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Sat Aug 26 8:34 pm  #1


Rogers Howls As Shaw Tries To Drop Mandatory Carriage Of OMNI OTAs

It’s been a fairly quiet summer at the CRTC, but this coming week, the Commission will be considering an application by Shaw for its cable and satellite services to drop mandatory carriage of Rogers’s OMNI stations and present the ethnic outlets as part of its overall specialty channel package instead.
 
The reason? Rogers has been licenced to launch an “OMNI Regional” station as soon as September 1st, one that will be seen across the country. As a result, Shaw doesn’t think it needs to carry the OTAs as part of its basic service anymore, because it will result in unnecessary duplication where bandwidth is already being squeezed.  
 
Rogers isn’t happy with the idea that its over the air outlets could be moved from what the company calls its “local television neighbourhood.” (And yes, I get the irony of Mr. Rogers neighbourhood.) They predict such a move could spell the end of the stations altogether.
 
“OMNI’s advertising revenues would be negatively impacted by a material amount,” the cable giant’s Susan Wheeler writes in her intervention. “Based on our experience with other discretionary services losing carriage, we estimate that such a scenario for OMNI would result in a decline in viewership of 15% to 25% causing the station to lose $150,000 to $200,000 in advertising revenues.
 
“If all BDUs, excluding Rogers Cable, were to move OMNI out of the local television neighbourhood, then we estimate that the station would lose $500,000 to $900,000 in advertising revenues. This loss of revenue would be devastating to the ongoing viability of OMNI Regional and the OMNI OTA stations.”

 
And they may have reason to worry. The Commission has already received a reply from an operator named Eastlink that essentially says, ‘well if you let Shaw do this, we want to do it, too.”
 
It’s not often that you get two heavyweights battling it out over carriage of two TV stations. It will be interesting to see what the CRTC decides.

 

Sat Aug 26 9:01 pm  #2


Re: Rogers Howls As Shaw Tries To Drop Mandatory Carriage Of OMNI OTAs

That's rich.

Rogers gutted the multilingual news programming that made the Omni stations different, and now cries foul when Shaw, who has likely realized these stations are nothing but Rogers units regurgitating the same spew, decided there was little point, or viewership, in carriage.

Cry me a river.

 

Thu Aug 31 12:38 pm  #3


Re: Rogers Howls As Shaw Tries To Drop Mandatory Carriage Of OMNI OTAs

And the winner is - Shaw, which was given approval to drop the OMNIs as a basic service, once it starts carrying the regional version of that channel, which will go across the country in different forms.

The CRTC noted in its decision on Thursday that it has no say in the matter of where the stations will be put on Shaw's channel list, which won't make Rogers happy. They lost on all their points, and now it will be interesting to see if their dire predictions of losing money and threatening their business model for the stations actually comes to pass. 

Something else to watch for - whether Bell tries to follow suit. 

Shaw vs. Rogers: The CRTC Decision 

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