Yesterday’s CRTC announcement unveiled a dramatic overhaul of its protectionist rules for television programming. These changes will directly impact what you can watch and have access to. Here’s why:
The ratio of Canadian programs that local TV stations must broadcast during the day has been cut from 55% to zero. Specialty TV channels will feature 35% Canadian content.
What this means to you: Instead of stations airing the same episodes over and over again to satisfy the Cancon rule, they can air new, fresh content.
The ratio for weekday prime time – 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. – remains the same, at 50% Canadian.
What this means to you: Great Canadian content will continue to be supported and produced for primetime.
There are no longer Cancon requirements for the evening hours for specialty channels.
What this means to you: Some of your favourite Canadian specialty programs may be cut. (We’re betting Orphan Black is safe, don’t worry.)
Video-on-demand services like CraveTV and Shomi must make their exclusive content available to all Canadians over the internet.
What this means to you: You no longer need a cable or satellite subscription in order to access these services.
The rule that requires specialty channels to broadcast only certain types of programs has been eliminated.
What this means to you: stations like Discovery, CosmoTV, HGTV, etc. will be able to acquire and produce shows that better reflect their audiences interests and needs.
New specialty services will be allowed to enter the Canadian marketplace
What this means for you: more options.
The definition of what qualifies as Canadian-made content is expanding.
What this means for you: Broadcasters will be encouraged to create bigger-budget programs resulting in better content.
What do you think of these changes? Tweet us @ClutchPR