Netflix drawing criticism from TV industry - Page 4 - Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums

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post #46 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-30, 05:50 PM
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I would argue that Netflix is no different from a Blockbuster or any of the other online DVD rental outlets. I can pay a monthly subscription to any of the online rental houses now and get monthly access to all the rentals I want. How much different is Netflix from that model? If we had more rental houses competing, it's not inconceivable that one would try to secure DVD rental rights to specific movie studios.

It will be interesting to see how this all plays out, but in the end I'm sure that we'll see what usually happens and the CRTC will make sure that all competition is stifled and the consumer pays more than we should have to.

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post #47 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-30, 05:58 PM
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The difference between Netflix and pay TV is the fact that if the CRTC regulates or taxes Netflix too much or pushes it too hard, it is relatively easy to get access to the US Netflix and subscribe to that instead.

Push the regulatory hurdles up and people will give up on the Canadian version of Netflix. I can't run a TV cable up from the US, but the internet is global. I could use a US satellite and there are a good many who do, it's just you have to have a physical address in the US as far as I know to do this.

It is a fine balancing act. I don't see the Netflix, Apple, Blockbuster connection since the other services are pay per use (pay per view?) whereas Netflix more closely approximates traditional TV where you have a selection for a fixed price and can watch as much or as little as you want.
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post #48 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-30, 05:59 PM
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The Canadian model is old and broken as is the current CRTC model. Time for the dinosaurs at the CRTC to get their heads out of the sand!
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post #49 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-30, 06:34 PM
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Originally Posted by MIghtyFinn View Post
The Canadian model is old and broken as is the current CRTC model. Time for the dinosaurs at the CRTC to get their heads out of the sand!
The Canadian model is based on forcing us to pay for trash we don't want. Canadian programming that doesn't appeal to the masses or Cogeco (for example) bundling and making you pay for a number of religious channels on digital basic are a couple examples of why I've opted out of the Canadian system.

If they're going to start trying to bill services like Netflix or iTunes or even DVD purchuses at my local HMV it'll give me more insentive to just buy my stuff online from US e-tailors and boycott the Canadian system even more so.

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post #50 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-30, 06:57 PM
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I agree and with Web add spoofing you can get American product like Hulu without much problem.
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post #51 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-30, 08:02 PM
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Netflix is distributed though the internet, an internet connection you pay for regardless of usage. If Netflix changed there delivery model, I could see opening the debate on them...

To regulate or tax a service that is provided through the internet is opening a whole new debate on net neutrality.
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post #52 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-30, 08:35 PM
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Keep in mind that many of the CRTC handcuffs were essentially in exchange for being granted the use of limited national resources like airwaves (for TV/radio stations and terrestrial wireless BDUs) or satellite orbital slots (for DTH BDUs). In other words, "if you want access to our airwaves, you have to play by our rules and help perpetuate our Canadian culture."

The comparison is a little better vs. wireline TV BDUs since they don't really preclude the presence of other wireline BDUs, but even then, the barriers to entry for wireline are so high that the incumbents have monopoly or duopoly status in most parts of the country.

A service like Netflix has a very low barrier to entry at the subscriber end, but that also means that all of its competitors have an equally low barrier. Their challenges are primarily at the business and content end. They do not consume any limited Canadian resources and they can be usurped just as quickly as they've risen to their current position. How do you regulate such an agile technology?

I really don't think you can equate Netflix with the BDUs just because they happen to deliver the same kind of content. The CRTC would have to regulate each and every source of video on the Internet, be it foreign or domestic. It would also beg the question of why they haven't regulated Internet radio, which has existed for years. Perhaps that's only because none of the big boys have complained about it... yet. Pandora hasn't gotten past the Canadian music licensing hurdles so we can't subscribe to it, but once we can, don't be surprised if many of the same arguments come up.
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post #53 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-30, 10:18 PM
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Originally Posted by timlocke View Post
I disagree. Get the right gov in Ottawa and they will happily pass a law that permits the big ISPs to block "foreign" streaming video sites.
Although a topic for another forum I thought I could fix this for ya:

"Get the WRONG gov in Ottawa and they will happily pass...

Now doesn't that sound better?

Please relax, I'm just having fun.
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post #54 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-30, 10:31 PM
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I am not in favor of this but couldn't the CRTC with government help start charging a fee on the internet providers (same ones as the cable providers in most cases) to give to the Canadian Industry? They do this with both tape and cd/dvd's for copyright, they certainly could do this without charging the Netflix people directly.
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post #55 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-30, 10:59 PM
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The Canadian system is broken. It is over taxed, over managed, over protective of local industry; not open to a competitive environment.

CRTC is in the dark ages. The last solution should be to tax Netflix to make it a level playing field. Tax that and what is next? We need change and remove the waste in our bloated telecommunications system.

I love my Netflix app built into my internet enabled Samsung TV. That is why I bought the TV. I'll pay extra for Netflix if I have to, and at some time dump my cable provider, unless my cableco can provide the service I want (cable card) and value for money.

Heck, the CRTC says it is illegal for me to watch OTA from the US of A and record it on my Windows 7 Media Centre. Ridiculous.
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post #56 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-30, 11:31 PM
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The difference between Netflix and Apple's iStore has been debated before. The difference is that Netflix streams video on demand, a market that competes with cable, IPTV and, to some extent, satellite operators (BDUs.) Apple sells product directly, so that are competing with brick and mortar stores and online retailers such as Amazon. Those are two different markets with completely different regulators.

OTOH, is Netflix really competing with broadcasters? I say no. They are competing with PPV and VOD operations from BDUs. Netflix is also competing with video rental stores. Does the CRTC regulate them? No. Just what are the regulations for PPV and VOD operations? Does Cancon apply? No. Are they a conventional broadcast station or specialty station. No. Though they do supply some content originating from specialty stations, PPV and VOD operations are treated separately. Again, they are competing with video rental operations, not broadcasters.

So what exactly is the TV industry's complaint? Is it that Netflix is competing with a regulated industry? Just what CRTC regulations affect VOD, PPV and video rental operations? I don't know of any. Or is it yet another case of a TV industry who doesn't want competition and goes crying the the CRTC to protect them? IMHO, the CRTC should tell them to grow up and find ways to compete instead of hiding under the CRTC's coat tails.

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post #57 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-30, 11:37 PM
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The Heritage Committee put forth a ninth report on that was released about a week ago called the Impacts Of Private Television Ownership Changes And The Move Towards New Viewing Platforms in which they want the CRTC to hold a public hearing on whether companies like Netflix, Google TV, Apple TV, etc., should be contributing funds to the Canadian television industry.

A quote from inside, Rogers Communications’ senior vice-president, regulatory, Ken Engelhart in the report:
“Canadian broadcasting and distribution companies face more and more competition from unregulated over-the-top service providers like YouTube, Apple TV, Hulu, and Netflix, and various illegal black market services. These companies pose a serious threat to broadcasting and cable companies, as they compete with Canadian media companies for scarce advertising and subscription dollars and encourage consumers to cut the cord on the regulated system by offering niche low-cost or free on-demand content.”
So the Committee came up with five recommendations, the one that sticks out is:

• That the Commission examine the growing emergence of non-Canadian broadcast players in the new digital realm and initiate a public consultation process to determine whether and how such non-Canadian companies should support Canadian cultural programming (this is the recommendation we led with, aimed squarely at making the likes of Netflix et al pay into the system)
I think the CMPA also backed this report.

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post #58 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-31, 12:06 AM
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If they even THINK of adding a surcharge for Netflix users I'd make a point of boycotting virtually everything Canadian for viewing online like I've done with TV.

If the Canadian industry wants to make money start making stuff we WANT to see. 18 to Life (which was finally cancelled by the CBC) got such bad ratings as summer filler on the CW they pulled it.

Pulled filler summer programming that's our prime TV viewing.

People watch and liked SCTV, The Newsroom, Electric Circus and Kids in the Hall (for example) - if they want to make money they need more shows like these

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post #59 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-31, 12:10 AM
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Thumbs down

I am getting really tired of a bunch of bureaucrats telling me what I should watch and then taxing me for it's production, only to end up with a bunch of unwatchable crap. Let's face it, government broadcast industry protectionism has failed, as can be witnessed every night on prime time. The government already gives the CBC billions of dollars from general taxes. Let the CBC be responsible for "Canadian culture" and open up the rest of the industry by reducing taxation and regulation.

At 20 I had a good mind. At 40 I had money. At 60 I've lost my mind and my money. Oh, to be 20 again. --Scary
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post #60 of 413 (permalink) Old 2011-03-31, 11:24 AM
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I really don't think you can equate Netflix with the BDUs
But you can equate it with a pay tv operator because its securing Canadian rights for content and then distributing through a subscription fee.

The truth is Netflix and Astral are the same. One uses the Internet to distribute its product and one uses coaxial cable.

Should the rules for Netflix be different than those for Astral?

Personally I don't want Netflix encumbered with regulations but I do want Netflix and Astral treated equally.
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