CNM People

As a result of a company reorganization to focus on content, TVA Group Inc has made some top level changes. Raynald Brière has been appointed as GM of the TVA Network. He retains his post as senior VP, broadcasting. Philippe Lapointe has been given responsibility for programming and news, and Serge Bellerose will be in charge of specialty channels. André Provencher, previously senior VP of the TVA Group, has announced his departure for an undisclosed new opportunity. Provencher spent 12 years with the company. The shuffle comes as TVA Network management is announcing the elimination of 35 jobs, mainly in administration to cut costs.

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CNM Short Takes

NewKidCo releases new Tom and Jerry game for N64
NewKidCo International Inc has released "Tom and Jerry in Fists of Fury’ for the Nintendo 64 video game console. The title is the first of three Tom and Jerry titles expected to be released by the end of the year, including "Tom and Jerry in House Trap" for the PlayStation console and "Tom and Jerry in Mouse Attacks" for the Game Boy Color. The games are being published by Warner Brothers Consumer Products. NewKidCo is the former SoftQuad Corp.

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PwC finds most Canadians confused over digital television service offerings

The concept of digital television is confusing Canadians, and as such, not many are planning to buy it, according to a new survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers. But the firm’s principal consultant in the area says that uncertainty won’t last long as people begin associating the technology with a flood of new interactive services coming online in the next few years.

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CAB takes steps to narrow divide between broadcasters and new media companies

New media companies are cautiously optimistic that an offer for them to join the Canadian Association of Broadcasters will lead to new opportunities between the sometimes rival camps. In a move that could speed up rollout of interactive technologies, the CAB board of directors last week voted in favour of allowing web streaming companies and certain Internet retailers to become associate members of the organization.

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Battle of words continues between Canadian broadcasters and JumpTV.com

The debate over JumpTV appears stalled as lawyers from both sides battle over the need for further consultation before the Copyright Board can issue the upstart Internet re-transmitter an interim tariff (CNM, Nov. 1/00). Dueling letters to the board were exchanged in the last two weeks as Jump lawyer Sunny Handa dismissed the arguments of the broadcasters rallying against the proposed tariff. David Kent of McMillan Binch, responding on behalf of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters, urged the board to convene a meeting to settle the dispute.

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Salter back in creative content game

Salter Street Films has embarked on another venture into online creative with the launch of a companion website to the ItchTV series. Unlike Salter’s predecessor site of the same type, 22Online, the company has high hopes for advertising revenue will be large enough to sustain the site.

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New media incubator sets sights on spectrum to be auctioned in January

New media incubator itemus Inc plans to build a new Internet-based wireless network if it’s among a handful of winners in the federal government’s radio spectrum auction, scheduled to begin January 15. The Toronto-based startup has taken a 20 per cent stake in Wispra Inc, one of the players vying to win cellular spectrum set aside in 1995 by Industry Canada for next-generation personal communications services (PCS) services. If successful, itemus CEO Jim Tobin says his company is prepared to deliver a raft of new personalized applications that could change the nature, and mobility, of online content.

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Digital interactive media sector larger than broadcast, says new MMSG survey

The multimedia industry has grown as large as the broadcast sector, according to a new report that digital media champions hope will convince government to provide better funding and tax incentives to their industry. The MultiMediator Strategy Group’s (MMSG) Canadian Interactive Media Producer’s Survey 2000, presented at the Canadian Institute’s New Media Business Conference in Toronto last week, shows that the sector is growing and maturing, even if it isn’t thriving just yet.

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