ARCHIVED -  Public Notice CRTC 1992-32

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Public Notice

Ottawa, 30 April 1992
Public Notice CRTC 1992-32
The original Canadian content regulation for AM radio came into effect in January of 1971, following an extensive public process undertaken in 1970.
The primary objective of the regulation was cultural: to establish a greater presence of Canadian music on Canadian radio, in keeping with the requirements of Section 3 of the Broadcasting Act, 1968 which called for the use of "predominantly Canadian creative and other resources" in the Canadian broadcasting system. Under the regulation, also referred to as the MAPL system within the industry, recordings qualify as Canadian content provided they meet two of the following four conditions:
* Music (M) - the music must be composed by a Canadian.
* Artist (A) - the music or lyrics must be principally performed by a Canadian.
* Production (P) - the musical selection consists of a live performance that is
 (i) recorded wholly in Canadian, or
 (ii) performed wholly in Canada and broadcast live in Canada.
* Lyrics (L) - the lyrics must be written by a Canadian. The purpose of the regulation was to ensure that Canadian artists are provided greater access to the airwaves, and that Canadian audiences are given an expanded opportunity to hear Canadian music and Canadian performers.
A secondary objective, an industrial one, was to assist the development of a Canadian music industry infrastructure to help ensure the continued availability of Canadian musical expression.
The Commission is satisfied that the Canadian music requirement has been successful in attaining both of these objectives. With few exceptions -- most of which are based on regulations or policies -- Canadian radio stations now broadcast a level of 30% Canadian content in music. Canadian audiences are able to hear a reasonable selection of Canadian artists, and Canadian artists have access to Canadian audiences. The regulation also has contributed to a healthy Canadian record production industry.
The content requirement for Canadian music has now been in place for more than twenty years, with few modifications. In 1986, two aspects of the regulation were amended to eliminate discrimination against instrumental music. In 1991, the Commission removed a superfluous requirement that a certain percentage of the music broadcast have either music or lyrics written by a Canadian. A copy of the current regulation is attached.
Co-writing Credit Proposal
In the Fall of 1991, the Commission asked representatives of various sectors within the music industry to report to the Commission as to the continuing usefulness of the Canadian content regulation for radio, and to make suggestions for change. The industry established a task force, which consisted of the Canadian Country Music Association (CCMA); the Canadian Independent Record Production Association (CIRPA); the Canadian Music Publishers Association (CMPA); the Canadian Recording Industry Association (CRIA); SOCAN, the Canadian performing rights organization; and the Songwriters' Association of Canada.
On 14 January 1992, this task force reported that:
"1. The existing flexibility and simplicity of the MAPL system should be retained. It has delivered specific, clear benefits to all participants in the Canadian music and broadcast industries.
2. In order to recognize the increased amount of collaboration between songwriters in the creation of songs, the existing regulation should be modified so that where a song is co-written by a Canadian and a non-Canadian, where the Canadian songwriter is credited with at least fifty percent of the composer's share respecting the music and at least fifty percent of the writer's share respecting the lyrics, that song should qualify for one of the two required 'points'."
The Commission also received comments from l'Association québécoise de l'industrie du disque, du spectacle et de la vidéo (ADISQ), la Société professionnelle des auteurs et des compositeurs du Québec (SPACQ), and l'Union des artistes (UDA). All three groups agree in principle with the task force's proposals.
The Commission hereby submits the industry's proposals for public comment.
Since the proposals, if adopted, would require that a specific percentage contribution to each musical selection be by a Canadian, it would be necessary for the parties concerned to ascertain that this requirement is met. The repository of that information is the performing rights organization with which each composition is registered. It would seem reasonable, therefore, to qualify any composition that is registered with a performing rights organization willing to confirm to the Commission its assistance in verifying joint writing credits. It would also seem reasonable that the amendment apply to all compositions performed or recorded on or after 1 September 1991, the date on which the increased Canadian content requirements for FM stations came into effect.
Other Proposals
In addition to the submission by the informal industry task force, the Commission has from time to time received proposals from other interested parties. For instance, it has occasionally been suggested that, given the high profile of the performer, this function should be awarded two points. In the past, the Commission has also been asked to establish a separate point for the producer function in order to give recognition to its importance. A third suggestion relates to the introduction of a criterion for copyright ownership. A fourth suggestion has been that, after having been in effect for 21 years, the regulation should be amended to require Canadian content to qualify on four rather than on two counts, while still others have argued that the regulation is no longer necessary or desirable.
Questions have also arisen as to the current definition of a Canadian for the purposes of this regulation. Some have asked, for instance, whether long-time Canadian expatriates should still benefit from the Canadian content regulation. The Commission notes that, at present, a person is deemed to be a Canadian if he or she is a citizen, a landed immigrant, or a 6-month resident. Call for comments
The Commission hereby invites comments from the public on the tools now used to implement the requirements for Canadian music on radio, as well as on the above proposals. Submissions should be addressed to the Secretary General, CRTC, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0N2, and be received by the Commission on or before (60 days).
Any documents referred to in this notice may be obtained from the Commission at the above address.
Allan J. Darling
Secretary General

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