Media Beat
Media Beat

Media Beat: December 13, 2019

CRTC calling for comments on CBC programming

The Commission is seeking input about the programming of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and Société Radio-Canada (CBC/Radio-Canada) as part of the process to renew their broadcasting licences. CBC/Radio-Canada’s current licences will expire on August 31, 2020. Respondents can participate by sharing ideas online, by mail and sending a fax. — CRTC portal

CBC launching all-female Family Feud Canada

Family Feud Canada, hosted by actor and comedian Gerry Dee (Mr. D), is set to premiere on December 16. For those unfamiliar with the show (or its Saturday Night Live spoofs), the show consists of two family teams competing to guess the most popular responses to survey questions.

The show will be broadcast at 8 pm four nights a week (Monday through Thursday) on CBC TV and on the free CBC Gem streaming service before moving to its regular time slot of 7:30 pm on December 23. — Craig Takeuchi, The Georgia Straight

CRTC issues $115K in ‘penalties’ against Orcus Technologies

The investigation found that Orcus Technologies marketed and sold a Remote Administration Tool under the name Orcus RAT. The investigation concluded that this tool was in fact malware, a Remote Access Trojan that enabled hackers to install the program and take full control of a victim's computer without their consent or knowledge. By marketing and offering these products and services, John Paul Revesz and Vincent Leo Griebel aided in the commission of numerous violations of Canada's anti-spam legislation.

The CRTC collaborated with domestic and international partners – including the RCMP, the FBI and the Australian Federal Police to conclude this case. — CRTC

Yukon's oldest commercial radio station marks 50 years

CKRW began broadcasting from Whitehorse at 6 a.m. on Nov. 17, 1969. It began as an independent, locally-owned station, and it still is today.

Whitehorse businessman Rolf Hougen, who founded the station, said he knows that a lot of smaller radio stations in Canada have been absorbed into larger media conglomerates over the years. He says CKRW has had offers — but turned them all down. — CBC News

Amazon launching global home Internet service

According to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, the goal for the Home Internet Service is to offer it everywhere in the world. With the low orbit satellites, access to the broadband will reach places that have previously been underserved, such as developing countries.

Amazon plans include launching 3,236 satellites to use for their network, and set it around 367-mile, 379-mile, and 391-mile altitudes. At these altitudes, the satellites can reach 56-degrees north and 56-degrees south, which, according to Amazon, would reach around 95% of the total population in the world. — Adam Alderson, Digital TV Life

PlayStation Vue trying to sell its 500K subscriber list to rivals

An executive at another streaming company, who asked not to be identified because he is under a non-disclosure agreement with Sony, said he had recent talks with the company about transitioning over a user base that still has around 500,000 consumers and offloading intellectual property and technology assets related to Vue. — Daniel Frankel, Multichannel News

YouTube prepping launch of PBS stations on its video platform

Multiple PBS stations have confirmed that they will be live on YouTube TV by the end of December. With less than three weeks left until the start of 2020, it seems that YouTube TV is extremely close to launching PBS and PBS Kids on YouTube TV. — Luke Bouma, Cord Cutters News

YouTube takes a tougher stance on harassment

Facing long-standing criticism that they had not done enough to protect people from harassment, YouTube executives announced Wednesday that the video service would start policing material that insulted or demeaned others because of their race, gender or sexual orientation.

The policy applies to videos and comments directed at anyone, including public officials, private individuals and YouTube creators. — Daisuke Wakabayashi, The New York Times

NZ’s broadcasters facing a cliff

In many countries, including Ireland, public broadcasters have already hit an “existential financial crisis”. In 2019, Ireland’s public broadcaster, RTÉ, warned it would not survive without a government rescue plan. In 2018, Danish public broadcaster DR announced up to 400 job cuts and closures of three television channels and three radio stations as part of a media reform package.

New Zealand’s commercial broadcasting news operations are in serious trouble as a consequence of streaming services flooding the market. — Merja Myllylahti, The Conversation

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