Wandering Eye: City's wireless signal gets better, Toronto councillor stands up for Drake, and more

Wandering Eye

Hey local politicos, want some free ink? Here's one idea: Get involved with a rap feud. That's what Toronto Councillor Norm Kelly did when he inserted himself in the middle of a beef between Meek Mill and Toronto's favorite son, Drake. Kelly told Meek Mill he was "no longer welcome in Toronto." Meek was not pleased. And now sites like Vice's Noisey are going to Kelly for the inside scoop. Here's a sample:

Noisey: Have you ever heard Meek Mill's music? Do you have a favourite song?
Norm Kelly:
No, I don't. I haven't heard his music and I don't have a favourite song. What attracted my attention was that he attacked a guy who's not only a Canadian hero, but really a prominent citizen of Toronto.


Drake is a hero in your eyes?
Oh yes! You know, he is a guy who feels the city that raised and nurtured him, he's a remarkably talented guy, he's highly respected, and Meek . . . I don't know what the word is. Disses?

That is correct.
He disses him a week before he comes to town to perform at a concert. (Brandon Weigel)

Having a hard time deciding who to support in 2016 and want to know the candidates' stances on Star Trek and comics? The New York Times is on it! Here's its Q&A with Ted Cruz—lol, okay, you probably weren't going to vote from him anyway, but whatever—that touches on Iron Man, "Star Wars," "Star Trek" vs. "Star Trek: The Next Generation" (Cruz prefers the original, while also speculating "I think it is quite likely that Kirk is a Republican and Picard is a Democrat."), and some political blather. Choose wisely, voters. (Brandon Weigel)

The City Council this week passed a franchise agreement for a wireless service provider called ExteNet Systems, allowing the company to put antennas on public light poles and other infrastructure to improve cellular phone service. As anyone who has ever tried to tweet or text from a stadium of festival grounds knows, too many people in one place creates a data jam. The little antennas, with tiny transmitters, are designed to ameliorate this problem. The franchise agreement is based on similar agreements elsewhere. The company will pay a $100 annual franchise fee, plus carry liability insurance for any damage done to public property, or to pay to remove the antennas (and fiber optic lines) the company installs. ExteNet is a startup, living on venture capital funds. That might be why, close on the heels of ExteNet, the council also introduced a bill to grant Crown Castle NG Atlantic LLC, a franchise, to do basically the same thing. Crown Castle appears to be a much bigger wireless infrastructure company. The proposed agreement with Crown Castle looks very similar to the ExteNet agreement. The city appears to be hedging its bets. (Edward Ericson Jr.)