CCR Update

CRTC calls for comments on framework for licensing new specialty audio services
Interested parties have until Oct. 12 to submit comments on how the CRTC should license new specialty audio services. The CRTC notes in Public Notice CRTC 2001-85, released today, that the proposed regulations would permit digital distribution by large cablecos of ethnic audio programming without prior regulatory authorization. As well, the CRTC indicated that it would consider the addition of Radio France Internationale (RFI) to the foreign services eligibility list once a framework has been established. More details:

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CNM People

IAB Canada, an organization of Internet publishers, advertisers and agencies dedicated to the development of online advertising, has appointed two co-chairs for its new Vancouver Council, which will work to bring more education and research on Internet advertising to advertisers, agencies and publishers in western Canada. Andeen Pitt, director of media services at Vancouver ad agency Wasserman & Partners, and Pat Stadnyk, manager of western advertising sales at Globe Interactive in Vancouver, will head up the council. Pitt has 20 years of experience with a number of ad agencies and brings a solid background in media planning to the post. Standnyk has over 20 years of experience in the advertising industry, primarily in newspapers and new media.

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CNM Short Takes

Rogers Communications invests $2 million in U.S. interactive TV software developer
Rogers Communications Inc has invested $2 million in California-based MetaTV, a company that provides software technology that enables interactive TV portals, services and enhanced TV applications. The investment will not necessarily result in Rogers adopting the company’s software for use in its digital set-top boxes, however. Jan Innes, VP of communications at Rogers, says the investment was made because Rogers "was looking for opportunities in the interactive TV area that looks like a good fit". She says it’s too early to say whether Rogers will use MetaTV technology for future ITV services. Rogers’ $2-million investment augments funding MetaTV recently received from Comcast Interactive Capital and Cox Communications Inc and other financial and strategic investors. With the Rogers investment, MetaTV’s total capital financing for 2001 has topped $30 million. MetaTV says the investment will accelerate the deployment of its Universal Portal Platform based ITV services.
 

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French company chooses Canada to roll out next-gen “black box” for TV viewers

Canadian consumers will be the first in North America to sample a new technology that transforms the television into a computer, a web browser and a device for playing CDs, video games and DVDs. Multimedia Network Computer (MM-NC) of France is rolling out its new Max box in Canada this fall over the U.S. because of this country’s reputation as an early adopter of new technologies.

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Former radio broadcaster tapped to lead ITV lab at Montreal’s Media Experts

A Montreal media company has hired a former programming director from the CHUM Radio Group to help advertisers prepare for the pending arrival of interactive television. Ian MacLean, the new head of the ITV lab at Media Experts, says a large audience for ITV is closer than many realize, and if advertisers want to exploit this new medium, they have to act now.

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Literary review re-launches with truce between owner and freelance writers

The venerable literary review Books in Canada has re-launched publication amid a quiet truce between its owners, Amazon.com, and a group of freelance writers who had accused the magazine of using their work without permission. The Periodical Writers Association of Canada (PWAC) called for a boycott of the magazine earlier this year, saying it was letting Amazon re-print archived book reviews electronically without permission from the authors (CNM, February 7/01).

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Copyright Board takes two issues off the table in phase one of JumpTV proceedings

JumpTV.com Canada Inc has cleared two hurdles before the Copyright Board of Canada in its bid to become a legitimate retransmitter protected by law. Last week, board officials told participants in the landmark proceedings that the availability of Internet programming by broadcasters and others won’t enter the debate, and the existence and effectiveness of border controls will be moot in the first phase of proceedings set to begin in early December.

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New survey shows parents know little about what their children do online

Canadian parents may think they know what their children are doing online, but it’s not a view shared by their kids, according to a groundbreaking new survey released by the Media Awareness Network. The study of 5,682 Canadian students, aged nine to 17 years, found that children believe their web surfing goes unmonitored. They also believe they know a lot more about the Internet than their parents do.

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