Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Returning to roots

When the Toronto Sun Family blog was launched Dec. 6, 2006, the intention was to give moral support to employees at the flagship tabloid facing a questionable future under Quebecor.

We also wanted to tell the stories of Toronto Sun vets who launched a tabloid that defied the critics and was adopted by readers who would remain faithful for decades.

Almost three years later, many of those employees who had gathered at a Toronto Sun reunion in November of 2006 are now on the outside looking in and the Sun is a shell of its old self.

TSF went well beyond its initial mandate, with postings and comments on a wide range of topics involving matters across the Sun Media chain, including Osprey, picked up in 2007.

What is left to be said about Quebecor, PKP and the direction of Sun Media newspapers? Not much, really. The mood is that light at the end of the tunnel is an oncoming train. That is so depressing.

So come Dec. 6, the third anniversary of this blog, it will be back to our roots - the Toronto Sun. All things Toronto Sun - the Day Oners, the journalism giants who worked there, the many tales of gotcha tabloid journalism, the fascinating inside stories etc.

The blog will be an ongoing tribute to employees who were on the Toronto Sun payroll during the glory years, from day one, Nov. 1, 1971, into the 1990s.

We are going to be largely devoted to the glory years of the Toronto Sun, one of North America's unique newspaper success stories, but post-Quebecor news and comments relating to the Toronto Sun will also be welcomed.

All previous TSF postings not dealing with the Toronto Sun will be deleted.

All things Toronto Sun - then and now - after Dec. 6.

The Toronto Sun turns 40 on Nov. 1, 2011, if it survives under present management.

Time enough to share the memories of a newspaper that was once among the Top 100 favourite companies to work for in Canada.


  1. Disapointing to hear!! Us Western Sun Media employees were glad to know we weren't alone in out fight. We could find that here, and find comfort that others were in the same battles.

  2. Aww that's sad. How are we supposted to know what's going on if the tipsters aren't telling us?

  3. I agree with the previous poster (about focusing only on Torsun). We all know that the startup Edmonton Sun and the purchase of the Albertan in Calgary were important to the growth of the company with many Toronto people coming out west. Following that the purchase of the Bowes organization with many Bowes people very excited about the new owners at the time. I have a hard time believing that this blog will be of much interest if it just focuses on Toronto Sun since the history of the company was really much more since the western papers really (in the early days anyway) added a lot to the eventual growth of the corporation.

  4. That's a damn shame.
    You guys have become a great watchdog for all Sun Media papers, giving us info we could never get otherwise.
    I really wish you'd change your mind on that decision.

  5. While I completely understand the decision....I too agree with the previous commenter - those of us out west and many others I know of that work in the weeklies were glad to have a voice and found comfort in knowing we weren't alone in our struggles against mismanagement through incompetence.
    Thanks for the good times TSF....

  6. I work for a Sun Media / Bowes Publication in Southwestern Ontario. We all watch this site as well to see the corporate wide anxiety and impending closures etc. I understand what you want to do in returning to your roots but it has been helpful to know our situation it not alone. Great to reflect on the glory years at Toronto Sun. It will get sleepy as it talking about The Maple Leafs under Punch Imlach. Farwell!

  7. Someone needs to launch a Quebecor-watch blog...

  8. That's really too bad. You've become a daily fixture for our small newspaper in Northern Ontario and a link to what is really happening elsewhere. Please reconsider.

  9. Looks as though it's a big sell out. You don't stop a good thing unless outside factors are trying to stop you.
    It's almost as though TSF only, and only ever, thought the TS was above everyone else. I'm sure there is people in Edmonton, Calgary and Winnipeg, just like there is in Ottawa that care about news and used this blog to obtain information otherwise impossible to get.
    I argue you are bending over due to pressure. You argue one thing for so long and decide, after a few years, to screw the rest of us.
    How hard is it to accept tips? How hard is it to give a shit?
    That is what is wrong with news. It's not only the managers or PKP who is destroying our papers, and, subsequently, reporting. It's guys like you who are too tired, apt to complain rather than fight, and eager to through in the towel.

  10. Well, as TSF itself keeps suggesting, now is the time for some of us who are being cast off, left out in the cold by the decision, to band together and launch a scrappy little startup to keep that flow of information coming.

    Deleting old posts is a shame, and smacks of revisionism, but I suspect TSF is under a lot of pressure from the chain to back off on the release of inside information. I know of at least one daily that is monitoring staff e-mails to spot who's sending in tips and comments. The heat is on. TSF is pulling back, that's his decision, but it's still a shame.

    If the daily wants to scale back and reduce its news content, it's time for something else to take its place as industry watchdog., anyone? Anyone?

  11. You're doing too good a job to narrow your focus!!!
    I actually liked the way you shone a light into the narrow nooks and crannies of the Sun Media empire..the family base maybe Toronto but I still want to know about the siblings, cousins and adoptees amoung the family...even if I don't know their names off the top....

  12. I actually enjoy visiting here. I guess, come December, I won't be anymore. That's a disappointment. If I have a vote, it's to keep this blog as is.
    However, if comments and news from outside the mighty 416 are discouraged, so be it. Call me negative, but it's a shame that I once again feel unimportant.

  13. It will be sad to see this blog go back to its roots, though it's your blog so I understand the decision.
    Your legion of tipsters kept us informed when PKP and management kept us in the dark. It will be sad to be thrust back in the darkness.
    Maybe someone else will start a blog and carry on the tips about the whole chain.
    Thanks for the blog and all it's done to date

  14. Get ready for your numbers to take a huge nosedive. Hate to say it, but very few visiting this site care about how things were circa 1975 Toronto Sun. So much for being a "Family" ...

  15. I no longer work for Sun Media. I was cast off on Black Tuesday. But I know for a fact the management of paper I worked for monitored this site and always had a fit when there was something negative to say about them. It plays a role. It may even have prevented some things from getting worse. I hope you reconsider, but if you don't, I hope you help someone else launch a sister site that still deals with the present situation facing many of the other Sun Media papers.

  16. Like many of the posters above, I agree... this site as it has evolved to today will be greatly missed! Too many of us are kept in the dark until the grim reaper shows up with a pink slip. Let's hope the many devoted people who have contributed to this fantastic site will grab the torch and continue to shine a light for those of us in the empire who are often kept in the dark. Should such a site become available, please let us know here. Thank you TSF!

  17. Please, reconsider.

    Rob Lamberti
    Chair, Toronto Sun Unit

  18. This news is disappointing. This is a site I read almost every day but come December I'll knock it off my saved websites and probably forget about it.

  19. Geez, I think you got your feedback!!!

    Like PT Barnum said: Give the people what they want!

  20. Ok I understand narrowing the focus, what I don't understand is actually deleting old posts.... what's the point?

  21. Is this decision based on pressure or threat(i.e. a lawsuit) from Sun Media big wigs?

    Please keep your TSF blog but provide a link to the older posts and allow non-Toronto Sun posts to go there. Your site is a great connection to others in the chain and it's nice to know we're not alone in our struggles and frustrations.

  22. is waiting in the wings in case you carry out your decision to kept strictly to the Sun

  23. And somewhere, PKP is smiling.

    He gets his way again.

  24. This site (as it is) has never been more necessary than it is now.
    Yes celebrate Toronto Sun history but don't ignore the rest of us.
    Whether you like it or not, you have become our voice in many ways.

  25. Although I thoroughly enjoy reading about the Toronto Sun, please don't change the format of the blog.

    Management is so tight-lipped about what goes on in this company it has become the only way we can get any information.
    For those of us at the smaller Sun Media papers it makes us feel we are not alone in our struggles.

  26. For the many reasons mentioned above, this is too bad. Hope you are ready for your hits to drop off the planet.

  27. The last poster summed it up perfectly.
    This has gone way past just a place to gripe.

    Listen to the masses! Please!

  28. If there ever was a way to find out if people really cared about whats up with the Sun chain and the offspring. You have done it perfectly.

    Now what will it be?

  29. Doug Creighton and his team started the Sun because they knew the little guy on the street wanted a voice and to be entertained. They satisfied these needs beautifully, with balls and brains. The astronomical numbers they achieved are obvious examples of their abilities to gauge a market. Today, the little guys and gals — who have or who are still working for the chain — have shown that The Sun Family Blog has a market. Do us all a favour, including yourself, and follow in the footsteps of the founders.