Media Beat
Media Beat

Media Beat: June 30, 2017

Creative groups appeal CRTC funding ruling to cabinet

The Canadian Media Producers Association (CMPA), the Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists (ACTRA), and the Directors Guild of Canada (DGC) have submitted a joint petition to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, asking her to set aside, or refer back, the CRTC’s Group Licence Renewal decisions for Canada’s large television broadcasters, released last month.

“Across the production sector, Canada’s creator community shares deep concerns about the damaging impact of these decisions,” the coalition said in a statement yesterday.

Continuing: “An independent analysis commissioned by the CMPA found that the CRTC’s decision to decrease the required amount broadcasters must spend on Canadian Programs of National Interest (PNI) will likely result in a drop of more than $900 million in production volume, causing a cumulative economic reduction of $1.15 billion in GDP over the five-year period during which the broadcasters’ licences will be in place. A backgrounder summarizing these findings is available here...

CRTC vice-chair announces resignation

The regulator’s vice-chair, telecommunications Peter Menzies has announced he is resigning as of July 15th, 2017.

The news was first reported by online media journal, which notes that his resignation leaves a vacuum at the top, as the vice-chair broadcasting position remains empty after 20 months, filled only on an emergency six-month basis by Judith LaRocque, who is now interim CRTC chair – but only until mid-October.

The Ontario and Prairie Regional commissioner positions also remain empty (Ontario for more than a year and the Prairie job since Candice Molnar’s term expired in January 2017).

Castanet buys Juice FM

Castanet has struck a deal with Vista Radio to buy Kelowna’s Juice FM 103.9.

The CRTC announced Thursday that the proposal is now set down for a hearing in Ottawa on Sept. 7.

Approval is expected sometime in October.

The founder of, Nick Frost, said, “When this opportunity came up, we thought it was the right thing to do for two key reasons: to broaden our reach when viewers aren’t online, and to bring an entirely different local radio service to the city.”

Castanet’s GM, Chris Kearney, said the FM station will broadcast from the Castanet’s new newsroom in the downtown core.

Frost originally sold the station after 21 years to Standard Radio in 2006 when it was then branded Silk FM.

Barbara Frum inducted into CBC News Hall of Fame

Barbara Frum, known best to Canadians as co-host of CBC Radio's As It Happens and later for CBC Television's The Journal, has been inducted into the CBC News Hall of Fame.

On hand for the ceremony Tuesday were several friends and colleagues, along with members of her family — CBC

Doyle: Peter Mansbridge deserves great respect – maybe not reverence

Away from the anchor's job, he has never been quite as witty or droll as many of his counterparts, their raillery honed by so much time spent covering crisis after crisis in high-octane circumstances. But, on Mansbridge's departure, that's hardly a diminution of his role. Kudos to him for his long and stellar support of CBC News as an important, even vital, part of the fabric of life here. He probably had to be obnoxious on occasion to do that. But we should all be glad he did, rather than extrapolate anything else from his actions — John Doyle, Globe & Mail

Bell hires a record number of summer students

Bell has announced it has hired approximately 700 summer students this year, a record number that is part of 1,000 co-op training positions the company will take on this year.

"Bell is proud of our tradition of providing young people with the learning opportunities and experience they need as they prepare to enter the workforce, and we are pleased to make more summer student positions available than ever before as we celebrate Canada 150," said Bernard le Duc, Bell's Executive Vice President of Corporate Services. "We highly value the energy and new ideas that summer students bring to our company and our customers as Bell continues to lead the way in broadband network and service innovation" — CNW

Media News Digest

Another departure at CRTC, cuts at Bell TV1, CBC debuts Seat at the Table — Fagstein

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