News

Canadian carriage fee debate heading to Supreme Court

Rogers Communications is going to the highest court in the land to stop the country's broadcasters from collecting retransmission fees.
March 2, 2011

Canadian┬ácable company┬áRogers Communications is going to the highest court in the land to stop the country’s broadcasters from collecting retransmission fees.

“Rogers will be seeking leave to appeal the decision,” Rogers spokeswoman Jan Innes told realscreen sister publication Playback Daily.

Canadian telecom Telus is to join Rogers in taking their case to the Supreme Court of Canada.

No word on whether rival cable and phone giants, including BCE and Shaw Communications after they scooped up conventional TV assets of their own, will join the Rogers appeal to the high court.

The legal move follows Canada’s Federal Court of Appeal earlier this week siding with conventional broadcasters on retransmission fees from cable and satellite TV operators.

Cable and satellite TV operators took heart from the Federal Court of Appeal judges splitting on the question of the CRTC’s jurisdiction in allowing a fee-for-carriage regime for the industry.

The lower court’s dissenting opinion from Justice Nadon held that the Copyright Act disallows royalties to be paid for the retransmission of local signals, and so limits the CRTC’s power to impose its will under the Broadcasting Act.

(From Playback Daily)

About The Author
Daniele Alcinii is a news reporter at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joins the rs team with journalism experience following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.

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