CCR People

Philippe Tousignant has been named as manager of media and parliamentary relations at the CRTC. Most recently, he was working as manager of consumer policy on the telecom side of the commission. Before joining the CRTC in September 2000, he was an analyst and spokesperson on regulation and policy at Action Réseau Consommateur, a consumer protection group.

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CCR Short Takes

Correction
The article entitled "Craig files amendment for pop channel; also asks for leave to appeal CRTC decision" in CCR, July 31/03 should have stated that the extension of time was to allow more time for the respondents (CHUM, Directors Guild of Canada, et al) to file their memoranda of fact and law. Craig has already filed its memorandum of fact and law.

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CRTC allows CBC to continue to broadcast blockbuster films during peak hours

The Canadian Broadcasting Corp. has won a licence amendment from the CRTC that will allow it to continue to broadcast non-Canadian blockbuster films during peak viewing hours, relatively quietly reversing a controversial condition of licence that was imposed during the public broadcaster’s most recent licence renewal in January 2000 (CCR, May 23/03). The CBC declined in 2000 to appeal the licence condition, but in the end still managed to get what it wanted.

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Expanding small cableco in B.C. says it’s unaffected by DTH competition, piracy

Asmall cable operator based in Salmon Arm BC is going against the grain and expanding in the face of continued pressure from direct-to-home (DTH) satellite TV competitors. While many other small cablecos are lobbying for increased regulatory help as they face expensive plant upgrades and the challenge of bringing new options such as video-on-demand (VOD) to a small customer base, Mascon Communications Corp. says it is feeling few competitive effects from either Star Choice Communications Inc. or Bell ExpressVu LP.

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CRTC-mandated local programming fund strikes another blow to CIFVF financing

The only fund in Canada to support non-theatrical educational and informational programming is at risk as a result of the recent CRTC decision to require satellite TV distributors to pay into a new local programming fund. The money for the new fund can be diverted from the 1% of revenues that Star Choice Communications Inc. and Bell ExpressVu LP currently contribute to independent production funds, such as the Canadian Independent Film and Video Fund (CIFVF) (CCR, July 31/03).

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ExpressVu announces new measures to reduce signal theft before CRTC meeting

The CRTC’s approach to dealing with squabbling over who’s to blame for TV signal theft appears to be working, with Bell ExpressVu LP recently announcing several measures aimed at securing its system. News of three major anti-piracy measures undertaken by the direct-to-home satellite TV distributor came days before a scheduled meeting with the CRTC.

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Craig Wireless, UBS in battle for control of Look, which sees Internet business on rise

A lawsuit filed by Craig Wireless International Inc. could throw a wrench in restructuring plans at wireless cable and Internet operator Look Communications Inc. UBS Wireless Services Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Unique Broadband Systems Inc., appears to be eyeing Look, particularly for its growing Internet assets, while Craig hopes to establish a more national footprint for its MDS system in western Canada. Look operates in parts of Ontario and Quebec.

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