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Discussion Starter #1
I wanna enter government someday, MP, maybe even PM:rolleyes:. That aside, one of the things I'd like to do if I could, is improve the Canadian media industry. There's this plan I've come up with, in which the CRTC would require all providers to carry all channels licensed to air in Canada.

In theory, since all the providers would have the same channels, they would have to compete for customers based on things like customer service, channel packaging, and quality of their service, rather then certain channels that people want, and say Bell TV has it and Rogers doesn't, so that person has to go to Bell to get it.

I wanna know what people think. Would this help improve competition based on quality of service, rather then by channels provided? Or would it have an opposite effect? What do you think? I'm up for any ideas or suggestions.
 

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This would give the channels all the power, and drive up rates. If I have to carry you, what power do I have in negotiating with you? So then, to keep rates down, you have to have the CRTC regulating the rates between channels and providers. Just won't work.
 

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Just open the skies to the American Providers, let the people choose who gets their money.
 

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lol if we had the option to go south of the border for tv.. Or rather bring dish/Directv here.. i think far more then half us would ditch what we have now in a heart beat for some American tv.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Perhaps, but that's not what I'm asking. And to be honest, I'm not for opening up to US companies. I think time would be better spent improving the infrastructure we have now, and making companies give us better service.

As for US tv, that's a different matter. Whether or not we make providers carry all channels licensed here, and what US channels are allowed here or not, are two completly different issues.

And travisc, why would we need the CRTC to regulate rates? If all providers had, say Setanta Sports for example, they'd have to duke it out over who could give it to their customers cheaper or in a better package then the other, which would lower the price, not raise it.
 

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Yes, but when Setanta knows that all providers MUST carry it, then they will ask for more money, more than is reasonable. What can the providers do about it? They have to carry it. You're putting too much power in the hands of one side.
 

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Sounds good on paper, but not technologically do-able.

Some areas and/or cable providers have their distribution network limited to 450Mhz, 750Mhz or 1Ghz. In a big city or a small remote community, they would be forced to either upgrade (hope you'll provide subventions) or overcompress the channels or roll out Switched Digital Video. Satellite providers will need to rocket launch a new satellite ASAP.

Areas serving majority english customers won't justify the need to carry all 24 french-language HD channels, wasting valuable QAMs for a few/no francophones.

You also didn't mention anything concerning:
- local OTA canadian channels. All ~20 or so local channels of the same network will be carried by all providers? Or just one channel per network is enough?
- US OTA networks. There's PBS, ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, The CW, MyNetworkTV, but should we also add RTV, ThisTV, LATV, Ion, America One, and all other odd networks?
- International channels. They are licenced, but should we carry ALL of them? Including the canadian ones, you'll end up with more than a hundred of multilingual channels! That's a LOT!
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Well, regarding the international channels for expats and immigrants, like RAI International, or RTP, I was gonna suggest providers only have to provide them in areas with a significant population that those channels cater too.

I understand this plan has alot of flaws and problems, but it has some good points too. It's not as if I'm not open to ideas on how to augment it to make it better.

Also, you asked "local OTA canadian channels. All ~20 or so local channels of the same network will be carried by all providers? Or just one channel per network is enough?". In the US, providers are required to carry all local versions in their targeted area, and remember, the US is huge population and region-wise, so it's not like the providers up here couldn't do the same.

As for US OTA, usually only two feeds are licensed here, usually Buffalo and Seatle, so that's not really much of a problem.
 

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As for US OTA, usually only two feeds are licensed here, usually Buffalo and Seatle, so that's not really much of a problem.
You're kidding, right?
There's the networks from Boston, Buffalo/Rochester, Burlington/Plattsburgh, Detroit, Seattle/Tacoma, and I think Manitoba has/had Grand Forks stations and Alberta has/had Spokane.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
You're kidding, right?
There's the networks from Boston, Buffalo/Rochester, Burlington/Plattsburgh, Detroit, Seattle/Tacoma, and I think Manitoba has/had Grand Forks stations and Alberta has/had Spokane.
Well, I'm basing that off of a thing I read a while ago about Rogers asking CRTC for a license to carry a different feed then the two I mentioned.
 

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Seattle, Spokane, Detroit and Boston OTA networks are all licensed for national carriage. Many other US border stations are licensed for regional carriage.

IMHO, an "All-Carry Requirement" proposal will be a negative development, mainly for the pricing and anti-competitive implications already mentioned. I think most members here want less regulation in the broadcasting industry, not more. The CRTC needs to work more at protecting consumer interests and less at padding the bottom lines of broadcasters and BDUs. An "All-Carry Requirement" would benefit broadcasters, reduce competition among BDUs and increase costs to consumers significantly.
 

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I was gonna suggest providers only have to provide them in areas with a significant population that those channels cater too.
So you are then expecting any further immigrants that want to see their own language programming to move to an area that has been forced to carry it.? You should make sure that the Ethnic Programming areas are clearly listed in several languages in all the Immigration material so new immigrants can be aware of the areas they should move into to watch, and pay for, programming in their own native tongue.

What effect will this have if you decide that an area does not warrant, a particular language show, are the people who were paying for it going to be compensated to move to an area that does.?

Forget it, it is a non-starter, not enough band-width on Cable or satellite for ALL channels, ALL of the time.
 

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There is enough corporate welfare as it is in the Canadian broadcasting industry, without all channels gaining a must-carry requirement. No BDU's has the capacity to carry all the existing channels with a proper quality, and the number of channels would probably explode if they automatically gained must-carry on approval.

The actual original content on Canadian channels is already so diluted, what we need is less channels, not more! Weed out the channels no one watches, instead of turning them all into rerun central...
 

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I understand that some Canadian media companies re-air a lot of the same programming on their networks however that is a product of this 500+ channel universe. There are only so many programs and budget dollars to go around for programming. I would not support allowing American companies in to Canada such as Direct TV. Not only would this eliminate a ton of Canadian jobs at Bell, Rogers, Cogeco, etc. but we would also get the American propoganda from that country. When I turn on my t.v., I care about what is taking place in my own backyard, I don't care about California's issue's or New York's. Another thing, neither Direct TV or Dishnet would pump any money in to producing Canadian content. With the era of the Internet, in my opinion, I am very happy with my Bell TV offerings and the stuff I can get from the Internet.
 

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I applaud your effort as it seems you have done some thinking about this issue and haven't just posted it up in the spur of the moment. Having said that, I have to agree with the others that this is 'all-carry' approach, as you call it, is just plain wrong.

By forcing providers to carry all specialty channels what you are doing is not only discouraging competition amongst Canadian broadcasters (which technically doesn't exist at all due to the CRTC and their ridiculous 'genre protection' rules) but also encouraging these idiots to keep launching more worthless channels because thanks to this rule all providers will have to carry it. Why should all channels be carried, there are many that are on the air that are pure crap and are more than likely only watched by a few- should they be granted must-carry status?! The law of the TV land should be 'the strong survive, the weaker die', which is what would happen if you had a real free market where competition was encouraged not discouraged through needless regulations. A free market environment will force broadcasters to create channels that people are interested in and contain quality, original programming. What you have right now, is a 200 channel universe where at least half contain the same programming because the Canwest's & CTVglobemedia's of the world spread programming around all their channels instead of purchasing programming for each individual channel based on the genre it serves. Of course you can thank the idiots at the CRTC for allowing that but since they do the bidding of big business its to be expected.

The correct approach is to break the monopoly that both BDU's AND broadcasters enjoy. Canadian broadcasters should be allowed to compete with one another (this one channel per genre notion is ridiculous) and BDU's should be forced to introduce more user friendly purchasing options for channels be it pick n' pay or customizable packages. People want the channels they are interested in and are sick of being forced to pay for tons of other channels that they don't want or watch.

As for your comment about ethnic services. some providers like Shaw & Videtron already do what you are suggesting which I think is the correct approach and makes the most business sense (which is all they care about anyway). They only carry channels for which there is a sizeable population in the area that they serve. For example, why should Shaw carry any Tamil channels when the majority of the Tamil speaking diaspora lives in the GTA, it makes no sense?!
 

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I understand that some Canadian media companies re-air a lot of the same programming on their networks however that is a product of this 500+ channel universe.
Uh, you might want to check again- almost ALL broadcasters employ this practise of spreading the same programming around a lot of their channels- Canwest, CTVglobemedia, Rogers, Corus.

I disagree with your notion that this is a side effect (so to speak) of the so-called 500 channel universe and we should just accept it. If they don't have enough content to fill 500 channels then there should not be 500 channels on the air, simple as that! Perhaps its time to go back to the way things were 15-20 years ago where you had a handful of channels that aired programming specific to that channel and was actually worth subscribing to.
 

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Well let me just say I agree with some of the comments and i'm not against mandatory carriage for some channels, but for all of them? That just wouldn't work.

The only channels that should be must carry are Canadian specialties while giving consumers the option of whether or not to subscribe to them with better pick and pay options and less bundled packages. The reason I suggest this is because there are many channels as was mentioned previously that aren't available on all providers. Rogers offers pretty much everything as does Bell, but Shaw and Shaw Direct refuse to carry many channels. Would it not be feasible to force them to carry all available English/French Canadian channels and allow customers to choose which channels they want to pay for?

Of course I would also love it if we could force CTV, Corus, Astral, and everyone else to start broadcasting in HD and i'm sure you would all agree with that.
 

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I have no problem with a forced carry policy if all programming is "a la carte".

If I don't watch a particular station, I won't subscribe to it, the station will not receive my subscription dollars. At that point the role of the BDU will be to negotiate fair rates with the broadcaster and to provide me with good customer service.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Thanks for everyone's comments. Again, I know my idea has some flaws, and that there are other ways of pushing for more competition and better service to the people. I do have some other ideas as well, such as a re-organisation of the CRTC and it's practices(I know alot of people hate the CRTC, but if it did things the right way, it could be a really good agency), but I wanted to bounce around this idea first.
 

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I would take a different tack.

Instead of each channel being reqired to be carried by each provider, you can allow subscribers to subscribe only to channels on other providers which their primary provider does not carry.
 
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