ARCHIVED - Broadcasting Public Notice CRTC 2004-45

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Broadcasting Public Notice CRTC 2004-45


See also: 2004-45-1

Ottawa, 9 July 2004


Call for comments on proposals for the addition of Fox News and NFL Network to the lists of satellite services eligible for distribution on a digital basis


The requests


The Commission has received two separate requests from the Canadian Cable Television Association (CCTA), acting as the Canadian sponsor, to add two non-Canadian satellite services to the lists of satellite services eligible for distribution on a digital basis (the digital lists). The CCTA described the non-Canadian services as follows:

Fox News: A 24 hour seven day per week national U.S. cable news network devoted to delivering objective coverage of the day's events. The service broadcasts original news and information programs including live breaking news stories and coverage of significant events in the United States and around the world.


NFL Network: A 24 hour year round television lifestyle and entertainment sports service for NFL fans intended to complement and promote NFL games that are aired by other broadcasters. NFL Network broadcasts original news and information shows, magazine style shows and a weekly game preview show. Programming also includes press conferences, fantasy football shows and in 2004 some live exhibition games. NFL Network is not a live event sports service and will not be carrying live NFL games with the exception of some exhibition games and NFL Europe League games not currently offered by existing Canadian broadcasters.


The CCTA stated that authorizing the above services for distribution in Canada would be beneficial to the Canadian broadcasting system in that the services would (i) offer Canadian viewers the benefit of increased choice, (ii) increase the penetration of digital services which, in its view, is critical for the health of Canadian diginet services, high definition television, video-on-demand and potential interactive services, and (iii) be an effective tool in combating the appeal of the black market.



In Call for proposals to amend the lists of eligible satellite services through the inclusion of additional non-Canadian services eligible for distribution on a digital basis only, Public Notice CRTC 2000-173, 14 December 2000 (Public Notice 2000-173), the Commission invited proposals to amend the lists of eligible satellite services through the inclusion of additional non-Canadian programming services that would be authorized for distribution on a digital basis only. The Commission also stated in Public Notice 2000-173 that any such requests must include the following:
  • evidence that the non-Canadian service has agreed to be sponsored by the Canadian party filing the proposal;
  • a statement from the service provider that it has obtained all necessary rights for distribution of its programming in Canada;
  • a brief description of the service;
  • a copy of the current program schedule;
  • evidence of potential demand, as gathered through discussions with distributors; and
  • an undertaking from the non-Canadian service provider that it does not hold, will not obtain, nor will it exercise, preferential or exclusive programming rights in relation to the distribution of programming in Canada.


The Commission is satisfied that the CCTA has provided the supporting information required by Public Notice 2000-173 and that it is now appropriate to call for comments on the requests set out above.


As stated in Public Notice 2000-173, the Commission intends to assess the current requests against the background of its general policy which, among other things, generally precludes the addition to the lists of eligible satellite services of new non-Canadian satellite services that are either partially or totally competitive with Canadian specialty or pay television services. In applying this policy, the Commission will take into account the services of all specialty and pay television programming undertakings whose licence applications have been approved by the Commission, including all of the launched and unlaunched Category 1 and Category 2 specialty and pay television services.

The sponsor's views on competitiveness


With respect to NFL Network, the CCTA submitted that this service would not be partially or totally competitive with a licensed Canadian specialty or pay television service. The CCTA stated that NFL Network would complement both the live NFL games currently aired by Canadian broadcasters and the NFL Sunday Ticket pay package offered on a digital basis by Canadian cable companies.


The CCTA was of the view that Fox News would serve to complement the news currently aired by Canadian broadcasters. Further, the CCTA submitted that the Commission has already recognized that non-Canadian news and information satellite services are not competitive with licensed Canadian services that operate with similar formats. In this regard, the CCTA noted that the Commission has added such non-Canadian news services as CNN, CNN Headline News, C-Span, Euronews and BBC World to the lists of eligible satellite services despite the existence of Canadian services such as CBC Newsworld and CTV Newsnet.


In Fox News Canada, Decision CRTC 2000-565, 14 December 2000, the Commission approved an application by Global Television Network (OBCI) (Global) for a new Canadian Category 2 specialty programming service to be known as Fox News Canada. In Deadline to commence operation of Category 2 specialty and pay television services,Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2003-599, 16 December 2003, the Commission approved a request by Global for a one year final extension until 24 November 2004 to the implementation date for Fox News Canada.


The CCTA attached to its request a letter dated 31 March 2004 from Fox News, the non-Canadian partner in Fox News Canada. In that letter, Fox News addressed the Fox News Canada service as follows: "Fox News does not intend to implement this service and therefore will not meet the extended deadline to commence operations." The Commission notes that the CCTA did not provide any information from Global concerning Global's plans for Fox News Canada.

Call for comments


The Commission invites interested parties to file comments concerning the proposed addition of either of the sponsored non-Canadian satellite services to the digital lists. Parties that wish to comment should also submit a true copy of their comments to the Canadian sponsor at the following address:
1010-360 Albert Street
Ottawa, Ontario
K1R 7X7
Fax: (613) 232-2137


Proof that comments have been sent to the sponsor must accompany the original of the comments sent to the Commission


Comments must be received by the CRTC and by the CCTA on or before 9 August 2004.


Parties should clearly identify the request or requests to which their comments apply. They should also indicate whether they support, oppose, or propose changes to the requests, and should include the facts and grounds therefor.


The CCTA may file a written reply to any comments received concerning their requests. Such replies should be filed with the Commission, and a copy sent to the person who submitted the comments, by no later than 23 August 2004.


The Commission will not formally acknowledge comments. It will, however, fully consider all comments and they will form part of the public record of the proceeding, provided that the procedures for filing set out below have been followed.

Procedures for filing comments


Interested parties can file their comments to the Secretary General of the Commission by using ONE of the following formats:
  • Intervention/Comments form
    available from the Commission's web site by indicating and selecting the public notice number under the Decisions, Notices and Orders section


  • by electronic mail to


  • by mail to
    CRTC, Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0N2


  • by fax at
    (819) 994-0218


Submissions longer than five pages should include a summary.


Please number each paragraph of your submission. In addition, please enter the line ***End of document*** following the last paragraph. This will help the Commission verify that the document has not been damaged during transmission.


The Commission will make comments filed in electronic form available on its web site at but only in the official language and format in which they are submitted. Such comments may be accessed in the Public Proceedings section of the CRTC web site. Copies of all comments, whether filed on paper or in electronic form, will also be placed on the public examination file.


The Commission encourages interested parties to monitor the public examination file and the Commission's web site for additional information that they may find useful when preparing their comments.

Examination of public comments and related documents at the following Commission offices during normal business hours

  Central Building
Les Terrasses de la Chaudière
1 Promenade du Portage, Room G-5
Gatineau, Quebec K1A 0N2
Tel: (819) 997-2429 - TDD: 994-0423
Fax: (819) 994-0218
  Metropolitan Place
99 Wyse Road
Suite 1410
Dartmouth, Nova Scotia B3A 4S5
Tel: (902) 426-7997 - TDD: 426-6997
Fax: (902) 426-2721
  405 de Maisonneuve Blvd. East
2nd Floor, Suite B2300
Montréal, Quebec H2L 4J5
Tel: (514) 283-6607
Fax: (514) 283-3689
  55 St. Clair Avenue East
Suite 624
Toronto, Ontario M4T 1M2
Tel: (416) 952-9096
Fax: (416) 954-6343
  Kensington Building
275 Portage Avenue
Suite 1810
Winnipeg, Manitoba R3B 2B3
Tel: (204) 983-6306 - TDD: 983-8274
Fax: (204) 983-6317
  Cornwall Professional Building
2125 - 11th Avenue
Room 103
Regina, Saskatchewan S4P 3X3
Tel: (306) 780-3422
Fax: (306) 780-3319
  10405 Jasper Avenue
Suite 520
Edmonton, Alberta T5J 3N4
Tel: (780) 495-3224
Fax: (780) 495-3214
  530-580 Hornby Street
Vancouver, British Columbia V6C 3B6
Tel: (604) 666-2111 - TDD: 666-0778
Fax: (604) 666-8322
  Secretary General
  This document is available in alternative format upon request and may also be examined at the following Internet site:

Date Modified: 2004-07-09

Date modified: