"We're doing well in print. I think we're doing well in radio. I think we're doing all right online but we're doing terribly on television," Mr. Teneycke told the 2010 Manning Networking Conference. "If we want to be successful as a movement, we have to get on TV .... in a much bigger way than we have today."
He also signalled that he's prepared to use his editorial powers to target some of the bête noires of the Canadian right. "If you have a teacher or examples of teachers who are trying to jam lefty philosophy down your throat, please send me an e-mail," Mr. Teneycke told a high-school student at the March conference. "I'd love to make them famous."
Before now, the most conspicuous recent case of a media organization trying to pull the agenda to the right was Conrad Black's 1998 launch of The National Post - which to most observers, hasn't turned out quite as planned. Mr. Teneycke, however, noted that the paper, "in terms of succeeding in capturing market share, was doing very well under Conrad Black. It was sold to the Aspers and well, the story of the Aspers is well known."
He noted that Mr. Black "sold the paper for a huge profit and did very well."
Not everyone is impressed with Quebecor's plans. Veteran political journalist Don Newman, who has covered Parliament Hill for CBC, is concerned Sun TV will have a polarizing effect on Canadian politics, stirring up the Conservative base and producing more hardened positions between Commons parties.
"I'm not opposed to more news channels ... but I really wonder if it's going to be used as a bully pulpit."
He said Mr. Teneycke talked about such a channel when they met back in 2003, after a Saskatchewan election. "He seemed to blame the traditional media, and I guess particularly the CBC, for the defeat of the Saskatchewan Party by the NDP. He said 'What we really need in Canada is a Fox News network.'"
So does Mr. Teneycke fancy himself Canada's answer to Roger Ailes, the Republican media consultant turned president of Fox News?
"I have to gain a lot of weight and have a lot of success before I can make that comparison," Mr. Teneycke said, laughing. "Roger Ailes is the most successful man in television and I am just a kid who hasn't proven anything yet."Report Typo/Error