Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Canadian TV Content Died A Long Time Ago
Who is the CRTC fooling with its latest regulatory hearings?
Canadian content has been in peril for the past two decades and the CRTC has only hastened its demise.
The CRTC is currently is currently holding Ottawa hearings to determine a number of key issues but basically it amounts to whistling past the graveyard of Canadian TV.
Consider the latest statistics.
Canadian content is supposed to be 50 per cent during prime but when have you ever seen half that amount?
And still the CRTC will make no move.
On Global TV 16 of the network's 18 hours of prime time are simulcast American imports.
Where are the quality Canadian dramas, sitcoms, even current affairs shows? Nowhere.
Some will appear later in the season I'm told but never at the 50 per cent mark.
One of the loopiesrt CRCT regulations says an hour of Canadian content shall count at 90 minutes!
Over at Rogers Media which programs Citytv stations there'll be wall to wall NHL hockey Saturday and Sunday nights which counts as Canadian content.
City felt so emboldened that it has cancelled its sole Canadian scripted sitcom --Seed --which failed to find a permanent U.S. home.
I remember in 1985 there were 11 quality domestic scripted TV series on the Canadian networks as well as a host of locally made scripted TV movies.
Somehow the CRTC was persuaded by the networks to drop its quota on scripted dramas.
The next season only two were left. The CRTC was directly responsible for this artistic catastrophe.
CRTC is now saying in the new Ottawa hearings it wants to kill off the bundles whereby the three big TV providers --Bell, Shaw and Rogers --offer their wares to Canadian customers.
It's strange but I've yet to meet many people who ever watch the Outdoor Life Network (OLN) which seems to consist of variants on Pawn stars and Storage Hunters.
Nobody these days talks to me about the american Import which has such treasures as Hoarders and used to run Dog the Bounty Hunter.
When I took a straw poll at a recent block party in my neighborhood BBC Canada got many votes and so did the various sports webs.
But nobody seemed aware there was a Documentary Channel since it is so high up the cable dial.
Attempts to control streaming on home computers is too little too late.
The teen nerd who is my neighbor has devised a gimmick that gives him a false American address --hence he has access to such services as Hulu which are restricted to most Canadian viewers.
Trtying to impose a Canadian content regulation on Netflix won't work at this stage. Besides such American imports as FX Canada and Opra Winfrey's OWN network have such low content requirements (usually 15 per cemt of content) that they merely purchase reruns to fill their requirements.
We're getting near the moment when customers will be dropping their dependence on cable TV altogether and opt for computer services only/
One "millenial" I know has done just that --no conventional Canadian TV for her only Netflix and whatever she can get on her computer.
The CRTC is moving in its usually lumbering fashion but the train has left the station.