Media News Digest: De Adder axed, CRTC gets Indigenous commissioner, Mark Bergman joins The Beat

News about news

At the CRTC

  • The latest statement from heritage minister Pablo Rodriguez suggests “web giants” like Netflix and YouTube will be made subject to Canadian content quotas and forced to “contribute to the creation of Canadian content,” presumably financially.
  • The federal government has finally gotten around to appointing a non-white person to the CRTC. Claire Anderson, a lawyer from Yukon, is the new B.C./Yukon commissioner, filling a vacant post. She’s the first person from the Yukon to be appointed to the commission, and first Indigenous woman. With the previous announcement that Alicia Barin will take over from Yves Dupras as commissioner for Quebec next month, seven of the nine commissioners will be women. The government can appoint up to 13 commissioners, though all the regional posts and chair and vice-chairs are now filled.
  • The CRTC is changing its policy on public alert tests, and adding a second annual test of the wireless public alerting system in November that will be visible to end users. Among other things, the new twice-yearly test will be synchronized with the broadcast (TV and radio) tests, which were previously four times a year, to avoid confusion when users see the test on one platform but not another.
  • TLN/ATN and Ethnic Channels Group, two losing applicants in the race to replace OMNI, have joined ICTV and CorrCan Media Group in asking the federal government to overturn the decision to award OMNI a renewal. Besides the points raised already by the other two groups, TLN/ATN argues that it was improper for OMNI’s local over-the-air TV stations to be grouped with a pay TV service in one proceeding, and the commission did not have a properly updated ethnic broadcasting policy in place. Both TLN/ATN and ECG point to the lack of any analysis of their applications in the CRTC decision as being unfair. TLN/ATN also throws in the fact that ratings for OMNI’s newscasts are only a small fraction of what they once were. Bell and Amber Broadcasting are the only applicants for TV services to replace OMNI that haven’t asked the government to step in.
  • Videotron says it intends to go to court to fight the CRTC decision requiring them to participate in a national working group on set-top box ratings data collection. “The Broadcasting Act contains no explicit provisions empowering the CRTC to force operators to share their facilities with third parties as a condition of licence, and certainly not for the purpose of giving third parties a commercial advantage,” the company says.
  • CHCM 740 AM in Marystown, N.L., a VOCM network station with 20 hours a week of local programming, has been approved for conversion to FM. The new transmitter will be at 88.3 MHz, with a power of 59,300 watts.
  • France English-language 4K TV channel REVEL TV has been added to the list of channels authorized for distribution in Canada. The channel’s programming is mainly travel, music, “extreme sports” and electronic gaming. It’s owned by France’s Clubbing TV.
  • I’m not one to nitpick on typos in decisions, but this one, about a technical change to a radio transmitter, gets both the language of the station wrong (it says English, is actually French) and its source of programming (it says ICI Première, is actually ICI Musique). The French version gets the language right, but still says ICI Première. The commission may need a proofreader.
  • The Broadcasting Arbitrator has assigned paid time to the various political parties. These are minimum obligations for how much time each broadcaster has to allow the parties to purchase, according to the rules set out in broadcasting and elections law. Each party gets a minimum of 12 minutes from each broadcaster, with more popular parties getting more.
  • Newfoundland’s NTV (CJON-DT) has applied to get the same consideration for described video as the major networks are seeking, because its primetime programming comes from CTV and Global. Those networks are asking for some flexibility in the new rule that all primetime scripted shows must have described video, because some imported programming doesn’t come to them early enough to have DV done. NTV’s application estimates the cost of DV at about $850 an hour.
  • United Christian Broadcasters is seeking amendments to its radio station licenses to solve a problem it has been experiencing: The CanCon quota is lower to specialty music (in their case, contemporary religious) than popular music, 10% vs 35%. But when a foreign (usually American) Christian music song becomes popular enough, it starts charting, and shifts categories. The result is that if the stations want to play that popular song, it has to play a popular Canadian song for every three or so American pop songs it plays. UCB argues there simply aren’t enough Canadian Christian pop songs to meet this requirement, and it doesn’t want to play non-Christian Canadian pop music. Its proposed exception would make Christian music remain in the specialty category (with lower CanCon) regardless of its popularity, and sets specific requirements to ensure this exception applies only to Christian music.
  • An application by Radio Humsafar to move the transmitter for an unlaunched Brampton ethnic AM station to Mississauga has been denied again by the CRTC. Though it proved that the proposed transmission site was unavailable, the new site would have reduced coverage in Brampton and extended it well into Mississauga, and was deemed unacceptable because the station is licensed to serve Brampton. A similar application had previously been denied by the commission. The station has until October to launch, and the CRTC says no further extensions will be granted, which means the authorization will probably lapse.
  • Licence renewals:

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10 thoughts on “Media News Digest: De Adder axed, CRTC gets Indigenous commissioner, Mark Bergman joins The Beat

  1. Dilbert

    The sad part of the Michael De Adder story is that it reveals just how much money and power can change the way stories are reported or issues are covered. It’s a gross abuse of power, and one that undermines the legitimacy of the media.

    Reply
    1. Marc

      Exactly. This is why they get called fake news. They’re owned by people and companies they should be investigating. Given who its owner is, when did you last see an exposé of Amazon’s slave-like employment practices in the Washington Post? I’ll wait.

      Same thing for cable news. Look at who the biggest advertisers are – defence contractors, big pharma and big insurance. This is why if you’re anti-war, they’ll smear or shun you. Ask Phil Donahue about that.

      Never more than today has Manufacturing Consent been relevant.

      Reply
  2. ted duskes

    Regarding the typos made by mtltimes – while it is embarrassing to miss these in the proofing stage, at least the titles are still readable enough to make sense.

    I find that listening to the radio news broadcasts on weekend mornings on an English Montreal station that I will not name is becoming difficult.

    While the audio quality is fine, the frequent mangling of sentences coming out of the radio is enough to drive a person nuts.

    I remember years ago (1996) a similar problem when a news reader explained that terrorists were holding hundreds hostages with machine guns.

    I always wondered why those heavily armed hostages did shoot the heck out of those poor, unarmed terrorists.

    That was just one of many, many incidents – sadly, most were similarly darkly humourous.

    I think the quality may be slipping.
    Again!

    Reply
  3. Tim Lightman

    Regarding Brunswick News. We call them the “Irving Papers” (anything on tj.news) for a reason.

    Brunswick News also delivers for Amazon as well. This entire province is in capture and it wasn’t for the Acadians they would probably get away with a lot more.

    Reply
  4. Philip

    Any news on what happened to the 24 heures free newspaper. It hasn’t been available all week and can’t find anything online about its future. Both free papers were missing on Monday. (Apparently, it was a holiday), but Metro is back out there. Just wondering if 24 heures is finished or just taking a small unexpected break.

    Reply
  5. mediaman15

    Just catching on some Fagstein reading, but have you heard anything about licence renewal for AM600 and how many years?

    Reply

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