BCE pitches new local news fund at CRTC hearing


More TV in my portfolio

By Julianna Cummins and Jordan Pinto


Tuesday January 26, 2016

Local news programming was the focus of several presentations on the first day of the CRTC’s public hearing on local and community television, with broadcasters and media companies noting that while there is an appetite for local news, financing remains a huge challenge within the current framework.

In his opening comments, CRTC chairman Jean-Pierre Blais reminded participants of the key issues the proceeding wants to address, including whether or not the CRTC can or should intervene to keep news and local information programs alive.

Ahead of the hearing, the regulator noted its research shows 81% of Canadians believe local news is important. As such, as part of the hearing, the CRTC invited the public to submit proposals on a potential fund to support the production and broadcast of local news. BCE executives went into Monday’s hearing with such a proposal, pitching a new local news fund that could be financed by reallocating the funding BDUs are currently required to contribute to Canadian programming.

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  1. Fine. But I get more local news from the Internet. Not Darryl or Gord.

    As a side note, I have started to watch the CTV Edmonton news “hour” via PVR. This way I can skip through the opening “whats going to be in the news” teasers, the stories with a curious social agenda (transgender bathrooms), the man on the street interviews (a story is introduced, but no details are given before switching to people on the street giving uninformed opinions on stories they know even less about), the weather teasers (we get the temperature and current weather but no long range forecast until the second or third weather segment), the feature reporters that have to join Darryl in the studio to waste time introducing a story that can be easily introduced by Darryl, and the compulsory story about hockey, even though there is a separate sports segment.

    If I take out all this fluff and show business nonsense, I can watch the important stories in less than 20 minutes instead of 60 minutes. Not to mention they’ve already had a 60 minute newscast at 5PM, and the evening news is repeated verbatim the next morning.

    Maybe it’s time to close the individual newsrooms, and start a community channel supported by the big corporate broadcasters and have ONE news channel with only local and regional content.


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