Canada's Television Broadcasters Unite to Stand Up for Viewers and to Protect
Local Television

TORONTO, Sept. 14 /CNW/ - In an unprecedented move, and representing the vast majority of local television stations across Canada, CTV, 'A', Global and CBC have joined together to launch a national campaign - Local TV Matters - aimed at rallying viewers and all Canadians to support local television.

"Our viewers are telling us that local television is very important to them and to this country," said Paul Sparkes, CTV's Executive Vice President of Corporate Affairs. "Canada's broadcasters are responding to our viewers' concerns by launching this campaign that reinforces the importance and value of local television in all regions of Canada."

The Local TV Matters campaign provides concerned viewers and all Canadians with an opportunity to learn more about the current issues facing local television. The interactive campaign includes an official website - www.localtvmatters.ca - and advertising across Canada. Along with informing Canadians about the issues, the campaign is also aimed at setting the record straight about misinformation cable and satellite companies are telling their customers.

"Cable and satellite companies are attempting to disguise their own self interests as our viewers' interest," says Charlotte Bell, Global's Senior Vice-President of Regulatory and Government Affairs. "We are concerned that Canadians are being misinformed by cable and satellite companies, specifically about the additional costs these companies are choosing to unnecessarily pass onto our viewers."

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) will be deciding the future of local television this Fall. One of the campaign's concerns is that cable and satellite providers continue to charge viewers for our services, yet they pay nothing to local television stations. However, Canadian cable companies pay U.S. cable channels in excess of $300 million a year for their services, and these cable channels are not required to produce any Canadian content. The campaign members are standing up to change this system because they believe local stations deserve fairness so viewers can continue to enjoy local television programming now and in the years to come.

"We encourage viewers to visit www.localtvmatters.ca to learn more about how they can support their local stations," says Steven Guiton, CBC's Chief Regulatory Officer. "In a country as large and diverse as Canada, it is important for our viewers and the local communities in which they live to have a voice."

About Local TV Matters:

Local TV Matters is a campaign launched by local Canadian television broadcasters with a focus on the protection and preservation of local television for viewers across Canada. Local TV Matters' members include CTV, 'A', Global, CBC, with thousands of supporters located across the country. The campaign encourages all Canadians to share their voice and support local television by joining the conversation at www.localtvmatters.ca.

SOURCE News - Media

For further information: For further information: Local TV Matters: Bonnie Brownlee, CTV Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications, Phone: (416) 384-7190, Email: Bonnie.Brownlee@ctv.ca; John Douglas, Canwest Senior Vice President, Public Affairs, Phone: (204) 227-1846, Email: jdouglas@canwest.com; Jeff Keay, Head of Media Relations, CBC, Phone: (416) 205-3987, Email: jeff.keay@cbc.ca


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