Microcell’s struggles continue as company posts Q4 net loss in subscribers
The opinions expressed in this editorial are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Decima Reports.
Rick Mischel has been named CEO of Mainframe Entertainment Inc. effective immediately. Previously, he was president and COO at Los Angeles-based The Harvey Entertainment Company. In his new role, Mischel will have oversight on all production, development, distribution, licensing, operations and business affairs at the animation company. He will be based in Vancouver.
Elizabeth McDonald, president and CEO of the Canadian Film and Television Production Association, says that it’s time to move on ensuring that the different pillars of the Canadian film and TV production industry are adequately balanced. Her comments follow the government’s decision to cut $25 million per year in the two-year funding renewal it granted the Canadian Television Fund (CCR Update, Feb. 19/03), while increasing the production services tax credit that encourages foreign production in Canada in its budget. "I’m very unhappy about it (the cut in the CTF), but I want to solve this issue. I think that we all have to look at the financing paradigm," she tells Canadian Communications Reports. "Everyone is trying to figure out what went wrong. But let’s move forward, let’s resolve it, let’s make sure that none of the pillars of the production stool is wobbling by this time next year. I want to make sure that the balance is maintained in our sector."
I must set the facts straight concerning the remarks made by Peter Murdoch, vice-president of media at the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada (CEP), as expressed in your article "CEP union questions motives of new pro-public broadcasting organization." (CCR, Jan. 30/03)
Technological developments and the power of the market are eroding the amount of control the government is able to exert over media, according to the senior VP of policy and regulatory affairs at the Canadian Cable Television Association (CCTA). Speaking February 14 at a session on the role of the government at the Who Controls Canada’s Media forum in Montreal, Michael Hennessy argued that public policy will in time have less and less influence over the media industry.
Telephone companies getting into the television distribution business are asking for greater flexibility in the composition of their basic packages. Telcos could be one of the first to benefit if the CRTC establishes different rules for basic packages for all-digital cable systems since they are currently rolling out fully digital distribution services. Born in the analog environment, cableco rivals tend to offer digital options in conjunction with analog tiers.
Canadian broadcasters are prepping for the launch of yet more digital specialty television channels, even though the roughly 50 services already on air have sustained multi-million dollar losses. CanWest Global Communications Corp., whose six diginets led the broadcasting sector going in the red with a combined pre-interest/tax loss of $29.4 million in the year ended Aug. 31, 2002, is one broadcaster planning to pump out more channels. It plans to go live with the jazz-based digital service CoolTV within the next three months.
Star Choice Communications Inc.’s decision to drop out of the Canadian Satellite Users Association (CSUA) last year left many of its customers attending the organization’s recent annual conference complaining about the satellite company’s inaccessibility. Star Choice gave no presentations or updates on its business plans at the conference, as has been tradition in the past. All it did was send one delegate to the conference, the 10th annual edition.