ARCHIVED - Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2002-467

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Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2002-467

Ottawa, 20 December 2002

World Audio-Visual Entertainment Systems (W.A.V.E.S.) Inc.
Across Canada

Application 2002-0103-8
Public Hearing in the National Capital Region
15 July 2002

Low power special event facilitating undertaking


The Commission received an application from World Audio-Visual Entertainment Systems (W.A.V.E.S.) Inc. (WAVES) for a broadcasting licence to operate a low-power television programming undertaking.


WAVES proposed to operate a television service providing an enhanced experience for spectators at cultural, sports, commercial and tourist events. The proposed service would enable spectators to view the event from different angles and provide access to interactive content related to the event through a portable audio-visual receiver. WAVES proposed to broadcast no more than 12 minutes of advertising each hour.


WAVES stated that it would broadcast in analog mode in the 470-806 MHz UHF band with less than 500 watts of transmitter power. It proposed initially to use four television channels. Since not all the event locations are known at this time, the applicant did not indicate which frequencies would be used.



The Commission received interventions regarding the WAVES' application from Rogers Broadcasting Limited (Rogers), Bell Globemedia Inc. (Bell), and the Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB).


The interveners claimed that there were similarities between the proposed WAVES service and the services offered by low-power radio undertakings for special events. In Exemption order respecting low-power radio: limited duration special event facilitating undertakings, an appendix to Final revisions to certain exemption orders, Public Notice CRTC 2000-10, 24 January 2000 (the exemption order), the Commission exempted these radio programming undertakings from the requirements of Part II of the Broadcasting Act (the Act) and all regulations made thereunder.


The interveners submitted that several criteria that were set out in that exemption order should be applied to the service proposed by WAVES. In particular, the CAB asked the Commission to restrict advertising on the proposed service to identification of the sponsor or promotions mentioning the sponsor's name. The CAB also asked the Commission to require that the service limit its programming to the special events indicated and not duplicate the programming service of any other licensed television undertaking.


Bell submitted that the service should honour broadcasting rights for the coverage of special events and should acquire broadcasting rights for such events from the various holders of those rights.


Rogers further submitted that instead of considering the application strictly as filed, the Commission should examine the possibility of issuing an exemption order similar to the order relating to low-power radio for special events, with criteria specific to low-power television.


In reply, WAVES argued that the service it proposed is very different from the radio services covered by the low-power exemption order and does not warrant the application of similar criteria, as suggested by the interveners. The applicant pointed out that it is proposing an optional service, and that the signal to be transmitted will be encrypted and will be decoded only by those who rent a portable receiver.

The Commission's analysis and conclusion


Under section 22(1) of the Act, the Commission may not issue a broadcasting licence unless the Department of Industry (the Department) "certifies to the Commission that the applicant has satisfied the requirements of the Radiocommunication Act and the regulations made under that Act, and has been or will be issued a broadcasting certificate with respect to the radio apparatus that the applicant would be entitled to operate under the licence".


In this matter, the Department advised the Commission that it cannot issue a broadcasting certificate because the applicant has not filed the required technical specifications, since not all the events and locations are known. Without the required specifications, the Department cannot provide any assurance that the proposed service will be technically acceptable.


In view of the foregoing, the Commission denies the application as filed.


The Commission concurs with the interveners, however, that low-power radio and television services for limited duration special events should receive similar regulatory treatment. Accordingly, in Proposed exemption orders, Public Notice CRTC 2002-80, the Commission today is issuing a call for public comment on proposed exemption orders for four classes of low-power radio and television undertakings, including a proposed exemption order for low-power encrypted television: limited duration special event facilitating undertakings. The deadline for submissions is 18 February 2003.

Secretary General

This decision is available in alternative format upon request, and may also be examined at the following Internet site:

Date Modified: 2002-12-20

Date modified: