Canada's Cable and Satellite Companies Continue Their Misinformation Campaign

TORONTO, Oct. 8 /CNW/ - In a press release today, Canada's major cable and satellite providers (the "BDUs") continued their campaign of misinformation relating to the issues facing Canadian local television stations.

The members of the Local TV Matters Alliance would like to correct the following erroneous statements by the BDUs:

    -  Cable and satellite providers did provide roughly $1.9 billion to
       Canadian specialty and pay television services in 2008. They also
       charged consumers more than double this amount to receive these
       services. And while they charged every subscriber ever increasing
       amounts to receive basic cable or satellite service, local television
       stations, which form the main component of the basic package, were
       paid nothing.

    -  Simultaneous substitution is not a specific benefit to local
       television stations. It is a regulatory mechanism that allows BDUs to
       carry U.S. television stations without violating the programming
       rights Canadian stations have purchased.

    -  The cable and satellite providers did collect LPIF fees. However, they
       also passed this cost on to consumers after they were instructed not
       to by the CRTC. In addition, even the CRTC has characterized the LPIF
       as a temporary measure.

    -  In the United States, local television stations must choose between
       mandatory carriage low on the dial or a negotiated carriage
       arrangement. As we have noted numerous times, the members of the Local
       TV Matters Alliance are fully prepared to accept such an arrangement
       as well.

    -  While it is possible that the advertising market for local television
       may rebound from what it experienced over the course of the last year
       (during the depths of the global economic crisis), it is an
       indisputable fact that local television advertising revenues have been
       flat for many years and the business model for local television is no
       longer sustainable.

With today's release, the BDUs continue to try to distract Canadians from the real issues. Local television is in crisis. More stations will close if something is not done. Cable bills have risen four times the rate of inflation. And the only way bills will increase by $5 to $10 will be if the cable and satellite providers choose to force Canadians to pay twice for what they already pay for to further increase their profits.

Stop being taken advantage of. Go to to voice your support for local television and urge the Commission re-regulate the cost of basic cable and satellite service.

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, and CHEK NEWS, 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


For further information: For further information: Name: Bonnie Brownlee, CTVglobemedia Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications, Phone: (416) 384-7190, Email:; Name: John Douglas, Canwest Senior Vice President, Public Affairs, Phone: (204) 227-1846, Email:; Name: Jeff Keay, Head of Media Relations, CBC, Phone: (416) 205-3987, Email:; Name: John Pollard, CEO of CHEK Media Group, Phone: (250) 383-2435, Email:

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