Canadian Association of Broadcasters Revived
March 22, 2011
OTTAWA, ONTARIO: After announcing plans to fold last June, the
Canadian Association of Broadcasters has found a creative way to keep going--albeit
in a much reduced form. The organization planned to disband due to irreconcilable
differences between its cable, satellite and broadcast TV members
“The CAB hired Fern Bélisle, the former vice-chair, broadcasting at the
Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission, to review our
operations and give us some suggestions on how to wind down,” said current Sylvie
Courtemanche; CAB chair and vice president of government relations at the
Canadian radio group, Corus Entertainment.
“In the context of his review, it became apparent to him that there were areas
where broadcasters were in complete agreement on issues,” Courtemanche said.
These issues include copyright and copyright reform, administration of the
Canadian Broadcast Standards Council, and distribution of programming funds
such as FACTOR/Musicaction.
In order to avert future conflicts, the CAB is now avoiding any thorny topics
that could divide its members. Of these, “the areas that caused the greatest
conflicts were the regulatory submissions with the CRTC,” Courtemanche said.
“The new mandate of the CAB is that we will not be representing our members on
policy issues involving the CRTC.”
Meanwhile, to cut costs, and remain in line with its reduced mandate, the CAB
cut its staff. When it needs assistance, it will hire consultants, Courtemanche
said. The four board members also contribute. Elected last June, the board
includes Golden West CEO Elmer Hildebrand, who tried to put together a
radio-only version of the CAB when the association appeared doomed.
Despite its reduced mandate, the CAB is once again making itself known to
Canadians, primarily through a radio campaign supporting Bill C-32, the
Canadian Copyright Modernization, which is as of mid-March was still being
debated in Parliament.
Among its provisions, Bill C-32 would eliminate any royalties payments or fees
for temporary digital copies of music that are created as part of
“technological processes” at a broadcast station, such as when a file is
transferred from an archive to an automation system. -- from