TV, Eh? Industry Update – TOU.TV, CRTC, CBSC/Toronto media, more

TOU.TV’s Hard gets cut off

It took until March 8, 2012 for Sun News Network to talk about CBC again – this time, a “victory,” as TOU.TV pulls Hard from its website. Hard is a French sitcom from Canal+ set in the porn industry, though Hard is more a racy HBO-esque sitcom with nudity and simulated sex, than a proper soft-core romp.

I realize the issue is around CBC using government funding to pay for explicit programming. At the same time…a French cable show, with racier-than-usual material? By this definition of porn, quite a few TV Funhouse segments, like “Jokamel” and “Porn for Kids” – are “porn.”

Yeah, I know I’m reaching, with references to a long-cancelled Robert Smigel program. I’m just saying.

CRTC news

CHCH-DT can now move from DTV channel 11, to DTV channel 15. DTV channel 15 was abandoned in 2011 by CKXT-DT-1 Hamilton, a retransmitter of Toronto’s now-inactive Sun TV signal.

The average effective radiated power for CHCH increases from 4,500 to 59,000 watts, with a maximum ERP of 132,000 watts. Interventions mainly concern a signal overlap with American border stations, and unlicenced Toronto channel Star Ray TV.

March 16, 2012 is the deadline for interventions/comments concerning the Local Programming Improvement Fund. The LPIF hearing begins April 16, 2012, at Les Terrasses de la Chaudière’s Central Building, in Gatineau, Quebec. LPIF was the catalyst behind the Local TV Matters/Stop the TV Tax debate of 2009, over fee-for-carriage/value-for-signal/negotiation-for-value.

The CRTC calls for comments and replies, related to a revised licencing framework for pay-per-view services. Specifically, the revised licencing framework concerns video-on-demand services. Comments must be sent by May 14, 2012, while replies must be sent by May 24, 2012.

Constable Garrett Styles’ final police radio transmission not a breach of privacy: CBSC

On Friday, March 9, 2012, the CBSC released two decisions, regarding four Ontario news organizations’ decisions to air York Regional Police Constable Garrett Styles’ final radio transmission. A minivan driven by a 15-year-old boy dragged, and then pinned, Const. Styles during a routine traffic stop. Styles died from his injuries on June 28, 2011; the 15-year-old was charged with first-degree murder.

The television broadcast of Styles’ unencrypted transmission caught the ire of the CBSC. None of the four stations involved in the hearings – CIII-TV (Global Toronto), CHCH-TV, CITY-TV (Citytv Toronto) and CFTO-TV (CTV Toronto) – invaded Const. Styles’ privacy, according to the CBSC. The transmission was unencrypted, and “rebroadcast” on the Internet, so the transmission is considered public domain.

Citytv Toronto violated Article 6.3 of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters’ Violence Code, for not providing a viewer advisory before the “disturbing audio clip.” In the case of CTV Toronto, a voiced-over transcript replaced the audio clip; CTV Toronto still violated Article 6.3. Global Toronto and CHCH are innocent of any CBSC-related violation.

A minority opinion, by D. Braun, states that Articles 4 and 8 of the RTDNA Code of (Journalistic) Ethics were violated by all four stations. In addition, no one obtained the consent of the York Regional Police.

York Regional Police Deputy Chief Tom Carrique is “disappointed” by the CBSC ruling, according to yorkregion.com and The Toronto Star. Carrique also feels the RTDNA Code of (Journalistic) Ethics articles were violated.

Odds and sods

Two businesses appear on Dragons’ Den-related programming – St. Stephen, New Brunswick fencing/pallet makers SWP Industries Inc., on debuting CBC show The Big Decision, and Nanaimo, British Columbia geoduck harvesters Emerald Sea Farms, on Dragons’ Den.