CRTC decision welcomed, but ownership concerns remain

    OTTAWA, June 8 /CNW Telbec/ - Canada's largest media union welcomes the
CRTC's decision to apply at least one of its current ownership policies to
CTV's application to take over CHUM Limited's $600 million-plus broadcasting
    "Beyond helping its own bottom line, CTV didn't offer Canadians one good
reason for wanting to own more than one TV station in cities like Toronto,
Edmonton or Vancouver," says Peter Murdoch, Vice-President, Media, for the
Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union.
    But CEP still has serious concerns about allowing CTV to have CHUM's
34 radio and 20 specialty services.
    "Nine months after CTV and CHUM shook hands on their private deal, we
still don't know what CTV plans to do with these services. It didn't give the
CRTC any concrete programming or financial plans. Without this kind of
information, just how did the CRTC decide that CTV's application was the best
possible proposal to use these valuable licences?"
    "Giving CTV new revenue streams worth hundreds of millions of dollars
each year obviously benefits CTV," adds Mr. Murdoch, "but what Canadians will
get is more concentrated media control without any evidence that pyramiding
ownership leads to more high-quality Canadian programs, more diversity in news
and information, or even more employment opportunities.
    "The CRTC still hasn't answered the question we asked when it announced
the CTV hearing: 'Why is the CRTC pushing to hear these mega-media
transactions before hearing Canadians' views about concentration of media
ownership this coming September?"

For further information:

For further information: Peter Murdoch, cell: (905) 516-5720, office:
(613) 230-5800, ext. 249

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Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada

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