The findings of a task force set up to study the Canadian Television Fund suggest that more money should be put toward new media - but not all connected with the fund are hailing the move.In its report issued June 29, the four-person task force, headed by CRTC vice-chair of broadcasting Michel Arpin, recommended that a $25-million allotment for new media production be set up within the CTF. It also suggested that while that money will have to come from the fund's existing capital pool, it should be capped so as to minimize the impact on traditional television production, and new sources of revenue should be found as soon as possible."Certainly seeing an injection of $25 million into interactive production in association with broadcast would be a substantial boost from where we're at right now," says Ian Kelso, president of Interactive Ontario, which represents 150 interactive media stakeholders in the province."There definitely been a number of companies who have come up through it and are creating world-class ," he continues. "We saw at the Interrnational Emmies how successful we were with ReGenesis."Xenophile Media's interactive property based on Shaftesbury Film's hit bioterrorism series garnered an International Emmy award in the Interactive Program category at MIPTV in Cannes this spring. It also won a Gemini Award last year for Best Cross-Platform Project.The coming-together of an innovative broadcast property and an immersive interactive one is the future of entertainment, Kelso says - and an area where Canadian producers have proven their aptitude. "I think on the innovation side and the creativity side we can do a very good job," he says. "I think the more we can get out there and make stuff and build capacity, the more opportunity we're going to have to substantiate a more market-leadership role for creating that type of content."The task force's review of the CTF got underway in February, and was prompted by dissatisfaction on the part of two key contributors to the fund, Shaw Communications Inc. and Québecor Inc.'s Groupe Vidéotron ltée. The BDUs threatened to withhold their payments to the CTF if their concerns about governance and imbalances in funding policies weren't addressed.One of Quebecor's concerns was that the fund didn't recognize the increasingly important role alternative platforms, such as video-on-demand channels (VOD), were playing in the Canadian broadcasting system. Broadcasters also voiced concerns that CTF polices precluded non-linear channels such as VOD from rights negotiations with producers.And at a stakeholders' breakfast held during the Banff World Television Festival, CTF president Valerie Creighton emphasized the need for the fund to craft a "new platforms" policy, something she referred to as a "burning issue."But others with interests outside the new media world don't see the development as a positive one."We all agree that we need more funding for new media," says Writers Guild of Canada executive director Maureen Parker, whose group represents screenwriters and other professionals, both in traditional production industries and in new media. "But what we have is a very finite sum of money." She notes that the CTF is perennially oversubscribed, although the situation has improved: according to the fund's Stakeholders Report 2007, the oversubscription percentage dropped from 8% in 2005-2006 to 1% in 2006-2007.Parker's colleagues at other creators groups seem to concur. "There isn't that much money in the CTF that $25 million won't make a difference" to television production, says Monique Lafontaine, general counsel and director of regulatory affairs at the Directors Guild of Canada. "Certainly the DGC is supportive of the CTF providing support to new media productions, but what we were proposing was that it be new and different money."The fund itself was tight-lipped about any reaction to the report, but director of communications MaryBeth McKenzie says there is definitely enthusiasm for venturing further into new media.