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Moore's tweets prompt reproach about timing

Canada's Heritage Minister James Moore in Ottawa April 4, 2012.

CHRIS WATTIE/CHRIS WATTIE / REUTERS

As CBC employees were being briefed on job losses and programming cuts due to the recent federal budget, the Minister of Canadian Heritage was tweeting about a visit to the set of Saving Hope, the CTV medical drama recently picked up by NBC.

"En route to the set of the TV show "Saving Hope" – the CTV (and now NBC) hit new drama. Canadian cultural success story," James Moore tweeted around the same time senior CBC executives began a town hall meeting with CBC employees to inform them that the shows Dispatches and Connect with Mark Kelley had been axed, along with radio drama programming, reductions to children's and sports programming, and 88 jobs cut from news with redundancy notices issued at the end of the month.

"Such bad form that you r on set boasting of sold-to-U.S. show when cbc losses announced today are so devastating," wrote Sue Campbell.

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Moore responded: "The show airs in the US *and* Canada, stars Canadians, is written by Canadians, is produced in Canada ..."

Campbell, who used to work for the CBC, responded: "I'm happy for the show, but a sombre day, still. It's about the timing. Thanks for tweeting back." She now works for the government of Ontario.

In a subsequent e-mail to The Globe and Mail, Moore's communications director James Maunder wrote: "He was simply meeting the cast and crew of what will become a real Canadian success story when it debuts on CTV and NBC in the coming months." He also pointed out that shortly after the set visit (and the tweets) Moore was at the CBC Broadcasting Centre to tape an episode of George Strombolopolous Tonight.

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