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Commission's broadcasting and distribution report is out


OTTAWA-GATINEAU - The fourth annual Broadcasting Policy Monitoring Report was released by the CRTC today, 134 pages of facts and figures on the status of television, radio, cable television and satellite in Canada.

It also reports on a number of social issues (including programming standards, accessibility and cultural diversity) as well as on Internet use. Here are the report's highlights but surf on back to later in the week for a more detailed look at the report.

* There are 631 English language, French language, Aboriginal and ethnic television stations in Canada. These include 23 CBC/SRC stations, 17 private CBC/SRC affiliates, 91 Canadian private commercial stations, 105 Canadian specialty services, 20 Canadian pay and pay-per-view services, as well as 93 foreign satellite services.
* Viewing by English language viewers to Canadian drama and comedy programs remained at only 11%, as in the previous two years, foreign drama and comedy programs accounting for the remaining 89% of viewing. In contrast, the viewing share for Canadian drama and comedy programs by French language viewers increased from 43% in 2000 to 46% in 2001, 48% in 2002.
* In 2002, Canadian programs garnered 76% of the total viewership to French-language programs and 32% of the total viewership to English-language programs.
* Revenues for conventional English-language private television fell slightly (1.7%) from 2001 to 2002. At the same time, revenues for English-language specialty, pay and pay-per-view services increased by 10.8%. Revenues for English-language digital specialty services totalled $48.7 million in 2002. From 2001 to 2002, revenues for conventional French-language television increased by 3.3%, while those for French-language specialty, pay, and pay-per-view television increased by 10.7%.

* Canadian radio services comprise 99 CBC/SRC stations, 608 commercial AM, FM and digital stations, and 131 community and campus stations.
* Revenues for English language AM and FM stations increased by 2.7%, while those for French language stations grew by 5.3% from 2001 to 2002.
* Since the coming into force of the CRTC's commercial radio policy in 1998, Canadian radio stations have made commitments totalling close to $120 million in support of Canadian talent.
* In August 2003, the Commission awarded 56 licenses for transitional digital radio stations in the Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver and Windsor markets.

BDUs (cable, satellite and wireless)
* Competition for cable services comes mainly from Direct-to-Home (DTH) satellite distribution undertakings and multi-point distribution systems (MDS). These competitors have reduced the share of the large cable undertakings (class 1) from 80.5% in 1999 to 72.4% in 2002.
* Approximately 82% of Canadian households receive basic service from a BDU.
* Subscriptions to DTH services totalled 1,959,677 and their share of the market reached 21.2% in 2002. Subscriptions rose by nearly 440,000 - or 29% - from 2001 to 2002. This growth was derived from former cable subscribers and new subscribers in areas without cable access.
* The number of subscribers to digital services (including cable TV and DTH) increased from 3,050,518 to 3,594,691 between June 2002 and June 2003.
* By the end of November 2003, the rates of 4.7 million, or 70%, of the subscribers of the large cable undertakings (Class 1) had been deregulated.

* 64% of Canadian households owned a computer in 2003.
* In March of 2003, 68% of Canadians had access to the Internet from home, work, school or some other location. 12% of Canadians had wireless Internet access.
* In 2003, for the first time, there were as many subscribers to high speed Internet as to dial-up Internet.

New this year, the report also looks at:
* Signal theft and the measures being taken to stop it
* The CRTC's role in resolving disputes arising from competition
* Audiences for English language and French language drama and comedy programs between 1993 and 2002.

The 2003 edition (which uses figures from The Commission itself, BBM, Nielsen Media Research, Statistics Canada and from the license holders themselves) continues to measure the evolution of the Canadian broadcasting system. The CRTC finds the report very useful in assessing the impact of its regulations and decisions, and trusts that the industry and the public will find it helpful to their planning and to their participation in CRTC proceedings.

To see the report, go to To comment on the report,

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