are with the technology," he said.
Two months after the radio station was
launched, the newsroom is scheduled to
be up and running in January. The staff
comprises eight members so far, including
one senior newsperson, Antiguan Omega
While he has always maintained a talk
forum, Rogers experienced format is to
use music to attract listeners. Although he
is a jazz enthusiast, he says he has not
added much of his favoured genre to the
music list. Instead, he matches the music
as best he could, to provide as much his-
torical context. Steelpan, calypso---a little
ed---create a rel-
evance of mem-
want to know
what is happen-
ing. So I am pro-
ment and keeping
about what s hap-
them," he said.
The setting up of
Caribbean is one of two
milestones for the vet-
eran journalist in 2014. In
June, as part of the royal
birthday celebration, Queen
Elizabeth II appointed Rogers
as a Member of the Most Excellent
Order of the British Empire (MBE) for
services to Broadcasting.
He acknowledges the value of
the people who guided him on
his career path---his head-
master who read at the
front of the class, talking
about what was happen-
ing in the news; his father
who listened to radio news; his
entrance into the world of work at
age 16 when he joined the Barbados
Rediffusion Service as a scriptwriter
but ended up producing radio news;
then later, he was producer of a
nightly 9 o clock newscast which
involved capturing international
news, rewriting notes and often ad-
libbing on air; copywriter for the
ad agency Corbin Compton.
It was only when Rogers col-
lected the award from Governor
General Sir Elliott Belgrave in
Barbados on November 14 that
it really hit home that he was
getting this honour.
"It s not something that
happens every day. It gives
a moment of pause. I was
just plain happy, pleased
as punch. 50 years in the
biz? Hey!" he said.
Governor General Sir Elliott Belgrave,
left, congratulates broadcaster Julian
Rogers after presenting him with his
MBE. PHOTO COURTESY BGIS
"We have no choice to
converge. The journalist
we are looking for must
possess multiple skills.
Even specialists must
have skills. It's a one-man
creative force to produce.
This applies to the
station. The younger the
journalist, the more
comfortable they are
with the technology."
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