OTD: CBC launches international shortwave service

On today’s date in 1945, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) officially started its international shortwave service known as Radio Canada International (RCI).

RCI was often referred to as “the voice of Canada” in its early years; however, after consistent funding cuts throughout the ensuing decades, shortwave services were terminated in 2012. Since then, it has only been accessible via the Internet and in five languages (compared to the 14 languages it boasted in 1990). CBC has also ended its production of RCI news.


In 2011, the Royal Canadian Mint issued a 25-cent coin commemorating the CBC’s 75th anniversary.

The coin’s reverse design depicts a microphone created by CBC/Radio-Canada for its daily coverage of the 11,265-kilometre royal tour of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth in 1939. Designed for outdoor broadcasts, the mic’s special wind-resisting device represented a major technological advancement and is still commonplace today.

The cupro-nickel coin has a weight of 12.61 grams and a diameter of 35 millimetres.

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