ARCHIVED - Transcript / Transcription - Toronto, Ontario - 2002-09-18
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TRANSCRIPT OF PROCEEDINGS
FOR THE CANADIAN RADIO-TELEVISION AND
TRANSCRIPTION DES AUDIENCES DU
CONSEIL DE LA RADIODIFFUSION
ET DES TÉLÉCOMMUNICATIONS CANADIENNES
SUBJECT / SUJET:
Multiple broadcasting and ownership applications &
applications further to Public Notice CRTC 2002-39
"Call for applications for a broadcasting licence to carry on
a radio programming undertaking to serve Toronto, Ontario"/
Demandes de radiodiffusion et de propriétés multiples ainsi
que des demandes suite à l'avis public CRTC 2000-39
"Appel de demandes de licence de radiodiffusion visant
l'exploitation d'une entreprise de programmation de radio
pour desservir Toronto (Ontario)"
HELD AT: TENUE À:
Travelodge Hotel Hôtel Travelodge
Toronto Yorkdale Toronto Yorkdale
2737 Keele Street 2737, rue Keele
Toronto, Ontario Toronto (Ontario)
September 18, 2002 le 18 septembre 2002
In order to meet the requirements of the Official Languages
Act, transcripts of proceedings before the Commission will be
bilingual as to their covers, the listing of the CRTC members
and staff attending the public hearings, and the Table of
However, the aforementioned publication is the recorded
verbatim transcript and, as such, is taped and transcribed in
either of the official languages, depending on the language
spoken by the participant at the public hearing.
Afin de rencontrer les exigences de la Loi sur les langues
officielles, les procès-verbaux pour le Conseil seront
bilingues en ce qui a trait à la page couverture, la liste des
membres et du personnel du CRTC participant à l'audience
publique ainsi que la table des matières.
Toutefois, la publication susmentionnée est un compte rendu
textuel des délibérations et, en tant que tel, est enregistrée
et transcrite dans l'une ou l'autre des deux langues
officielles, compte tenu de la langue utilisée par le
participant à l'audience publique.Canadian Radio-television and
Conseil de la radiodiffusion et des
Transcript / Transcription
Multiple broadcasting and ownership applications &
applications further to Public Notice CRTC 2000-39
"Call for applications for a broadcasting licence to carry on
a radio programming undertaking to serve Toronto, Ontario"/
Demandes de radiodiffusion et de propriétés multiples ainsi
que des demandes suite à l'avis public CRTC 2000-39
"Appel de demandes de licence de radiodiffusion visant
l'exploitation d'une entreprise de programmation de radio
pour desservir Toronto (Ontario)"
BEFORE / DEVANT:
Andrée Wylie Chairperson / Présidente
David Colville Commissioner / Conseiller
Andrée Noël Commissioner / Conseillère
Cindy Grauer Commissioner / Conseillère
Andrew Cardozo Commissioner / Conseiller
ALSO PRESENT / AUSSI PRÉSENTS:
Joe Aguiar Hearing Manager / Gérante
Pierre LeBel Secretary / Secrétaire
Alastair Stewart Legal Counsel /
HELD AT: TENUE À:
Travelodge Hotel Hôtel Travelodge
Toronto Yorkdale Toronto Yorkdale
2737 Keele Street 2737, rue Keele
Toronto, Ontario Toronto (Ontario)
September 18, 2002 le 18 septembre 2002TABLE OF CONTENTS / TABLE DES MATIÈRES
PAGE / PARA NO.
PHASE I (continued)
PRESENTATION BY / PRÉSENTATION PAR
Catholic Youth Radio - KSM Inc. 270 / 1559
CKMW Radio Ltd. 334 / 1967
Infinity Broadcasting Inc. 430 / 2476
Toronto, Ontario / Toronto (Ontario)
--- Upon resuming on Wednesday, September 18, 2002
at 0832 / L'audience reprend le mercredi
18 septembre 2002 à 0832
1552 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good morning. Welcome back to the hearing. Alors nous souhaitons la bienvenue à tous ce matin.
1553 Mr. Secretary, please.
1554 MR. LEBEL: Thank you, Madam Chair.
1555 Item No. 4 on the Agenda is an application by Catholic Youth Studio - KSM Inc., for a licence to operate a commercial specialty FM ethnic religious radio station in Toronto.
1556 The new station would operate on frequency 101.3 megahertz, Channel 267B1, with an effective radiated power of 440 watts.
1557 Appearing for the applicant, I will ask Father Marian Gil to introduce his colleagues.
1558 You have 20 minutes to make your presentation.
PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION
1559 DR. GIL: Good morning, Madam Chair, Commissioners, ladies and gentlemen.
1560 Let me introduce the Radio Plus Toronto team: Russ Leblanc, our General Manager, an experienced radio broadcaster.
1561 At the end, Kinga Fasciszewska, Assistant Manager and Producer of Polish programs.
1562 On my left, Mark Garczynski, Financial Advisor to Catholic Radio.
1563 Lizanor Barrera, media student at Western, Internet Catholic Radio and active in the Filipino community.
1564 Tony Gosgnach, Producer and host of our English program and assistant editor of the interim newspaper.
1565 Darlene Chmielewski, full-time teacher and volunteer on-air host.
1566 Brian Moccia, health care professional, volunteer host and program producer.
1567 Olga Pankiw, Ukranian Catholic, ethnic broadcaster and journalist and a member of Ethnic Balance Panel.
1568 Anna Rogala, Marketing Coordinator for the International Festival of Religious Song.
1569 Scott Chu of Decima Research.
1570 Kenning Marchant, our legal counsel.
1571 For eight years we have provided Catholic programming in Polish and English. We hope, with your support, we can celebrate our 10th anniversary on the air as a full-fledged broadcaster.
1572 The goal of Radio Plus Toronto is to educate, motivate and create programs for positive reflection on the Catholic faith.
1573 But we will also share out time with others. We will begin each weekday with English programming for the multi-ethnic Catholic community. We will provide more cross-cultural programming each afternoon. For 10 hours each day we will offer Catholic programming in 11 third languages. We will also offer weekly programming for the diverse francophone Catholic community. Each evening and weekend, there are affordable access hours for other faiths.
1574 There is a huge unmet demand for Catholic programming. The survey results show that. Thousands of interventions, including over a hundred organizations, show that.
1575 Will people listen to Catholic radio?
1576 World Youth Day was a special event, but the audience numbers are impressive. The minute-by-minute audience for the Papal Mass was: 491,000 viewers on CBC and 233,000 on Newsworld. Newsworld's summer audiences are normally about 30,000, but 897,000 televisions were tuned in for at least some part of the Mass.
1577 Catholics in the GTA will soon number two million. They come from over 100 countries. They celebrate Mass in 38 languages each week.
1578 At the African parish, Mass is in English, French and several African languages. In suburban Mississauga, Canada's sixth largest city, one resident in ten is Portuguese.
1579 New Catholic communities are being formed, such as the Romanian Mission just last year.
1580 We believe our programming will attract others too, because it is inspiring, because it is interesting, because it is informative, because it is a real alternative to the other 32 radio services in Toronto.
1581 I hope you will listen to Catholic Radio on our Web site at www.catholicradio.ca. It is a magazine format, like Germany's Deutsche Welle or Radio Netherlands on shortwave.
1582 We begin with our lineup, such as:
1583 News from Canada, the Vatican and around the world:
1584 A topical interview or phone-in on Canon Law, Iraq or young offenders.
1585 The story of a saint: like Saint Elizabeth of Portugal, the peacemaker who stopped the wars between Portugal and Spain, and also between her husband and her son;
1586 Or Saint Nicholas -- I am not referring to the patron saint of Christmas shopping. The gifts he gave were marriage dowries, to save young women from prostitution back in the 4th Century.
1587 Reviews of the latest PG rated films. There is a problem with PG ratings. Parents don't have time to see a movie before their kids do. Our Web site tells kids what they will like about PG movies like "Signs" or "Goldmember", but also tells parents what violence, sexual content, drugs and alcohol and crude or abusive language the movie contains.
1588 There is a family feature; a reflection on faith from the Bible, not just the basis of our faith, but what Northrop Frye has called "The Great Code" of western civilization; and a lighthearted look at life and faith in Russ Leblanc's View from the Back Pew.
1589 And we will have music, a key part of our mission. Our International Festival of Religious Song is not a proposal, it is an annual event. We organize it.
1590 I mentioned Professor Frye, one of the great literary critics of the 20th Century. You can find both the Bible and Professor Frye's book about the Bible on an unusual reading list: the Rock n' Roll reading list. It is on the MuchMusic Web site at www.chumcity.com.
1591 The point of this example is that it is not only language and ethnicity that nourish our cultural diversity. It is also religion.
1592 Religion is one of the most important sources of ideas. It is a source of standards. It is a source of creativity. It is a source of inspiration. And not just religion in a place of worship on a Sabbath day, but in the music, ideas and values that are part of every day.
1593 We believe Catholicism offers an important perspective. We compete with news and views that are often different from our own. We welcome that diversity, but we also seek our own place in it.
1594 We play an important role in the community, through social agencies, hospitals, schools, universities, and help to immigrants and refugees.
1595 Society expects a lot of us. Communities rely on us to help sustain the social safety net. We ask you to give us a much needed communications tool to help with that work -- a full-time radio licence.
1596 We have an eight-year track record of sound financial operations. We have a realistic business plan. We aspire to, and believe we have approached, the highest standards of public service in our programming. We have fashioned specific responses to CRTC policies, particularly for ethnic and religious broadcasting.
1597 We have appointed an Ethnic Programming Panel to monitor and advise on ethnic balance.
1598 Our Religious Balance Panel already includes people from non-Catholic faiths. We have met with programmers from the Anglican, Jewish, Muslim and Greek Orthodox communities who want program hours on our station.
1599 We are aware of the licensing challenge you face with many applicants for the same frequency. There are different combinations of licences open to you.
1600 Catholic Youth Studios will consider options, including AM frequencies between 1610 and 1690.
1601 However, we believe there are particular reasons for Radio Plus Toronto to be licensed for 101.3 FM. This is the only FM frequency that will reach a wide GTA audience with a clear signal. The biggest reason is the size of the Catholic population -- the 36 per cent of the GTA, soon to be two million -- plus listeners of other faiths.
1602 There are few radio services, existing or proposed, whose GTA audience is as large and as dispersed.
1603 There are other reasons why Catholic Radio, in our view, belongs on 101.3 FM. Music is very important to us. Yes, we will have spoken word programming, as do other FM stations like CHIN-FM, CIRV-FM and CBC 99.1.
1604 FM is the best band to deliver high quality music, particularly Canadian music. We will program Canadian music in almost every program hour. Young people listen to other FM stations, music with a great beat and a great sound, but crude language and coarse lyrics. We hope they will also tune in to our great music and our great lyrics. To attract them, we need to be in the same radio neighbourhood.
1605 We also think FM makes sense for our adult audience. FM is the band where other public and non-profit stations are located, such as CBC, university radio and listener-supported CJRT. In our view, listener-supported Radio Plus Toronto belongs there too.
1606 Another reason is, the Catholic social service agencies who will be looking to Radio Plus Toronto to help reach their client communities: through emergency announcements, appeals for volunteers, or as a source of community programming. That requires signal consistency as well as reach.
1607 On an AM signal, people in their cars could miss important announcements going under a bridge or into an underground parking lot for example.
1608 I want to conclude with Radio Plus Toronto and the objectives of the Broadcasting Act. We know they are your ultimate licensing criteria.
1609 We have identified 21 objectives to which our service will make a material contribution. We will make those contributions for the largest target audience of any application before you at this important hearing.
1610 Madam Chair, Commissioners, we ask for your support for our application and we are ready for your questions.
1611 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Father Gil and welcome to you and your colleagues.
1612 Commissioner Cardozo, please.
1613 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you, Madam Chair.
1614 Welcome, Father Gil. Thank you very much for your presentation and all of you being here.
1615 I think this is probably your first appearance before the Commission.
1616 DR. GIL: Yes, that is true.
1617 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I welcome you here and hope we can make it a pleasant experience.
1618 I will just tell you, so that you are aware, the purpose of the hearing today, and the rest of the phases through the next few days, is really to complete the information we need to make a decision. So the decision is based on your application, the letters that you have exchanged with the Commission so far and then these discussions.
1619 So just to clarify, if there are issues we don't cover today, it is not because they are not important, it is just that we have enough information.
1620 This isn't an interrogation, but feel free to give us as much information as you feel will be helpful to us to make our decision.
1621 I will go through a few areas and let me just tell you what they are. We will start with talking about the ethnic and third language programming; after that, Canadian content; Canadian Talent Development; religious programming policies, economic and business issues and, lastly, some technical issues.
1622 First, on programming. Let me get a general sense of the application.
1623 Had there been a general call for this hearing as opposed to the call that we made which specifically focuses on applications that clearly reflected diversity of languages as well as the multicultural, multi-ethnic reality of the Greater Toronto Area, if this had been a general call just for AM and FM applications of any kind, would you have had the same type of application or would it have been different?
1624 DR. GIL: Because the community in the GTA is a very diverse community and mother language is very important, especially when people would like to express their faith and their beliefs, but also cultural values, that is why I think that we would apply in a situation when there was an opportunity for multi-ethnic and multilingual service like this one.
1625 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I also want to sort of get at that what you have put forward to us is not a plan that you have had for a long time and then you have added the multilingual part in to meet this call. Is this always part of the idea that you had?
1626 DR. GIL: I have been thinking about this project for the last couple of years and, as you could see through our history at Catholic Youth Studio, we started the program first with the Polish Community and the program grew to the extent that we also added an English aspect to that program.
1627 Having contact with so many groups across the GTA and having meetings with different organizations, I noticed that there was a great, great desire and demand for Catholic programming also in ethnic groups other than Polish. That is why we specifically applied for this licence, because it is multilingual and multicultural as the Catholic community is in the GTA.
1628 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Right. What is the youth part of the studio? Is it a youth organization or a youth service organization?
1629 DR. GIL: Our organization came into existence after the World Youth Day in Denver, Colorado in 1993. But over the years this group brings together not only young people but also young adults and parents.
1630 Now we have a great number of people, not only young people but also, as I mentioned, families and young adults that are part of this organization, but at the very beginning it was a youth movement, a youth group that got together after the World Youth Day. It was inspired by this tremendous event. As you could see what was happening in Toronto just a few months ago, we are very happy that a similar event took part in Toronto almost 10 years later than Colorado.
1631 So we have, yes, a large number of young people involved in our corporation, but also we have young adults and families as well.
1632 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: There is a significant youth component. It is not just that you were youth when you started it and you are not youth any more but you forgot to take the word off?
1633 DR. GIL: No, no. We still have many young people involved. We could see that especially during the World Youth Day when our journalists covered different events. The majority of our journalists are young people, university students.
1634 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Can I just ask you a couple of questions on demographics.
1635 In your June 17th letter, what looks like page 30 by my count -- they are not numbered, but I think it is page 30 -- there is a section on demographics. You have looked at the population, the Catholic population of the Toronto CMA, as 35 per cent or 1.6 million. A few points down in the line you have youth 50 to 24 at 608,000.
1636 Is that Catholic youth or all youth in Toronto?
1637 DR. GIL: That is Catholic youth.
1638 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: That is Catholic youth.
1639 I guess in reading your application I think we have placed a lot of emphasis on the youth aspect of it. Should I not be looking at the youth aspect as the key part that is both youth and adults? Because further down on that page you say:
"Radio Plus Toronto expects its programming to build a significant audience among adult audiences primarily age 25-plus." (As read)
1640 Based on certain things.
1641 DR. GIL: We planned our programming the way that would serve young people and young adults as well, but our main goal is to reach adults 25-plus.
1642 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: More 25-plus than, say, 14 to 25?
1643 DR. GIL: Correct.
1644 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I wonder if I could just ask the technician if there is anything you can do. There is a bit of a hum coming from Father Gil's -- it may be some kind of divine aura around you, but there seems to be a bit of a hum coming just from that particular microphone.
1645 I will carry on though.
1646 So the target audience is then, I guess, the 25-plus adult population, which is 23 per cent, a little over a million people?
1647 DR. GIL: Yes.
1648 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. Thank you.
1649 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Tell us a bit about your local programming. As you are aware, local programming is an important aspect. Give me a sense of the local programming you would have and also your programming you might get nationally and internationally. I note you are getting some programming from the Vatican for example. Give us a sense of how much would be locally produced and how much would be from beyond Toronto and internationally.
1650 DR. GIL: We can't hear you.
1651 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Oh, you can't hear me now.
1652 The red light is on, but they can't hear me.
1653 Can you hear me any better now?
1654 DR. GIL: A bit better, yes.
1655 THE CHAIRPERSON: You should try to have only one microphone on at a time, because that causes interference between the two. Thank you.
1656 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Can you hear me now?
1657 DR. GIL: Yes.
1658 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So we will play this game of pressing buttons and maybe we can communicate better.
1659 Could you give us a sense of how much local programming you will have and how much will be from elsewhere in the country and how much will be from outside the country? I note that you have some programming from the Vatican.
1660 DR. GIL: Most of our programming will be local. As you can see in our refiled supplementary brief in June, we will have some programming from abroad, but most of it, almost 90 per cent will be local programming.
1661 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: How would you describe that program? What type of programming would it be? Would it be mostly spoken word?
1662 DR. GIL: Yes, about 70 per cent will have spoken word. But as I mentioned in the introduction, we will have -- because of the great involvement in International Festival of Religious Songs and because of involvement of many artists from different ethnic communities, we will have also a great percentage, about 30 per cent of music.
1663 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: You have listed there languages that you will provide programming in. Are those going to be individual producers doing their own thing, or will you be providing sort of like a master programming and they would then translate it into the different languages?
1664 DR. GIL: We will have producers for every ethnic language and it will be in-house production.
1665 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Would they develop their own programming or would it be like an English script that they would then translate and run in each language?
1666 DR. GIL: We have developed over the years very successful programming for the Polish community and we want to apply this programming to other communities as well. But it won't be an exact replica of the Polish programming, it will be also a space for adjustments to different communities.
1667 So we will have in ethnic segment elements like news from the Vatican, from Canada, from around the world. We will also have interviews, we will have meditations, we will have movie and book reviews. We will also have, as I mentioned, interviews, phone-ins.
1668 So these are the segments which will reflect different aspects of every community, because each community is very different. That is why we want to make sure that the producer is very familiar with that community, comes from that community and has also a good understanding of what is really happening there, that we produce programs that are of high quality and that meet with the needs of certain communities.
1669 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Can I ask you about your planned working relationship with -- is it Innerpeace Television, Paolo Canciani's operation. What type of synergies or sharing of programs have you got there?
1670 DR. GIL: At the present time we don't share any programming or anything like that, but we are open to other groups that are providing programming also in Canada who would like to collaborate with us to make our program more richer and more applicable to our audience, yes.
1671 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Can I just clarify a couple of things for possible conditions of licence.
1672 You have noted that you will be offering 62 per cent ethnic programming and 62 per cent third language programming. Would that be acceptable to you as a condition of licence?
1673 DR. GIL: Could you repeat the question?
1674 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Sure. From your application I gather that 62 per cent of your programming will be ethnic programming and also 62 per cent will be third language programming. Do I have those numbers right and would you be willing to accept that as a condition of licence?
1675 DR. GIL: We would like to produce, yes, a minimum of 60 per cent ethnic programming and third language.
1676 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So 60 per cent is the figure you have put forward?
1677 DR. GIL: As the minimum, yes.
1678 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Can I also just take that one step further. You might have noticed we have asked this question of others.
1679 In response to some of the interventions there was concern that we be a little more specific in our conditions of licence so one of the things we are exploring with applicants is: Would you be willing to name some of those languages?
1680 Would you, for example, take a figure like 55 per cent or 60 per cent? What I'm just doing is, I notice that all the languages are the same amount, seven hours each, so if I took the languages that would add up to about 50 per cent, which is what we are looking at.
1681 This question may sound complicated. It is complicated to me too, so bear with me.
1682 But if we said: Would you accept a condition of licence with a minimum of 55 per cent which would cover the following languages, namely Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Vietnamese, Cantonese, Mandarin, Polish, Ukranian, Korean, German and Tagalog -- which is taking the languages which is pretty well what we just said in terms of 62 per cent but I'm just, in this case naming the languages as opposed to saying "X" number of languages.
1683 The list of languages you have provided us, would you be okay with a condition of licence that names the languages, which means you would have to stick with them and you wouldn't have the flexibility to drop?
1684 If you like you can think about that.
1685 DR. GIL: To a certain extent, yes. But I think that each radio station would like to have certain space to move this way or that way, because we know that especially immigration is moving sometimes this direction or that direction. That is why I wouldn't like to lock ourselves into that spot that we weren't going to be able to provide the service later on. But in our effort, we would do what is possible to serve this community.
1686 The reason we decided to choose those languages is because we used three criteria. First of all, we looked at the 10 top ethnic groups in the GTA. Then we looked at number of parishes which are present in the GTA. Also we looked at programming that is provided for those communities in the GTA. So these are three criteria we used in order to discern which groups we are going to serve.
1687 As I mentioned, yes, we would accept certain limitations, but not to the extent that we wouldn't be able later on to serve communities, because let's say German or any other community moves out. There are different trends in our society sometimes. From the GTA certain communities are moving west or moving east and then we would be serving only a very small number of people. That is why I would look at this situation from that point of view.
1688 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. I understand what you are saying.
1689 Can I ask you to give this some thought and perhaps when you come back in Phase II if you could come up with your own wording as to what kind of condition of licence would be acceptable which would give us two things: a percentage of the number of hours and the names of languages? So we might not say seven hours per language, but we may want to at least name the languages.
1690 DR. GIL: Okay.
1691 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So if you can give that to us? You can come back in Phase IV at the end of the hearing, which is the end of next week.
1692 DR. GIL: Yes.
1693 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Can I just ask you in terms of how you selected languages, when you said you looked at what else was available, you weren't looking at overall ethnic programming, you were looking at Catholic-oriented ethnic programming?
1694 DR. GIL: We looked at the programming overall that this provided as well. We know that there is not much Catholic programming in the GTA except ours.
1695 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I'm just thinking when you look at it from the language perspective. When you look at some of these languages, Polish for example, there is a fair amount of Polish programming across the system.
1696 DR. GIL: Yes.
1697 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: It is not Catholic programming necessarily.
1698 DR. GIL: That is why we do not change the number of hours in the Polish programming. We will provide the same number of --
1699 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: When you are looking at services in other languages you are looking at Catholic programming in other languages?
1700 DR. GIL: Catholic. We were looking --
1701 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: If you take Korean, for example, or Spanish, or let's say Vietnamese, there is a lot more Polish programming available in Toronto than there is Vietnamese, but you have them both pegged at seven hours. From what I understand, you are not just looking at Polish programming in general but Catholic-oriented Polish programming, Catholic-oriented Vietnamese programming.
1702 DR. GIL: Yes. The reason we decided to keep one slot for each group is because of our experience. We know that when people learn that there was certain programming at a certain hour -- let's say at the present time we have programming on AM 530 from 8:00 to 9:00, when people learn that every day there is a program it is a lot easier for them to tune in than to have the programming one hour on Monday and one hour on Saturday.
1703 From a business point of view and from the success of the programming, I think that is the best strategy that we came across.
1704 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. You talked about training opportunities for volunteers. Could you give us a bit of information about that?
1705 DR. GIL: On a regular basis we provide training opportunities every year during the summertime. We have summer students that have an opportunity to learn how to use media and for our own producers we have also training sessions. We try to send people to different seminars in order to encourage them to upgrade their skills because it provides also benefits to our community.
1706 BER CARDOZO: Okay. So they would get training in all aspects of the work you do.
1707 DR. GIL: Yes.
1708 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thanks. You are aware of the importance of keeping logs which is sometimes a problem with stations, but sometimes a particular problem when you have a lot of volunteers. We don't have the ability to be flexible on keeping tapes, keeping logs.
1709 DR. GIL: I'm aware of that. We are complying with the regulations at the present radio station. I believe that the management of that station that we are at at the present time could prove that we are filling out all the necessary documents and will do that also at the proposed station.
1710 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. A couple of questions on Canadian content. You have said that you would exceed the 10 per cent minimum and offer 15 per cent in year one, going up to 30 per cent in year seven. Would you accept that as a condition of licence?
1711 DR. GIL: Yes.
1712 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. And could I ask you when you come back in Phase IV to give us the precise figures for each of the years from one to seven. What you have got is 15 in year one, 30 in year seven, so if you could just make up the numbers however you like them between years two and six and just give us a chart because we would probably want to put that in if we were to license your application.
1713 The percentage you are looking at is across the board, so that's the multilingual parts as well as the English parts of your program.
1714 DR. GIL: Correct.
1715 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Would it differ between the ethnic -- the third language parts and the English? Would you have more Canadian content than English or do you think there's enough Canadian content, religious, Catholic, multilingual programming?
1716 DR. GIL: We will provide the same percentage for both English and --
1717 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And you feel there's enough programming, there's enough Canadian music of interest to you in the various languages.
1718 DR. GIL: I think that I already mentioned that the Festival of Religious Songs brings people from different ethnic groups. We have our own recordings at the present time that we use. We already produced some CDs from the previous festivals, so we could utilize that, plus we plan we expand this event. I believe that by year seven we will have enough music to provide Canadian content of 30 per cent.
1719 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. That's a perfect segue to the next set of questions I want to ask you about, which is the Canadian Talent Development.
1720 The International Festival of Religious Songs that you just mentioned, you are looking at $30,000 annual funding for that; 50 per cent for staging, infrastructure and organizational aspects or $15,000 a year.
1721 How does that support Canadian talent Ddvelopment, the actual development of Canadian talent?
1722 DR. GIL: The Festival of Religious Songs is a contest. This year we have about 50 groups that already applied. The festival takes place in November. We provide an opportunity for Canadian artists to perform. They also receive prizes at the end. They will receive also certificates.
1723 If I can mention, during the World Youth Day one of the performers during the Stations of the Cross was a person that was part of the Festival of Religious Songs. Because of those talents and opportunities that we give different people, different Canadian artists, it is an excellent stage for development of Canadian talent.
1724 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Can you give me a sense of the $30,000, what money would go for? Fifteen thousand goes towards actual artists and --
1725 DR. GIL: Fifteen thousand goes to organizational aspects like providing equipment, providing also venues. Once in a while we organize those events also at the Living Arts Centre in Mississauga and we know that to rent the facility for three days for such a large event it costs lots of money.
1726 Also, as I mentioned, another 50 per cent will go towards bringing in artists from different ethnic groups from abroad. I strongly believe that bringing artists from different ethnic communities from abroad inspires also young people, Canadian talent. We know that it attracts people. It attracts also artists because they want to perform with someone who is famous. This is our experience for 13 years. That's why I think that it works. We would like to continue that.
1727 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: All right. You are looking at bringing in Catholic artists. You are not talking about Mick Jagger or Cher or somebody like that I take it.
1728 DR. GIL: Yes. I'm talking about Christian artists.
1729 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I don't know really if Mick Jagger has strong Christian values. I don't know.
1730 On diverse community concert series that you plan, $7,000 per year, the funds seem to be set aside or no funds have been set aside for the artists themselves. Is that correct?
1731 DR. GIL: Yes. This part this money is provided for just venues and also equipment, so we create an opportunity for different ethnic groups to be part of those events.
1732 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: How much of the money would go to the artists? Would they be paid?
1733 DR. GIL: No. We don't pay the artists any money.
1734 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: What I'm gathering from these two projects, there isn't much money going to artists themselves. My question to you is this: If you were to be licensed, we would look at this -- we would analyze this fairly closely.
1735 You are aware of our Canadian Talent Development policy. If we felt that any of these parts don't meet, we would indicate which parts don't meet. Would you be prepared to reassign those to something that more exactly replicate their policy or meet their policy?
1736 DR. GIL: Could you repeat once again the question?
1737 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Yes. Our policy on Canadian Talent Development requires that the money goes directly to Canadian talent development. At the end of the day if you were to be licensed and our analysis suggests or concludes that some of what you put aside is not directly helping Canadian talent development, that there may be too much for infrastructure issues, not enough for artists themselves, would you be willing to make some changes to these plans and come back to us and reassign the funding according to --
1738 DR. GIL: Yes.
1739 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: That's the right answer. Okay. Actually, if you had said no, I would have just asked you for your explanation because that's allowed too. You don't have to. If you have got a good explanation as to why you should be allowed outside the rules, we are also prepared to listen to that. I just want to clarify that.
1740 On religious programming, are you familiar with the Commission's religious broadcasting policies, the number of which -- for your lawyer I will just say the number. It's Public Notice 1993-78. Part of it, Part IV is called "Guidelines on Ethics for Religious Programming". I just want to ask are you aware of that and will you accept as a condition of licence that you would abide by that and if not --
1741 DR. GIL: Yes, we will.
1742 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: You tell us. Okay. On balance programming, you are required to do a certain amount of balance programming under religious policy. What is your understanding of balance programming? What do you plan to do there? You plan to do 14 hours a week, four hours of rebroadcast between 6:00 p.m. and midnight.
1743 DR. GIL: Yes. In order to provide the balance programming, we decided to run programs that would bring also a perspective of different faiths and different views. That's why included in our regular programming are programs like "Universal Understanding or Ecumenism". That would be an excellent opportunity to bring people from different faiths and discuss the issues, plus present issues.
1744 We also once a month provide documentaries on different religious groups because we live in a multiethnic and multireligious environment. That's why we would like to provide that opportunity and build bridges between generations and different religions.
1745 Plus, in order to provide the balance programming, we included in every programming time for phone-ins so that people can express their views and in order to make sure that it works, we will screen the calls and also allow other people to express their views that not only we agree with, but they might not be used to reflect the teaching of the Catholic church, but we live in the environment and we are not afraid to deal with issues that concern our society.
1746 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. There are two ways of looking at balance. One is if you take an issue, say, such as marriage and you had five people from different faith groups, some people might call that balance, but if from five different faiths they all the exact same view, which may be the case, some might argue that isn't balance, that you want is to get balance. You may get people of the Catholic faith who have a different view on the subject.
1747 So you are open to both different faith groups as well as different points of view.
1748 DR. GIL: The Catholic church itself is very diverse. People reflect different views, different options, so we would be also open to provide that so that there is a larger understanding also of what is really happening in our world around that.
1749 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: In terms of the number of hours that you have offered, namely 14 hours per week, four hours to be broadcast between six and midnight, would you be willing to accept that as a condition of licence?
1750 DR. GIL: Yes.
1751 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: You talked about ten minute open line segments and you have listed those as balance programming. I'm thinking from the point of view of monitoring or your counting at the end of the day.
1752 Is it fair to say that that would be potentially balance programming because if you had a ten minute segment where you weren't getting a balance of views, like you got say three calls and all three calls have the same view, would you still be calling that part of your balance programming?
1753 DR. GIL: I think that it is an opportunity for everyone to phone in and express their views. Plus, we will provide all of our Web site so that people can express their views and we will bring those comments to our next program and say what are the views in order to make sure if we do not reflect in certain ten minute segments the variety of views, then we will have an opportunity at the next program to provide those views, gathering information from our Web site, so we will make sure that this is also part of our balanced programming.
1754 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: These ten-minute segments would be part of this 14-hour overall of balance programming. Right?
1755 DR. GIL: Yes.
1756 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Would they be in different languages or in English?
1757 DR. GIL: They will be in different languages, as well.
1758 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So each language would have these ten-minute open line segments.
1759 DR. GIL: Yes.
1760 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Every day on each of the seven days that they are on?
1761 DR. GIL: Mostly, yes.
1762 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Your Balance Advisory Panel, you have indicated in the material we have received so far that you had three people on there of the Sikh, Macedonian Orthodox and Anglican faiths. Are all the people now chosen? Do you have others that you can update us on?
1763 This is the Balance Advisory Panel.
1764 DR. GIL: At the present time we have those people, yes, for the balance programming, and we are also open to bring some other people, as well.
1765 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you.
1766 I have a question on marketing, if we could go to the Decima Study. You talked about Toronto Catholics are interested in multilingual multicultural Catholic radio, on the first page, and on page 7 again: Unlike some other topics, the need for multicultural multilingual radio programming is widely shared amongst practising and non-practising Catholics. Then on page 9: The interest in programs of this multicultural nature appeals to those 18 to 34, with 54 per cent interested, and those 55 and older, 46 per cent.
1767 From what I understand, the sample size is about 400 in the Decima Study.
1768 DR. GIL: Yes.
1769 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Does this include Catholics overall, or shall we call it non-English speaking or Catholics from the minority ethnic communities?
1770 DR. GIL: I will let Scott Chu of Decima respond to this question.
1771 MR. CHU: Thank you, Father.
1772 When we first started this study we looked at the universe as being the Catholic community in the Toronto CMA area. Once we started that, we had to realize that there are different levels of involvement as far as their face was concerned, that some would consider themselves to be practising and some would consider themselves to be non-practising.
1773 Once we determined that, we also had to determine what portion of the Catholic community would consider themselves to be practising and what would consider themselves to be non-practising.
1774 We determined that a 400 sample size of 400 complete would be sufficient. What we have done is we have completed 100 random interviews with those who claim to be Catholic in faith.
1775 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And that is 100 out of the 400?
1776 MR. CHU: That is all 400 interviews were completed amongst Catholics in Toronto CMA.
1777 Among the first 100 we completed, we found out that about 40 per cent of those people would consider themselves to be non-practising and 60 would consider themselves to be practising. Once we determined that and once we determined the profiles of those people, we were able to expand the sample to 400. We had a quota of 300 practising and 100 non-practising, and we were able to weight the numbers back to the proper portion of practising and non-practising after we completed the 400 interviews.
1778 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: That is not quite my question. Some people believe the Commission has very extensive powers, but whether people are practising or non-practising of their faith hasn't yet been put into our Act. So I don't want to go there.
1779 I am more concerned about the language they speak or the ethnicity in terms of the multicultural, multilingual nature of the application.
1780 What is your sense of the 400? What is your sense of the number of people who would either be third language speaking or from the minority ethnic communities that you are appealing to with your third language programming?
1781 MR. CHU: The interview was completed in English only. At the end of the survey, we also asked about their ethnic heritage as well. The numbers that we received from that question was a reflection of the Catholic community in the Toronto area in terms of different ethnicities represented.
1782 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: What would the percentage of that 400 be of the language groups that you are looking to serve? Would it be 30 per cent, 50 per cent?
1783 I am not necessarily looking for each of the languages, but overall.
1784 MR. CHU: So the languages that you have outlined.
1785 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: You asked the ethnicity questions.
1786 MR. CHU: Definitely.
1787 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: What percentage of the 400 came from one of the minority ethnic groups?
1788 MR. CHU: We believe it was close to 50 per cent.
1789 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: From what you know, either Mr. Chu or Father Gil, is that reflective of the Catholic church in the Greater Toronto Area? Is about half of the Catholic population from the minority ethnic communities?
1790 DR. GIL: Could you repeat once again?
1791 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Yes. From what you know, either from this survey or in general, what is your sense of the ethnic composition of the Catholic population in the GTA? Would about half of it be from minority ethnic communities?
1792 DR. GIL: I believe so. About 50 or even more per cent would come from ethnic groups, yes.
1793 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: In terms of parishes, do you have a sense of parishes and masses, and that kind of stuff?
1794 I suppose less than 50 would be in different languages, because you are trying to have languages for the larger population.
1795 DR. GIL: Of the present time in the Toronto Archdiocese, the mass is said on each weekend in 38 languages.
1796 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: In how many?
1797 DR. GIL: Thirty-eight.
1798 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thirty-eight languages.
1799 DR. GIL: Yes. So it reflects a great diversity.
1800 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Can I ask about your fund raising. What is KSM Inc.? What is the relationship to Catholic Youth Studio?
1801 Is it one and the same thing?
1802 DR. GIL: It is the same organization. Actually, our full name is Catholic Youth Studio - KSM Inc. We use the Polish. KSM stands for Katolickie Studio Mlodych, which is the Polish translation of Catholic Youth Studio.
1803 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Tell me a little more about your fund raising and how you believe that will translate to this radio station.
1804 DR. GIL: At the present time our audited statement shows that every year we are able to raise enough money to operate not only the Polish-speaking program but also the English program.
1805 Actually the business plan that we proposed for this new operation looks like one-third of the proposed business plan we already collect running the program for one ethnic group. When we take into consideration 11 languages, then the opportunity also grows. I believe that it would help us to raise the necessary money to run --
1806 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: The fund raising that is done is primarily with the Polish community?
1807 DR. GIL: Correct.
1808 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And you have not started with the others yet.
1809 DR. GIL: No.
1810 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Do you have a contingency plan? That is a very optimistic answer you have just given me, and I don't want to throw cold water on it. If the fund raising doesn't work out the way you plan, what is your plan B?
1811 DR. GIL: We include not only the fund raising but also we know that there are several businesses that would support Catholic radio and would provide commercials for the station. That is part of our business plan.
1812 We have been successful and we proved that over eight years that this plan works. As I mentioned, I believe that if one-third of the income that we presently have is part of the new proposed station, then serving other 11 groups it shouldn't be a problem to raise enough money for the proposed station.
1813 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Do you have a sense of the 11 or 12, whether there are some communities where you would be able to raise more money than others?
1814 DR. GIL: Yes, of course, but some communities are smaller and some are larger, and some are well established and some not that well. That is why, in our vision, we considered that and will provide the programming to less fortunate groups that do not have that income and will subsidize those programmings for the smaller groups in order to serve those communities.
1815 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: The last couple of questions have to do with technical issues.
1816 You have heard about the specialty audio service policy that we just put out a few days ago. If you were not to receive a licence here, would that be a viable option for you?
1817 DR. GIL: At the present time we use the Internet and we broadcast over the Internet. We know that specialty radio and Internet, which is only a certain number of people. So looking at this very large community, about 2 million, I think to turn to specialty radio we wouldn't meet the needs of those people.
1818 Especially when people go to work, when they drive they spend sometimes, especially in Toronto, many hours in their cars. So we would miss the opportunity to serve those people.
1819 We are open also to provide the programming via satellite or specialty radio as an additional way of reaching out to those people.
1820 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: You would see that as being in addition to having an FM; that just having cable, satellite and the Internet is not sufficient.
1821 DR. GIL: Because of the large number, I believe that we would limit our programming to only that number of people, and I would see it as an additional way of reaching out.
1822 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: In terms of the best use of the frequency, I noticed in your June 17th letter you said that Radio Plus Toronto programming service is directed to 35 per cent of the GTA, or 1.5 million Roman Catholics.
1823 In reading your application, my sense is that it was the smaller target group mainly that you were looking at, not the entire population but the Catholic population, then a smaller group of that, which is the non-English speaking Catholic population, and then the youth of that.
1824 What you have laid out for me is that you are not looking at just the ethnic Catholic youth, but you are looking at all Catholics.
1825 DR. GIL: Yes.
1826 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: It is the English programming which would get you the English-speaking Catholics as well.
1827 DR. GIL: We thought very carefully of how to propose the programming, because we know that there is a large number of people. In order to serve this community we would need probably at least two or three frequencies to reach out to every community. As I mentioned, 38 ethnic groups, ethnic languages are already present and the mass is said every weekend.
1828 So, in order to serve them, the most optimized option is to serve those people in ethnic languages that also use English as a wider way to reach out to those communities -- that we won't be able to, because of the limited time. Also reaching out to the second generation sometimes identify themselves with certain communities, certain ethnic groups and they promote their cultural values, but they don't speak their language. So English would be a perfect way to reach those people as well.
1829 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay, thanks. I have a last question for you. It is a summary question. I would you or anyone else -- if anybody else would like to say something that they are dying to get on the record, this is your chance.
1830 Give us a sense again about the use of the frequencies you know -- I think it is seven other applications that have applied for this frequency.
1831 Give us a sense of why you think your application is the best one for the use.
1832 A couple of things to keep in mind is that we look at the issue of underserved communities and also look at an application with the largest number of people, although those aren't the only criteria, there is a number of issues.
1833 Could you give us a sense -- this is a summary chance -- as to why you would be most suitable for this frequency.
1834 DR. GIL: I think that one of the most important elements of why we should get 101.3 FM is because of the great number of people.
1835 Second, because Catholic communities are underserved. There is no Catholic programming except ours. There is about two million people -- the largest group that ever any applicants of this hearing is presenting.
1836 Also, the other options. I think that because 101.3 FM is still a limited way of reaching out that great number.
1837 So I think to consider other options would even limit the number of people that we propose to serve.
1838 Also, music is a very important part of our faith. Music is very important and part of our programming that we developed over the last 13 years as an excellent way of serving different communities and helping Canadian talent.
1839 The Festival of Religious Song brings people from different ethnic groups. It brings young children and adults.
1840 So, this is strictly a Canadian operation. We promote this event. We use this music to play on the station. We will have in the future enough music to provide for Canadian talent, but also to reach out to young people.
1841 We are very concerned about younger generations, young people, families. That is why we propose a very positive and very optimistic way of serving this population. I believe this is an excellent opportunity to get this 101.3 FM frequency.
1842 I have been working with young people for almost 14 years. I counselled families for several years.
1843 From my own experience, I see the great need of such a programming.
1844 I was really surprised that no one before came up with such a proposal, because of the number, because of the needs.
1845 I think that if Radio Plus Toronto is not recognized in that situation, I think that we will miss a great opportunity to serve a great number of people and meet their needs.
1846 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you very much. Those are my questions.
1847 DR. GIL: Thank you.
1848 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Madam Chair.
1849 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Counsel?
1850 MR. STEWART: Merci, madame la présidente. Good morning.
1851 I would like to begin with questions relating to your commitments on ethnic programming and third language programming and seek clarification of your commitments.
1852 I would like you to turn to page 63 of your deficiency response of the 17th of June. In fact, let's start with page 62.
1853 MR. MARCHANT: Could you please give us the heading on the page, so we are sure we are looking at the same page.
1854 MR. STEWART: Yes, of course. It is where you provided the various breakdowns of the ethnic groups that would be served and the hours that would be aired with respect to those various ethnic groups.
1855 At the end it is the percentage of total programming provided during the broadcast week that is devoted to ethnic programming.
1856 There doesn't seem to be a heading as such, except that on the previous page it is question 19. Maybe that will serve as a more reliable indicator of where I would like you to go.
1857 Are you with me?
1858 MR. MARCHANT: Is there a box at the beginning of the page?
1859 MR. STEWART: Okay. I am just being informed that there is a heading called "Serving and Reflecting Local Religions and Ethnic Communities", and that would be -- unfortunately where the page number is located on all copies, a hole has been punched through it.
1860 MR. MARCHANT: It is page 50.
1861 DR. GIL: We have it now.
1862 MR. STEWART: You have it? Thank you.
1863 It is a very simple question. As I understood it, what you agreed to when speaking to Commissioner Cardozo, by way of a COL, was 60 per cent for ethnic programming and 60 per cent third language commitment.
1864 Yet, on page 62, the percentage of the total programming that would be devoted to ethnic programming, based on your own figures, is 62.3.
1865 Similarly, on the following page, the third language programming that is reflected in the schedule would be more in the order of 62.3.
1866 So, is that 60 per cent or 62.3 per cent?
1867 MR. LEBLANC: There is a typo. It is based on the information here that we provided to you. It should be 62.3.
1868 MR. STEWART: In both cases? So you would accept those figures as the condition of licence?
1869 DR. GIL: We would accept it as a condition of licence. Minimum of 60 per cent and we know that we might produce even more than 60 per cent, but as a condition of licence, we accept 60 per cent.
1870 MR. STEWART: It just puzzles me why you wouldn't -- except I realize the variation is very small, but 62 per cent, given that that is what your programming would appear to suggest.
1871 MR. MARCHANT: I think there is no discrepancy.
1872 The application does actually clearly propose the 60 per cent as a condition of licence.
1873 In preparing a schedule, there is a projection that it won't just be a minimum, it will be exceeded.
1874 I think that is the spirit of imposing a condition of licence as a minimum, is that you might well want to exceed it. I think that was the spirit in which the application was prepared.
1875 As Father Gil explained earlier, there are questions of adjustment and flexibility that also go into this planning.
1876 So the 62.3 per cent was a tender on the part of this applicant that they were looking to exceed the minimum, not merely meet it.
1877 MR. STEWART: Okay. So at least the record is clear that it is 60 per cent by way of a COL. Thank you.
1878 Now, I would just like to explore very briefly on Canadian talent development. I believe under the International Festival of Song category -- now I have to turn to the relevant portion -- you are suggesting or proposing that $15,000 would be spent towards bringing in well-known artists from different ethnic communities around the world.
1879 Can you justify that expenditure, in terms of the Canadian talent development criteria that the Commission has?
1880 DR. GIL: As we look at generally accepted initiatives, we could see that generally accepted in a direct way are concerts, drama and also prices.
1881 So I believe that we meet those criteria when we bring in other artists to organize concerts and especially, as I mentioned before, in order to inspire young people and give them also some inspiration to be part of this event.
1882 Well-known people will attract a wider audience and serve better than if we would just stick to our own milieu, our own environment.
1883 MR. STEWART: I believe you said in response to Commissioner Cardozo's question that you would, in the event that the Commission wer not accept that as an eligible expenditure, you would expect to redirect that and other ineligible sums to eligible categories and that your overall commitment with respect to Canadian talent development by way of a COL would remain as stated, in overall terms, in your application. Is that correct?
1884 DR. GIL: Could you repeat, once again, the question?
1885 MR. STEWART: If the Commission were to disagree with you and say that that $15,000 is not an eligible expenditure, I believe in response to Commissioner Cardozo's question, you said you would be prepared to redirect that $15,000 towards something that the Commission would consider as an eligible expenditure and that in any event, your overall commitment with respect to Canadian talent development would remain at the sum that you proposed in your application. Can you confirm that, please?
1886 DR. GIL: Yes. We would reflect on that and confirm with the suggestions of the Commission.
1887 MR. STEWART: Sorry. Is that a yes or no?
1888 DR. GIL: Yes.
1889 MR. STEWART: Thank you. Now, just similarly -- I just note under the diverse communities concert initiative that there is an item there called "Additional Publicity". It is a small sum, $400, but is that sum going to a third party or how is it proposed to be spent?
1890 Again, it is with a view to assisting the Commission to determine whether or not such an expenditure would be an eligible expenditure under the Canadian development criteria.
1891 DR. GIL: It is a third party expenditure.
1892 MR. STEWART: Thank you.
1893 Now turning to your proposal for balanced programming. I believe you mentioned 14 hours in your application and you said that you would accept that by way of condition of licence. Would you also accept that four hours of that 14 hours would be broadcast between 6:00 p.m. and midnight as a condition of licence?
1894 DR. GIL: Yes.
1895 MR. STEWART: Thank you.
1896 You may have answered this question in response to Commissioner Cardozo's questions, but just for the record again, you mentioned the 10-minute open-line segments that are featured in your ethnic programs would qualify I think as balance programming. Can you just confirm that once again?
1897 DR. GIL: Yes.
1898 MR. STEWART: Why is that so, given that presumably an open line show might go beyond religious matters and indeed involve secular matters?
1899 MR. MARCHANT: In preparing this application the application team paid quite careful attention to the Commission's policy and to specific decisions that it had made in which -- but religious balance issues or balance in specifically religious balance issues were one of the concerns, for example with respect to a single, say, television station in Alberta. In that case, open line segments were one of the Commission's stated concerns in a decision relating to that.
1900 So it was an attempt to meet -- I guess if I can summarize what I recall -- these aren't the Commission's exact words -- but one of the tests that the Commission has proposed is that a reasonably consistent listener -- or viewer in the case of a television station -- would be exposed to a range of points of view on that station. That was the test.
1901 So in these phone-in segments, which will often include interviews as well, and guests, there is going to be a specific effort in all the language sectors to meet what we understand the Commission's objectives to be, that a reasonably consistent listener will be exposed to a range of points of view.
1902 MR. STEWART: But those open line shows, will they have a definite religious theme to them?
1903 DR. GIL: Yes. When we will have open line, we will discuss religious schemes, but also other topics concerning our society, daily life. So on that aspect we would like to provide the provide the proper balance.
1904 As I mentioned, if we would be able to provide certain programming we will make sure that we will gather information, gather opinions from our Web site, which will be also available for comments, and provide data that balance during the next program.
1905 MR. STEWART: So if I understand you correctly, you don't see balance necessarily in terms of reflecting the points of view of other faiths, but balance in terms of the subject matter of the program. Something may deal with immigration or seniors issues. That, from your standpoint, would be included under the rubric "balance". Is that correct?
1906 DR. GIL: No. What I said is, we would like to make sure that the proper balance is provided for every issue that we discuss on open line. Whether it is a religious matter or a social matter, we want to make sure that all views are presented during the discussion.
1907 MR. STEWART: Thank you.
1908 A very quick question with respect to your opening statement today. You said that you:
"...have met with programmers from the Anglican, Jewish, Muslim and Greek Orthodox communities who want program hours on our station."
1909 I just note in your -- and I think it was in response to deficiency questions you also included the Pentecostal community there. Were they not on this list for a particular reason?
1910 DR. GIL: No. At the present time some people from -- as I already mentioned, people from those faiths which are stated in our supplementary brief, refiled on June 17th, those people approached us when they learned that we will be providing a possible radio station in Toronto. They approached us and proposed programming on that station. That is why we mentioned those names. If other groups would have approached us, they would be there as well.
1911 MR. STEWART: Thank you. Can you elaborate a little on the arrangements, informal though they may be, that you have with these groups in terms of programming?
1912 DR. GIL: We will make sure that whoever purchases air time from us will provide also the proper balance and we will instruct those people, supervise also their production. Especially if the whole production is going to take place at our studio, then we will have a close look at it and we will make sure that whatever they produce is according to the rules and regulations required by the CRTC.
1913 We have some concrete -- I'm looking for the words, how to put that. Those people already expressed their will and they want to be part of this program, and I believe that if we are granted the licence they will be present at the station.
1914 MR. STEWART: Thank you. Now I want to very briefly just get into your financial projections.
1915 Can you just confirm -- and here I am referring to your revised financial operations that you submitted to the Commission on June 17th -- that under the item "Local", based on the first year, there is a sum of $489,064. Is that solely related to advertising sales?
1916 MR. LEBLANC: No, it isn't.
1917 MR. STEWART: What would it also include?
1918 MR. LEBLANC: The total between the two -- one moment, please.
1919 MR. LEBLANC: The breakdown with the $489,064 is based on radio revenue, yes. I'm sorry, I want to correct myself. It is based on revenue, the advertising and --
1920 MR. STEWART: Okay. If we just drop down to "Other", say for the first year, it is $675,000. How would that be made up?
1921 MR. LEBLANC: Seventy-five thousand is from the Oblate Fathers. Donations and fund-raising, $600,000.
1922 MR. STEWART: Excuse me, could you just repeat that.
1923 MR. LEBLANC: Seventy-five thousand would come from Oblate Fathers, as stipulated in Schedule 13, and donations equate to $600,000, and fund-raising.
1924 MR. STEWART: I see on the following page with respect to the methodology for revenue projections that there is an item "Income from KSM Inc." Where does that fit?
1925 MR. LEBLANC: Part of it is in the additional income that is derived from KSM as far as what they are currently generating now. So that would be through various spots and various things of that nature that they already have as income coming in now.
1926 MR. STEWART: Was that reflected in the projected revenues of the new undertaking?
1927 MR. LEBLANC: Yes, it is.
1928 MR. STEWART: Where would it be, under "Local" or "Other"?
1929 MR. LEBLANC: Local.
1930 MR. STEWART: Thank you. As we have asked of other applicants, the Commission would like you, before the Phase II of this hearing, to file with the Secretary a breakdown breaking out the advertising sales revenues and the other revenue items such as brokering revenues or, in your case, donations so that we have a clear idea as to how the revenue projections have been arrived at.
1931 MR. LEBLANC: I believe if you notice on Schedule 13 we have already done that. We have the brokerage hours. In the second aspect of the rate and sold hours, that is what it is under.
1932 MR. STEWART: Yes. I looked at that and I see examples, an example, an example. What the Commission would like is for you to track over the course of the projected licence term the breakdown.
1933 MR. LEBLANC: That is not a problem.
1934 MR. STEWART: Would you be in a position to file that with the Secretary prior to the Phase II appearance?
1935 MR. LEBLANC: Yes.
1936 MR. STEWART: Thank you.
1937 MR. STEWART: My last question is again a question that is being posed to all intervenors, and that is: Are you aware of the policy that the Commission recently issued on the new licensing framework for specialty audio programming services?
1938 DR. GIL: Yes, we are.
1939 MR. STEWART: In your view, would a specialty audio programming service licence be an objective that you would also be interested in, for instance in the event that you were not to be awarded a licence for an over-the-air undertaking?
1940 DR. GIL: As I already mentioned, we would look at this opinion as a secondary or rather additional option meeting the larger audience that we propose to serve, but not as a principal licence to serve the large community which is present in the GTA.
1941 MR. STEWART: Thank you very much.
1942 Merci, madame la présidente. Ce sont toutes mes questions.
1943 THE CHAIRPERSON: Father Gil, you and your team seem to be quite familiar with the religious policy, so you are obviously familiar with the definition of "religious programming" that the Commission uses. What, in your view, is the percentage of your programming that will be religious?
1944 I believe that you have stated in your application that the majority would be religious, but, in your view, what does "the majority" mean? How close to 100 per cent?
1945 If I am correct, 90 per cent of the music will be non-classic religious from Category 35 and that is the 30 per cent of your programming that is not spoken word, because it is 70 per cent spoken word.
1946 DR. GIL: Correct.
1947 THE CHAIRPERSON: So all in all, what does the majority of your programming being religious mean?
1948 DR. GIL: At the moment 90 per cent.
1949 THE CHAIRPERSON: Ninety per cent. You have clarified that 60 per cent of your programming will be ethnic which is the basic minimum for a station to be ethnic and 60 per cent will be in third language, which is only 10 per cent.
1950 I say only because we have before us applications for the same frequency with very high third language and very high ethnic, as high as a hundred ethnic. When I look at your application which is 90 per cent religious, the music will be 90 per cent non-classic religious, the ethnic will be 60 and 60 as between ethnic and third language.
1951 Obviously the question will be raised as to what extent your application responds to the call because it's highly competitive. There are eight applications on the frequency that is the most sought for. The call, as I reminded participants in my opening remarks, was applications for the licensing of programming services that clearly reflect the diversity of languages as well as the multicultural, multiethnic reality of the Greater Toronto Area.
1952 I would like you to tell us before closing why this is an ethnic station secondarily, why not consider it a religious statement primarily and an ethnic station secondarily when we are considering the proposals put forward in response to the same call on the same frequency by other participants whose applications you are familiar with.
1953 I would like to give you this opportunity to clarify how you fit within the call, considering the particulars of your applications, the very basic ones, and when you compare them with the competing applicants' applications.
1954 DR. GIL: We provide the service to, as I mentioned before, to the largest group that is present in the GTA. This group is a very diverse group, multilingual, multiethnic, multicultural. In order to utilize this frequency to maximum, we came up with the idea that the best way to serve this multiethnic community is to provide the service in several languages, in 11 languages, and also in English and French in order to reach that community.
1955 Because the Catholic community is very diverse and very multicultural, I believe this call fits perfectly because of that aspect.
1956 MR. LEBLANC: I would just like to add one further thing. Under our heading is the term "Religious", we are providing a service to many ethnic groups that is not available. It's a format for lack of a better word that we can ensure that we won't be offering a redundant service that is currently provided within the listenership of Toronto.
1957 It's just that. It's something that is specifically aimed to them, something that isn't available currently. That's why we chose the way we did.
1958 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Thank you very much. We will see you again at Phases II and IV.
1959 We will now take a 15 minute break. We will be back at 10:30.
1960 Nous reprendrons à 10 h 30.
1961 DR. GIL: Thank you very much.
--- Upon recessing at 1015 / Suspension à 1015
--- Upon resuming at 1030 / Reprise à 1030
1962 LA PRÉSIDENTE: Monsieur le secrétaire, s'il vous plaît.
1963 MR. LEBEL: Thank you, Madam Chairman.
1964 I would like to state for the record at this time that like other applicants that have appeared so far, ARC Broadcasting Inc. has undertaken to file a breakdown of its projected revenues broken down as between brokerage revenues and advertising revenues. ARC is undertaking to file this information by Monday, 23 September.
1965 Now, Madam Chairman, we will hear item 5 on the agenda, which is an application by CKMW Radio Limited for a licence to operate a commercial specialty FM ethnic radio station in Toronto.
1966 The new station would operate on frequency 101.3 megahertz, channel 267A, with an effective rated power of 44 watts. The panel members will be introduced and Mr. Evanov, you do have 20 minutes to make your presentation.
PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION
1967 MR. EVANOV: Thank you.
1968 Good morning, Madam Wylie, Members of the Commission and staff. My name is Bill Evanov, President and CEO of CKMW Radio Ltd. For each of its radio operations, CKMW has built a distinct and strong management team. Before you today is a team that is specifically dedicated to ethnic broadcasting.
1969 Within our company there is a clear division between the management that operates our English language FM stations and the ethnic management team which appears before you today. However, due to external circumstances, some of the management members could not be with us today.
1970 Nevertheless, I am confident the management group before you today will outline our vision for innovative ethnic broadcasting to serve the community, a completely new concept in ethnic radio, unlike anything we do on CIAO or on ethnic radio in the Greater Toronto Area.
1971 I am especially proud that our company, CKMW Radio Ltd., is one of the few broadcasters that has a successful female as Vice-President and General Manager, Carmela Laurignano. We are certain she is well known to the Commission. I would now like to hand over the presentation to Carmela.
1972 MS LAURIGNANO: Thank you, Mr. Evanov.
1973 In the front row from your right and left is Mrs. Neerja Khattar, the host of Punjabi Lehran, which airs Monday through Friday on AM 530 or CIAO. Mrs. Khattar is from Bombay and brings broadcast experience both from her career in India and one in Canada.
1974 Next to Mrs. Khattar is Don Currie, the current Manager of CIAO, and our candidate for Manager of the New FM. Don is a veteran of both ethnic programming acquisitions and selling niche radio.
1975 To my right is Satinderpal Singh Sidhu. He is the current producer of Punjabi Lehran. Satinderpal is a singer of folk songs. In fact, he's a star in India, performing before crowds of 40,000 routinely. We are pleased to have him on staff and willing to help build the New FM.
1976 In the back row to my left is Rocky Vaz, the Comptroller of New FM. To his right, of course, Bill Evanov, our President and CEO, and to his right is Ben Pokatara. Ben has an Italian-Spanish heritage and is both a member of our advisory committee and a contributor to our Canadian Talent Development plan. Ben brings firsthand experience of talent development, being both a promoter of talent and an owner of an independent recording company.
1977 That completes our panel.
1978 We will begin with an overview of the application. CIAO, a limited AM, has served the ethnic market since its inception, which is almost 20 years ago. Over the years we have rejoiced in being part of so many rich and varied communities. We have watched as our audiences have evolved from new immigrants to new Canadians and we have been proud of the role we have played.
1979 We have noticed that the celebration of culture on Toronto ethnic radio has not always been inclusive. People without knowledge of the language of broadcasts are excluded. This exclusion encompasses people from other cultures and walks of life, but as time passes also includes second and subsequent generations. Ironically, children are disenfranchised from their own culture simply because of a language barrier.
1980 To us this simply defeats the purpose of the multiculture goals within the broadcast system. To overcome this divide, we have chosen to commit to providing both the mother tongue and the language most spoken at home in the GTA, English, in some of our key blocks.
1981 Secondly, we will provide service to several underserved groups and have chosen to address a considerable portion of our service to just three principal ethnic populations, Latino, South Asian and East European. We are limiting the groups we serve, but expanding the service within each to include the multiple cultures. The New FM is structured to serve 12 languages and 12 cultural groups at a minimum.
1982 The challenge facing all applicants in formulating of program schedules is in deciding which communities to serve. Our choices were made on the basis of need, demand and the ability of the community infrastructure to support this.
1983 Over the course of this week you will hear that the South Asian community is significant in size and continuing to grow. Several radio services provide programs in South Asian languages, but there is clearly a need for more. According to statistics from Immigration Canada for 2001, Indian ranked number two, Pakistan number three and Sri Lanka number five for sources of immigration in the GTA.
1984 Walk down almost any street in Toronto or the subway, go shopping or eat out and see for yourself. The South Asian community has what is described in marketing terms as critical mass.
1985 The second principal group addressed by our proposal is the Latino community. To define the parameters of the communities we will serve, we have borrowed the U.S. Department of Health definition of Latino. I quote:
"A person of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Central or South American or other (pan American) Spanish culture. Latinos cannot be classified as one homogeneous ethnic group. This is because the term Latino is used to describe the larger umbrella group that is made up of various Hispanic subgroups, for example, Dominicans, Puerto Ricans, Columbians, Ecuadorians, etc., etc."
1986 Routinely we receive requests for time on CIAO that we cannot fill. It is a station policy not to eliminate or reduce service to one group simply to make room for another. A trend however has emerged. The largest number of requests we receive are from various subgroups within the Latino communities.
1987 Couple this with a growing Latino population, a trend that is yet to be identified in the 2001 census, and we believe we have found an unserved niche market.
1988 Spanish is the third most spoken language in the world after English and Chinese, the second most studied language in Canada after French and the fifth largest language group in the GTA. The fourth largest region for immigration for Toronto is South and Central America.
1989 When a programming opportunity arises, although its Latino culture has its own colloquialisms, the language itself is remarkably uniform. Enough people from a wide range of countries can easily understand each other.
1990 Our last major programming emphasis is the Eastern European languages. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the struggle for economic and social development has resulted in higher levels of immigration to Canada from the former Eastern Bloc.
1991 Similar to the Latino population, the 1996 census does not tell the full story. According to Immigration Canada, in 2001 the tenth and twelfth most significant sources of immigration to the GTA were East European countries.
1992 Each of the communities has demonstrated a demand for programming, but in our estimation are not equally positioned to support the service through advertising. I will ask Mr. Currie to describe the advertising environment.
1993 MR. CURRIE: The business plan of New FM is solid and relies on establishing a revenue base that is balanced between highly developed communities and emerging ones. The South Asian infrastructure includes a strong retail sector, a wildly popular food industry and a full range of support services. As such, the demand for advertising time from both within and outside the community is significant.
1994 We also noted that revenues flow out of Canada to a U.S. station programming to Toronto's South Asian market among others. This in combination with limited ability to available inventory during most time periods strongly suggests that the demand exceeds the supply.
1995 We recognize that the market can support more programming, but not an unchecked supply. In our model the wealth of the community will be used to subsidize service to other developing ethnic populations just as in the beginning Italian and Portuguese advertising revenues were used to subsidize the fledgling South Asian market.
1996 The Latino community is a case in point. It is still in the building phase, and while it has an established infrastructure it is not nearly as developed as the South Asian. We feel the time is right to introduce a radio service.
1997 We note that the communities support four newspapers, two distinct yellow pages and television programming on both Telelatino and Omni One. The missing element of the medium mix is radio.
1998 Similar to the South Asian market, there is a shortage of broadcast time currently dedicated to reaching the east European immigrants. Russian programming in Toronto is now limited to one half-hour per week.
1999 MS LAURIGNANO: Our proposed schedule establishes a balance between new and established communities and new and established immigrants.
2000 I will ask Mr. Satinder Pal Singh Sidhu to describe our South Asian block, which is where our typical broadcast day begins.
2001 MR. SIDHU: Thank you, Carmela.
2002 Our commitment to serving these communities is significant. From 6:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, our schedule will be focused on South Asian culture and languages. Hindi will be the predominant broadcast language from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m., but throughout the week we have plans for time dedicated to Bengali, Tamil, Gujarati, Malayalam, Marathi and Konkani.
2003 The latter three languages are not heard anywhere in the current broadcast spectrum.
2004 From 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. we will switch to Punjabi, and from 11:00 to noon Urdu will be broadcast. The format of these programs generally will be a combination of music, information, interviews, news, guest appearances and community highlights.
2005 Following through with our belief that English is a significant language group in this population, we will shift our language of broadcast but not our South Asian focus on the weekends.
2006 On Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to noon we will invite a wider audience to share in the celebration and further their understanding of their neighbours, the South Asian community.
2007 Mrs. Khattar can speak of her experiences in serving her community and what this new opportunity represents.
2008 Mrs. Khattar.
2009 MS KHATTAR: Thank you, Satinder Pal.
2010 As mentioned in the introduction, I am the host of a two-hour Hindi-language program every Wednesday. I am fortunate to have the opportunity to host the morning drive programming five days a week on the New FM, and I would like to tell you about the wide range of material I would like to cover. I will open every show with a gentle reminder of the humanity we all share. I do not burden my listeners, but I feel it is both the responsibility and an opportunity to share some wisdom about the kindness we must show ourselves and others.
2011 I aim to provide an entertaining, almost stress reducing environment, because I am aware that people who are listening are frequently on the way to work. The people of the South Asian community are similar to everyone in this room. We are concerned about health matters, social issues, parenting strategies and community development. Like most residents of Toronto, our life is too busy to read all of the journals and attend all of the meetings we would like.
2012 So our program will bring these matters to the South Asian community in an easily understood, entertaining and easy to listen to format.
2013 My topics will include the latest medical breakthroughs, dietary imperatives but could just as easily include an interview with a visiting entertainer or a good cooking tip.
2014 I will try to tackle the tough issues by inviting guests like the police and community leaders to discuss the challenges we are facing in society. Woven through all of this information is recognition of the unique perspective of the South Asian community and a continued support of our traditions, languages and values.
2015 We are new Canadians, and we have a wonderful spiritual culture that we do not want to lose. I help people to remember where we come from and how much we have to celebrate.
2016 I am so enthusiastic about the opportunities that this New FM provides because there is so much more I would like to do, and I know there is more the community wants. I am particularly delighted that Hindi will have such a prominent place in the programming. It is the most widely spoken and understood of all South Asian languages and, as such, the programming will be able to reach out to a very wide cross-section of the population.
2017 This programming on the New FM will have a better FM signal, more hours and a new time slot which make it more broadly accessible. We need more time, increased access and a better method of communicating with each other. The South Asian programming planned for the New FM meets these needs.
2018 MS LAURIGNANO: At 1:00 p.m., for three hours our programming will provide a full presentation of all things Spanish. The theme, the language, the content and the perspective will be Spanish, a subset of Latino. The infectious and compelling rhythms of the Latino music will be the highlights of the program: cumbia, son, merengue, salsa/timba, mambo, cha-cha-cha, conga, jazz, bolero, rumba and tango.
2019 Because the music is so central to this culture, it is the availability of the New FM signal that makes service to this market even possible.
2020 At 4:00 p.m. we will broaden the focus by expanding our programming to include all matters Latino and adding English to the language mix. We expect that the energy of the program will appeal to a wide range of people. Listeners will find something familiar and yet something so very new in the spectrum of Toronto ethnic radio.
2021 In addition to classic Latino, artists like Julio Iglesias, Tito Puente and Celia Cruz, the growing explosion of Latino artists like Shakira and Enrique Inglesias will allow a fluid stream of music and blend both older and newer sounds.
2022 While it is true that many of these artists do record in English, in fact all of our recordings will be in Spanish. It will only be the spoken word and informational content that is English.
2023 Several Canadian artists record in Spanish, and Canadian international stars like Celine Dion, Bryan Adams and Joey have been making recordings in Spanish for years.
2024 One of our goals of New FM will be to expand the exposure of Latin music, including these little heard recordings from well-know Canadian artists. However, we also expect a percentage of the artists we will play will be unique to our station and expose a stream of emerging Canadian Latino recording artists.
2025 This Latino segment will air until 12 midnight each night, Monday through Saturday, and from 7:00 to midnight on Sunday.
2026 MR. CURRIE: On Sunday morning New FM will turn its airwaves over to the needs of the East European block. Some of the largest population groups from the former Soviet Union will be able to connect with their mother tongue. Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian and Bulgarian will air for an hour each, and Russian will air for two hours.
2027 It is our intention to rely on independent producers to create these shows, and judging by the requests we will no problem filling these slots.
2028 We will also add a Filipino block on Sunday, which will round out the list of cultural groups we have identified as being both in need of service and able to support one. Like the East European block we will use an independent producer, which will guarantee that the voice and the spirit of the community are represented.
2029 As with many endeavours that attempt to serve a community, we see a role and an opportunity for an advisory committee. Our view is that an advisory committee can further our connections and ensure the integrity of the programming.
2030 Beyond establishing multilevel connections with the communities, the advisory committee will be instrumental in ensuring that the funds we have set aside for Canadian Talent Development are widely accessible and transparently administered.
2031 MS LAURIGNANO: CKMW Radio Ltd. is prepared to make a commitment to emerging and established Canadian artists by meeting a minimum of 15 per cent Canadian content throughout the broadcast day. This represents an increase of over 100 per cent from the Commission's benchmark of 7 per cent. We feel this is both an important and significant contribution and one that we can confidently make.
2032 Our commitments to stimulating Canadian Talent Development will be matched by our efforts to give it a broadcast window.
2033 MR. CALCATERRA: As mentioned in the introduction, I have been working in talent development through my business interests. I am excited about the commitments made to artists by New FM and in particular the Canadian Ethnic Artist Fund. It is designed to support the financial needs of emerging artists.
2034 In order to make a success of a recording career, ethnic Canadian artists feel that they frequently have to go to their country of origin to establish themselves. In the same way that French and English Canadian artists have found it necessary to go beyond these borders to make a living, ethnic artists cannot survive on the limited exposure they receive in Canada.
2035 This fund recognizes the significant expense in establishing yourself abroad and addresses this need.
2036 New FM also provides substantial contributions to the Catalogue of Canadian Ethnic Music, an initiative that provides programmers from Canada and around the world with access to a full range of Canadian artists producing music in a third language.
2037 Finally, New FM is providing support to a new area through the Latin Music DJ Spin-Off. The total combined contribution is $300,000.
2038 MS LAURIGNANO: Through our proposal, we have tried to demonstrate the collective wisdom from years of working in the ethnic market. The points I would like you to remember are these:
2039 We have a solid track record of community service and experience in pioneering niche markets.
2040 The economic reality is that success in ethnic broadcasting is not guaranteed and requires both experience in niche marketing and access to multiple communities.
2041 The view of uniform communities, neatly segregated along ethnic lines, is not the reality in Toronto. We are multi-ethnic, multi-influenced, and therefore many of the old programming paradigms no longer apply.
2042 Our plan for the New FM creatively bridges the divide that increasingly stretches between the newer and older generation of the ethnic communities by combining block programming and in some areas blending English and a mother tongue.
2043 We will support Canadian talent through a substantial contribution of $300,000 over the period of the licence and through increased exposure in our music selection.
2044 Finally, our proposal invites people from many cultures and walks of life to participate in the richness of ethnicity of this city. We will be radio the entire family can listen to.
2045 This concludes our formal presentation. We will be happy to answer your questions. Muchos gracias.
2046 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. Evanov, Ms Laurignano and your colleagues.
2047 Commissioner Grauer, please.
2048 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Thank you, Madam Chair.
2049 I would like to start quickly with respect to the programming by Mrs. Khattar.
2050 If you are licensed, are you expecting to move some programming over from CIAO? Perhaps you could tell me what would be the impact on CIAO's programming if you are licensed.
2051 MS LAURIGNANO: We have no intentions, no plans to move anything from CIAO to New FM. There is a lot of thought that went behind developing this proposal. It is something totally different.
2052 In terms of programming, we have identified and found some niches that we believe are underserved and are in need of the service on the FM band. CIAO is extremely well placed. It serves a part of the GTA, which is Brampton. There is a lot of heritage with the station.
2053 We have producers, personnel, listeners and programs that are established. So the idea is not that at all, and it will not happen.
2054 Where Mrs. Khattar fits in, for example, is that right now she is currently hosting a two-hour program in Hindi. She is our candidate to be the morning jock on New FM, which starts with a big Hindi program in the drive program.
2055 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: So it is in addition to what is currently being done.
2056 MS LAURIGNANO: It is in addition, yes.
2057 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: I would like to start with some questions on your programming.
2058 In your application you have stated that, according to the 1996 Census, the majority of Toronto understands and speaks English.
2059 Your program schedule indicates -- and you certainly elaborated on it this morning -- that you intend to broadcast in English as the principal language from 4:00 p.m. to midnight, Monday to Saturday.
2060 In your letter of deficiencies of June 5th, you indicated this program block would be interspersed with 30 to 40 per cent Spanish spoken word and yet the program schedule indicates a totally English program block targeted to a Latino audience.
2061 What I want to try to understand is how you are intending to work this language mix and what we could expect to hear on that block?
2062 MS LAURIGNANO: As you said, in the application we filed, in the program schedule there is English in brackets under that particular block. The reason for that was to indicate that the principal language will be English.
2063 In our deficiencies, as you noted, we indicated it is going to be a bilingual type of format and that up to 30 per cent to 40 per cent will be in the Spanish language.
2064 In any case, it is an ethnic program that is geared to -- whose core audience is to the Spanish/Latino community. It is preceded by a three-hour block of Spanish programming beginning at one o'clock. It is totally Spanish. As we said, there are three newscasts in Spanish at 2:00, 3:00 and 4:00 p.m. At four o'clock we start introducing English. There isn't a sudden cutoff point. It is going to be -- I should make it simple.
2065 The way it is going to sound is, all music is Spanish. It is a very music-intensive program. So all music is Spanish. The newscasts in that block which are scheduled for 4:00 p.m. is in Spanish, 5:00, 6:00 and 7:00 p.m. is in English.
2066 The on-air content of spoken word will be more heavily Spanish following the four o'clock, which is the total Spanish, and eventually get reduced so that an average will be about 40 per cent throughout that block. But the content itself is going to be to things related to those communities.
2067 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: I'm sorry, what were you saying, that 40 per cent will be --
2068 MS LAURIGNANO: Spanish. In Spanish.
2069 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Forty per cent of the spoken word --
2070 MS LAURIGNANO: -- will be Spanish. The commercials may be English or Spanish, depending on the advertiser's preference.
2071 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: I did want to get to advertising, perhaps we could do that later.
2072 So this is a large time block, 4:00 p.m. to midnight. So you have described it as starting in Spanish, spoken word and Spanish music, including a Spanish-language newscast at 4:00. By five o'clock will it be primarily English?
2073 MS LAURIGNANO: I don't have the exact percentages here, nor have they been worked out to that. We could certainly undertake to give you a precise formula, but the idea is that the average is going to be about 40 per cent from four o'clock to midnight. However --
2074 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Okay. Perhaps I could ask the question a different way. Would it be 40 per cent of each hour or each half hour?
2075 MS LAURIGNANO: It will be an average of 40 per cent throughout the time block, but the heavier skew of Spanish would be in the earlier part of the program because it is following the total Spanish program, the unilingual Spanish program. The idea there is that we can successfully keep the core audience. At an average of 40 per cent we will keep the core audience, which is the Spanish speaking, as well as add new listeners and perhaps younger skewed listeners who are not that proficient in language but who would not be turned off by a certain amount of Spanish language within a program.
2076 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: I know you spent quite a bit of time in your application and here this morning talking about the growth of the Spanish language and the size of these communities and that the unifying factor in fact is that they speak Spanish as the third largest language. So really what we are trying to understand is how much Spanish language programming will be delivered in these large blocks to these communities and to whom is the programming directed during that block 4:00 p.m. to midnight.
2077 So perhaps if you could just explain a little more what you envision. I realize you don't have exact percentages, but perhaps would there be the same amount of English/Spanish breakdown at, for instance, 5:00 to 7:00 as there would be from 8:00 to 10:00 at night?
2078 MS LAURIGNANO: The first part of your question, there would be more Spanish at the beginning of the Latino program at four o'clock and slowly it would be reduced, for two reasons. One is that, as I mentioned before, we are trying to keep that core audience which has hopefully been tuned in from 1:00 to 4:00. So the Spanish would be more intensive there.
2079 The music, it is going to be all in Spanish, so that again is another reason to keep the audience and to engage listeners really of hopefully many more cultures and backgrounds and even those who may not understand some Spanish.
2080 But the big change and the reason for the English is that we are inviting new generations of ethnics, those who are ethnic by how they define themselves, by the culture, by the traditions that they keep, by their way of life, but whose mother tongue or the language at home right now might very well be English. Because there is evolution and there is a generational change as well, it is not a homogeneous market we feel.
2081 By extension as well, we feel that this popularity of the music, which is going to be the predominant programming feature in this block, especially as we get on later on at night, will appeal to non-Latinos as well.
2082 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: So if in fact, then, this 4:00 to midnight block is going to be spoken word English, 60 per cent Spanish, 40 per cent, if I was looking at your program schedule would that be more appropriately described as Spanish-English bilingual?
2083 MS LAURIGNANO: Yes. Actually there is a term which is going by American's, it is "Spanglish".
2084 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Spanglish?
2085 MS LAURIGNANO: Yes. For all intents and purposes it is bilingual. It is a bilingual program, not 50/50. Because of the objectives of the programming and the way it was designed, we think that an average of 40 per cent will keep the core audience that I have described and attract other listeners, especially the younger ones who have been alienated from this particular kind of programming.
2086 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: But we won't see it balanced evenly throughout the evening, we will see a trend from Spanish towards English. Okay. Thank you.
2087 MS LAURIGNANO: Taking into account, of course, the demographic changes. You know, by eight o'clock a lot of the older people -- and I'm not stereotyping here -- are perhaps watching television or doing something else and the younger people are the ones that party so, you know, we are going to kick it up a notch. But it is still an ethnic program. It is different, reflecting the reality of what the city is all about now.
2088 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Then the programming will change throughout this time period. I wonder if you could tell me how the spoken word will be presented with respect to news updates, weather, sports, traffic, in what languages? How do you envision those things being presented throughout the time period?
2089 MS LAURIGNANO: If I could tell you what to envision of how the station will sound, it will sound like a mainstream station. That is afforded to us by virtue of the large blocks that we have created, that for once we are going to have an opportunity to really look at day part programming and be aware of people's habits, take into account people going to and from work, so you have your drive programs. You know that towards the evening it is a different shift in demographics, a different appeal. So we are able to do that and that is a big, huge, plus for us in terms of doing it that way.
2090 What you hear on air and how that is going to be blended, we will -- I would say that probably in the first couple of hours following that it will be half and half, about 50/50. It is quick. The newscasts are going to be scheduled so they have their place, but surveillance reports, weather information, that would be done bilingually, very definitely.
2091 I repeat again that we aim to do a music-intensive format, because we feel that the FM is perfect place for this. Also, in view of the commitments that we made to the artists, and that kind of thing, it is our best way of maximizing that frequency. That is the more traditional, sort of, you know, box program that is available in other places. Indeed, even the Spanish, the unilingual program three hours before that people can follow.
2092 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Did I hear you say it would sound like a mainstream station?
2093 When you talk about increasing cultural understanding and attracting the interest of the broader population, is that what you are talking about?
2094 MS LAURIGNANO: Absolutely. When we looked at it -- perhaps the way I can describe it is how we described it in our own terms and that is that we can broadcast or narrowcast. So you can pick the most common language, do that and attract as many people as possible, or you can try to get into the individual communities.
2095 This is a bit of a dilemma in terms of what kind of programs and what kind of niche and how we are going to do it. We are actually extremely excited that we are able to do both with this proposal, both in the South Asian and in the Spanish/Latino block.
2096 With the South Asian what we are doing is we are starting a morning drive on FM with the female host Dia Hindi(ph). Hindi of course is the lingua mater of India and it is understood by a lot of South Asian -- most of the South Asian population. So we are doing the broadcast. This is where we are going to get the most people.
2097 It is also the best way to maximize the morning drive program. This is a chance to get those people who are in their cars, who are everywhere else. It has the most appeal and the most accessibility. It is the most portable during those hours.
2098 So there is the narrowcasting and we go into the other languages as we go throughout the day, where eventually we are able to serve in the narrowcasting scenario those new languages such as Marathi and Konkani and a few others.
2099 Again, the narrowcasting continues where we have the Spanish as unilingual, although the Spanish does serve a huge segment of the market because there are probably 30 countries represented in this city where people originate from Spanish-speaking countries, and also there are a lot of people who understand Spanish, you know, who may not necessarily have that background.
2100 From this narrow we broaden it again, so that we are keeping those and then we are opening it up and we are inviting everybody to come in, whether it is for the music, it is for the culture, it is for the cross-cultural understanding, and it is in a language that is what is on the street, third and second and fourth generation. In fact, even first generation immigrants are not necessarily speaking their mother tongue, they are speaking English.
2101 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: When I look at your program schedule and you have Hindi, then Punjabi, then Urdu, then the other languages and then Spanish into English. But you don't have any English in the morning drive program, do you? No. You are speaking of the South Asian broader languages.
2102 MS LAURIGNANO: Exactly. The Hindi would be the big mother tongue for the South Asian block, which is that is where we start. Then we get into the specific languages, because they are also representative of certain states or regions from South Asia, so it is important there that the local news and the local commitments to our news, as well as their news from home, and that kind of stuff, be brought into those programs.
2103 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Would you then say, in terms of your broadening, narrowing and then broadening again, that by the time you get to five o'clock you are really programming for a broad general audience as opposed to a narrow ethnic audience?
2104 MS LAURIGNANO: I would say that primarily we are programming for Spanish, Hispanic, Latino. These are just terms. They are basically people whose mother tongue or whose country of origin or whose ethnic background would have a Spanish influence, through the language or through their ethnic heritage.
2105 That is the core demo. There is no ifs, ands or buts about it.
2106 The music is Spanish, which obviously has some crossover appeal, as we know, but we are not going to play Ricki Martin and Jennifer Lopez in a loop. People might like those, but it is going to be a broad range of music. So there are people who like some of the music. Even though Latino music is not a homogeneous things, you have meringue, which is native of the Dominican Republic, and you have the Tango and that kind of stuff. So there is still appear for the ethnic community with that kind of music.
2107 So it is an ethnic station in all senses of the word. All we are doing is, we are using English as a bridge.
2108 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: A bridge to what, though, with the Hispanic?
2109 MS LAURIGNANO: A bridge to young and old generations. That is the primary focus of that, that we want to include the younger ones who are disenfranchised. If you look at ethnic broadcasting for the most part, it is in a neat little box for reasons.
2110 A lot, including us, we are trying to serve whatever we can because that is what we have and so you sort of do it on a priority basis or you do it because that is the way it has been done. Ethnic broadcasting has tended to be within those parameters that, you know, you have a host and there is a lot of yak, yak, yak, and then we have news and then you put a couple of records.
2111 This is different. It is new. We think it is what Toronto is all about, or it is at least a part of it.
2112 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Thank you. One other question on this subject, which is: In your supplementary brief you indicate that the Sunday nighttime slot would be in English, but that is not reflected in your -- oh, I see, where it says "Latino" --
2113 MS LAURIGNANO: Exactly. That's what we did. When we --
2114 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: That is how you differentiated.
2115 MS LAURIGNANO: The primary language we had done English, right.
2116 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: So it should say English there?
2117 MS LAURIGNANO: No, it's bilingual.
2118 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Oh, bilingual. Right.
2119 MS LAURIGNANO: All Latino programming is bilingual.
2120 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Right. Okay. Thank you.
2121 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: With respect to your newscasts, you indicated in your application your newscasts will include headlines from international, national, local stories of interest to the GTA. You said the distinguishing content will be the material from the ethnic community that is typically not covered by broad interest radio stations.
2122 Can you tell me, will individual program contributors be required to broadcast local content specific to the group being served and how would this be monitored? How is this going to work?
2123 MS LAURIGNANO: Okay. We have 62 scheduled newscasts per week. I can actually give you a breakdown. For example, 15 in Hindi language, 5 in Punjabi, 5 in Urdu. The program is scheduled throughout the week. We will have news on the hour in those languages.
2124 We also have news in Bengali and Tamil and Gujurati and Malayalam. We also have 15 in Spanish, 15 for the Latino community which will be done in English. We have one at noon on Saturday. We have two Saturday in Spanish and we have one Sunday in Spanish.
2125 The way the news is going to be gathered and spread out is through many levels. We have accounted for a news director who is on staff. We have two reporters who are on staff, stringers, reporters. We also have an internship program where we are going to be recruiting people who will help gather news. The major national, international and major local, say Toronto, is covered that way.
2126 We also have allowed for and expensed a position of news services which will be both from here and from overseas. For the smaller communities themselves, we will rely on a number of measures to make sure that the news is covered. One is the people themselves, the people who are hosting the programs. People like Satinder and Neerja are tremendous sources of what's going on in the community, what the issues are, what happened.
2127 The other big factor, and we speak from experience on this, is making the station available for accidents. If there is a way for somebody to let you know about what's going on, you find out very quickly, so we have fax access, we have Internet access. We have a whole strategy for the Internet which is going to be appropriate for some of the younger programming -- youth programming that we were talking about before.
2128 We also have accounted for an action community coordinator, somebody who is going to be the eyes and ears and monitor all kinds of stuff. That's a paid position on staff as well. We are very confident that the news is going to be covered. Not only that, but it's going to be shared.
2129 Again, keep in mind the huge blocks of programming. It's not like a revolving door where one producer comes in and the other one goes out. This is going to be, you know, a hands-on radio station. The news director is there down the hall, the reporters are there, the fax machines are going, the teletype services, the whole thing.
2130 We are very confident that we can deliver.
2131 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Can you tell me how your internship program is going to work?
2132 MS LAURIGNANO: I beg your pardon?
2133 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Your internship program.
2134 MS LAURIGNANO: Absolutely. What we do, again we have some experience here. We are sort of a little farm team. We work with colleges such as Humber College. It is just very happy to give us recruits and entrants.
2135 What we do then is basically we come up with the objectives that we have to make in writing, an agreement with the school saying, you know, X number of people are required and this is what they can expect from us in terms of training and supervision and teaching and that kind of stuff.
2136 They send us candidates that we interview and, you know, we assure ourselves that they meet some of the qualifications and then we put them to work or sometimes they put us to work.
2137 How many would there be, for instance, in a year? Well, if I can tell you, I haven't really thought about that many, but I can guess given what we do right now. We probably train about 20 interns a year right now with CIAO. I think that would be fairly accurate for me to say about the thing.
2138 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: And how much time do they spend?
2139 THE CHAIRPERSON: Could I remind participants in the room to please turn off their cell phones.
2140 MS LAURIGNANO: It depends on their schedules and where they are coming from. For example, we had interns from Ottawa, some from the media, schools. How much time? Sometimes it's up to four days a week, you know, and sometimes it's flexible schedules, depending on, you know, if they are in the broadcast schools or if they are in universities or colleges or some specialty programs.
2141 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: And how much would they get paid? How much would you pay them?
2142 MS LAURIGNANO: Usually we don't pay them per se. We try to help them out, sometimes with costs or if they are asked to do something else. It's just an exchange program with the schools. It's part of their education.
2143 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Like a volunteer.
2144 MS LAURIGNANO: Hands-on experience, yes. Then they like it so much, you know, sometimes we hire them, which is great. It's not the -- they often visit. They're good. They are great at getting coffee sometimes when some of us are tied up. It's a great bunch. We love to work with them. It's great.
2145 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Now, I would like to talk a little bit about broker programming. Could you tell me, will there be broker programming on this station and, if so, how much and how it works?
2146 MS LAURIGNANO: I am going to ask Mr. Currie here to follow up with that. Go ahead.
2147 MR. CURRIE: As you can see from our application 90 per cent of it will be in-house programming that we will have full-time staff. We go to the brokering programming, it will basically consist of approximately 10 per cent. It will vary between nine and ten because we have public access in there also.
2148 When you look at a breakdown of the financing of the brokered programming, it doesn't equal 10 per cent. When you go across our financial statement, it averages out to 5 per cent per year, which is I would say half of the time consumed.
2149 With the brokering of the programming, if you want the numbers, I have them.
2150 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Perhaps you could give us the numbers. I am sure that counsel will follow up. What I really would like to understand is how -- where it is on here and how it is going to work with that 10 per cent.
2151 For example, why don't you give me an example how you would deal with a producer with respect to the brokered programming. What is the nature of the exchange, financial exchange, and then perhaps you could also tell me a bit about the community access separately.
2152 I understand both of these would comprise 10 per cent of the schedule combined, the brokerage and --
2153 MS LAURIGNANO: That's right. If you look at the full broadcast schedule for the week, we have made allowances for 90 per cent of the programming to be produced in-house. That means that there is going to be on-air staff, there is going to be salespeople, also support services in-house. That's why I say it's like a traditional kind of radio station.
2154 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: But you would be using community people.
2155 MS LAURIGNANO: We are using community people, but in terms of supplementing and on staff and that kind of thing, no, the day program is all in-house. What we have got is we have approximately 10 per cent of the schedule which is comprised of the smaller languages. There is room in there for one hour of what we call community access program that we have left open. As well, we left five hours open on the weekend to accommodate any requests or any needs that may arise or requests that we get.
2156 When this licensing process is over, we don't know how many are going to be awarded, how many people are going to be maybe displaced or maybe are looking for something, we have left another five hours in there that we will evaluate those requests and try to put people in.
2157 In reality, we expect to -- I know you are going to hear this word a lot -- subsidize those programs because they are so small. We would love to find an associate producer or somebody that we can engage in terms of, you know, coming up with the revenue sharing formula, but in our own internal projections -- to answer the other question -- where the revenue is shown in local sales in our revenue projections, it's included in there, we have calculated that although this is 10 per cent of the programming, we will in fact realize perhaps 5 per cent of the revenue based on the percentage of the ratio to the program.
2158 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: It is 10 per cent of your programming time, but 5 per cent of your revenue.
2159 MS LAURIGNANO: Exactly, yes. The large question is or the large answer is that we are not looking for a hotel room, you know, we are not looking for a place to rent rooms. This is going to be a family home with an open door.
2160 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: I understand that. I think what we really felt though with this number of applications and with the wide variety of proposals, the better understanding we have of the extent to which people use broker programming and what the financial arrangements are --
2161 MS LAURIGNANO: Right.
2162 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: For instance, would it be the producer then who would retain the revenues generated from any sales of that time or how would that work? You split them.
2163 MS LAURIGNANO: Yes. Again, it's quite a departure from the traditional and in fact from the existing arrangements that are on right now. Don't know exactly how it's going to be.
2164 The best scenario for us would be to go into a revenue sharing situation. It's going to be an hour program, you know, here and there, so we don't expect that somebody is going to make their full-time living out of this.
2165 We are introducing six new languages in the market that are not currently served through our proposal. We are going to have a challenge finding the on-air person, never mind a salesperson who is already trained and knows how to bring the sale in and get that kind of stuff.
2166 It's a consideration. It's something that we will look at, but I think it's going to be fragmented in terms of, you know, how each program is going to break down. There won't be a one formula for all of them.
2167 Again, it's a minuscule part of the schedule in the scheme of things, although an important one.
2168 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: In the area of local content, as you know, the ethnic policy states that we would expect licensees to report on the progress of their local content initiative on subsequent licence renewals and that we would find it helpful for licensees to indicate in their plans how they will subsequently evaluate their progress in this regard.
2169 You have indicated in your application you have an advisory board which, among other things, will make recommendations to the management on matters of program policy. Could you tell me a little bit more, first of all how you will evaluate your progress with respect to meeting your local content initiatives and how you measure your success? Then I will have some questions about your advisory council as well.
2170 MS LAURIGNANO: Yes. Again, we come at this with some experience. The evaluation is ongoing. We will have management set out objectives and measurable guidelines or guidelines that will enable us to measure by with monitoring.
2171 You mentioned as well the council. It will have some role in this as well. We expect them to make recommendations and in some cases hold us to task, you know, should we receive complaints or anything like that.
2172 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Do you have an advisory council now at CIAO?
2173 MS LAURIGNANO: No, we don't.
2174 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: So this will be a new venture for you.
2175 MS LAURIGNANO: This is a new venture. We obviously have, you know, people that we rely on that are in the community that worked at the station for a long time, but not a structured council. This is a new venture, yes.
2176 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Looking through your application, perhaps you can help me with this. I was a bit confused. I'm certainly not an expert in immigration policy, but you have indicated that you expect a number of the members of your advisory council to be non-residents. I was trying to understand how the system would work where you could have someone on an advisory council who would not be a Canadian resident.
2177 I wonder if you could maybe explain to me. I think you did explain deficiencies, that people who were immigrating often weren't residents.
2178 MS LAURIGNANO: Yes. We did explain it in the deficiencies. I should say up front that we have a minimum of Canadian citizens and residents. We are saying that actually it is desirable to have that representation on the council.
2179 As we said, and as I will reiterate, we need that view to largely people who are not citizens, who are here on landed immigrant status, who are here even on a student visa, any number of ways that they happen to be in this city here and are part of our radio audience.
2180 The other thing we want to do is use -- the council has a very important role in helping us with the CTD initiatives. Our role will be to make sure that the Ethnic Starmaple Fund is administered; that we get the best use of the money. They make recommendations to us.
2181 Part of that is that the artists are going abroad, as well, or we aim to export some of the talent and some of the artists abroad. We thought it was very important that we have some representation, maybe somebody from Miami who holds the Kyocho(ph) Festival, which is the biggest celebration of Latin music in the whole world.
2182 How much would that be helpful in giving us guidance on how we can get these artists to go to these competitions and how they get exposed and get television exposure, that side of the business; or perhaps even from India.
2183 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: It wasn't clear to me. It read that there would be people who would be non-residents who would be in the process of becoming Canadians.
2184 But I take it that is not what you are saying.
2185 MS LAURIGNANO: No.
2186 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: You have differentiated between people who are here in the process of being Canadians and people who are permanently living not in Canada who you would have on your advisory board.
2187 MS LAURIGNANO: Exactly.
2188 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: And their role would be to...
2189 MS LAURIGNANO: To offer us the international perspective on things, to broaden the horizons and to really open up some other possibilities that again are outside of that box. We are supposed to be this way, and Canadian talent has often been -- you put these people in costume, and they sing and dance; you pay them a little fee, and thank you very much. Look, Mr. Commissioner, we surpassed our ethnic talent development.
2190 I think that is what distinguishes our proposal. It is a little different in that we are living in the global community, and I would love to hear from somebody from a place like -- should I try it? -- Jiranarampuram(ph).
2191 We had a bet that I couldn't say that word.
2192 It just opens the whole spectrum, and that was really the view for that.
2193 With the advisory council, we are being very selective. Rather than rush out and grabbing a bunch of people, we are being very selective. We want a cross-representation of interests. We want people who are in the business end of it, who are maybe in entertainment, some health professionals.
2194 Of course, Ben is confirmed and he has helped us with that. The experience of actually promoting the artists, he is the one who has tried to take these ethnic artists and crossed them over. Without that intermediate step of having the air play, how did these people get established?
2195 To his credit, he has done very well with some of that. So we have Ben.
2196 We also have confirmed Mrs. Zena Kossar, who is founder of the International Caravan Festival here in Toronto, which is an institution, where there are features --
2197 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: And she lives here.
2198 MS LAURIGNANO: She lives here.
2199 We also have Saul Korman, who is a renowned businessperson. I think probably next to our mayor he is one of the local personalities here.
2200 That is the calibre of people we are hoping to attract.
2201 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: I notice you plan that it is your intention that the chair of your advisory committee will be an employee of the station.
2202 I am wondering what led you to make that decision. Often it is someone from outside, and this is different.
2203 MS LAURIGNANO: That was a calculated decision. The advisory board, of course, has a lot of leeway. We are open-minded. We want to hear the recommendations.
2204 But the ultimate responsibility is with the licence-holder. We will make the final determination there for everything. I think it is very important that the station be there, be represented in that regard.
2205 The council is not going to have any legal binding power. However, as I said, we are going to extreme lengths to make sure that we get to those people. I am sure their advice is going to be extremely useful and helpful and innovative to a degree.
2206 But we have control. We need to have that control.
2207 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: What I would like to do is talk about your proposed levels of ethnic and third language programming as conditions of licence.
2208 We may wish to impose on you a condition of licence related to your proposed levels of ethnic and third language programming. In your case this would be 100 per cent ethnic and at least 56 per cent third language programming each week.
2209 Do you have any problem with those as a condition of licence?
2210 MS LAURIGNANO: That is fine.
2211 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: You have agreed to commit by condition of licence to broadcast a minimum of 15 per cent Canadian content during ethnic periods.
2212 As you know, the Commission stated that it would maintain the Canadian content requirement for ethnic radio stations, including 7 per cent during ethnic periods, because we were not convinced that there was sufficient information to support an increase of Canadian content.
2213 You have talked a little bit about it, but I wonder if you could tell me a little more about why you could meet your 15 per cent Canadian content level.
2214 MS LAURIGNANO: Yes, of course. I am going to ask Ben in a minute to add to what I am going to say.
2215 The determination was made on a couple of very important factors. One is that we have made some progress in identifying ethnic music, and that is in part through one of our efforts, along with other members of the Canadian Association of Ethnic Broadcasters.
2216 We have developed and instituted an ethnic catalogue, a Catalogue of Canadian Ethnic Music, which is ready. It has a Web site, and it is going to be successful right across the country and across the world. We feel it is just the beginning.
2217 I serve on the committee that is doing it, and I know the commitment of those broadcasters and a lot of people.
2218 That helps us that way.
2219 Part of the challenge has been that there may be a Canadian artist in Montreal or somewhere and being played locally, but a lot of us broadcasters from Brampton or Vancouver may not know.
2220 So this is a way of pulling this kind of information. As well, the Web site will have the ability to allow programmers and broadcasters to download some of this, of course with artist's permission for air play.
2221 That is a resource that we now have in place that wasn't there in the past.
2222 The other thing is that given the type of programming we are doing, we have sourced it. So we are comfortable. There is a number of Canadian mainstream artists, as we said, like Céline Dion, Bryan Adams and a few others, who have Spanish recordings. There are people like Sony Music who have a Latin division.
2223 So there are some resources there that would not normally be available in other languages, for example.
2224 The third thing is that there is a roster of Canadian artists, both South Asian, who are huge stars in India. This is something that was a revelation to me. I knew there was something, but when I started talking with Pal and a few other people -- Pal himself, this gentleman here, is a folk singer. He goes through and he gets 40,000 people to see his concerts. There is a list of a dozen or so who are --
2225 MR. SIDHU: There are so many younger artists who use the radios and use the publication and recording here, and now they are very popular in India and in Pakistan, too. We want to create artists from here so that they should be popular in Canada too.
2226 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Could I interrupt here and ask you: Have you discovered through the establishment of the inventory that there is more there than was previously thought?
2227 Perhaps you could also tell me, one of you, the extent that it differentiates in different types of music and different ethnic groups.
2228 MS LAURIGNANO: First of all, the resources vary from one community to the other, depending on sometimes the infrastructure of the community, the size of the population.
2229 If you are looking at the larger number of titles, resources tend to be with the larger ethnic communities and/or the larger appeal of the genre of the music. For example, the Latin Latino music, that kind of rhythm, has excellent resources in Canada, or better resources than say Latvian or Lithuanian, or that kind of music.
2230 There is a generation or two who are on this launching pad of talent, and they need to take off. I have often said there is no reason why we can't produce a Ricki Martin or a Jennifer Lopez from Canada, as we did Céline Dion and Bryan Adams and Alannis Morrisette. Once we shoot them from here to those huge markets they will take off, because they have the talent. It is just from here to there.
2231 What is missing from here to there is that air play. They have to establish themselves here before they can take off somewhere else.
2232 Ben, perhaps you can read some of the artists.
2233 MR. CALCATERRA: Basically, to reach that 15 per cent Cancon there is enough Canadian Latino music in the marketplace right now. Myself, I work with many Canadian artists, and a lot of them we do record in Spanish, just because artists like Ricki Martin and Enrique Inglesias have already broken down the language barrier where now many Top 40 stations just play that Spanish kind of music.
2234 With the fund that we have set up in place, I think we will be able to definitely develop new talent, and also the existing artists that are currently in the marketplace that have album deals with major labels will continue to record and produce Canadian Latin music.
2235 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Does the 15 per cent apply to all of your various ethnic groups, or is it just your Latin group?
2236 MS LAURIGNANO: It is all. It is across --
2237 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: There is sufficient inventory throughout to meet that requirement.
2238 MS LAURIGNANO: Yes. With the shorter programs, we will do that as well because there is enough for an hour or half an hour traditional type music and recordings that are available. We are doing that now, the seven, and we don't have a problem doubling it.
2239 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Thank you.
2240 I wonder if you could tell me a little more about your Latin Music DJ Spin-Off competition. Explain to me a little more about the genre and emerging art form, new performing art genre.
2241 MS LAURIGNANO: The DJ, what is unique about this initiative -- again it is a little different than the norm -- is that by "DJ", first of all, we mean spinners. It is not the on-air, just for clarification. These are spinners. This is talent. This is Canadian talent.
2242 Some of the Latin DJs that come from the United States or South America are as big a star as any recording artist, because they sell their mixes, compilations and CDs, as well as they perform before crowds and/or entertainment venues.
2243 This is talent. This is like a talent initiative. Again, it is not the traditional song with the microphone, but it takes real art to do that. It takes marketing. It takes recording cont0racts sometimes to get this talent exposed.
2244 For example, right now you have someone like the Céline Dion remake of "I'm Alive". A DJ did that. They remixed it. That is what we are talking about in simple terms.
2245 But there is a real art and there is a real crop of Latin music expert DJs who would really benefit from this kind of exposure and this kind of help to them, again with the view of not only developing them in Canada but they could be exported.
2246 There are people like Eric Morillo, who is a well-known DJ from somewhere in the world, and he gets a $20,000 performance fee. He just doesn't sing.
2247 I don't know, Ben, anything you can add to that?
2248 MR. CALCATERRA: Yes. In the past 10 years the typical DJ role has been changed or transformed into a position now where the DJ is actually the artist. They come with their records, they come with their ideas and they play for people. What they create in their set is considered music.
2249 In Europe especially the DJ has become, in some cases, more famous than actual singers or songwriters. So we feel with the introduction of Latin music, combined with maybe some other types of styles of music, we can allow DJs to create their own sound, their own name, their own market and possibly even launch a DJ at the level of an Eric Morillo, who is a Latin American DJ that plays for two hours and gets paid $50,000.
2250 So that is what we are trying to create or trying to do.
2251 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: So tell me how this competition would work then.
2252 MR. CALCATERRA: Basically the competition would be a call out to all DJs. Primarily we would target the Latin community, but we would still accept applicants from other communities. Then we would advertise it through our own new FM, also including print promotion, TV advertising and basically just set up a big event around this DJ showcase.
2253 We would then select possibly, depending on how many submissions we get, 10 DJs to come in and battle or play against each other or come up with their best ideas of how music should be mixed and what their style is.
2254 From that, we would have a panel of judges that would select the winner and then we would take that winner, put him on the air and create a name for him and promote him as if he was an artist, and possibly also send him to other DJ competitions or other festivals throughout the world.
2255 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: So this would not involve DJs who might be working on the station?
2256 MR. CALCATERRA: No, not at all. Not at all.
2257 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: This is like club DJs or something. Is that it?
2258 MR. CALCATERRA: It is basically DJs from the street.
2259 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Street DJs.
2260 MR. CALCATERRA: Street DJs, yes.
--- Laughter / Rires
2261 MS LAURIGNANO: Can I just add one more thing? The Internet here, our Internet and the Web site and the interactivity of the Internet will also be used as a medium to promote and to enter on-line and that kind of stuff.
2262 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: With regard to your Canadian Ethnic Music Artist Fund, I gather you are modelling it after the CAB Starmaker Fund. Could you tell me, would eligible recipients be limited to those whose language and/or ethnic group receives programming on your station?
2263 MS LAURIGNANO: As has been said, we wouldn't exclude anybody, however very definitely the parameters would be set out. We would have a set of rules and regulations at the start.
2264 The objective here is that if our criteria is met -- obviously, for example, to enter the DJ competition you have to be some sort of a DJ. You can't come there and sing. Whether it be for original music in Hindi or Spanish, or that kind of stuff there, I think the way we set out the regulations for the Starmaker Fund -- like we are sending a person to India to enter the -- what is one festival?
2265 What is the festival?
2266 MS KHATTAR: We are having some of those festivals like the East Indian Music Festival and then we have rockyatra, which is a kind of a travel for rock music. These are coming up very recently. They have been going on for a couple of years.
2267 These events bring up new talent, old words and new music all blended together for today's generation, and I guess even the old ones like me who would enjoy those. It's just fun.
2268 MS LAURIGNANO: So the way it is going to be, it is going to be evaluated by -- it will happen in one of two ways. One is that through the advisory council and through the station and through some strategic partnership or association we may identify an event or a competition that is desirable for us to promote. For example, if it is a Kyocho(ph) or the rockyatra, we would put out the parameters. We would say there is a competition there, it is for this, for that. So there is a lot of built-in criteria there for the kind of candidates that it would attract.
2269 The other thing would be that we are going to invite submissions. Say "Hey, do you have an ambition? Do you want to get there? Send us your request and your reasons why and we will have the council evaluate and see if we can accommodate you."
2270 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: So I take it, then, this is something you would do yourselves and not jointly with any other ethnic broadcasters?
2271 MS LAURIGNANO: Actually, I would love nothing more than to make this a seed. You look at the Starmaker fund, the CAB, and I think their starting budget was $4.1 million and we are coming up with what appears maybe a bit more meagre sums, but I definitely would make every effort to engage as many broadcasters as possible.
2272 Not only that, I think we can get strategic partners on board. For example, we have allowed for that money there, but if we can save some of that money because we can secure a passage to India -- pardon the title -- through Air India, because they would become a partner in there, then that would free up more money to perhaps instead of sending two or three people, sending four or five to various things.
2273 So we certainly view this as a seed in the same way as we did with the ethnic catalogue. It started out as a little thing and it still is in its infancy, but I think it has great potential.
2274 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Thank you.
2275 What I would like to get a better understanding of now is the age demographic groups you have targeted. We talked a bit about your Latino block, which I guess will be youth, youth-targeted. I wonder if you could explain a bit about some of the other time blocks for the proposed station and what age group you have targeted?
2276 MS LAURIGNANO: The other time blocks are primarily the traditional type of audiences. They are primarily language-driven, as the schedule indicates. However, it is our intention to be as music-intensive as possible, which makes a big difference to listeners of various age groups. The younger demographics tend to like music and they tend to like it on FM, so we feel that by that alone we will attract a slightly younger skew of the market. They will be attracted by the music and not the rhetoric and the usual, sometimes, of talk or the traditional type of program.
2277 In terms of breakdown, I really can't give it to you. I don't know. All I can tell you is that our guesstimate is that because it is music-intensive, because it is on FM, because of the broad range of some of the languages that we have incorporated in the schedule, that we will attract larger audiences and I think younger audiences as well.
2278 Hindi, for example, I think is a language that is used for most recording, whether your mother tongue is Punjabi or something else.
2279 MS KHATTAR: That's right. I would just like to add in here, Hindi is the most widely heard language and people coming from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and including India, which is a very, very big part of the continent, it is just heard everywhere.
2280 I'm sure all of you here would know the Hindi movies that come into town. A lot of my friends, like you, would like to go and see them as long as the subtitles are there. Everything of the Hindi content today is there in the market. That is one thing which needs more exposure, better exposure, and exposure in the mainstream, because everybody who is here now wants it the Canadian way, but we have to present now Hindi and the other languages the Canadian way in the mainstream.
2281 MS LAURIGNANO: I think it is also fair to say, or I will say that because Hindi in the morning block is the language, that would be the more pop commercial kind of music format, which again attracts the younger, whereas when we get into the smaller, the narrowcasting language, it will be in more the traditional folk and/or religious music depending on what region we are targeting. So it is a bit broader in the morning.
2282 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: I'm not sure I completely understand, but let me tell you what I think I heard you say.
2283 The morning Hindi music will be skewing younger and some attempt to enter the mainstream. Is this --
2284 MS LAURIGNANO: I would say the South Asian mainstream, yes.
2285 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: The South Asian mainstream.
2286 MS LAURIGNANO: If you are taking that whole thing as a collective block, Hindi is a common language. In the same way that English, to some degree, is doing with the Latino and the Spanish, the Hindi is going to attempt to do that.
2287 By virtue of that language and by virtue of how the recordings are made and the time of day, we are going to be playing a more contemporary sound in the morning. So hopefully that will attract, again, a younger skew and maybe traditional.
2288 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: That is your intent, to attract the younger?
2289 MS LAURIGNANO: That is the intent, absolutely. But for all intents and purposes, the South Asian block is a traditional ethnic program in the way that we are used to doing it. The difference in this proposal is that it adds the Latino later on as a bit of a departure from this "traditional" type of program.
2290 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Thank you.
2291 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: WTOR. I'm sure you are familiar with WTOR. I wonder if you could just tell me what role it plays, in your view, with respect to capturing local Toronto South Asian audience and revenues? Just elaborate perhaps on the impact of WTOR in the Toronto market.
2292 MS LAURIGNANO: Just to confirm, this is the out of town we are talking about. I just want to make sure because sometimes abbreviations throw me off.
2293 I think there is definitely an impact in terms of taking revenue out of the market. I think it indicates that there is a shortage of programming. I think it also, unfortunately, takes away from the Canadian broadcasting system, because once it is across the bridge or across the border, then all those things that make a program Canadian are no longer applicable, such as Canadian content and local programming and the reflection of the local community. It may be done, but they don't have to do it any more. So sometimes it is done at the expense of Canadian artists as well or music content.
2294 I will as Don to see if he has any more, but definitely it is a concern and we would like that to be repatriated to some degree. Whether somebody else will take up their time, we don't know, but at least --
2295 It is a perennial that we have heard quite a number of times on various occasions and in various circumstances, but definitely there is an export there of revenue and we would like to see it back. At least that is part of what we would like to do with our proposal.
2296 MR. CURRIE: I think when we look at WTOR there are a lot of misconceptions there. The broadcast quality of the shows, from my perspective, is rather substandard. What I have found with our experience as an ethnic broadcaster, that we find some advertisers who feel they need their own show or want their own show and they have approached me and I have no time. There is no time available for them.
2297 So they take their advertising dollar, which they have been using on one of our ethnic programs, and they take it to 600 East Mall, or the West Mall, which is a few blocks from our office, and they have their own show.
2298 It lasts for two months or three months and the vanity radio that they have been doing just diminishes because they are tired of putting their hands in their pockets to pay the rent.
2299 The other thing that happens -- I notice in other applications where there are hundreds of concerts and one programming day for the South Asian community. I checked with a few of these sponsors. They said "Well, why shouldn't we? It costs us $2 for a spot or $3 for a spot". That revenue is relatively neutral for what they pay in rent and what they receive in advertising dollars. Then they last for one month, two months or three months and then they vanish.
2300 The actual money going south of the border is really the rental. The advertising dollars, it's just shifting pockets in Canada. The advertisers there -- if I was an advertiser and someone said to me "Look, I can give you 50 spots a month for $150", I would be foolish not to take it, even if they only had a hundred listeners. That's where WTOR fits in. Of course the regulatory is not an issue. It's an American station.
2301 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: So it's primarily broker programming as you understand it.
2302 MR. CURRIE: As I understand it, 100 per cent broker programming and the owner of that facility, it's just a cash cow for him. When one goes, the next one comes in and so on.
2303 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: And whatever advertising, to your knowledge, is being sold here is being sold at rock bottom prices.
2304 MR. CURRIE: Absolutely. Sold directly by the broker.
2305 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: By the broker.
2306 MR. CURRIE: By the broker.
2307 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: So you don't really see much potential to repatriate revenue then in your view.
2308 MR. CURRIE: Well, I think that that term is really not applicable because the advertising revenue I do not believe is going to Buffalo as a lot of people like you to believe, but my knowledge suggests otherwise.
2309 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Yes. The nature of the money that is going to Buffalo doesn't translate into --
2310 MR. CURRIE: Absolutely not.
2311 MS LAURIGNANO: But it is a factor in the market because it affects prices. As Don says, it devalues a lot of the spots and just creates a lot of confusion. You know, some are paying too much. They can just go there and buy $2 a spot. It's not apples and apples. It's apples and oranges. We are competing in the same market for those dollars. It has an effect to that degree.
2312 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: And what about two --
2313 MS LAURIGNANO: I don't know. I would be guessing. I have no idea. I suspect it has a following. It has to. I can't imagine even at $2 anybody would just, you know, just throw it down the drain. Either that or they have very good jobs people.
2314 It is obviously there. I mean it is obviously filling a need and something is happening there. It's an issue.
2315 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: So with respect to it is a competitor in the market, it is just apples and oranges.
2316 MR. CURRIE: I think when you look from the sales perspective it becomes a non-issue when you are offering like they are. They have small blocks. What we are offering is a real professional sales effort that we can go to an advertiser and sell him a day plan, a weekly plan, a monthly plan that he is going to have a big part where he can get two, three or four spots whereas there it's a hit and miss, it's a hodge podge, there's no consistency in the programming. As one will come another one will move in.
2317 The ethnic listener from my perspective tends to stay tuned for a longer period of time and is looking for real meat in the programming. The people that I have known who were advertisers who have gone there are not what I would call top quality broadcasters.
2318 MS LAURIGNANO: Well, our program on the New FM would definitely repatriate listeners. It can't compete. It's an AM signal from over there. This would be on FM. This is a program done in the mainstream. We would repatriate the listeners. Once we do that, I think the advertisers would just follow. That's the difference.
2319 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Thank you. Now, I have some questions on the economic issues.
2320 With respect to your sources of advertising revenue, you have indicated that you expect 50 per cent of your revenues to come from increase in budgets of existing radio advertisers. I'm wondering if that's existing radio or general radio or existing ethnic radio.
2321 MS LAURIGNANO: That was existing general radio, radio overall. Yes.
2322 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: And new advertisers, is that new to ethnic or new to radio?
2323 MS LAURIGNANO: New to ethnic radio.
2324 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Your new advertisers are those --
2325 MS LAURIGNANO: No, no. I'm just saying some of them will be new to ethnic radio, yes.
2326 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: I wonder if you could -- you touched briefly on the language of the advertisers, particularly during the Latino period.
2327 MS LAURIGNANO: Yes.
2328 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: I'm wondering if you could tell me how much -- what are your expectations with respect to the language of the advertisers during that period or your strategy perhaps.
2329 MS LAURIGNANO: The expectations are that it will probably even out at about 50-50. The reason for that is that there is going to be advertisers who start at one o'clock in the afternoon where the Spanish unilingual starts. It just continues again, the core audience being that, then with the English being added.
2330 I suspect that the way the program is going to sound and the music and everything else that the advertiser will keep that same commercial running the whole time.
2331 Then what we said is we are giving them a choice, we are giving the advertiser a choice. Maybe they only want to do half and half, you know, which is okay, you know. You know, chicken legs at 59 cents a pound or -- you know, it can be done, it can be incorporated.
2332 We can guesstimate that that would work out to about 50-50 in terms of the advertising. Then again, the background could be like a Latin beat. It could be, you know -- if it's a jingle, jingle versus spoken word. If it's produced in-house, outside -- it will be Spanglish, as they say.
2333 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: What's that?
2334 MS LAURIGNANO: Spanglish.
2335 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Maybe I should ask my question a different way. I think I didn't explain it very well.
2336 What percentage of your advertisers are you expecting to be traditional Spanish language advertisers vis-à-vis mainstream English language advertisers who may or may not care to translate their ads in advance?
2337 MS LAURIGNANO: Okay. The traditional base for Spanish does not really yet exist. There's a limited number of programs that are available right now. They are well placed. It's a different kind of program. I don't think we are going to get a lot of money from there.
2338 Where we accounted for those is where we set an increase in budget. You know, there are people in the markets who are doing that. Perhaps they say "Hey, it's a new program, I'm going to try it", whatever.
2339 The big source of advertising is going to be local. It's going to be from the Hispanic, Latino market that right now is advertising elsewhere, not on radio, not in the broadcast media. There is a wealth of print advertising. There is seccionamarilla,the yellow pages. It's about this thick with a lot of advertisers in there. They are using all kinds of other ways to reach this community in fragmented ways all over the place.
2340 We suspect with most of our programming that the advertising will be local and it will come from within those communities.
2341 Having said that, there is some crossover appeal that we want to be able gauge and take advantage of for that program there that we can say "It's not just a momma and poppa, but there's a younger Latino".
2342 For example, we see a stream coming from the entertainment industry which is not normally a regular source of advertising for ethnic programming. There's clubs, you know, like there's Latino clubs, there's dance clubs. For example, record labels, who also spend money. For example, I can see where the Latin division of Sony would invest money promoting Celine Dion's latest Spanish language CD.
2343 Those kinds of advertisers are possible and will be added. Those have been the non-traditional ethnic advertisers.
2344 In terms of getting the mainstream advertiser, it's not going to happen because they are looking at line numbers, they are looking at BBM ratings. This is an ethnic program and we are not going to be measured and the audiences are not going to be reflective.
2345 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Indeed, that would apply as well to your 4:00 p.m., to your Latino programming as well. You do not expect the majority of your revenues to come from English advertising.
2346 MS LAURIGNANO: That's right. We would expect the revenue to be from local sources. A lot of the Latino community will be developed. We are bringing new revenue to the market.
2347 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: I wonder with respect to your business plan, I have a couple of questions. What is the basis for your finding that there is demand for more third language programming among the South Asian, Spanish, Russian and East Europeans?
--- Pause / Pause
2348 MS LAURIGNANO: I couldn't read my own writing there for a while. Well, the demand. We looked at a number of things. One is we looked at the population of Toronto. We are told by statistics that 50 per cent of Torontonians are born outside of the country.
2349 Right now we are looking at 32 radio services that are servicing this area of which only six are ethnic. Based on that alone the ethnic communities would appear to be a little underserved.
2350 We also read the Commission's report, which was the 2001-10, where you tell us:
"There is a strong demand for new radio services to serve the ethnic population."
2351 We believed you. We then looked at the landscape. We looked at population, we looked at immigration patterns, we looked at the breakdown of what the demands were. We looked at what was not served, what languages were not on the dial and yet the immigration patterns and numbers would sustain the fact that there is a basis for maybe it's about time for some of these languages to be included, that they were significant numbers.
2352 We relied on our experience as well as broadcasters and we relied on the number of requests. We are in the market, we live it. When Don gets a call "I want to buy" or "I want to produce" or "I want to do this program for such and such a community", we turn them away because, you know, we don't have the time.
2353 Sometimes they want a program that would be best suited for FM and we can't do that or it would serve a geographic area where we are not because some of the Latino population, for example, the concentration in the pockets of the South Americans is more Toronto rather than the outside areas. That was a factor.
2354 Interestingly enough, the request that we get for the most, most programming is for the Spanish that you see in the South Asian block. That was a big factor.
2355 We also then went to the advertisers and confirmed support because it would be silly to embark on a plan which falls flat on its face where we are not confident, that say "Hey, if we went for this type of programming, do you see merit? Would you advertise? Could you find additional money? Even though you are now spending thousands of dollars in this little yellow pages directory, would you invest in radio?"
2356 The response was overwhelmingly yes, that they would love the frequency, the availability of that kind of service and the immediacy of the radio.
2357 Then we designed a schedule according to that. How could we maximize it and what kind of programming could we offer?
2358 We also looked at research that was in the market. For example, there was a Conquest Research Report that was done in 1999 that surveyed the South Asian market. It confirmed what we thought all along; what the wishes of the community were in terms of programming, as well as what they wanted that programming to reflect and what kind of things are important. It is very important.
2359 It was an important fact that 93 per cent indicated that they wished to receive news from around the world and specifically from the region that they came from; hence, we have a fully staffed news department, including a news director, that will serve that particular need.
2360 It was really a combination of things that led us to that.
2361 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Could you talk to me about the benefits you expect to enjoy with respect to the operating synergies between all of your other stations and this proposed new one.
2362 MS LAURIGNANO: Sure. With regard to our FM stations, there is not a lot of synergy other than in some of the support and facilities that we can use that are already existing, such as a place to put our studios and that kind of stuff.
2363 They are really two worlds apart. For example, you can't combo sales, an ethnic station versus a mainstream. You can't have the same on-air person. There are a lot of things that are not possible there.
2364 With regard to CIAO, there are limited synergies in a few areas, but there again not in the areas of programming. They are two distinct services. They are two different régimes.
2365 There are some synergies that can be realized, for example, in terms of accounting, in terms of helping develop that sales force that I talked about in-house, which is the next generation of sales. We can bring people in and through the synergies and the cost savings we can, for example, provide training courses and perhaps even get some research done, which has not been feasible up to now because it is too cost ineffective to get that done.
2366 That is where we really see the synergies: in some of the administration and in some of the sharing, but not at the cost of programming. In fact, one of the benefits is that any savings would be reinvested in programming. That is actually one of the benefits that we see in having a sister station for the ethnic market.
2367 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: I have two more questions. I am almost done.
2368 They are questions that we have asked of the other applicants.
2369 The first one is: You have heard us solicit the views of the others with respect to the ability of your proposal to deliver your service through the models and the new community radio policy.
2370 I wonder if you could give me your views on that, if you are familiar with it.
2371 MS LAURIGNANO: I can definitely give you views also. I was expecting your question.
2372 For example, we are on digital with the CIAO right now. We undertook to do that and we did.
2373 Unfortunately, we have not to date had any measurable response that it has made a big difference in terms of service being received, despite the fact that we have advertised it and we have made it known that it is now available there.
2374 The reason for that is that the service is not readily available. It is not portable. It is not in cars. You have to have a special receiver to get it.
2375 I also have some firsthand knowledge of the challenges that are being faced in the digital world. We all know that it is inevitable; it is coming. It is in the future.
2376 For example, I serve on the National Advisory Council for PrideVision, which is a specialty digital service. There are challenges in the digital world. Again, it is because of the distribution and the lack of portability. And in some cases, in their case also, it is cost and carriaging and other issues.
2377 I also think that the problems of the digital world perhaps are a little more acute with some segment of our older demographic ethnic listeners that we serve, because they are used to traditional over-the-air services.
2378 While we agree that this kind of world is inevitable, we think it is not going to happen soon enough for what we are proposing. We think that the need is right now, and we want to be there and delivering now because the niche and need is right there.
2379 It would not adequately serve what we aim to do with this proposal.
2380 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Thank you.
2381 With respect to the use of 101.3, there are a number of applicants. Perhaps you could tell us why you think yours is the best use of the frequency.
2382 MS LAURIGNANO: I think the best use of the frequency is that what we are doing is we are offering something that is new, something that is exciting. We are adding six new languages to the radio spectrum. We are offering music-intensive programming, which as we know is best served on FM.
2383 We have found a way to skilfully blend what I described before as broadcasting and narrowcasting, in that we believe that we have a good formula. We have found a niche that is not served right now.
2384 We believe that what we offer is the embodiment, to some degree, of the next level of ethnic broadcasting, because it recognizes the reality that we are a multiethnic, multigenerational community here. That should be reflected, as well.
2385 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Thank you.
2386 Thank you, Madam Chair.
2387 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you.
2388 Vice-Chair Colville.
2389 COMMISSIONER COLVILLE: Thank you, Madam Chair.
2390 Ms Laurignano, I was struck by one of the points in your closing comments in your oral presentation first up this morning, and the third bullet on the last page of your presentation.
2391 There are a number of bullets there that you have asked us to remember, and the third one is:
"The view of uniform communities, neatly segregated along ethnic lines, is not the reality in Toronto. We are multi-ethnic, multi-influenced and, therefore..."
2392 And I underscore.
"... many of the old programming paradigms no longer apply."
2393 I took it from that that you think that perhaps we and others have a bit of a misunderstanding about this issue as it would apply to Toronto.
2394 I think you probably captured what you mean by this in the answer to many of the programming questions in the discussion you had with Commissioner Grauer. But I would like you to explain in a few sentences just what exactly you mean by that and in particular this issue about "the old programming paradigms no longer apply" for me, at least, to have a better understanding what the old paradigm was and what the new one is, I suppose particularly as it is embraced in your application.
2395 MS LAURIGNANO: Sure. Commissioner Colville, what we intended with that is that there has been immigration to Toronto over a lot of years. There is now an ethnic composition in this city that is not just one-dimensional; that is, we didn't get off the plane or the boat at one time or a certain era or time frame or economic period. There has been integration for some communities already. They have been here for a while and in some cases have become part of the establishment.
2396 It was that we -- and I say "we" because I am one of them -- came over and we did our thing. We were here and the program was like this, and you had the gentleman of the radio doing his thing and giving us the news and playing the little songs.
2397 Well, the community has changed and to some degree some broadcasters have changed and some have not. Some could not have changed because the space was not there for these sorts of things to happen.
2398 While we have become proficient in the languages and while we operate in this society, we have also been influenced by everybody else around us. No one exists in isolation any more.
2399 I am thinking of even things like cuisine, where spaghetti used to be called noodles or macaroni, and now people know rigatoni and penne. That has been due to the fact that we have been able to mingle and share these cultures and share our experiences.
2400 We are no longer the Italians, and we are no longer this and we are no longer that. We no longer live in our little neighbourhoods. We understand each other a lot better.
2401 And we speak English without any detriment to our ethnic heritage or culture or richness or appreciation of the music. We speak English. I speak English with my brother while we have our spaghetti, and that kind of stuff, and it's fine. His children speak English. Actually, they understand very little Italian.
2402 Yes, they know who their grandmother is, what region of Italy they came from, and they can say the words, and that kind of stuff.
2403 That is what we really meant; that we are not each of one us living in isolation or just within our community; that in our schools, in our entertainment facilities, at the clubs -- I think of the dance clubs, and we have some experience here with one of our English stations that caters. You go to any club on a Saturday night live to air, and you are going to see young people of all backgrounds.
2404 They say "come sta" and "si pasa", and they understand each other.
2405 Also with languages, people are no longer unilingual; they are bilingual. And sometimes, by virtue of knowing some languages, we can automatically understand another. I can say a word in English, French, Italian and Spanish, and it is similar enough that any number of us in this room would understand it.
2406 That is really what we meant. There is a cross-cultural phenomenon that has taken place, an evolution where we have also become part of each other. There are similarities, and a lot of appeal across cultures, which we think we can bridge with these kinds of programs.
2407 And not just the Latino, but also again the East Indian. If you are from Bombay, you speak Marathi and you are up there and you say, that's fine, but let's start with the Hindi because everybody has that in common. It is in that program there that we expose everybody to everybody else.
2408 That was really the aim and the point of that paragraph.
2409 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Thank you.
2410 THE CHAIRPERSON: Counsel?
2411 Me STEWART: Merci, madame la présidente. I will be very brief.
2412 First of all, just confirmation that your brokered revenues, which I think you said would consist of 5 per cent of revenues, are reflected in your financial operations under the item "Other".
2413 MR. CURRIE: No. That is incorrect.
2414 The brokerage revenue is contained in the local. It is 5 per cent of the local revenue. It has been blended into that.
2415 The "Other" column doesn't involve the brokerage of it. It is non-traditional revenue, which would come from Internet sources and co-ventures within the radio station.
2416 MR. STEWART: You have stated that the brokerage revenues would be 5 per cent. Consistent with what we have done with respect to other applicants, if you would file before Phase II a breakout of the revenues as between brokerage revenues and advertising revenues?
2417 MR. CURRIE: Yes, we have those figures.
2418 MR. STEWART: Thank you.
2419 My second question is: Would you be prepared to accept a condition of licence that a minimum of 45 per cent of all ethnic programs broadcast would be in the languages of Hindi, Punjabi, Urdu, Bengali, Tamil, Gujarati, Malayalam, Marathi, Konkani and Spanish, which is a reflection, really, of your programming schedule.
2420 MS LAURIGNANO: Forty-five per cent?
2421 MR. STEWART: Correct.
2422 MS LAURIGNANO: We would have trouble with that or with any conditions with respect to the way it relates to this proposal.
2423 One of the primary reasons is that -- well, first of all, I should say that we are very comfortable working within the parameters of the ethnic policy. This proposal is clearly within that.
2424 With regards to accepting a condition of licence that would limit us to certain things, we would be concerned that we could have one hand tied behind our back while everybody else is free to do whatever they wanted to do.
2425 Actually, one of my concerns -- and perhaps even a little fear -- is that I think that this proposal is so good that a competitor could take it and go on the air a month from now before you issue your licence -- and we might be one of the recipients -- and hit the streets with this Latino program and then what happens, I am stuck with a condition of licence while somebody has had 11 months to get there first.
2426 We are very good at our work. We have a history for developing niche markets, sticking with it. In fact, we are a little like bulldogs, as I think some of you people know here. So definitely we are committed to doing it and we would try every single possible thing within our means to stick to it and exceed it, because we have found this niche. But if somebody were to preempt us or do something else, then we would want to have the flexibility of finding another niche and reacting quickly.
2427 So, in short, we are very happy to work within the framework of the policy, which is the minimums there, with the understanding that this is our plan that was developed and we would go on-air with that.
2428 MR. STEWART: If, for the existing stations, the Commission were to propose conditions of licence along the lines that I have described in order to tie down a bit more securely the nature of the programming offered by the station, the Commission were to do that and then subsequently in the renewal decision actually apply that condition, would you feel in that environment if others were subject to the same constraints, would you feel more comfortable with accepting a condition of licence along those lines?
2429 MS LAURIGNANO: I think I would feel more comfortable overall because then we are sort of all in the same playing field. Definitely we would review it at that time and make a decision, again depending on what other factors have to be considered.
2430 I don't know if there is going to be one licence or two or three or four awarded here. I don't know how things are going to shape up so it is kind of hard for me to make that determination.
2431 Although, from a philosophical and perhaps principled point of view -- and we stated that in response to one of the interventions -- we really feel that the market can take care of itself, that adjustments will be made. There are just a lot of factors here at play.
2432 We have been through there. With our CIAO Brampton station, which is a very small signal out in the west end, we sometimes call ourselves the farm team because we develop programs and then somebody comes along and where they have a void, a vacancy or they need a producer and it goes there. You know what happens, we react. We act. We find something else.
2433 But I don't know whether tying everybody's hands behind their back is better than tying some hands. I don't know. But I would feel more comfortable on a matter of principle just to let the market be.
2434 MR. STEWART: In the event that you were to be awarded a licence, what assurance could you give the Commission that you would adhere to the programming, the nature of programming that you have proposed in your application and would not say in the event that the group that you were targeting not prove to work out as you had thought originally and you were to move to target other groups, what assurances can you give the Commission that that would not happen, presumably short of a COL which would, of course, oblige you to adhere to those commitments?
2435 MS LAURIGNANO: I think we can definitely give you assurances from today that we are committed to the format. We didn't just stumble on this, we really researched it and we are really comfortable and confident that we can make it happen and deliver it in very quick order.
2436 We feel again, to use the words from before, serve the next level or the next generation of ethnic broadcasting. Quite frankly, if somebody else wants to embrace it, that's great too because we have to look at those realities if there is a niche and if there is a need.
2437 I think what we can offer is the fact that we are an existing broadcaster. We have done this for a long time. We are good at our work. I think some Commissioners have seen us when we had to fight for what we were going to deliver because we said we were going to do so.
2438 I think there is comfort there. And I will go on record today saying that we would absolutely make every effort to keep the schedule on line, absolutely.
2439 MR. STEWART: Thank you.
2440 Merci, madame la présidente.
2441 THE CHAIRPERSON: Since we have you here, Ms Laurignano, and you have a lot of experience, it is interesting to look at what the market may look like supposing there were three new ethnic stations in the market, and whether from our perspective, which is an attempt to offer the most service possible to the greatest number of cultural groups. That is the aim.
2442 I guess what we are discussing is whether, as you put it yourself, the market is able to take care of that. You, yourself, have raised a little while ago the fact that some groups have to be subsidized and that is part of the ethnic policy.
2443 Of course, as an incumbent, granted that CIAO is a smaller station and it is AM, if we were to impose this you would have one hand tied behind your back on 101.3, but you wouldn't on CIAO. So you would be a little better than a new entrant.
2444 You have heard the comments from our perspective rather than a purely commercial one that the number of ethnic services in Toronto just to compete against each other is good enough to reach the regulatory objectives we have, which of course are not necessarily financially informed or generated. We of course know that none of our objectives will be carried if people don't make money. On the other hand we have to find a balance between the two.
2445 I think more the spirit of the question is whether the old paradigm of the ethnic broadcasters knowing each other and choosing their main support to subsidize the other groups will still work as we expand the number of players in the market. Of course, for us it is a question of where the balance between ensuring that the objectives are reached and keeping the world decently commercial and market-driven.
2446 MS LAURIGNANO: You're right. I didn't for quite a while and I remember -- it is going to tell you how old I might be -- that --
2447 THE CHAIRPERSON: Don't tell that I was there too!
--- Laughter / Rires
2448 MS LAURIGNANO: Okay, I won't, but my nose will grow.
2449 I worked with CHIN Radio with the late Mr. Lombardi. That is how I learned to love ethnic radio. I was there for 10 years. I remember that in those days we were the only game in town.
2450 So a hearing would come up and it was for CFMT Television I think, then there was Telelatino and then there was CIRV and then there was this, and every time we would go to the hearing and say "Oh, my God, you can't do this. We are going to go out of business. The introduction of a new service is going to just put us out of business. It will be the demise. It is a death star -- bell."
2451 Well, guess what. Surprise, surprise, all these things have been introduced into the market and the market has adjusted.
2452 So it is a matter sometimes that when the critical mass gets bigger it creates that action and sometimes the need for advertisers to look beyond their traditional consumers and say "Holy smokes, there is an ethnic market. Not only is there a small half-hour program, but there is more programming. I have an option. I can go for -- right now I can go for South Asians. In the old paradigm it was like South Asian one hour a week.
2453 Mr. Sidhu here would just be on his little thing there, pay his brokerage fee and just do his little program. All of a sudden now it is the next level. It is South Asian, yes, but he can be Punjabi in his program and then with that group we can do all kinds of stuff.
2454 So the population base is there. I think the market economy is good. All indicators are that it is good.
2455 We have room to introduce more services. I think the market can bear it. They can adjust to it. I think the ethnic market and the ethnic advertisers can grow. I think we can do the broadcast system well and good by bringing revenues to it. The way we do that is to introduce broadcasters such as radio and television and that kind of stuff.
2456 So is it unlimited? Of course it has a limit. I think it is just a matter of how you introduce it. Obviously if four new players come on tomorrow, it is going to reorder ethnic radio broadcasting as we know it. If it is one or two services now and maybe some later on, the impact may be more gradual.
2457 THE CHAIRPERSON: I guess I could conclude from your conversation with Commissioner Grauer about WTOR that of course competition rather than silos may indeed create quality, because if there are two or more offering South Asian programming then you have to do it better to poach the audience. So there is a plus on that side as well I would gather from your comments.
2458 MS LAURIGNANO: Yes, absolutely correct.
2459 THE CHAIRPERSON: And a minus on the putting the arm behind the back. A balance.
2460 MS LAURIGNANO: Yes, a balance is what you do best.
2461 THE CHAIRPERSON: But I will tell you, after all these compliments you just buy us some spaghetti and noon and you have a licence.
--- Laughter / Rires
2462 MS LAURIGNANO: You name it. On one condition, this is your condition on spaghetti, you have like hot peppers.
2463 THE CHAIRPERSON: At this time of the day we will take anything.
--- Laughter / Rires
2464 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very much.
2465 You may discuss this further with your colleague and at Phase IV you may have some further comments, as others will have, about the appropriateness of considering this constraint or not considering it.
2466 Thank you very much, Ms Laurignano, and your colleagues.
2467 MS LAURIGNANO: Thank you, Madam Chair.
2468 THE CHAIRPERSON: We will be back at 2:00.
2469 We will hear Infinity this afternoon and that's it. So we may adjourn a little earlier and start with San Lorenzo application in the morning at 8:30.
2470 Please keep your phones at home.
--- Upon recessing at 1250 / Suspension à 1250
--- Upon resuming at 1405 / Reprise à 1405
2471 THE CHAIRPERSON: Order, please. A l'ordre, s'il vous plaît. Monsieur le secrétaire, s'il vous plaît.
2472 MR. LEBEL: Thank you, Madam Chair.
2473 Item 6 on the agenda is an application by Infinity Broadcasting Inc. on behalf of a corporation to be incorporated, for a licence to operate a commercial Specialty FM (ethnic radio) station in Toronto.
2474 The new station would operate on frequency 101.3 MHz (channel 267A) with an effective radiated power of 310 watts.
2475 Mr. Neeti Ray will introduce his colleagues. Mr. Ray, you have 20 minutes to make your presentation.
PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION
2476 MR. NEETI RAY: Thank you, Madam Chair and Commissioners. Before I start the presentation, I would like to introduce my panel.
2477 My name is Neeti Ray. I am the President of Infinity Broadcasting. I will start with the end of this table. On my left is Mr. Stien Lal. Mr. Lal is a well respected member of the foundation community. He has been a Deputy Minister of Citizenship not very long ago and also Deputy Minister in several other departments of the Government of Ontario as well as the Northwest Territory.
2478 Next to him is Renu Ray. She is my partner both in life and in Infinity. To my right is Radika Ray. Radika is a grade 13 student at Unionville High School. She is the student trustee for the York Region District School Board. Next to Radika is Mala Sennik. Mrs. Sennik is a community activist and has progressively pursued action plans to address specific issues, particularly those concerning women and seniors and several communities and countries, Kenya, Mauritius, Fiji and Canada.
2479 Behind me on that end is Mr. Bob Templeton representing Newcap Inc. of Halifax. Next to Mr. Templeton is Richard Baroudi. Richard is the President of the Canadian Lebanese Association and very actively involved in the community.
2480 Next to him is our consultant, Mr. Jim Robson. Next to Mr. Robson is our marketing consultant, Hans Jansen. Next to Hans is Duncan McKie, President of Pollara Inc.
2481 On the far table, starting from this side, is our engineering consultant, Mr. Pierre LaBarre. Next to Mr. LaBarre is Amina Warfar. She is the family service worker at MIDYANTA which is representing the Somali community today.
2482 Next to Amina is Mr. Bikram Lamba. Mr. Lamba is a former adviser to the Prime Minister of India from 1967 to 1975. He is currently a consultant around the management consulting company for 20 years and he has a Ph.D. from Howard Business School in Boston.
2483 Next to Mr. Lamba is Mr. Bich Phan. Mr. Bich Phan is the former Executive Director of the Vietnamese Association of Toronto, presently a board member at the Vietnamese association. Next to Mr. Bich Phan is Professor Waglé.
2484 At the end of the table is Professor Waglé. He was the Director of the Centre for South Asian Studies at the University of Toronto and now currently he is the Director of South Asian studies at the new college, University of Toronto.
2485 There was slight confusion and I apologize for that. Next to Mr. Bob Templeton is Robert Buchan, very well known. He is our legal counsel and I apologize for that. Richard Baroudi is actually sitting next to Mr. Waglé.
2486 If I may start the formal presentation now.
2487 Madam Chair and Commissioners, Infinity Broadcasting appears before you today seeking approval to establish a new ethnic FM radio station on frequency 101.3 MHz to serve a large awaiting multicultural audience throughout the Greater Toronto Area.
2488 Approval of Infinity for 101.3 FM will bring significant diversity and added listener choice to Toronto's ethnic radio market by providing high quality locally relevant programming to 14 ethno-cultural communities in 19 different languages.
2489 Through its inclusive program schedule, Infinity will reflect the rich cultural diversity of each community by giving it a distinctive radio voice and an ongoing presence and recognition of its contributions to the Greater Toronto Region.
2490 For the unserved Armenian, Estonian, Ghanaian, Latvian, Maltese and Slovak communities, it will mean access to regularly scheduled, dedicated programming in their own heritage languages.
2491 To the largely underserved Arabic, Dutch, Filipino, Hungarian, Romanian, South Asian, Somali and Vietnamese communities, it will add programming diversity and listener choice that will enhance and complement existing services within Toronto's ethnic broadcasting milieu.
2492 Infinity's world-class programming service to Toronto's 500,000 South Asians will play a key role in repatriating listeners and radio advertising dollars lost to WTOR-770 AM of Youngstown, New York.
2493 Our commitment of $1,750,000 in direct and indirect expenditures on Canadian talent will greatly benefit Toronto's developing ethnic artists in need of financial support and on-air exposure to advance their careers.
2494 MS RADIKA RAY: Madam Chair and Commissioners, Infinity's 101.3 FM will provide Toronto's ethnic business community with a cost effective advertising vehicle to access and serve those previously unserved and underserved third language communities. This in turn will attract new radio dollars to Toronto's FM sector with minimal impact on existing ethnic stations.
2495 The addition of Infinity's 101.3 to Toronto's FM band will also bring new listeners and increased hours of tuning among South Asians and other third language groups.
2496 As well, Infinity's inclusive broadcast plan will improve the balance of ethnic radio services in Toronto by narrowing the service gap between well-served multicultural communities and those who are underserved or have no service.
2497 Our broadcast plan will also impact on the service imbalance between English speaking mainstream radio listeners with more than 4,700 hours of listening options each week and third language radio listeners with only 835 hours per week.
2498 Infinity's ethnic broadcast plan fully meets the spirit and intent of the Broadcasting Act and the Commission's Ethnic Broadcasting Policy and represents the most comprehensive, productive and optimum utilization of the 101.3 FM frequency.
2499 MR. LAL: Madam Chair and Commissioners, the remarkable evolution of Toronto's multiculturalism over the past four decades has transformed an almost exclusively white city into the most ethnically diverse city in the world.
2500 This evolution, which has occurred across two distinct immigration eras, began with the first wave of mainly European immigrants settling in Toronto and forming the core of its multicultural population.
2501 Toronto's second immigration era has brought an increasing flow of immigrants who are predominantly from South and East Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Eastern Europe, among others.
2502 While Toronto's existing ethnic stations have well served the first wave of immigrants, as evidenced by the Italian, Portuguese, Spanish and now Chinese programs that dominate their broadcast schedules, third language groups from the second immigration era are in many cases unserved or underserved.
2503 The most dominant of these groups is the large and culturally diverse South Asian community whose population of more than 500,000 is greater than that of the cities of Barrie or London or Halifax or Victoria, among many other Canadian cities.
2504 Hence in developing our broadcast model, Infinity again chose to incorporate Toronto's largely underserved South Asian community as the core language group given its size and its economic capacity to power our business plan.
2505 With 22 years of ethnic broadcast experience, an intimate knowledge of Toronto's radio market, ongoing consultations with third language groups and extensive market research and analysis, Infinity is more than ready to meet and serve the needs of our 14 targeted ethno-cultural communities.
2506 MS RENU RAY: Madam Chair and Commissioners, to ensure that our broadcast plan addressed the specific needs and interests of South Asians, Infinity commissioned Pollara to conduct a study of the Toronto radio audience and in particular to measure the interest of the diverse South Asian population in a radio service that would broadcast daily in their languages in the Greater Toronto Area.
2507 The survey, designed by Pollara in conjunction with Infinity, interviewed a total of 1,002 persons, including 202 from the general population, 100 from the Tamil population and an over-sample of 700 was identified as South Asians.
2508 Pollara asked a random sample of South Asian and Tamil Canadians whether they would support and listen to a new radio station that was designed to connect them to both their new environment and their cultural roots.
2509 Overwhelmingly they said yes. Respondents not only supported the station, they said they would listen in large numbers.
2510 Some 82 per cent of the South Asians and 90 per cent of the Tamils interviewed said they would listen to the new station. Further, 91 per cent of South Asians and 96 per cent of Tamils said the new station would be a positive addition to Toronto radio.
2511 MR. NEETI RAY: Madam Chair and Commissioners, Pollara's survey also measured listening to U.S. border station WTOR whose programming is specifically targeting the Hindustani and Punjabi language sectors within Toronto's South Asian community.
2512 Survey results show that 18 per cent of the South Asian respondents are turning to WTOR and listening for 7.25 hours per week. This tuning level is very significant in that it translates into nearly 500,000 tuning hours per week.
2513 The WTOR factor surfaced again in the "Economic Analysis Survey" conducted by the Bay Consulting Group, BCG, on behalf of Infinity. Given its listener and revenue impact on the South Asian community, BCG feels that WTOR is in effect Toronto's seventh ethnic radio station.
2514 Based on the number of commercials WTOR is running daily, a conservative estimate of Canadian dollars flowing annually from Toronto's ethnic business to Youngstown, New York, is well in excess of $1 million.
2515 In short, this station whose call letters stand for "WTORonto" is exploiting the Toronto market at the expense of our ethnic radio stations, the South Asian community and the Canadian broadcasting system.
2516 MR. LAL: Madam Chair and Commissioners, central to Infinity's commitment to serve 14 ethnic communities in 19 different languages is its South Asian programming which will be broadcast in five major languages: Hindustani, Tamil, Punjabi, Bangla and Gujarati.
2517 It is important to understand that within Toronto's South Asian population, there are 22 different languages spoken. The only language from amongst them that is universally understood and respected and able to bring the many diverse cultural elements of the broader South Asian community together is Hindustani.
2518 Essentially, Hindustani is the "lingua franca" of South Asia and is to South Asians what English and French are to the rest of the world.
2519 Hindustani is the language of Indian films, television and radio programs, commercial advertising and musical performances. This is why Hindustani has such an emotional appeal for all, whether at home or abroad.
2520 Despite its lingua franca status as the only universally understood language within Toronto's hugely diverse South Asian community, the most ready source of Hindustani programming in Greater Toronto is WTOR.
2521 Hence, the near absence of high quality Canadian produced Hindustani programming in the GTA since the loss of Infinity's "Radio India" program in mid 1998 has resulted in a largely underserved South Asian population with the exception of those South Asians from the Punjab state of India who speak Punjabi.
2522 MR. NEETI RAY: Madam Chair and Commissioners, in order to maximize our efforts to repatriate Canadian radio listeners and advertising dollars from WTOR, Infinity has scheduled its South Asian language programs during the morning, day and drive prime times in order to compete head-to-head with WTOR's South Asian program schedule.
2523 As Infinity's proposed schedule shows, Hindustani programming will be featured Monday to Friday, from 6:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., for a total of seven hours a day.
2524 Following the Hindustani programming, Infinity has then allocated the 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. time slot, Monday to Friday, and 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. slot on Saturdays and Sundays to Punjabi programming.
2525 Occupying the prime 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. afternoon drive time, Monday to Friday, will be the Tamils from Sri Lanka who, despite their rapidly growing numbers and vibrant business community, are largely underserved.
2526 Based on the results of Pollara's audience survey, the 15 hours per week of Tamil programming will have a significant impact on the Tamils of Sri Lanka who, unlike the Tamils from South India, do not understand or speak Hindustani.
2527 We are confident that with head-to-head competitive scheduling and high quality, locally relevant programming, Infinity will repatriate the majority of South Asian listeners and advertisers tuning to WTOR in the absence of a Canadian alternative.
2528 It is somewhat ironic that the audience and advertisers that Infinity hopes to repatriate are the same listeners and advertisers who were part of the large and loyal audience base that Radio India built over nearly a decade of serving Toronto's South Asian community before losing our brokered air time.
2529 In essence, Infinity's loss has become WTOR's gain.
2530 MS RENU RAY: Madam Chair and Commissioners, as career broadcasters, Infinity's insistence over the past 22 years on achieving the highest quality programming possible has been our benchmark, and the key to our success in producing world-class multicultural programs in Edmonton and Toronto.
2531 This ongoing quest for high quality programming is central to Infinity's decision to work directly with each community and their respective associate producers, as opposed to brokering time to independent producers.
2532 Across our experience in both ethnic radio and television, Infinity has learned that the greatest singular need of third language groups is to have access to programming that is directly relevant to their local communities.
2533 This desire on the part of the ethnic groups was strongly manifested in Pollara's research, in our discussions with the 14 communities we propose to serve, and in the more than 6,300 interventions filed with the CRTC in support of Infinity.
2534 Amongst the wealth of information accruing from Pollara's audience survey is the fact that a very high percentage of South Asian and Tamil respondents thought it very important or somewhat important to have local media that would keep them in touch with people and events in their local ethnic community; keep them in touch with what is happening in their family's country of origin; help them learn about their cultural heritage; help them understand what their ethnic group has in common with other ethnic groups and communities and their relationship with mainstream Canadian society.
2535 MS RADIKA RAY: Madam Chair and Commissioners, with such thoughts in mind, Infinity developed Cross Cultural Vibes, an ethnic program designed to reach across cultural boundaries and present music and spoken word programming in English on issues and subjects of common interest to radio listeners from all ethnocultural communities.
2536 Infinity sees great value in this type of ethnic programming with its ability to bring Toronto's diverse cultural communities together for brief periods throughout the week to share their common interests and experiences on a variety of topics.
2537 From our perspective Cross Cultural Vibes, slotted for 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday to Friday, nicely complements Infinity's overall program schedule, 94.5 per cent of which is devoted entirely to third language groups.
2538 MS RENU RAY: Madam Chair and Commissioners, with respect to talent development, as detailed in our application Infinity will spend a minimum of $350,000 on direct expenses and $1.4 million on indirect on-air talent promotion initiatives over seven years.
2539 In assessing the needs of local ethnic talent and how to best apply our resources in an equitable and inclusive fashion, Infinity has designed its direct and indirect expenditure initiatives to achieve maximum results for the benefit of ethnic talent in our targeted communities.
2540 With a minimum first year direct expenditure total of $35,000, Infinity in subsequent years two through seven will increase its direct expenditures by a minimum of $5,000 per annum.
2541 Hence the year seven figure will increase to $65,000 while the cumulative total for all seven years will be a minimum of $350,000.
2542 Beyond the direct expenditure provisions and indirect on-air initiatives, Infinity would stress that there are many intangibles that 101.3 FM will employ in its ongoing commitment to ethnic Canadian talent.
2543 As a case in point, Infinity proposes to exceed the required minimum 7 per cent Cancon level for ethnic radio stations by increasing it to a minimum of 10 per cent.
2544 MR. NEETI RAY: Madam Chair and Commissioners, in response to the February 12, 2002 call for applications, Infinity engaged the Bay Consulting Group, BCG, to conduct an economic analysis of the potential for a new ethnic FM radio station for the Toronto-centered market.
2545 BCG notes that the ethnic radio market in Toronto grew by 21.3 per cent from 1998 to 2000 and continues to grow.
2546 BCG also notes that FM radio is a growth sector and as such Infinity's revenue target of $1.05 million in year one and $1.3 million in year two and $1.6 million in year five are highly achievable.
2547 The BCG report further states that Toronto can easily absorb a new private ethnic station. Licensing such a station will have minimal impact on the market dollars flowing to other stations, because targets are modest and new dollars will be drawn to radio broadcasting from previously unserved or underserved language groups.
2548 BCG points out that Toronto's ethnic radio market, in the first year of the proposed station's operation, will be approximately $16.96 million. Infinity's projected revenue of $1.05 million represents only 6.2 per cent of that total.
2549 As well, given the size of Toronto's radio sector in total, Infinity's projected revenues will be less than 0.6 per cent of the market.
2550 MS RENU RAY: Madam Chair and Commissioners, the proposed relationship between Infinity and Newcap Inc. (Newcap) represents a new era of co-operation between ethnic and mainstream broadcasters.
2551 In exchange for a minority 10 per cent equity position in Infinity's proposed ethnic station for Toronto, we will have access to the depth of resources and expertise across many areas of broadcast activity that Newcap has developed.
2552 Infinity was attracted to Newcap in part by the support and sensitivity shown towards Canada's aboriginal broadcasters. From our perspective, this made for a good fit between Infinity and Newcap, in somewhat the same manner as the co-operative effort between Milestone Communications and Standard Broadcasting.
2553 Given the huge challenges that await Toronto's and indeed Canada's rapidly evolving multicultural society and all its attendant needs, the Infinity/Newcap initiative is perhaps an important first step towards ethnic and mainstream broadcasting sectors working towards common solutions.
2554 MR. NEETI RAY: Madam Chair and Commissioners, it should be further noted that Infinity's broadcast plan introduces a number of diverse elements to Toronto's ethnic radio market, not the least of which is diversity of ownership.
2555 In conclusion, approval of Infinity's application for 101.3 FM will, among many considerations:
2556 (1) extend service to 14 unserved and underserved ethnic communities in 19 languages;
2557 (2) introduce significant new levels of programming diversity and added listener choice to Toronto's ethnic radio market;
2558 (3) repatriate Canadian listeners and advertising dollars from WTOR;
2559 (4) implement Canadian talent development initiatives that will provide financial support and on-air exposure to local ethnic artists and performers;
2560 (5) help narrow the service disparity gap between Toronto's well served English-speaking radio audience and the far less served third language communities.
2561 Madam Chair and Commissioners, these are but some of the reasons why approval of Infinity's application will serve the public interest and best ensure the optimum utilization of the 101.3 FM frequency.
2562 On behalf of Infinity, I want to thank you for this important opportunity to present our proposal for 101.3 FM. My colleagues and I look forward to your questions now.
2563 Thank you.
2564 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you and welcome, Mr. and Mrs. Ray and Ms Ray, and the entire panel.
2565 I have some questions for you about the demand for the service and also the business plan that you propose.
2566 My first question is: In your 10 May filing about the languages that would be served, in which you would serve the public, you have indicated together for 17 hours Bengali, Gujarati and Punjabi.
2567 How many of these hours would likely be Punjabi?
2568 MR. NEETI RAY: A total of nine hours would be in Punjabi.
2569 THE CHAIRPERSON: In the same planning, in one instance Bengali is not shown as a language. Punjabi and Gujarati are together.
2570 What would be the division between the two, Gujarati and Bengali?
2571 MR. NEETI RAY: Bengali or Bangla -- both mean the same -- is scheduled on Saturday and Sunday after Punjabi, between 8:00 and 10:00 a.m.
2572 THE CHAIRPERSON: I was looking at this page, at simply the division between these three languages, which are aggregated together for 17 hours.
2573 So you have told me nine hours in Punjabi. How would the other two be divided?
2574 MR. NEETI RAY: Nine hours in Punjabi, four hours in Bengali, or Bangla, four hours in Gujarati, and two hours in South Indian languages.
2575 THE CHAIRPERSON: To make up to the 17 hours.
2576 MR. NEETI RAY: That's right, yes.
2577 THE CHAIRPERSON: Is there any understanding of those languages from one group to the other?
2578 MR. NEETI RAY: Do you mean if they understand each other?
2579 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes. You seem to group it as South Asian, so I am wondering whether there is a connection between the languages.
2580 MR. NEETI RAY: These languages, whether Bengali or Punjabi or Gujarati, are related in that the original source of that language would be --
2581 THE CHAIRPERSON: Would someone who speaks Gujarati also understand Punjabi, and the same thing with Bengali?
2582 MR. NEETI RAY: No.
2583 MR. LAL: Madam Chair, maybe I could assist.
2584 All these languages are -- sorry.
2585 THE CHAIRPERSON: We have to have one microphone at a time as much as possible; otherwise, we are getting --
2586 MR. LAL: Thank you, Madam Chair.
2587 I was going to say that Gujarati, Bengali and Punjabi are somewhat related languages in that they all take their root from Sanscrit, which is the original language. Therefore, there would be some degree of understanding.
2588 Having said that, each of these languages has developed their own literature, their own culture, their own script. Therefore, if I were to venture a guess, I would say about 20 to 30 per cent would be understood of the other language as opposed to 100 per cent.
2589 I hope that helps you.
2590 MS RENU RAY: Madam Chair, perhaps I could add a comment.
2591 We have Professor Wagle from the South Asian Studies, and he could clarify some of that even further.
2592 THE CHAIRPERSON: I am just trying to understand whom you will serve. As you know, there is already in our records -- and I don't think you have questioned that -- some 86 hours of Punjabi programming already available in the Greater Toronto Area.
2593 So I was trying to see just how many hours were in Punjabi, considering that you are saying that you try to serve the underserved. The 17 hours is the largest number of hours after Hindustani.
2594 I want to know how it is divided up as between Punjabi and the other.
2595 We have had some discussion about the 42 hours of programming in Tamil, and the conclusion we seem to have arrived at is that it is programming that is available during the night-time period on CHKT-AM.
2596 Is that your understanding, as well?
2597 MR. NEETI RAY: In fact, yes, it is: 42 hours between midnight and 6:00 a.m., seven days a week.
2598 THE CHAIRPERSON: What is your understanding of the number of SCMOs offering Tamil? We had four applicants -- three. Apparently one is not operative. Is that your understanding as well.
2599 MR. NEETI RAY: Our understanding is that there are three operating at this time.
2600 THE CHAIRPERSON: When you speak of the South Asian population size, in your application and again today, you estimate it to be half a million in the GTA. When you arrived at this number, what linguistic or cultural group are you speaking about to arrive at the half a million?
2601 MR. NEETI RAY: Before I answer that, or before I actually pass this on to our consultant, Mr. Hans Jansen, that if in fact that were taken into account -- Hans.
2602 MR. JANSEN: Madam Chair, to answer your question directly, the key cultural groups are Indian, Pakistani and Sri Lankan. In terms of the growth of these groups, in 1999 we have taken into account 35,000 individuals in terms of the growth of the knowledge of the language, and in 2000, 45,000. But Indian, Pakistani and Sri Lankan are the main cultural groupings.
2603 In terms of languages, the main languages would be Gujarati, Hindi, Punjabi, Tamil and Urdu.
2604 THE CHAIRPERSON: That figure of half a million would include, or would it include the group that you are targeting with Hindustani Konkani?
2605 MR. JANSEN: That is two-thirds, Madam Chair. Punjabi would be the other one.
2606 THE CHAIRPERSON: So when you speak of South Asian, that would include the target that you aim in Hindustani programming at?
2607 MR. JANSEN: Yes, Madam Chair. It is consistent with the research of Pollara as well.
2608 THE CHAIRPERSON: You have put considerable emphasis in your application about the repatriation of money and audiences from WTOR from Youngstown. It is also the case in your presentation. We need to understand the context that you are putting this in and the importance it has for the success of your business plan.
2609 First, I will refer to some of your documents. If you need to find it and you have difficulty, I will wait until you do if you need the document.
2610 In a deficiency response, the first one, at question 8 you were asked to identify the sources of your revenue, your estimate of where your revenue will come from in percentages. You have indicated that 20 per cent would come from local market radio stations and 15 per cent in increases in budget of existing radio advertisers, and new advertisers for 30 per cent, and other media for 35 per cent.
2611 Since a large amount of your revenue is to come from WTOR, I would like to know how you characterize the revenues from WTOR in that breakdown. Do you consider it a local radio station, or in these four breakdowns where is the revenue that will come from WTOR characterized?
2612 MR. JANSEN: Madam Chair, for the purposes of this analysis, WTOR would be considered a local station, a local advertiser.
2613 THE CHAIRPERSON: So it would be included in the 20 per cent?
2614 MR. JANSEN: Yes. But there are other categories as well from which WTOR revenue would be sourced. Because we are talking about the future and the market growth component of the market, in other words dollars that normally would flow to WTOR if the new station were not licensed, those dollars are captured in the other three categories.
2615 So we would have to calculate the answer to your question, and we would be happy to do that. That will take 10 minutes. If you would like to proceed with your questions, then we will do that.
2616 THE CHAIRPERSON: I had wrongly assumed that you would answer me that it was under other media.
2617 MR. JANSEN: That is partly true.
2618 THE CHAIRPERSON: Partly true.
2619 MR. JANSEN: Partly true. So we will calculate how much of it comes from other media, how much from local stations and what proportion of it would be market growth.
2620 THE CHAIRPERSON: Since my calculations will not be right -- I was trying to figure our how much of your business plan is dependent on the success of repatriating WTOR. I did my calculations using the 35 per cent, or part of the 35 per cent. You are telling me 20 per cent.
2621 Can you give me a ballpark figure of what it will be? All the 20 per cent? Part of the 35 per cent?
2622 Sometimes if you look at all these numbers you can calculate it and arrive at a pretty high figure. How much revenue are you going to get from there in percentages?
2623 MR. NEETI RAY: I can just point out the Bay Consulting Group report. At his page 28 -- I'm not sure if you will be able to go to that -- it says that:
"At station maturity..."
2624 He took year three to be the year of maturity:
"...sales of the proposed Infinity Broadcasting station are expected to be in the order of $1.4 million. Sources of revenue are estimated to be as follows..." (As read)
2625 You will see that it is a little over 30 per cent that has come from WTOR.
2626 I will just give the details here. It is 0.28 per cent from existing ethnic stations.
2627 THE CHAIRPERSON: They said at maturity?
2628 MR. NEETI RAY: Maturity, which is year three.
2629 THE CHAIRPERSON: One can also look at the calculation of your revenues and the percentages from different languages and make a calculation that if you combine Hindustanian and South Asian, which would be the programming of WTOR, I think even in the first year the percentage that would come from WTOR would have to be well over 30 per cent, considering that -- the 20 per cent, it means you are not going to repatriate a lot of advertising from the other local stations, the Canadian ones.
2630 But again, can you tell me, if I were to add a side line to the sources of your revenues, you say that WTOR will come out of the 20 per cent and party the other media, which is 35 per cent, which will include newspaper, et cetera. So at year three you expect you would get out of WTOR 30 per cent of your revenues?
2631 MR. NEETI RAY: Actually, in the year three it is close to 35 per cent and year one the approximate dollar figure would be $368,000 from WTOR.
2632 THE CHAIRPERSON: In year one.
2633 In year three what is 30 per cent of your projected revenue?
2634 MR. NEETI RAY: It will be half a million dollars.
2635 I would like to point out, if you wish to also see from another angle as to how we came to that amount, it is also that it is coincidental -- perhaps not coincidental -- that WTOR was licensed the year that Radio India program went off the air. Once again, whether a coincidence, that the month that we went off the air was the month that they went on-air with their construction permit to play music. When they realized that Radio India had gone off they targeted our advertisers, contacted them, and our revenue figure during the last full year of operation on Radio India was in the neighbourhood of a bit over $400,000 annually.
2636 THE CHAIRPERSON: In the same deficiency letter, the question above the one where you discuss your sources of revenue, you say at 7 sometimes you have $1.5 million in advertising revenues going to WTOR, sometimes $1 million.
2637 If you were to estimate $1.5 million garnered in the GTA by WTOR, what would be the sum of what you think you can get back from them? I think sometimes the application says most of it.
2638 What would be the amount, $1.5 million a year and your first year revenue is $1.05 million I think.
2639 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes. We are being very conservative in our estimate of the dollars that we would be repatriating from WTOR. We began with the figure that we were ourselves generating from the Hindustani language program in Toronto.
2640 We do aim to repatriate much more than that, but we have been cautious for the sake of making these projections.
2641 Another indicator that would further reinforce our projections as the reality, and perhaps conservative, is that we have letters of commitment from 20 of WTOR advertisers who used to be previously Infinity clients, to a commitment to divert advertising dollars to Infinity 101.3, if we got licensed, from WTOR, and the total amount constitutes just over $350,000 per year. It also reflects the kind of revenue that we were generating from these clients.
2642 THE CHAIRPERSON: At the Bay Consulting Group research paper at page 28, in year three they say:
"Half a million would be repatriated from WTOR in year three." (As read)
2643 Which you have called maturity. I stand to be corrected, but that is 36 per cent of your revenues of $1.4 million.
2644 MR. JANSEN: Madam Chair, may I may a comment. I could explain the differential.
2645 It should be kept in mind that the Bay Consulting group report represents findings and a professional opinion about what could be repatriated. The Bay Consulting Group Report is more assertive, more aggressive than the repatriation target that Infinity Broadcasting itself has set.
2646 What the Bay Consulting Group is saying is that we believe that there is potential to repatriate $500,000 in year three. The Infinity Broadcasting numbers that have been submitted as part of its application are more conservative.
2647 One cannot compare the Bay Consulting Group findings with the actual numbers that found their way into the application. Where the Bay Consulting Group figures may be in excess of 40 per cent, the numbers that Neeti has presented are lower.
2648 Of course we stand by our findings. We believe that there is significant potential by the year 2007-2008-2009 to repatriate half a million.
2649 THE CHAIRPERSON: I would have thought by then they would be out of business.
2650 MR. JANSEN: Hopefully. It's a bit similar to the discussions that we had about KVOS in Vancouver.
2651 THE CHAIRPERSON: Right. It's interesting that you speak of half a million at year three, but Mr. Ray, in your projections for your revenues, the amount -- the percentage of your revenues to come from Hindustani and other South Asians is the same every year from year one to year four.
2652 You filed the details of projected revenue breakdown from each programming segment. I would have thought like Bay Consulting that your repatriation efforts would grow over time. I suspect that when I look at repatriated revenues I am to look at Hindustani and South Asians. That's all that WTOR does.
2653 MR. NEETI RAY: Predominant.
2654 THE CHAIRPERSON: It's a constant percentage coming from those languages. I had expected that the proportion of the revenues coming from those languages would grow with what you call maturity as the consultants seemed to find.
2655 MR. NEETI RAY: I thought you were still not finished with the question. Yes. We have taken a linear approach as far as the rest of the years are concerned. They totalled quite close to what we believe our projection should be and very conservative. The breakdown might vary as we progress in years.
2656 The Hindustani language programming revenue, I would expect it would grow, but all I am saying is that we have been very conservative in these estimates. If anything, this will only grow. We hope that WTOR is out of business in our year five or six, but the fact also remains that WTOR is also here to stay.
2657 We have to continuously make sure that we provide, you know, much better than what they can provide so as to be able to compete with them. That's our target, to do better than them in programming and in sales so that we can if not put them out of business, then repatriate more than what we have projected in our projections.
2658 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mr. Jansen, I understand that you did the study and this is their application, but it is really integrated. It is relied upon as well. For us it's not that simple.
2659 MR. JANSEN: That's correct, Madam Chair, yes.
2660 THE CHAIRPERSON: They rely on your expertise and indirectly I suppose we either rely or want clarification on why they should or should not or why we should or should not rely on it.
2661 I don't know if that's a question for Mr Jansen, but my understanding is that you arrived at those revenues for WTOR by attaching a money value to the commercials you could hear on WTOR. Am I correct?
2662 MR. JANSEN: Madam Chair, the purpose of that particular appendix was primarily to demonstrate that the percentage of commercials on WTOR that are in fact Canadian sourced commercials, i.e. commercials for Toronto-based advertisers, is much higher than one normally would expect on an American station.
2663 THE CHAIRPERSON: I believe that you say at page 22 of your study that nearly 100 per cent of advertisers on WTOR are Canadian -- I suppose I accept that -- which I imagine is verifiable. You will recognize the business and so on.
2664 My question was how did you then transform that into a sum, into the amount of money they make? Did you have any evidence or did you assume what the price of these commercials were to arrive at a sum of how much money they are making?
2665 MR. JANSEN: No, Madam Chair. We used the other method, the top-down method where we looked at the size of the market overall and took into account all the other information.
2666 The problem is a bit similar again to the KVOS one where we have very good Canadian information, but the question of what the volume of the American station is is a hard one, so we rely on estimates that have a fairly broad range as opposed to the Canadian market where we can hone in precisely and where we know it's about $15 million at the moment.
2667 THE CHAIRPERSON: But assumptions had to be made about how much money was paid to get these spots.
2668 MR. JANSEN: Yes, and we found in the market research that WTOR is charging less than what one would expect from a station like that, but the actual estimates were based on the results from interviews where people said, you know --
2669 THE CHAIRPERSON: I don't know if you were here this morning. This, of course, is not the reply stage, but we heard this morning another broadcaster say that they had evidence that the amount paid for these spots was extremely low and below market grade which would then require a whole lot of them to arrive at the revenues that you applied to WTOR, a portion of which you want to repatriate.
2670 MR. NEETI RAY: Allow me to point out that that is correct. I even heard that they were selling something in the neighbourhood of an average of $10 per 30 second spot which is not only extremely low, it is almost unbelievable.
2671 We also calculated that at 400 commercials a day. If we take only Monday to Friday, then at $10 average for the brokering time or what it would cost them, the amount of money going would be $1,040,000 if it is only Monday to Friday. That is in our experience, our belief, a fairly low projection or low estimation of their potential revenue that is being lost from the South Asian community.
2672 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mr. Ray, do you consider that the success of your business plan as presented to us is dependent on the success of your repatriation strategy?
2673 MR. NEETI RAY: My answer to that would be if they intended it not to be, it will not be dependent on repatriation because we know the size of the South Asian market. We have the experience of having done this business for nine years in Toronto. That business community has grown and it would not have any more impact if we take WTOR out of the scene for a minute and we generate from local sources only.
2674 The impact on any existing radio station would have been no more than our "Radio India" program was having on the local radio stations here in Toronto.
2675 Also keep in mind that we were not broadcasting from Toronto, we were broadcasting from St. Catharines so we were still an outside of the market station. The rapport existed with all the other six radio stations. It seems there was no great concern.
2676 Having said that, we are targeting to generate the maximum amount of revenue dollars that we have lost, "Radio India" has lost to WTOR because they targeted us.
2677 THE CHAIRPERSON: Can you give us some quick indications of what your strategy will be to repatriate revenue from WTOR? From what I understand now, their rates are ridiculous. Therefore, you are not going to be offering lower rates to those advertisers. That strategy of underpricing the spot is not an option. Therefore, what else will you do to repatriate the advertisers and audience?
2678 MR. NEETI RAY: We would first of all predicate our strategy on high quality programming so that before we even divert the Canadian dollars, we would try to divert the Canadian South Asian audiences back to Canada, back to Infinity.
2679 We are confident that we would be able to do that because we have provided very high quality programming to the South Asian community for nine years. That is evident also from the thousands of letters that have been received in our support, including organizations, close to 200 of them, in all communities actually, but from the South Asian community close to 75 to 80 organizations. It is quite evident that they feel the void of high quality programming.
2680 There are also comments that WTOR is there as an alternative, but it is not the best alternative. They have no choice where else to go. They surf the dial and they find WTOR and they talk to WTOR.
2681 We will provide a better alternative that will repatriate first the audience. Once we have done that we would give less reason to the parent advertisers to advertise on WTOR because they will not get the result they are looking for, even if they are paying pennies for the advertising.
2682 Number two, as long as we are able to procure the advertising orders from our advertisers at a reasonable price -- I do not believe it has to be as low as WTOR because you get what you pay for. You are getting a lot more from the model that we are going to present to the advertisers.
2683 We will be very competitive. We therefore would be able to repatriate those dollars back. That is also evident from the letters of commitment that we have received from our own previous advertisers who are currently giving all their advertising dollars to WTOR.
2684 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mr. Ray or Mr. Jansen, what is the population of South Asians in Youngstown or the environs of Youngstown?
2685 MR. NEETI RAY: I don't think there is any. I have been to Youngstown. In fact, I also have visited the transmitter side of WTOR out of curiosity. I thought I am going to the studio, but I happened to be in the wilderness. All they had was three towers, a small hut with the transmitter.
2686 I asked the engineer "Where is the studio?" He said "We don't have any studios here". He said "Etobicoke".
2687 MR. NEETI RAY: The studios are in Toronto, there are no South Asians in the area. Is it your view that WTOR does not at all seek to or reflect the South Asian community of the GTA? You speak about repatriating and quality.
2688 I am asking these questions because your business plan is based on succeeding in getting a fair amount of money from WTOR. Mr. Jansen, I guess you haven't questioned that. It suggests that by your 36 per cent of your revenues for half a million dollars out of $1.4 million. Yes, quality. You won't be able to charge less it would appear.
2689 Who do they program to and who are the producers on WTOR?
2690 MR. JANSEN: Madam Chair, maybe I can start.
2691 THE CHAIRPERSON: They obviously don't speak to Youngstown.
2692 MR. JANSEN: No. It is very clear that the market has grown sufficiently since Neeti went off the air with "Radio India". The market is sufficiently large to warrant a new station in Toronto.
2693 It is simply that WTOR is what a broadcaster would consider low-hanging fruit. It is a station that is there. Canadians want stations based in Canada. They want Canadian programming. The community wants to support a Canadian station, but there is no Canadian alternative at the moment.
2694 So the only choice they have is to go to Youngstown. The reason the dollars show up is because repatriation is possible. But if WTOR were not there, the station would still be very viable.
2695 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mr. and Mrs. Ray, you may be able to answer. The second part of the question is: Who produces on WTOR?
2696 MR. NEETI RAY: These are produced by individuals from within the South Asian community with brokered programming on WTOR. All you have to do is go to their studio in Etobicoke.
2697 If I may add, which will partly answer your earlier question also, they are all brokered programming. There is no mechanism in place or need for any of the brokers to be answerable to either the community or to the station. The station is not much worried, because they are not answerable to the CRTC. The FCC would probably not worry too much about providing high quality programming for a city in Canada.
2698 Therefore, the quality of the programming cannot be what it ought to be, if it had to be locally relevant, because the need is not felt by the brokers. The minimum requirements are met. The minimum requirement is actually to be able to pay the radio station the cost of the time, and anything beyond that is in the hands of the broker.
2699 MR. LAL: Madam Chair, perhaps I could add to the discussion.
2700 I don't think the Rays will say that, but let me say this: that both Mr. and Mrs. Ray are very highly respected members of the South Asian community in Toronto. They have been around for well over a decade. The quality of their programming is well known. We think that their credibility alone will bring a lot of the listening population or public to their station.
2701 While Youngstown may be able to give cheap rates, I am sure you appreciate that the value of advertising is directly dependent on the return that the advertiser gets. The return that Infinity would provide to that advertising we believe would be much greater than Youngstown could ever do simply because of the quality of their programming and the quality of the listeners and the scale of the population that will actually listen to the Infinity programs.
2702 Thank you.
2703 THE CHAIRPERSON: Is someone here from Pollara?
2704 MR. McKIE: I believe I was introduced at the beginning.
2705 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes. I am not that clever to remember everyone, and it is not indicated on your sheet. I apologize.
2706 At page 13 you state that -- somewhere you state that 700 South Asians were interviewed. Is that correct?
2707 MR. McKIE: That is correct.
2708 THE CHAIRPERSON: And at page 13, that only 18 per cent of them reported listening to WTOR.
2709 Do you consider that a large number?
2710 MR. McKIE: If you take that 18 per cent and extrapolate it to the South Asian population and accept the fact that it is approximately 500,000 people, it constitutes about 70,000 individuals, each of which reports an average of seven hours of tuning.
2711 This is about the same number of people, I am told, that were listening at the time Neeti was running the Radio India program in Toronto. So it appears that they have completely captured about the same number of people as were listening to that program.
2712 A 70,000-person audience in the radio universe is fairly substantial, if my memory serves me. It has been a while since I worked at BBM, but that is a fairly substantial audience. It is certainly one, given the number of hours that they are tuning that people are managing to make a living on.
2713 So yes, I think it is an important piece of the audience. Those are the people who are tuning in from the Toronto area. And it is that many people.
2714 It just depends on how many hours a week they tune, of course. This is substantial tuning for one station, the seven hours.
2715 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes, 7.5 hours. I remember that.
2716 MR. NEETI RAY: May I add, too. I have something that you might find interesting.
2717 Duncan was kind enough to mention that we had a listening audience of something like that, but it was actually in the last full year of our operation, the 7,000 to 9,000 listeners for Radio India. This was measured by BBM.
2718 The question might be: How come BBM measured an ethnic program?
2719 The answer to that is we were on a mainstream radio station, and when you look at the 6:00 a.m. to 1:00 a.m. on one page, then you will see that it is all thin during the day. But as soon as 7 o'clock kicks in, then it is all full. It came to 7,000 to 9,000.
2720 The other thing is that if 18 per cent have said that they listen, then it is more than the average listening to the Canadian ethnic stations in Toronto. There are six of them. If we divide 100 per cent by six, it comes to less than 18 per cent.
2721 So the share of WTOR from that perspective is slightly larger than the average of GTA ethnic radio stations.
2722 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mr. Ray, or whoever wants to answer, in your financial operations, the normal sheet the Commission expects you to fill, your revenue projections divide the revenues between national and local and other, syndication production, et cetera.
2723 Where would the amounts predicted to be repatriated from WTOR show up here? Would they be in sales?
2724 MR. JANSEN: All in local, Madam Chair.
2725 THE CHAIRPERSON: All in local.
2726 MR. JANSEN: Yes.
2727 THE CHAIRPERSON: If your repatriation scheme or strategy is not successful considering the emphasis you put on it, would that mean then that either you would take more revenue out of local stations or you would shift the emphasis of your programming?
2728 Considering its importance, what would it do to your business plan if instead of conservative you found that they were ingrained in the community more than you think and more difficult to dislodge?
2729 MR. JANSEN: Madam Chair, one thing we didn't mention is the strength of commitment that the retailers in Toronto have to a Canadian station.
2730 During interviews it became very clear that they really wanted to advertise on a Canadian station, but they had no choice.
2731 The other factor that should be mentioned is that the Commission knows about the tax deductibility issue of advertising. In a pricing battle, if tax deductibility becomes a bigger issue because it is pointed out by the new station in the market, then Infinity would have a major advantage.
2732 Frankly, we are not very concerned about the ability of Infinity to repatriate, because it will happen. If the numbers are lower, please keep in mind that the growth of the market has been fairly significant. So most of those additional dollars would come out of market growth.
2733 THE CHAIRPERSON: By then, Mr. Jansen, I suppose you will be on another project.
2734 MR. JENSEN: I hope so.
2735 THE CHAIRPERSON: So Mr. Ray...?
2736 MR. NEETI RAY: I also would find it important to point out that the size of the South Asian business community is fairly large.
2737 If we look at just the Tamil guide -- and we mentioned that in the application -- that Tamil guide lists approximately 1,500 businesses. And the Pakistani Directory has close to 3,000 businesses.
2738 The number of businesses who have committed to us to divert their advertising dollars to Infinity is only 20.
2739 If we were not to take their revenues as being the revenue repatriated, we have to replace that with another 20 advertisers. Finding those 20 amongst the 4,500 advertisers and finding those who are either not advertising currently or are advertising but would be willing to increase their advertisers would be possible and very likely.
2740 THE CHAIRPERSON: That leads, of course, to the question of the extent to which your proposal will remain what it is. You have accepted, I believe, that you would be prepared to accept by condition of licence that your station would be 100 per cent ethnic.
2741 Am I correct?
2742 MR. NEETI RAY: That is correct.
2743 THE CHAIRPERSON: And that it would be 94 per cent third language.
2744 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes, 94.5 per cent.
2745 THE CHAIRPERSON: And 10 per cent Canadian content in the music and ethnic period.
2746 MR. NEETI RAY: That is correct.
2747 THE CHAIRPERSON: Let me raise this right away rather than at the end. What I am looking at is whether your business plan makes sense; and if not, what may happen.
2748 We have asked that of all the applicants.
2749 Would you be prepared to accept a condition of licence, as well, if the Commission found that to be an appropriate proposal, that a minimum of 54 per cent of your ethnic programming be in Hindustani, Tamil, Bengali, Gujarati and Punjabi, which is taken from your application and put into a percentage?
2750 MR. NEETI RAY: We would be willing to take that as a condition of licence.
2751 THE CHAIRPERSON: Do you or any of your colleagues have further comments to make about the wisdom of doing that?
2752 Some participants have posited some negatives and not many positives to date.
2753 Do you have any comments about whether this would be an appropriate or equitable way of proceeding in light of the fact that the incumbents don't have these requirements? As you understand, you have to do ethnic programming, but no one tells you which languages.
2754 MR. NEETI RAY: Having said that we will accept it as a condition of licence, because that is what we have proposed, it will put us in a slightly disadvantageous position in relation to the existing radio stations who would have much more flexibility than we would have.
2755 Should we need in future years to make some adjustments, called for strictly by need and demand from the community, we will probably be restricted to an extent in being able to implement that, depending on how many changes we would need to make. We are not projecting any change in the schedule.
2756 If I look back and see the other radio stations, they had to make adjustments in order to optimize the utilization of the new sources available to them. This would give some restriction.
2757 If there was a specific reason to do that, I would then have commented on that in particular.
2758 For example, if there was -- I remember the Fairchild hearing in 1995, I think, and there was a specific reason they were asked to not only limit the amount of Cantonese programming but also the hours. I thought they were the only ones who were asked to do that.
2759 While we are committed to providing quality service to the South Asian community, as well as the other communities, we will accept that as a condition of licence. However, we are aware of the restrictions that it will put on us.
2760 THE CHAIRPERSON: You may wish to think about this further and speak to us again in Phase IV and suggest perhaps a middle course.
2761 I think what we have done now -- I didn't do it myself, but I suspect that we took simply your proposal and picked the 54 per cent.
2762 MR. NEETI RAY: Can I just add to that that I hope it is clear that we would accept that as a condition of licence.
2763 THE CHAIRPERSON: But we certainly also want to hear what is the negatives are and whether you have a proposal that may be more appropriate.
2764 I guess you weren't here this morning when we had an interesting discussion -- at least I thought I was interesting --
--- Laughter / Rires
2765 THE CHAIRPERSON: -- with Ms Laurignano from CJMW. Of course from a regulatory perspective it is the attempt to ensure that we don't only leave it to the market as more and more ethnic stations are implemented, to assure service to as many groups as possible in the best way possible. So if people are able to shift, depending on what is the ease of competition or whatever. That may lead to the furtherance of your commercial objectives, but maybe not of the regulatory objectives of serving as many groups as possible.
2766 What you alluded to, of course, was the first time the Commission did it. I understand it was as a result of incumbency concerns that the end product would be that nobody would get the service because the competition would be too intense. So that is the philosophy.
2767 We are just exploring the possibility as we look into the possibility of licensing more services to try to see whether we should have a regulatory concern about allowing the market to shift the linguistic groups and cultural groups that are served. So that is where I was coming from.
2768 MR. LAL: Madam Chair, it seems to me that in this case the regulatory imperative that you have in the marketplace determining where the line should be for that division, it is really not in conflict because our application says that we would predominantly depend on the South Asian community.
2769 As you have indicated, there may be some debate about the percentage, whether it should be 54 per cent or whether it should be less than that or higher, but --
2770 THE CHAIRPERSON: The question, though, that we are looking at is whether not only a regulatory concern but a regulatory tool is necessary to ensure broad service, the tool being binding you to certain of the major languages.
2771 MR. NEETI RAY: I thought in 1996 the decision also had alluded to some concerns expressed by competing stations and there was one line which indicated that the Commission, in that decision at least, was leaning more towards letting the market forces determine what way this programming scheduling would go. I thought I would mention that to you.
2772 THE CHAIRPERSON: That was in 1996. You wouldn't believe how smart we got since then.
--- Laughter / Rires
2773 THE CHAIRPERSON: You state at Schedule 17 -- and I am reading from your application:
"The majority of Infinity's spoken word initiatives will be local programming, programming that is locally relevant and community driven." (As read)
2774 "The majority". What actually is the amount of local programming? What would be the percentage or number of hours of your spoken word programming that would be local?
2775 MR. NEETI RAY: We estimate the spoken word programming should average out. It will be a 60/40 split, 40 per cent spoken word and 60 per cent music.
2776 The spoken word programming will be locally relevant. If you want me to --
2777 THE CHAIRPERSON: That is my problem is majority and prevalence. I would like to know what exactly the percentage will be.
2778 MR. NEETI RAY: The vast majority of it will be local programming.
2779 Renu I think wants to put a word in.
2780 MS RENU RAY: Madam Chair, you asked about what would be local. All of it will be local programming.
2781 THE CHAIRPERSON: But don't you have international news?
2782 MS RENU RAY: That would be integrated in a very small percentage, extremely small, minimal.
2783 THE CHAIRPERSON: So it will be almost 100 per cent?
2784 MS RENU RAY: Almost 100 per cent would be local.
2785 THE CHAIRPERSON: Because the majority could be as little as 51 per cent. That is what I was asking, because all I found was the majority of. So it will be almost -- and 40 per cent of the programming.
2786 What will be the mix, for example in your drive period in Hindustani in the morning? Will that be 60/40 music/spoken word? Give us some sense of what that mix programming will be like.
2787 MR. NEETI RAY: Before I ask Renu to further shed some light on that, the morning drive time, I will say it will have to be a bit fast-moving program.
2788 The 40 per cent will average out during the seven hours from 6:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. For example, in the morning we will have news on top of the hour, we will have the weather report and the traffic. On the half during the prime time we will have a short piece of news there, plus the weather report and traffic report, information about local communities and South Asian communities, a kind of a community bulletin. Those will comprise the spoken word programming during the drive time.
2789 THE CHAIRPERSON: Will it be similar during the afternoon drive period which, if I recall, will be devoted to the Tamils?
2790 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes, it will be, but we expect the Tamil programming to perhaps have a bit more. Well, it will have more spoken word than in the morning.
2791 It is very difficult for us to give the exact level, but the reason I said it will be different is, the amount of spoken programming and the need for spoken programming we believe would be determined by the stage of development that any particular ethnic community is at. Most of the South Asians are quite well settled in Toronto, in Canada for many years and the very vibrant Tamil community, for example, they have much less radio programming at this time and we believe they will be able to utilize the more time for spoken word programming.
2792 THE CHAIRPERSON: I still don't quite understand the basis for the amount of spoken word programming.
2793 MS RENU RAY: Madam Chair, Pollara had done research with regard to that and they found that a very, very high percentage of people look forward to news from back home, news from our local community, and they look forward to keeping in touch with events happening locally. Also, they want a good relationship between the other communities and their own community. Addressing that would be our spoken word. That is how it has arisen.
2794 Perhaps Duncan can go further into it.
2795 MR. McKIE: Well, we did ask all of our respondents what types of programming they would like to listen to on the station. What is surprising, if you look at the research in general, compare it to the general population -- and this is why we looked at the general population as well as a kind of benchmark to see what comparisons we could make -- the high degree of desire on the part of these audiences to have spoken word programming, news, information, world affairs, news from home, and so on and so forth, it is almost 50 per cent higher, and in some cases twice as high in certain categories than the general population.
2796 I can't relate this firsthand, but I am told that that is very consistent with the kind of programming that these people have been accustomed to in their home countries.
2797 So there is a strong rationale into getting this station to present that kind of programming, as it seems to be the kind that these audiences want. The research of course was done in hopes of discovering that and we did and I feel that the approach seems to be consistent with it.
2798 MS RENU RAY: Also, Madam Chair, if I can add, as I did my round at the various communities that we propose to serve, what I found is that our model is entirely based on the community's needs. As we proceed we will be discussing and having ongoing consultations with the community and with our advisory council members to see what are the needs of the community and keep changing as we go along.
2799 THE CHAIRPERSON: Could it be that it will include open line programming to discuss issues?
2800 MS RENU RAY: Yes, of course it would have open line programming.
2801 THE CHAIRPERSON: As you know, of course, open line programming, which is very popular, sometimes to the Commission's distress, is an area that is vulnerable to difficulties. How will you deal with that?
2802 MR. NEETI RAY: We are aware that as the licensee we will be responsible for anything that goes on the open line shows, therefore there are mechanisms in place. Our associate producers would not go on-air unless they are fully trained.
2803 We will be developing a manual that would clearly indicate and teach them the codes of regulation. The handbook would help us in training as to what must be kept in mind when holding the open-line shows. We will have a 10 second digital delay for any abusive comment, that if ever it comes in that it can be weeded out.
2804 From our own experience in the past 10 years we have had no problems with any of the programming that we broadcast on CKTV.
2805 THE CHAIRPERSON: You describe in your Schedule 17 at pages 5 and 6 your Cross Cultural Vibes program. I have a few questions to try to understand better what this is likely to be.
2806 Your aim is to reach across all cultural boundaries, but who will be the target audience?
2807 It is a daily program, correct, from 6:00 to 7:00 Monday to Friday?
2808 MS RENU RAY: Yes, Madam Chair.
2809 THE CHAIRPERSON: Who will be your target audience or will there be a representation from all the communities you serve or some of the communities you serve?
2810 MS RENU RAY: Madam Chair, we are very excited about this particular program "Cross Cultural Vibes" because it has been instituted because we saw a need in the community to bring together the various cultural groups at a common meeting place, a meeting ground, a meeting of minds, a meeting of cultures, a meeting of sharing of ideas, discussion of issues that are common across all cultural groups. So it would be targeting all the ethnic groups that we propose to serve, yes.
2811 THE CHAIRPERSON: Who will produce the program?
2812 MS RENU RAY: It will be station produced.
2813 MR. LAL: Madam Chair, if I could add to that. There are a lot of issues that are common to all diverse communities, issues relating to senior citizens for instance and how to access public institution services that are provided to senior citizens; issues relating to human rights and decisions made by commissions that may impact the communities; the ability and the means to access Social Services as well as health issues.
2814 So we feel that there is a whole host of issues that would be of common interest to communities that really rely on third languages, or whose knowledge of how the Canadian government or Canadian system works.
2815 We hope very much that there will be a substantial educational component to this as well. That is why we are very excited about this. We think that this is truly a winner. This would be a window into Canadian society for communities that have been disenfranchised until now.
2816 MS RENU RAY: Madam Chair, this is also to encourage participation of the third language groups into the mainstream society so that they become comfortable and familiar with how the system works.
2817 If I can invite our two people on the panel to talk about -- because we will have one day that will be a youth day, one day will be a women's day and one day will be a senior's day.
2818 We have on our panel Radika, who is a school trustee on the school board for the York region and she has a plan to talk about the youth.
2819 THE CHAIRPERSON: Perhaps you can tell us at the same time in what language will it be? Will it be in English?
2820 MS RADIKA RAY: It will be in English.
2821 THE CHAIRPERSON: In English.
2822 MS RADIKA RAY: The spoken word will be in English.
2823 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes. So it is five hours a week?
2824 MS RADIKA RAY: Yes.
2825 THE CHAIRPERSON: So that will fulfil practically all of your 5.5 per cent of the programming not in third language. It will be the only English-language programming.
2826 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes. But also we have estimate a half hour our of a two-hour block that we have allocated for South Indian languages.
2827 If I can explain it now, it is that that there are a few South Indian languages and what we have done is, because of the commonalities, we have put them together. Some parts of that program may be in English to be able to communicate common --
2828 THE CHAIRPERSON: As part of the rest of that 5.5 per cent.
2829 MR. NEETI RAY: Exactly.
2830 THE CHAIRPERSON: Ms Ray.
2831 MS RADIKA RAY: There would be a youth program once a week on the Cross Cultural Vibes, and that would consist of also a 60 to 40 ratio of music to spoken word programming.
2832 The spoken word programming would consist of discussions mainly on social issues that are relevant to youth from all the ethno-cultural backgrounds. They would go from a broad spectrum of light issues to heavier issues, such as parental conflicts, conflicts in school, to more serious, such as violence or bullying.
2833 The music part would have popular music from all the different ethnic cultures. For example, there would be ponga(ph) music, remixes or maybe the popular Arab songs. This would allow the youth to learn about all the other cultures in the world and the other cultures in our diverse city.
2834 MS RENU RAY: Madam Chair, we have Mala Sennik who has been very active with the seniors groups who will be coordinating the seniors program on the cross-cultural rights matter.
2835 MS SENNIK: Madam Chair and Commissioners, I have a few thoughts here on how we would go about this. The needs and the aspirations of the seniors in the community are more or less synonymous.
2836 Be it the French, Anglo-Saxon, Germans, Italians, Portuguese, Spanish, Chinese or South Asian, the seniors community of today had as well their favourite music from popular films, classical music, poetry, literature, other folklore during their youth and adulthood. This would take back the clock to the thirties and right up to the sixties, the nostalgia, the memories and the joys of the past. Indeed, a great gift to be given to the seniors.
2837 Infinity is committed to serving the seniors programs of the highest quality at the time of day or night -- some of the seniors can't go to sleep at night as well because of medication and so on, so we would have to be very sensitive to their needs as well and best suited to their needs. We will be there to serve their needs with integrity.
2838 THE CHAIRPERSON: I can assure you, Ms Sennik, I am more and more interested in seniors' problems and the remedies for them. Having said that, I need a break so we will all take a break of ten minutes.
2839 I have a few more questions. I think it will be just too long if we keep going. Ten minutes we will be back.
2840 MS SENNIK: Thank you.
--- Upon recessing at 1540 / Suspension à 1540
--- Upon resuming at 1558 / Reprise à 1558
2841 THE CHAIRPERSON: Order, please.
2842 At schedule 17, page 4, of your application you discuss and in another part as well the fact that you will not have brokered programming about which we have spoken with some of the applicants and that instead you will, and I quote, "work in close cooperation with each associate producer to have them achieve excellence in meeting the local programming objectives of their respective communities".
2843 Can you explain to me what your relationship will be with associate producers both financially and also in the achievement of the excellence in meeting local programming objectives of each community?
2844 MR. NEETI RAY: Thank you, Madam Chair.
2845 I would like to begin by letting the panel know that ours is actually a two-tier motto, the associate producers and station-produced programming. The proposed station will have this model. The associate producer model for the non-South Asian programs is what we will follow. In other words, the producers of the non-South Asian programs would be associate producers. All foundation programming will be station-produced.
2846 When we look at the Toronto of today and the sentiments of the respondents in the Pollara report, the single most prominent desire expressed was for local programming reflecting the various ethnic communities that we propose to serve.
2847 We felt that the model that would best serve the interests of the communities would be the one that involved the communities in the production of the programs. We therefore adopted to work with the communities rather than broker time out to independent producers who may or may not serve the community well.
2848 The associate producers in the proposed station would be answerable to the respective communities through the advisory council that will monitor the programs to ensure that the expectations of the respective communities are met by the associate producers.
2849 The arrangement with the associate producers would be as follows when an if-we-are licence would go through a process of training -- well, first audition and choosing the associate producers, then the training. They bring in their skills, the knowledge of their communities and their knowledge of the kind of programming that would be produced and the terms we will give them to fulfil it, to provide state of the art equipment and ongoing support.
2850 That would be the basis of the sharing of revenues. The level of sharing would be 60-40, 40 per cent to the associate producers of the revenues generated by that producer and 60 per cent to the station.
2851 THE CHAIRPERSON: And who will generate their revenues? The salespeople of the station or the associate producers?
2852 MR. NEETI RAY: The associate producers or their associates.
2853 THE CHAIRPERSON: The only difference is there will not be enough from purchase of block time as between this scheme and brokerage. The main difference will be that there won't be a block of time purchased up front by the broker for which he or she is at risk. Is that correct?
2854 MR. NEETI RAY: That is correct. I see -- perhaps where you are coming from it is very difficult in this case to draw really a line between brokerage and associate producer if that's the way we look at it. If one said it is also a kind of brokering, I would not disagree with that, but also to mention that our own sales force of the station would also be participating in the sales.
2855 The fact that the associate producer or his or her associates would know the business community better, so this would be an opportunity to do the sales and do the split.
2856 THE CHAIRPERSON: How much of the programming hours or which languages will involve -- explain to me when you say that Cultural Vibes will be done by the station. Do you mean then not by associate producers but by station staff?
2857 MS RADIKA RAY: Yes, it will be done by them.
2858 THE CHAIRPERSON: And how many hours? The Hindustani programming, who will produce it?
2859 MR. NEETI RAY: The Hindustani programming production of course will be led by us as well. We are hands-on broadcasters. We have done that on Radio India, even though we had close to 20 announcers on Radio India led by us. The programs would be station-produced in Hindustani and we would have professional broadcasters with many years of experience who would be doing that programming for us.
2860 They would be on Saturday. They will not have to be concerned or they will not be concerned with sales. They will be dedicated on-air radio hosts like any mainstream radio station.
2861 THE CHAIRPERSON: Will you clarify something for me. Radio India, you were a producer or an associate producer on somebody else's station, were you not?
2862 MR. NEETI RAY: I was brokering time out from CKTV.
2863 THE CHAIRPERSON: So this will not be the same.
2864 MR. NEETI RAY: It will not be.
2865 THE CHAIRPERSON: You will be the station with your staff and you will be hiring associate producers. You will be in a completely different role.
2866 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes. The only thing actually would be when we brokered the time out, a big chunk of time, 61 hours per week, Radio India ran like a mini radio station because we had our own facility, our own announcers, our own producers, our own salespeople.
2867 We would continue to do that because we still want to achieve the same or even higher quality programming because we will have more resources and that we can do with staff announcers who are professional broadcasters, not --
2868 THE CHAIRPERSON: The parallel would be that you would place your associate producers in the situation you were or are you saying nobody is going to have that many hours, so it's different? You will be the owner. You say Cultural Vibes will be done in-house.
2869 I think there are comments that brokerage is not as good, et cetera, but if I look at your staff sheet -- can you look at that with me. I want to see how this is all going to work. You have 13 staff. One page says 12 and one page says 13. In schedule 19 at page 1 it's 12 and at page 2 it's 13.
2870 Anyway, the sheet is here at "staff". Let's start at the bottom and eliminate people who won't be involved in production, the receptionist, typist, correct? Traffic billing.
2871 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes.
2872 THE CHAIRPERSON: Technical operations won't be involved in programming.
2873 MR. NEETI RAY: Right.
2874 THE CHAIRPERSON: Salespersons, no. Those four salespersons, are they going to govern or direct the associate producers or are they going to sell separately from them? How is it going to work?
2875 MR. NEETI RAY: Let me clarify. There is some latitude here amongst the 13. It actually is 13. I think there was a revision sent if I remember correctly. While the program coordinators would also be on-air hosts.
2876 THE CHAIRPERSON: Let's hold the line then and come back to sales. After sales managers, salesperson/sales manager may not be involved in the programming that is produced by associate producers, but they certainly won't be producing.
2877 MR. NEETI RAY: No, but the four salespeople who would be from the foundation community, there is some possibility there that they would be on here, also production part-time job. All they have to do is mornings. Say if he works seven to eight or seven to nine, then he has the rest of the day to do the sales.
2878 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes.
2879 MR. NEETI RAY: So there will be some overlap.
2880 THE CHAIRPERSON: Then we are up to three coordinators, one program director and the general manager of the station. Those would be involved directly in production.
2881 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes.
2882 THE CHAIRPERSON: Presumably they would produce Cultural Vibes with the associate producers.
2883 MR. NEETI RAY: One of them would have to. Now, Cultural Vibes is a one hour program and that's very part-time work. We would most probably incorporate that programming within the station producers.
2884 THE CHAIRPERSON: Let me try to be more precise. You have an associate producer. You are not saying "Here is a half hour that you paid for, you program in it and do it properly", et cetera. You say "You will direct, your own staff will do that. You will not get involved in hands-off because it is not good quality". How is it going to work?
2885 MR. NEETI RAY: The way it will work is, for example, I have Radika here, I have Mala here and Renu who would be doing Cross-Cultural Vibes.
2886 THE CHAIRPERSON: Leave Cross-Cultural Vibes. You have quite a few hours of Hindustani in the morning. Who is going to do that? Not the general manager. No, the program director and the program coordinator and possibly associate producers.
2887 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes.
2888 THE CHAIRPERSON: How will you combine this?
2889 MR. NEETI RAY: For example, I could be doing certain programs myself. If I am the general manager I would also be hands-on involved in producing these programs. Then we have the program direction which will be Renu and she will be on-air host as well.
2890 MS RENU RAY: Madam Chair, if I may. The success of our Air India program was very largely predicated on our own performance on air, Neeti's performance and my performance. We are counting very heavily on ourselves being involved in the production of the programming as well as -- if I am the program director, I am one, then the program directors, three of them under me, they would also be involved in the station production.
2891 The salespeople would be involved part-time in the production as well. We have Radika and Mala here to do the seniors and the youth, even in a tiny bit as well as in the Cross-Cultural. In the Cross-Cultural we would also have some of the salespeople who would be involved in that.
2892 THE CHAIRPERSON: Normally, when we ask how will you ensure that everything is according to the principles, especially with the open-line programming, et cetera, often the answer is: Well, we have a contract with brokers, and they are bound legally to do the right thing. And we have even had some guidelines filed with us as to what will be included.
2893 How will you do it since you won't have that contractual relationship of brokered time?
2894 MS RENU RAY: Madam Chair, as the licensee of the radio station, we would take responsibility for that on ourselves to provide ongoing training, seminars, workshops and wrap-up sessions with our producers. Even before we start, we would have a handbook, a manual that would detail all the regulations.
2895 We would even invite you to come and give some workshops to our producers from time to time so that we would stay on top of that.
2896 MR. NEETI RAY: Madam Chair, you mentioned about contracts. I wanted to add that with the associate producers we would have a contract that would spell out the requirement of adherence to the codes of ethics and all the other regulatory codes that would be included in the handbook.
2897 So there would be a contract.
2898 THE CHAIRPERSON: It would be more in the guise of an employment relationship as opposed to a financial one as in brokerage where the financial arrangements are also set out.
2899 That would be the only difference.
2900 MR. NEETI RAY: That will be the only difference. Here the financial element that would go into it would be only the understanding of the sharing of revenues, which would have to be part of the contract.
2901 THE CHAIRPERSON: The application also details your plans to have training of associate producers, especially for less qualified or less experienced, along with Humber College.
2902 Would this be at your expense?
2903 MR. NEETI RAY: It would be at our expense. And just to clarify, it would not be part of any CTD.
2904 The expenses would be paid by the proposed radio station.
2905 THE CHAIRPERSON: Would potential program producers be required to attend these courses?
2906 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes, they would be required to attend these courses.
2907 THE CHAIRPERSON: In discussing your advisory council, you also say that there will be training sessions sponsored by the advisory council.
2908 Is that different?
2909 MS RENU RAY: No, Madam Chair. That is part of the training, as well.
2910 Let me go into how this works.
2911 The advisory council is set up, and each member of the advisory council represents each language group that we propose to serve. What will happen, once we are licensed, is that we will go back to that particular member of the advisory council and ask her to identify the different talents in their community.
2912 Actually, they have already done that. They already have people identified. They would give us the names. We would have an audition with these people and select the most appropriate people and then have them go through a training session.
2913 We call that advisory council sponsor training program. That is what it means.
2914 MR. NEETI RAY: What this would basically do, Madam Chair, since this would be a new radio station, is that many on-air hosts would be new and on-air for the first time. This training program would make them ready to go on air the first day they are on-air. It will give them training for announcing, for writing scripts, for the production facility, how to be hands on on-air hosts. Many of them will be operating the equipment themselves.
2915 And of course the regulations, understanding of the regulations, would be part of the training as well.
2916 THE CHAIRPERSON: In your presentation today you found it important, I guess, to talk about the 10 per cent equity position of Newcap in Infinity's ethnic station for $1 million -- I stand corrected, but of $1.8 million required, approximately?
2917 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes.
2918 THE CHAIRPERSON: And for 10 per cent equity position, with some possibility in the future of getting to 20 per cent.
2919 You raised the fact that, in your view, it is not dissimilar to the co-operative effort between Milestone and Standard Broadcasting. But that example -- and again, you can explain my concern away -- was that Standard was a bit of an expert in the type of music programming that Milestone was going to program, and therefore the synergy was quite obvious.
2920 Unless Mr. Templeton's company is doing something that I don't know about, there isn't this claimed synergy.
2921 Mr. Templeton, what will be the synergy or the advantage -- the synergy, I guess, from Mr. Ray and the advantages from you?
2922 MR. NEETI RAY: Would you like me to give our perspective first?
2923 THE CHAIRPERSON: Unless Mr. Steele has gotten into multilingual programming while we weren't looking.
2924 MR. NEETI RAY: Before I pass on to Mr. Templeton, may I just give a very brief background that would be helpful, I hope.
2925 First of all, Madam Chair, I would like to clarify that we didn't go to Newcap because we needed financing. We had our financing in place. We had it in place in the year 2000 when we applied for the 740 AM. We had to find financing available to us in Ottawa when we applied for Ottawa.
2926 Why Newcap? Why did Infinity go to Newcap or vice versa?
2927 What happened was last year when there was a call for television applications in Toronto, we contacted them. I spoke to Mr. Steele about a possible working together, joining-hands partnership in a television initiative. Because of lack of time to be able to put an application together, it did not happen.
2928 Mr. Steele seemed more interested -- and he verbalized it -- about an FM initiative in Toronto if we had one, and if there was any opportunity for him. I explained to Mr. Steele that the reason for you to join with us would have been financing. But we have our financing in place.
2929 Having said that, I began to see some important synergies. As a student of broadcasting, I began to see a few points. And just like the CRTC approved of LMAs a few years ago, it brought small broadcasters to larger broadcasters, and they were able to utilize the resources available. That synergy has done tremendous good to the broadcasting industry.
2930 We saw the similar kind of synergy but in more than one way. Except for programming, we saw synergy in access to their vast resources, the technical knowledge they have, the technical resources they have, the sales knowledge they have and learning from their experience of running 42 radio stations.
2931 Of course, in lieu of this partnership, they have 10 per cent equity.
2932 There is also another vision that it harbingers -- and I hope this is a good start -- of mainstream and ethnic broadcasting synergies. Canada is going to be increasingly multicultural in the future. The resources are going to be more and more scarce.
2933 The mainstream and ethnic broadcasting entities would have to come together to be able to have maximum utilization of the resources available to serve the vast multicultural communities of especially big centres like the GTA.
2934 We observed their sensitivity to the aboriginals in their collaboration with them, with Aboriginal Voices Radio. That was a good example, and I thought it was a good mix. I was very excited about it, Newcap and Infinity co-operation. It represents a forerunner of relationships to come.
2935 Can I ask Bob to give his perspective?
2936 MR. TEMPLETON: Madam Chair, Commissioners, I could echo Neeti's comments. There are some synergies we see or some expertise that we may be able to provide Neeti, as we are doing on an ongoing basis with Aboriginal Voices Radio Network and our friends and associates there.
2937 Neeti mentioned technical and sales training, issues like that, standard broadcast operating systems that may be of benefit to speed the learning curve of operating a station fulltime.
2938 In return, we will learn a lot about ethnic broadcasting.
2939 I personally became involved in ethnic broadcasting a lot of years ago, working for Jan van Brucken in Vancouver. It made me sensitive to the need of ethnic broadcasting in large centres, especially large centres like Vancouver and Toronto.
2940 Since then Toronto has changed dramatically, as you know, and it is expected it will change even more dramatically over the next ten years.
2941 The broadcast landscape is changing on a yearly basis, especially in a market like Toronto. We intend to be a national broadcaster from coast to coast, hopefully some day, and we want to be part of that change and contribute to that change and learn in the process.
2942 THE CHAIRPERSON: You were asked if there would be a shareholders agreement between the shareholders, which is basically 90 per cent, you and Mrs. Ray, and 10 per cent Newcap.
2943 Do you have any intention of having a shareholders agreement?
2944 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes. Before I pass this over to Bob Buchan, yes, we do have a draft shareholders agreement, and it is available for inspection by the Commission.
2945 THE CHAIRPERSON: Would you make a commitment that the shareholders agreement, if there is one, will be filed with us and reflective of what you have told us the relationship would be between the parties?
2946 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes.
2947 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mr. Templeton...?
2948 MR. TEMPLETON: Yes, we would certainly be --
2949 THE CHAIRPERSON: Explanations were given as to what the agreement is between the parties, or among the parties. My understanding is that Mr. Steele -- Robert? -- would be on the board.
2950 MR. TEMPLETON: Rob Steele would probably be on it, or myself; I am not sure.
2951 THE CHAIRPERSON: One member on the board.
2952 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes.
2953 THE CHAIRPERSON: Of interest to us, of course, would be that if there is a shareholders agreement, that it is filed and it reflects the answers that you have given in writing and today about the relationship.
2954 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes.
2955 MR. BUCHAN: Madam Chair, we do have a draft shareholders agreement. I have a copy in front of me.
2956 We have 15 copies if you would like to have them deposited on the record in this proceeding.
2957 It reflects exactly the terms of the application. There is nothing new in the shareholders agreement. But it makes it a little easier to read than reading through the application, finding one's way to the articles and finding out how the conversion rights from the articles would work.
2958 THE CHAIRPERSON: I will leave it to counsel to deal with. Of course, should you be given a licence, you would probably be required to actually find that agreement; or certainly if you do find one, that it be reflective of that.
2959 MR. BUCHAN: Just to clarify the record, Madam Chairman, I want to emphasize that there is nothing in the agreement that deviates from the application as filed. It is simply a letter agreement, a letter from Infinity Broadcasting to Newcap building on the terms and conditions of the application that was filed, reflected in the letter agreement, which is two and a half pages long.
2960 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes. Of course, what is not in the agreement is obviously what would be of some interest to us, as opposed to what may be in an agreement that would shift the power or the control.
2961 It is simply to ensure that it is as presented to us once legal arrangements are finished.
2962 Do you want to comment to the question that has been asked of everybody as to whether last week's public notice regarding specialty audio services would be an alternative if someone else was granted this frequency?
2963 MR. NEETI RAY: Frankly, we haven't had an opportunity to closely study the report that came out. We did provide the comments in response to the call that resulted in this report coming out last week.
2964 Our response to that would be any service on the cable or through the satellite would not be much different from an SCMO. It cannot be heard in the car, and that would be the greatest concern.
2965 It would not reach the audience in the way that we need to in order to achieve our objectives, including repatriating lost Canadian dollars and Canadian audience.
2966 If we have a service on the cable or on the satellite, it would be so restrictive that it would have negative impact on WTOR's revenue or audience.
2967 With due respect, I would like to submit that it would not serve the purpose that we have set out to achieve.
2968 THE CHAIRPERSON: Considering the responses we have been getting, we don't have to reserve this hotel for a hearing in January for specialty audio service.
2969 Of course, maybe people will have to change their views after we finalize this exercise.
2970 Commissioner Grauer has a question and so does Commissioner Cardozo. Then we will give you your five minutes to tell us why you are the best.
2971 Commissioner Grauer.
2972 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Thank you, Madam Chair.
2973 I hope you will indulge me. I may be going over some worked over territory, but it is back to WTOR again.
2974 What I was doing when the discussion was going on was I was writing out some numbers myself, and I would appreciate your comments on where I came down to.
2975 I gather the WTOR tuning, according to BBM, is in the area of one-tenth of 1.0 per cent. Is that your understanding of BBM numbers of WTO tuning?
2976 MR. NEETI RAY: No. Duncan can give you an answer on those.
2977 MR. McKIE: Is WTOR a member of BBM?
2978 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: No. But there are some numbers.
2979 MR. McKIE: I understand that if they are not a member, those numbers are supposed to be suppressed. So I don't have access to them. We only have our own research on tuning within Toronto for WTOR.
2980 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: What does your own research show?
2981 MR. McKIE: Our research showed approximately 70,000 persons per week reached in the Toronto area in the South Asian community, for an average of seven hours each which, if you take the adult population of 400,000-and-some, translates into approximately 500,000 tuning hours to WTOR coming out of the South Asian community in Toronto.
2982 How that would translate into a BBM figure, I have no idea. Since those numbers are officially not available because they are not members and we are not allowed access to them -- and I don't know how they are getting circulated. I haven't had a chance to look at them.
2983 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Okay. Then I won't bother going on.
2984 It was really based on some numbers we had.
2985 MR. McKIE: As I say, officially those numbers don't exist.
2986 COMMISSIONER GRAUER: Thank you.
2987 THE CHAIRPERSON: Commissioner Cardozo?
2988 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you, Madam Chair. I have just a couple of questions to get clarification on your discussion so far, first on the WTOR matter.
2989 As I followed the discussion and as I understand it, your plan A is to repatriate a significant portion of advertising and therefore a significant portion of your revenue would come from repatriated advertising.
2990 I sensed that towards the end of the discussion you were allowing that maybe you had a plan B.
2991 Mr. Lal, you talked about the recognition factor, the credibility of Mr. and Mrs. Ray in the community, and that that would pull in advertising dollars.
2992 You talked about your experience with Radio India.
2993 Do I sense that correctly? What exactly is your plan B if you are not able to repatriate the amount of advertising dollars that you are planning to? Would you find other ways of raising that money, or would you have to cut back in the kinds of programming that you have put forward to us in this application?
2994 MR. NEETI RAY: I recognize that you are talking about plan B. This is not if we are able to repatriate the money; this is if we are not able to repatriate the money.
2995 We believe from experience of the advertisers that we had on Radio India -- and we watched them -- that a significant amount of the dollars also were seen going to the print media. Our strategies were then including repatriating some more from the print media.
2996 I think it was very important to point out that the programming that people are looking for, the Hindustani programming, is a missing link in the Greater Toronto market. It is the greatest single common denominator between our generating the revenue and what the audiences want.
2997 We believe the advertisers follow the audience.
2998 Naturally, WTOR comes into play again in this, because if the audience that we are targeting is specifically the WTOR audience -- because we are going head-to-head with them in our schedule. We are not targeting any other radio station.
2999 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: In what way is the quality of your programming going to be better than what is on WTOR?
3000 Most of that programming is produced in Canada out of their Etobicoke studio, or at least produced somewhere in Toronto?
3001 MR. NEETI RAY: I am not sure. They are probably producing maybe in their basement and taking it to WTOR.
3002 We are confident because we have the track record of having been recognized as providing the highest quality of programming; and the figures that we know of, the audience that was available, the feedback from the advertisers that would keep coming back to us because there was a very huge listening: feedback from the community, whether it is through letters and e-mails and calls, meeting at functions, and then BBM.
3003 We were the only ethnic program that was shown on BBM.
3004 MS RENU RAY: If I could add to that, Commissioner, Radio India was so popular that when it went off the air we were flooded with calls and faxes and people literally crying, telling us that it had broken their hearts. People were so dependent on that, because there was nothing else like that for them.
3005 When we lost that huge chunk of programming, our listenership had no choice but to go to whatever was trickling in through from wherever.
3006 A lot of our audience was so loyal that they refused, as a matter of principle, to tune into WTOR or even advertise there. So they diverted a lot of their advertising to print media, to other stuff, but did not want, on principle, to go to WTOR.
3007 So we think that a lot of that would come from those areas that had not gone to WTOR.
3008 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: One of the other applicants this morning talked about producers that were being, to paraphrase, taken on and dropped over short periods of time by WTOR.
3009 Is that your view?
3010 MR. NEETI RAY: Could you kindly repeat the question.
3011 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: One of the applicants this morning suggested that WTOR was taking on and dropping producers at a fairly fast rate; that they weren't getting expertise.
3012 Is that your information?
3013 MR. NEETI RAY: WTOR has in the past also had some turnover where some producers, if they have left for whatever reason, the time has been filled in in no time. There is so much demand for programming.
3014 I have not noticed much change in the last few months.
3015 MS RENU RAY: Could I add one more point, Commissioner.
3016 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Sure.
3017 MS RENU RAY: Research has shown that there is a lot of under-tuning to South Asian programming in Toronto, and I would request that Duncan comment on that research.
3018 MR. McKIE: I think the WTOR story is a little more complex than we are making it sound. You have to think about the numbers we collected in the research and what they imply in terms of how successful this new station might be up against WTOR and in the Asian community generally.
3019 We found, first of all, that 80 and 90 per cent of the people we questioned said they would listen to the new station. There was pretty well universal support for the new station.
3020 We also found systematic undertuning in the South Asian community to existing radio stations in Toronto, I would say by about 20 per cent. It is around 16 hours, which is lower than the average adult tuning.
3021 You have to ask yourself why is it that a community which seems to enjoy radio, has a tradition of radio and likes spoken language radio, isn't tuning to the level that their general population is?
3022 I think that one answer -- and I am only speculating because we didn't ask them to join the dots -- is that because there is no strong supply in the market of South Asian programming, there is slightly lower tuning.
3023 Some of that is obviously going to WTOR. But if 80 per cent to 90 per cent of these people say they are going to listen to the new station, that has to come from WTOR, or they are going to be listening to more hours overall in their week and will increase the total amount of listening done by the population.
3024 Either way, the station succeeds.
3025 Our research, which has supported a number of applications over the years, has never seen as high a number in the percentage of people that say they would support a station when we asked the question: Would you listen to this station?
3026 This is the highest number we have ever seen, so there is no question that there is near universal support for this station in the marketplace.
3027 I think the whole question of will they succeed in audience terms is moot. I think it is answered in the research that they certainly will.
3028 Whether they defeat WTOR in the process, or not, seems to be less relevant when you consider the mass of people that is going to listen to this station, according to the research that we have done.
3029 So I wonder how important the question becomes in terms of the future of the station in the long term.
3030 MS RENU RAY: Another point is that Hindustani, as Neeti has said, is the missing link. People from South Asia here come from different states in India, but the one thing in common is the Hindustani language.
3031 In the Pollara research what we found is that two-thirds of the total South Asian population speak or understand Hindustani. There is one-third of the Punjabi population.
3032 I would like here to talk about why Hindustani language and why we think that the rest of the South Asians would tune into this growing population.
3033 I would invite Professor Wagle to take a minute to explain that.
3034 Professor Wagle.
3035 MR. WAGLE: Madam Chair, let me assure you that this is not going to be an academic discourse.
3036 The word "Hindustani" literally means belonging to Hindustan, the old Persian word for Indian subcontinent.
3037 Hindustani is written in Devanagari script which is derived from Indian sanskrit in the Asodi(ph) language. Then it is designated as Hindi.
3038 If Hindustani is written in Arabic Persian script, it is known as Urdu.
3039 Hindustani was intermittently called Urdu in the 19th century. I have known several American universities where they teach two years of Hindi with Devanagari script. The third year is reserved for Urdu since the grammar, syntax and local words in many instances are the same for Hindi-Urdu. Learning Urdu is more like learning Arabic Persian script.
3040 At the University of Toronto we have been teaching Hindi since 1998 with countless students of South Asian origin stemming from India -- that is from Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Bengal, Gujarat and Maharashtra regions of India; and then from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Caribbean regions who speak Hindustani but cannot read and write Hindi or work in Hindi grammar.
3041 Hindustani is the language of India's film industry, so-called India's Bollywood. As you probably know or may not know, over 600 Hindi films are produced every year in India. The language which goes by the name of Hindi is actually Hindustani.
3042 Hindustani is the language of much watched popular Indian TV shows and TV soap operas in India as well as in a city like Toronto. The South Asian diaspora, metropolitan centres like Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, the next thing they speak Hindustani when they encounter other South Asian Canadians. Let me give you a concrete example.
3043 A Punjabi speaker that is a South Asian immigrating from the region of Punjab in India can converse in Hindustani, but the Gujurati -- that's a Canadian person from Gujurat, India -- if a Punjabi were to use Punjabi language with a Gujurati, the Gujurati will not understand him.
3044 Hindustani is understood by most South Asian communities in Toronto. Such is the impact of Hindustani. It is a comfort language as opposed to a mother tongue of most South Asians in Toronto.
3045 Madam Chair, allow me to give you a historical precedent by Hindustani as lingua franco of India. Mahatma Gandhi, acclaimed leader of Indian nationalism, consistently from the 1920s to the 1940s declared his goal of making Hindustani the national language of India which he thought would be acceptable to both Hindus and Muslims of India.
3046 He also felt, and correctly I might add, that Hindustani transcended the distinction of identities based on religion, region, language and classes living in the Indian subcontinent. I haven't brought the book unfortunately with me, but my colleague, senior colleague, Professor Peter Brock in fact wrote a book on the very subject of what he called "Gandhi as a linguistic nationalist". The entire book is on Hindustani.
3047 Thank you.
3048 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you, Professor. Can I just ask you about your advisory council. You talked about it quite a bit. Have you got members appointed to it or a member?
3049 MS RENU RAY: Yes, we do have our members already appointed.
3050 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Can you tell us a few of the names. I don't necessarily want them all. If you can just rhyme them off.
3051 MS RENU RAY: I have it here.
3052 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes. We have a person in the Armenian community, Ari Spavichian(ph), who is also a member of the advisory council for the application, Mr. Miso Stevanek(ph), of the Canadian Slovak Conference. Mr. Stevanek is not --
3053 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: These are on your application.
3054 MR. NEETI RAY: He is on the application.
3055 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And who is the chair?
3056 MR. NEETI RAY: We have not appointed a chair, but when we have our first general meeting, formal meeting, we will appoint a chair.
3057 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And, lastly, about your producers in the non-South Asian languages, have you got agreement with all the languages that you indicated here?
3058 MR. NEETI RAY: We do not have agreement with anyone in writing. It will be premature. With the associate producers, if that's what you are getting at.
3059 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Yes.
3060 MR. NEETI RAY: The reason it is premature is the process that we would go through in order to choose the associate producers, it would be perhaps not as fruitful to do it at this time. What we have off the community representatives is to identify them and once we have done that, they are not going to give us one producer that this is a producer on our behalf.
3061 They will identify a number of them. They will audition them as any radio station would, then choose the ones that are the best and then go through a process of training.
3062 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Can you tell us at this point whether you have made some level of contact with people in all the communities?
3063 MS RENU RAY: Yes. I can answer to that since I have been in the field. I have had contact with every language group that we are proposing to serve. Today we have here many who are from the Somali community. We have Mr. Bich Phan from the Vietnamese community. We have Rachad Baroudi from the Arab community.
3064 Then we have from the Dutch community Ada Winston who also I just heard won the Governor General's award. We have Mr. Bofuyu(ph) in the audience from the Canik(ph) community and we have from the Slovak community Mrs. Divinik(ph). From Latvia we have Mr. Ozakis(ph) and Marcia Esmeet(ph) from Estonia. We have Mr. Pahopins(ph) who is the President of the Baltic Canadian Business Conference.
3065 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Okay. That's fine. I just wanted a sense that you had been talking to people.
3066 MS RENU RAY: Yes. All of them have told me that they have already identified time and they are just waiting to get on the air.
3067 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you. Those are my questions.
3068 Thank you, Madam Chair.
3069 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mr. McKie, when you say that the VBM numbers that Commissioner Grauer raised were officially non-existent, you mean not public.
3070 MR. McKIE: Not public and not available to persons like myself.
3071 THE CHAIRPERSON: I just wanted to clarify.
3072 MR. McKIE: I'm sure they collect them.
3073 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mr. Ray, you have five minutes to tell us why your application must be won on 101.3 and then I will deliver you to counsel.
3074 MR. NEETI RAY: Thank you, Madam Chair.
3075 Madam Chair and Commissioners and Commission, we believe that Infinity should be awarded the 101.3 MHz frequency for the following reasons.
3076 One, Infinity will bring a high quality locally relevant programming service to the South Asian community whose population of more than 500,000 persons is the largest unserved group in the GTA.
3077 Number two, Infinity's inclusive programming in Hindustani, Tamil, Punjabi and 16 other languages will add significant diversity and listener choice to Toronto's ethnic radio market.
3078 Number three, Infinity's ethnic broadcast plan will serve 14 ethno-cultural communities in 19 different languages. Infinity is a committed courier broadcaster with 22 years of ethnic broadcasting experience, including 12 years in the Toronto ethnic radio market.
3079 Infinity through its past and ongoing radio and television activity has earned the trust and respect of the foundation community as evidenced by the more than 6,300 letters of intervention filed with the Commission in support of Infinity Broadcasting.
3080 Infinity has committed a minimum of $350,000 in direct expenditures and $1.4 million on indirect on their initiative in the development of ethnic Canadian talent. Infinity under the ownership of Neeti and Renu Ray have a strong business plan, solid financing, an experienced management team and a firm commitment to support this undertaking over the long term.
3081 Infinity's proposed synergistic relationship with Newcap provides full access to a broad range of resources and expertise of a large mainstream broadcaster.
3082 Number nine, Infinity's world class South Asian programming will repatriate Canadian listeners and radio advertising dollars from WTOR which is supposed to stand for WToronto.
3083 Last but not the least, Infinity's ethnic broadcast plan represents the most comprehensive, productive and optimum utilization of the 101.3 FM frequency.
3084 Thank you, Madam Chair.
3085 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. Ray.
3086 I want to tell everybody that anybody who gets to 11 reasons doesn't necessarily get the licence.
3087 MR. NEETI RAY: Thank you.
3088 THE CHAIRPERSON: Counsel.
3089 MR. STEWART: Merci, madame la présidente. I will be brief as I always am. I'm looking at Commissioner Colville.
3090 You referred to the letter agreement. I would like to have your confirmation that you will be filing that at least before Monday of next week.
3091 MR. BUCHAN: Counsel, we could file it right now if you would like, with copies available to go into the -- the only point just for the record to clarify, there is a reference in here to the by-laws of the corporation shall be substantially the same as the by-laws attached to schedule B of this letter.
3092 Those are the same as the by-laws that are in the application. Otherwise we have a copy of the agreement if you would like it now or we could leave it with you after and copies could be available in the examination room.
3093 MR. STEWART: You can file it with the Secretary with sufficient copies for the public exam room. Thank you.
3094 MR. BUCHAN: Thank you.
3095 MR. STEWART: The second question. You have revised the number of hours allocated to Hindustani language from 40 to 35. Why is that? You appear to have increased the number of hours devoted to the Mingali, Gujurati and Punjabi languages. I'm referring to the contract between what you originally filed and then the revised ethnic programming table that you filed.
3096 MR. NEETI RAY: We filed our revised schedule or revised list because there was an error when we sent the original one. It was supposed to have gone with the original application in the way it came to you in the revised form.
3097 MR. STEWART: Thank you. Now, with respect to the revenues based on the associate program directors programming -- I am referring to the advertising revenues and to the 60-40 split that you referred to.
3098 Now, would your consent to chop those revenues be found under local time sales in your forecasted revenues and expenses table?
3099 MR. NEETI RAY: Yes.
3100 MR. BUCHAN: The answer is yes. Just for further clarification I may quickly give you a breakdown. I'm not sure if that's what your question was.
3101 MR. STEWART: Actually what would be helpful if you could file for the Commission by Monday of next week a breakdown of the projected revenues as between the advertising revenues based on the associate producers programming and the non-associate producers programming, i.e. the in-house production, given that you don't have officially brokerage revenues as some of the other applicants do.
3102 We have posed this question and got this undertaking from other producers as well.
3103 MR. BUCHAN: Yes. We will file it. We actually have it with us.
3104 MR. STEWART: If you could provide it to the Secretary at the conclusion of your presentation or your appearance this day, that would be very helpful.
3105 MR. STEWART: Thank you very much.
3106 Merci, madame la présidente.
3107 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. Ray, Mrs. Ray, Ms Ray and Mr. McKie. Now I know exactly who you are. Thank you for your cooperation and patience and for the well behaved although quite visible crowd.
3108 Have a nice evening all of you.
3109 We will begin at 8:30 in the morning and we will see some of you, if not at all, with Phase II.
3110 Thank you. Bonsoir.
--- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1650, to resume
on Thursday, September 19, 2002 at 0830 /
L'audience est ajournée à 1650, pour reprendre le
jeudi 19 septembre à 0830
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