Goooooooood morning Aurora!


Halloween morning, 1938, Orson Welles awoke to find himself the most talked about man in America.

It was in a 1960 court deposition that Welles explained his inspiration for War of the Worlds: “I had conceived the idea of doing a radio broadcast in such a manner that a crisis would actually seem to be happening, and would be broadcast in such a dramatized form as to appear to be a real event taking place at that time, rather than a mere radio play.”

The idea that such a stunt could be repeated almost 80 years later is as equally absurd as the sustainability behind the idea of raising an antenna to re-broadcast serialized radio dramas that are freely available on the internet.

Equally ludicrous is the assertion that having a community radio station in Aurora will instantly resolve the town’s inability to communicate in times of emergency as evidenced in the recent 2013 ice storm something Mayor Dawe’s seems to be advancing in this July15th Auroran piece here: and has been echoed in a comment on Evelyn Buck’s blog here:

I pointed out in my previous post here: the CRTC Broadcasting Order 2009-340 and Broadcasting Decision 2011-438 that states their expectation that ALL radio and television broadcasters and broadcasting distribution undertakings participate in the National Public Alerting System and reminded all licensees that they have a duty to inform the public of imminent perils.

But these facts are obviously an inconvenience for Mayor Dawe who seems enamored by the 1940’s schtick of this radio station pitch man who looks like he just stepped off the Monopoly box.

Creating another radio station is a quaint idea, even an interesting one if those proposing it actually had and shared a plan with us all as to their business model. and all but in times of crisis it is the town’s duty to ensure timely communication to all local radio stations. Something it failed to do in 2013, and is poised to again due to its woefully outdated Crisis Communication Plan which can be viewed online here:

For whatever reason the Communications department at the town has failed to update the town’s plan which lists Tim Jones as Mayor.

Under Public Directives it suggests the following radio stations for updates:

Yet later in the report in a wider listing of radio stations it is not the same 3 stations that are considered “primary contacts”:

So antiquated are the contents of this plan it lists the long defunct Aurora Cable TV station and even has M.P. Adam Vaughan as a contact for City TV:

This is the town’s current crisis communication plan. If a crisis was to break out immediately this plan suggests someone would actually be tasked with acquiring the following tools for responding to media inquiries:

The 2013 ice storm was a wake-up call to government to form emergency preparedness plans, which is evidenced in a freshly released Fact Sheet on ONTARIO’S EMERGENCY PUBLIC WARNING SYSTEM:

This service provides quick information via RSS feed, SMS text messaging, e-mail, Facebook and Twitter that complement community emergency management programs such as automated phone calling, in-home tone-alert radios and sirens.

So why didn’t Mayor Dawe accept the wake-up call here in Aurora?

If he sincerely wanted to shore up the deficiency in the town’s crisis communications he would have seen to it that this plan be revised as I suggested in this post:

Instead a massive failure in leadership to direct staff effectively appears to continue to expose our town’s ability to communicate with us in a time of crisis.

But hey when the shit hits the fan won’t it be comforting to know you can dial into “The voice of Aurora”?

I suspect the voice will sound eerily similar to Robin Williams:

“Dork calling Orson! Come in Orson”


Watts on your mind?

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