Although 10 of the 23 Canadian specialty services licenced last year have yet to find cable or satellite carriage, the CRTC (Canada’s federal broadcast regulator) has received over 70 applications for new services in the latest licensing round.
Despite the existing carriage conundrum, most of the new proposals come from companies which already own Canadian specialty services, meaning that the would-be cablers are betting the CRTC will rule as it did last year and give a license to every qualifying applicant. If that’s the case, then the licence winners are, in essense, reserving their right to the genre until market conditions can support their launch.
Among the factual service applications, it looks like the battle for a travel channel will shape up as the most interesting. Montreal-based Astral Communications, Toronto-based Baton Broadcasting, Western International Communications of Vancouver, chum of Toronto and Toronto’s NetStar Communications are all vying for a chance to engage Canadian armchair travelers.
Hearings are expected to begin spring 1998.
Selected Canadian factual applications:
Canal Histoire (History)
The Y Channel (Men’s Television)
The Explorer Network (Travel)
The Health Network
The Science & Technology Channel
National Geographic Channel Canada
Canada’s Health Network
Fit TV Canada
Food Network Canada
People Channel (Biographies)
Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
Land & Sea – Canada’s Country Connection (Rural life)
Les Ržseaux Premier Choix
Canal Justice (Law and Justice)
La cha’ne gourmande (Food)
Ržseau de l’žconomie (Business and Finance)
Ržseau de l’histoire (History)
Ržseau des arts (Arts and Culture)
Rogers Broadcasting Limited
Chatelaine TV (Lifestyle)
The Documentary Channel
Today’s Parent TV
Also in Upfront:
-News Briefs for November 1997
-Disney goes back to nature
-Paramount boosts its reality slate with Wild Things
- Discovery’s Latin American Travel Buy
-TVNZ’s Natural History Unit goes on the block. And the winner is. . .