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News | 03/24/2006 5:00 am EST

MTV Canada debuts under CTV aegis
MTV Canada has pulled out all the stops in its relaunch as part of the CTV Inc. empire. On March 21, the youth-oriented music and lifestyle specialty channel rolled out its Canadian service through no less than six separate channels, including: conventional and specialty channels; mobile content, which includes not just mobisodes and other programming but also wallpaper, ringtones and other downloads; video on demand; live events; and, a new broadband TV service dubbed MTV Overdrive. While MTV Canada is a dedicated analog specialty service at its core, its programming will be shown six times a week on CTV’s conventional affiliate stations under the moniker "MTVonCTV". Meanwhile, Rogers Cable will also offer a free preview of the MTV specialty channel until June 1. As might be expected, the Canadian iteration of MTV features some home-grown Canadian content: MTV’s broadcast licence is actually that of another CTV analog specialty channel, talktv, which CTV announced it would discontinue last year and morph into MTV Canada (CCR Update, Sept. 30/05). As such, MTV is bound by talktv’s old conditions of license – including a 68% minimum Canadian content makeup – and consequently has seven original series in production, six of which were ready to air at the time of MTV Canada’s launch. "It’s a landmark day for Canada’s creative community and viewers from coast to coast," Susanne Boyce, president of programming at CTV and chair of the CTV Media Group, said in a release. "Sharing Canada’s creative talent with the world through MTV’s worldwide network puts Canada on the world stage. It’s where we belong." MTV, a division of Viacom International Inc., is now available in 49 countries through MTV Networks International.

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