Student media look towards brighter future

As the tuition hikes loom over anglophone universities, student media hope they stay afloat.

Student media organizations across the city are exploring new funding alternatives.

After speaking with student media institutions across the city, the consensus is clear: fee-levies are the main source of revenue for most outlets, and these fee-levies have not increased since the early 2010s. Fee-levies are a small amount of money, typically between a couple cents to dollars, which students pay per course credit that fund student groups and associations.

CKUT, McGill University’s radio station, just finished its week-long annual funding drive last month and reached its fundraising goal of $50,000. It was a bittersweet celebration though. 

“$50,000 doesn’t even cover our rent per year of this building alone,” said Madeline Lines, CKUT’s funding and outreach coordinator.

The radio station is facing financial difficulties with a growing deficit. If the station does not find new sources for revenue, it will have to shut down in the next two years, Lines said.

“We hit a wall,” Lines said. “We’re in this tricky situation, where it is a bit of a last chance for us, our whole organization could go under.”

Over half of CKUT’s revenues are from fee levies—students pay a small fee for every course credit—which has not increased in the past 10 years. “Think about how much a sandwich cost in 2012 and how much it costs today,” Lines said. “There’s a huge difference.”

Madeline Lines is looking for new ways to fund CKUT’s operations. Photo by Camila Lewandowski / The Concordian

The McGill Daily is also facing financial uncertainty. Their coordinator, Olivia Shan, said that the paper’s financial situation is “really nerve-racking.”

She said that with the money they collect from fee-levies and advertising, they can barely pay for printing and staff honorariums—editors are paid $250 per month although they work around 15 hours per week.

Both student-run organizations are also anticipating a drop in revenues because of the tuition hikes announced by the provincial government last fall, which Shan said will cause a drop in enrollment. As of December of last year, McGill University has already seen a drop of 20 per cent. 

Concordia too has observed a 30 per cent enrollment drop, as of December 2023. Therefore, if student publications cannot rely on fee-levies, they must look elsewhere.

Cameron McIntyre said that CJLO is looking to diversify its revenues in anticipation of the coming tuition hikes. Photo by Camila Lewandowski / The Concordian

Concordia’s radio station, CJLO, has a balanced budget, but the team is looking to diversify its revenue in anticipation of the tuition hikes. Allison O’Reilly, the station manager, said that they expect to see their revenue drop by 15 to 20 per cent next fall because of the tuition increase.

“We are going to put more effort into fundraising,” said the programming director, Cameron McIntyre. “We want to establish ourselves as an institution that is less reliant on fee levies.”

He said that the radio station will focus on collecting more money during their annual funding drive to compensate for the revenue losses they expect in the coming years. 

O’Reilly added that CJLO understands the economic burden that university students are facing as a result of the hikes, which is why the station will now turn towards its listeners and the Montreal community at large for financial support.

Étienne Dubuc said that in the last couple of years, the Université de Montréal observed a significant drop in its enrollment rate. Photo by Camila Lewandowski / The Concordian

French-speaking universities are also experiencing a drop in enrollment.

Étienne Dubuc, the general director of CISM, the Université de Montréal’s radio station, said they made $20,000 less last year than they usually do because of dwindling enrollment.

“Cutting back on expenses is starting to be quite unfeasible,” he said. “We’re rolling at a minimum to [produce] something that’s welcoming and fun.”

He explained that if CISM were to cut staff’s hours it would diminish the services and support offered to volunteers who want to get involved in the station. 

As advertising revenues shrink and fee-levies remain unmoved, Dubuc is considering setting up a subscription program: listeners can make a pledge to CISM, which would give them exclusive access to content and to their favourite shows.

Back at McGill, Lines said that CKUT is a voice for underrepresented communities and advocates for social change and justice. “I think that that doesn’t always align with McGill’s investors’ interests or opinions,” she said.

Shan shared a similar sentiment, saying that the McGill Daily is “pretty much left with little support from the university.”

In the meantime, CKUT is reaching out to the Montreal community for donations to stay afloat.


Beyond strikes: next steps for anti-tuition hike mobilization

In lieu of picketing, Concordia students organize demonstrations and events to mobilize students.

From March 11 through 15, Concordia saw 30,000 students across departments on strike. No strikes have continued past that week and no further strikes are being organized by Member Associations (MAs) at Concordia. However, mobilization in support of paid internships, anti-austerity actions and the ongoing strike of the teaching assistants at the Association of Graduate Students Employed at McGill (AGSEM) is still going strong.

Though the strikes are over, support for accessible and affordable education remains important to many students. Despite the lack of further strike action, those who have helped with the mobilization against tuition hikes are maintaining their support for common financial issues facing students.

The Coalition de Résistance pour l’Unité Étudiante Syndicale [Resistance Coalition for the United Student Union] (CRUES) is one key group organizing mobilization in support of students. CRUES aims to unite students across educational institutions to tackle issues faced by students.

At 12:00 p.m. on Friday, March 29, the student body at CÉGEP de Rimouski organized a demonstration against unpaid internships at the Émilie Gamlin Park. CRUES and the Social Sciences Student Association at Laval University have also expressed support for their own students’ access to paid internships. 

The momentum behind such rebuttals against internship conditions has been carried over from past student strikes in Montreal, like the 2019 and 2022 strikes at UQAM demanding internship remunerations. 

Jasper Cobb, an upper-year geography student at Concordia who helped organize picketing during the recent strike week, spoke to the importance of solidarity.

“It all boils down to austerity measures and capitalism, whether that’s making students pay insane amounts of money for tuition or doing unpaid labour,” they said. 

This sentiment was echoed by Mowat Tokonitz, a first-year urban planning student, who pointed out that increased tuition rates are “going to affect everyone’s university experience.”

While the complete extent of service cuts at Concordia is unclear, the university is already anticipating cuts on certain services such as Adobe. Last November, Concordia spokesperson Vannina Maestracci said in an interview that the university “was looking into what the total effects of the tuition increase will be on smaller programs like creative arts,” since the majority of its students come from outside the province.

Despite the dedication of those involved in mobilization, there are no further strikes planned at Concordia. “When the strike ended, we had a long talk and came to the conclusion that we don’t really have the capacity to extend the strike or have another strike this semester,” said Cobb. 

In lieu of picket lines, students have organized a demonstration on April 10 with a student mixer afterward, as well as a “DJs Against Austerity” event on May 2 at Reggies bar.

Further mobilization efforts will be planned over the summer, with further emphasis on anti-strike action being ingrained into next fall’s frosh events.

There are several opportunities for those willing to get involved in collective mobilization. Cobb and Tokonitz suggested that students reach out directly to their Instagram account (@tuitionstrikes) for general information.

Music Quickspins

QUICKSPINS: Future & Metro Boomin — WE DON’T TRUST YOU

The trap titans reunite for a joint album that highlights their best strengths.

Future and Metro Boomin are synonymous by this point. The rapper is the voice behind Boomin’s iconic producer tag “If Young Metro don’t trust you, I’m gon’ shoot you,” and the pair have been working together for over a decade. From DS2 to the Drake-assisted What a Time to Be Alive mixtape, and viral hits like “Superhero” and “Mask Off,” the pair have cemented themselves as a dynamic hitmaking duo in hip-hop. WE DON’T TRUST YOU doubles down on their usual chemistry, delivering a 16-track offering of sinister, icy trap bangers.

Boomin’s signature production style is fully on display right off the bat. The horns on the title track are understated yet triumphant, the bells are ominous, and the producer’s knack for creating atmosphere truly shines. This is equally the case on other tracks: “Claustrophobic” and “Ain’t No Love” notably shine due to their inclusion of strings, creating an orchestral feel. Boomin’s signature bells appear all over the album (”Ice Attack,” “Cinderella” and “Magic Don Juan”), setting the nocturnal backdrop that defines his production style. 

The St. Louis native’s beat palette on the album highlights the signature sound he’s carved for himself, one that is versatile. Some of the catchiest beats on the album have a retro feel, whether it’s the late ‘80s hip-hop samples on “Like That” or the open hats on “Fried (She a Vibe)” that call back to classic 2000s trap music. Boomin further elevates his production through collaboration: producer Mike Dean’s synth passages on “Young Metro” close out the track on a cinematic note. Producer Zaytoven’s contributions to “Ain’t No Love” include his signature flutes and varied percussive sounds, all of which make the instrumental even more animated.

Future is fully locked in throughout the project, meeting Metro Boomin right in the middle to create addictive hits. His flow is sticky, his hooks are catchy and the majority of tracks aim for the sweet-spot runtime of three minutes, never overstaying their welcome. His lyrical focus mostly relies on braggadocio, but there are moments of clarity. He takes aim at a friend turned foe on the intro track, and “Runnin Outta Time” is about feeling paranoia and distrust in those around you. No matter the beat, he sounds laser-focused and fits the production like a glove.

Several artists also lend their talents to the project. The Weeknd appears on “Young Metro,” laying a soft and understated hook that perfectly works as entrancing background vocals. Travis Scott’s feature on “Cinderella” perfectly suits the track’s psychedelic, woozy atmosphere and his auto-crooning effectively serves as a segue on “Type Shit.” The latter also features Playboi Carti, who comes through delivering a full-length verse in his recent, signature deep voice cadence. Kendrick Lamar is the true show stealer on the album, with a fiery verse on “Like That” taking aim at Drake and J. Cole. He disclaims the idea of the “Big 3,” claiming “it’s just big me” and reigniting hip-hop’s competitive flame. Rick Ross is another perfect fit, dropping opulent raps over an elegant soul sample-based beat on “Everyday Hustle.”

In addition to Boomin’s cohesive sound, the project is driven by a series of quotes from late Mobb Deep rapper Prodigy. His voice bookends various tracks with quotes that are cocky yet assertive: they are metaphors for the rapper-producer duo’s excellence, a reaffirmation of where they stand alongside their peers—above them, amongst the greatest to ever do it.

WE DON’T TRUST YOU is the latest reminder as to why Future and Metro Boomin are so often revered as a duo: where Future’s flow hits, the production hits just as hard. With another album set for April 12, this album proves that the pair can effortlessly impress once again.


Trial Track: “Like That (feat. Kendrick Lamar)”


The future of journalism is in your pocket

A slower and more niche medium, podcasting is reshaping the way news is consumed.  

In the years following the pandemic, the landscape of podcasting has undergone a seismic shift. A study conducted by the Nieman Lab found the number of new podcasts launched dropped precipitously, falling by nearly 80 per cent between 2020 and 2022. This startling decline in new podcast creations has left many questioning the state of the medium, wondering if it has transitioned from a gold rush into a more mature market. While the surge in podcasting during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic was substantial, the subsequent drop in new shows and episodes suggests a market favoring ongoing, long-term content rather than limited-run productions. 

Precisely because we are in an era of endless scrolling and perpetually refreshed newsfeeds where the estimated reading time written under headlines determines the worthiness of your read, I believe the future of journalism is in audio—more specifically podcasting.   

Audio journalism refers to journalism that is done via the recording or transmission of voice on the radio, television or internet. Audio has been an important component in journalism since the invention of the radio. I think audio journalism, in particular podcasting, is a  medium that will grow as essential sources of news, storytelling and opportunity within local communities, even if the frenzy of our daily lives and the rapid flow of information has made it difficult for the ordinary citizen to keep up. 

In my opinion, podcasting embodies democratic media creation and consumption. In his work, Silvio Waisbord explains that in the digital age of journalism, we’ve witnessed a profound shift in the dynamics of news dissemination. Historically, news resembled a top-down pyramid controlled by a select few. Today, it has evolved into an egalitarian landscape where anyone can participate in sharing information. I think this transition from vertical control to horizontal openness and equality is embodied by podcasting, and will lead to more sustainable journalism.

Podcasting will thrive because audiences want content on a smaller scale that resonates with their communities. Katerina Eva Matsa, the director of news and information research at the Pew Research Center, highlighted that people are now making deliberate choices in their selection of social media platforms for news consumption, often driven by their personal identities. This shift indicates that individuals are not only seeking factual information, but also a sense of community through their news sources.

I feel that podcasting offers a more immersive and detailed approach to understanding current events and issues. Often readers don’t delve deeper than headlines, which can contribute to the spread of fake news and misinformation. Recent data from the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism shows that only 51 per cent of consumers who “read” an online news story actually read the whole article, while 26 per cent read part of it and 22 per cent only looked at the headline or a few lines. 

In our hectic daily lives, where we’re always on the move and easily distracted, podcasts are becoming the go-to way for people to stay informed while doing their everyday tasks like commuting, working out, or doing chores. It’s like having a personal news companion, making news consumption more personal and accessible. 

As trust in local news rises and the focus shifts from reaching large audiences to nurturing communities, I believe podcasting stands as a vital and enduring medium shaping the future of journalism.


An opportunity for youth to inform policy change

If you have ideas on how to improve policies and laws concerning our digital future, now is your chance to share them.

The Carrefour Jeunesse Emploi of Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (CJE NDG) alongside the Goethe-Institut and ThinkYoung has received funding from the European Union for a transatlantic dialogue exchange project called “Our Digital Future — C’est ICI.” ICI stands for inclusion, collaboration and inspiration.

“The mission of the project is to produce policy recommendations to make the digital future safer and more inclusive for everyone,” said Ekaterina Fatkulova, the project coordinator.

This Thinkathon aims to bring the policy recommendations of youth forward to governments on all three levels: municipal, provincial and federal. Participation is available for youth between 18 to 30 from all backgrounds. It is a chance for youth to share their ideas and be heard.

“The online Thinkathon has a purpose to recruit 3,000 youth from Canada and Europe to work on this online platform,” said Fatkulova. “It’s to accomplish the same thing as we do in our 24-hour events but they do it online without a 24-hour deadline. They really have more time to produce these policy recommendations.”

All participants need to do is create a profile on the website, select a topic from six themes and create a PowerPoint highlighting their ideas for policy change. Participation can be done alone or in teams of up to four people. The themes are citizenship 4.0, social relations, smart & fast-expanding cities, security, education, and culture and entertainment.

Participants have until April 12 to create a profile and submit their ideas. Once all ideas are submitted, everyone who signed up online gets to interact with a mentor. “The mentor gets to say ‘that’s a good idea but it’s missing this.’ They are going to direct [the participants] into making their idea more concrete,” said Fatkulova.

Participants vote for the winning team. Winners are sent to Brussels to present their policy recommendations. The participants from Europe will travel to Ottawa to present theirs. The ones who win second place obtain $500 per team member.

“This project is designed around the basis that young people will have a chance to get in contact with people who will take their idea seriously to inform their policy proposals,” said Lynn Worrell, a youth worker at CJE NDG and communication outreach coordinator of the project.

Last year’s 24-hour Thinkathon connected 50 participants in Montreal with 50 ones from Brussels. They had 24 hours to come up with policy recommendations. One of the policy recommendations brought forward last year was universal access to digital literacy education.

According to Fatkulova, the 50 participants believe that government officials at the provincial level should allocate the necessary resources to funding programs that would help expand universal digital literacy while making sure that vulnerable and excluded citizens are prioritized.

“This is a project that is designed for people who are going to be future leaders to have an opportunity to practice how to inform policy change—how to give their ideas to policymakers,” said Worrell. “I think that this is so important because we have to make the future a lot easier for young people to regain control over their destiny.”

To participate and share your ideas in the online Thinkathon, you can create your profile today at


Photo courtesy of Ashutosh Gupta



MUTEK: Future of Immersive Spectacle Panel 2019

Video by Calvin Cashen

Feature photo by Sébastien Roy

Student Life

A new chapter for documentary films

Envisioning inclusion and documenting the imagined future of marginalized groups

At first glance, ‘Documentary Futurism’ might seem like an oxymoron—if the future has yet to happen, how can it be documented in the tradition of nonfiction storytelling? In their newest project, Cinema Politica seeks to answer that question the way they know best; through the creation and sharing of radical, independent documentaries.

“We came up with this idea of documentary futurism through being inspired by all of the Indigenous film programming we’ve been doing, in collaboration with Indigenous filmmakers and curators,” said Ezra Winton, co-founder and director of programming of the Cinema Politica film network.

“It’s bringing together documentary conventions and ideas of speculation and the imagination, even the fantastical.” Winton noted that, while nonfiction and speculation has been brought together in other forms, the combination has largely gone untouched in the documentary world.

Enhior:hén:ne [Tomorrow], directed by Roxann Whitebean. Enhior’hén:ne explores Mohawk children’s predictions about the state of mother earth 200 years into the future.
“The idea of being forward-looking with documentary has partially come out of 15 years of programming documentaries where the vast majority have focused on the past and the present, and the future part is always just the last 10 minutes,” said Winton. “We’re more interested in the whole thing being more forward-looking and that means not just envisioning inclusion, but ideas about social justice.”

After receiving the Canada Council for the Arts (CCA) New Chapter grant, the project itself started to shift from an imagined future to a reality.

“We called [the CCA] right away to ask, is this just to celebrate, or can this be critical?” recalled Winton. “And they told us they’re calling it the New Chapter for a reason. That they’re more interested in critical perspectives and less about national chauvinism.”

Project coordinator James Goddard came on board not long after, bringing with him knowledge of afrofuturism and experience working in the interdisciplinary speculative arts.

Enhior:hén:ne [Tomorrow], directed by Roxann Whitebean.
Goddard points to the work of Indigenous futurism and afrofuturism, the latter having garnered much attention since the recent release of Black Panther, as the driving force behind the new genre. “[People] are interested in the ways in which marginal groups tell stories about the future,” he said.

“The importance of that, especially for Indigenous groups in Canada, is that there have been literal legislative maneuvers right up until the 90s that the government was doing to erase Indigenous people, to eradicate the possibility of a future. So when Indigenous people tell stories about their presence in the future, it’s an important form of resistance. And that’s true of almost every marginalized community that has experienced a history of erasure.”

Cinema Politica put out a call for film proposals in September 2017. They received over 70 applications, which were then passed on to a panel of jurors for deliberation.

“It was doubly experimental because we removed ourselves from the selection process too,” added Goddard. “Had we played more of a role in the actual selection process, more of our pre-existing ideas about what we wanted from the project would have bled into that.”

We might have been heroes / Nous aurions pu être des héros, directed by Andrés Salas-Parra. In a world with nothing left to mine, communication has become the main resource for humanity to exist. The challenge? To stay connected.

Among the jurors is Nalo Hopkinson, a prolific author of six novels, including Brown Girl in the Ring, which Goddard described as a “landmark text for speculative fiction and afrofuturism.” Joining her is Skawennati, a media artist whose work addresses the past and present from an Indigenous perspective, and award-winning filmmaker Danis Goulet, who produced, wrote and directed the film Wakening, a source of inspiration for the project.

The jury deliberated based on their collective interpretation of the project goals, finally arriving at the 15 films commissioned to inaugurate the new genre. “There’s a lot of variation in the themes they deal with. Obviously a lot of the films deal with environmental collapse, one film in particular focuses on exploring sexuality and gender variants, there’s a film that looks at corporate culture, and a number of the Indigenous films engage with the idea of what happens after the settlers leave,” said Goddard.

“We really encouraged the artists to interpret it as they wanted to, politically, aesthetically, everything. We just basically set the canvas, and even then the edges of the canvas can still unfurl,” said Winton. “My expectations were just that this was going to be interesting and hopefully, probably, amazing. And my expectations were met.”

In the tradition of Cinema Politica, Winton hopes the films will not only start conversations about the alternate realities they present, but serve as a catalyst for grassroots social movements unafraid to look towards an imagined, brighter future. “We’re always tackling present, day-to-day issues, and that’s important, but also imagining a post-capitalist, post-colonial, post-gender binary, post-whatever it is, it’s exciting and it can be politically transformative.”

Featured film still from Lost Alien, directed by Tobias c. van Veen.

Student Life

Mapping the future of artificial intelligence

Panelists define AI and discuss how this technology will impact society and the workplace

Artificial intelligence (AI) professionals discussed the impact and future of AI in the workplace and its role in society at large during a panel held at Concordia University on March 13.

“The fear of technological anxiety and mass unemployment due to artificial intelligence has been largely proven to be untrue,” said panelist Kai Hsin-Hung, a consultant at the International Training Centre for the International Labour Organization. “Rather than eliminating occupations, AI will most likely replace the tasks and how we are going to be doing them.”

According to Abhishek Gupta, an AI ethics researcher at McGill University, many people don’t fully understand the term AI, and its definition “has been shifting over time.” Gupta defined AI as “the ability of a machine to do a task that was previously thought to be only possible by human intelligence.”

Caroline Bourbonnière, a communications advisor for the research institute Element AI, clarified that, while certain jobs will be replaced with AI, the purpose of converting this work to automatic operations is to allow workers to be more efficient. “All of futurists are wrong about how quickly AI will be affecting the job market,” she said. “We have a lot of reports, and it was found that job creations versus job-loss projections tended to have a very balancing effect.”

Certain dangerous jobs, such as tractor operators and miners, may eventually be replaced by AI technology, but Bourbonnière emphasized that this does not mean AI will replace all jobs. In particular, she discussed how AI technology will be responsible for completing paperwork in the future, which will allow workers to focus on tasks more central to their job.

“In some organizations, people will be spending about two hours a week putting together reports,” Bourbonnière said, offering the example of how “79 per cent of social workers’ work is paperwork. Imagine what they could do with this time. They can be spending it with youth at risk.”

An important subdivision of AI is machine learning, Gupta explained. This refers to a digital system’s ability to “learn” a task that it is not explicitly programmed for. In this process, the digital system is provided with a set of data, which its AI component registers and internalizes. Machine learning is just one of the ways AI can be helpful, rather than a harmful, according to Xavier-Henri Hervé, the executive director of Concordia’s District 3 Innovation Centre.

“I do not think AI is the foe. AI is just reality,” he said. “The foe right now is time. The speed at which this is happening; things are happening a lot faster than anyone is imagining. [AI] is so convenient.“ Hervé reminded the audience that AI is already a component in many everyday devices, such as smartphones. “It is hiding everywhere,” he said.

Bourbonnière added that she believes it’s crucial to democratize AI to prevent large companies from monopolizing the technology, and to allow non-profit organizations to use AI to address issues around the world. “[Democratization] is education—to learn about the technology and not feel intimidated by it,” she said. “It’s important in widening the population’s understand of the technology.”

Feature photo by Mackenzie Lad

Music Quickspins

Future and Young Thug – Super Slimey

Future and Young Thug  – Super Slimey (Epic, 2017)

Future and Young Thug’s collaborative mixtape, Super Slimey, is exactly what you would expect from trap music’s two most notorious rappers. Unlike his joint album with Drake, Future has found an artist he can flow with, as he and Young Thug possess a chemistry that only groups like Migos have. Future and Young Thug are pioneers when it comes to rap flow, and the way they trade verses over the album’s nocturnal yet fast-paced beats make it a must-listen for all rap fans. The melodies that project from their voices make each song sound unique and different, unlike many albums in the trap genre. Songs like “No Cap, Three” and “Patek Water” featuring Offset are certifiable bangers and standouts on the album. Super Slimey just goes to show how versatile Thugger and Future really are, cementing them as the two best artists in their lane.

Score: 8.8/10

Trial Track: “Three”

Music Quickspins


FUTURE – HNDRXX (Freebandz, 2017)

Fresh off releasing his eponymous project just a week prior, Future returns with HNDRXX. Putting out projects so close together is risky for an artist who is often critiqued for being too formulaic, but HNDRXX will put those claims to rest. This album serves as a companion piece to FUTURE, though it’s completely different stylistically. The soundscape is extremely melodic and atmospheric. The content is much more introspective. In “Selfish” featuring Rihanna, the pair harmonize beautifully together. They sing about getting back into a broken relationship for selfish reasons. “Use Me” has Future rapping about his frustrations with a significant other using him for fame. “Incredible” sees him talking about having trust issues until meeting the right one, over a bass-driven, synthpop-inspired instrumental. With this album, Future took a risk and it paid off in a major way. HNDRXX may be his best body of work thus far.

Trial Track: “Selfish” ft. Rihanna

Rating: 9.5/10

Music Quickspins

Future – Future

Future – Future (Epic Records, 2017)

Atlanta rapper Future’s fifth studio album brings back the type of trap music no one wants to hear anymore. With artists like Migos, Travis Scott and NAV excelling with moody, atmospheric sounds, Future tries to push a more upbeat, hard-hitting flavour. However, just like an old bottle of Coke, the flavour falls flat. The album starts out with a banger called “Rent Money” which features Future delivering his signature triplet flow, while a heavy beat supports his voice in the background. From that point on, the album degenerates into a directionless mess with no real appeal. Sure, the beats sound nice, but that isn’t enough to save the album. Future flows the same on almost every song, while delivering the same uninspired lyrics about money, drugs, fame and women. Just by listening to one song, you’ve pretty much heard the entire album. Future was once at the forefront of trap music, but now he’s outdated and has been surpassed by much more interesting artists.

Trial Track: “Super Trappers”



NHL: Where do we go from here?

With the departure of NHL superstars Alexander Ovechkin, Evgeni Malkin and Ilya Kovalchuk to the Kontinental Hockey league in Russia, we realize that this lockout is definitely serious. When will it end? Without a light at the end of the tunnel, the hopes of watching professional hockey in Montreal look slim.

Donald Fehr and Gary Bettman are planning to meet on Sept. 28 for the millionth time, which is good because they still want to tell each other that they won’t agree with each other’s proposals. However, fans have become restless and are dying to watch their favorite teams play.

The fact that we are stuck in this crossfire between two groups each being paid millions of dollars (Bettman gets $8 million and the players have more than they can cash in) leaves us to try and find something else to watch on TV. The biggest sports event coming to the Bell Centre is the New York Knicks versus the Toronto Raptors. That’s not normal for our hockey-saturated city.

We realize this is a mockery of people who are passionate to watch their favorite players score goals, win games, and enjoy the game of hockey. These players and organizations believe it’s much more than that. Let’s look at the details.

The NHL wants to cut away 25 per cent of player salaries in order to compensate for the fact that four of 30 teams did not make a profit last season. Players like Sidney Crosby and Ovechkin have nothing to cry for; they are each paid 10 to 12 million dollars a season to shoot a hockey puck in the net (that’s without sponsors and bonuses). Take 25 per cent off $12 million and you still have $9 million in your bank account at the end of the year. Any person who’s not a professional athlete would never complain of such thing. But hey, we aren’t all Ovechkins right? Since all the players are under the NHLPA, Ovechkin has the right to cry for the other players who aren’t even paid half his salary.

What I don’t understand is why Gary Bettman said last year was the most profitable year in the NHL. If that’s the case, how come we cannot use those profits and help boost the teams that do not have any money? What about investing in a city ready to make money? For example, transferring the Coyotes to Seattle, a city that already has a football, soccer, baseball and a former basketball team, would make sense. This is definitely a city that would be able to create profits in order for the NHL to shut up and stop preventing the CBA negotiations.

Until the NHL and the NHLPA are able to get somewhere with their negotiations, I will stay by sad hockey fans that have no choice but to change their channels to the NFL and soon the NBA. Not as entertaining as hockey, but hey, it’ll make us happier than watching the two sides argue.

If the NHL and NHLPA cannot come to an agreement soon, they’ll lose more than just money – they’ll lose fans as well.

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