CBC/Radio-Canada proposes solution to affordability of cable and satellite television services

November 3, 2009, Ottawa

In a submission filed with the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) yesterday, CBC/Radio-Canada offers a solution to the issue of the affordability should a compensation regime for the value of local television signals be implemented.

The Corporation recommends the introduction of a pared-down basic cable package, the content and maximum price of which would be limited by the CRTC. The all-Canadian package would include only the “essentials”: local television stations and a very limited number of other licensed programming services.

“We think it’s critical that all Canadians – regardless of demographic or location – have access to an inexpensive package of essential Canadian television services,” said Hubert T. Lacroix, President and CEO of CBC/Radio-Canada. “That’s what our solution offers.”

“The hope was that competition would protect consumers. That hope was misplaced,” said Steven Guiton, Chief Regulatory Officer for CBC/Radio-Canada. “There appears to be very little keeping Canadian cable rates in check except the fear of a consumer revolt if the abuse becomes too blatantly obvious. And even then, the cable and satellite companies have devised an effective shield – blame it on the CRTC. It’s time things change.”

In its submission, CBC/Radio-Canada details a straightforward approach to establishing a new framework that could easily be implemented in time for the digital transition scheduled for August 2011.


About CBC/Radio-Canada

CBC/Radio-Canada is Canada's national public broadcaster and one of its largest cultural institutions. The Corporation is a leader in reaching Canadians on new platforms and delivers a comprehensive range of radio, television, Internet, and satellite-based services. Deeply rooted in the regions, CBC/Radio-Canada is the only domestic broadcaster to offer diverse regional and cultural perspectives in English, French and eight Aboriginal languages, plus seven languages for international audiences.

About CBC/Radio-Canada

CBC/Radio-Canada is Canada's national public broadcaster and one of its largest cultural institutions. The Corporation is a leader in reaching Canadians on new platforms and delivers a comprehensive range of radio, television, Internet, and satellite-based services. Deeply rooted in the regions, CBC/Radio-Canada is the only domestic broadcaster to offer diverse regional and cultural perspectives in English, French and eight Aboriginal languages, plus seven languages for international audiences.

For additional information, please contact:
  • Angus McKinnon
    Director, Communications Services and Corporate Spokesperson
    tel. 613-288-6235
    cel. 613-296-1057
    angus.mckinnon@cbc.ca

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