Sat-ND, 23.8.96

Sat-ND 96-08-23 - Satellite and Media News

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This issue is sponsored by TELE-satellite, Europe's Satellite Magazine 
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Green light for DMX Canada
Canada will finally get its own DMX pay radio service. As always when
foreign media wanted to enter the Canadian market, it hasn't been easy.
In December 1995, Shaw Communications received a license for DMX Canada to
provide pay audio service to subscribers via cable or satellite. The
company filed its original application with the Canadian Radio and
Television Commission (CRTC) in April 1992, for approval to introduce the
first pay audio service in Canada. DMX Canada is 80 percent owned by Shaw
Communications with the remaining 20 percent held by DMX Inc. Shaw
Communications is a diversified communications company whose core business
is Canada's second-largest cable television operation, reaching more than
1.5 million homes.
During CRTC hearings held last autumn, DMX Canada proposed a comprehensive
music service for the Canadian residential market highlighting Canadian
artists and international talent. "We are averaging a minimum of 30 percent
Canadian content on our locally produced channels. We plan to program 18
out of 35 channels in Canada," said DMX Canada president Heather Shaw.
"That's an unprecedented opportunity for home grown music talent,
especially for those performers in niche music genres. We will also
contribute 4 percent of our gross annual revenue to the development of
Canadian talent."
You guessed it: DMX Canada will be different from the US or the
international versions, regarding Canadian authorities' fear of a cultural
invasion. This includes the Canadian government: In March 1996, it decided
to refer DMX Canada's license back to the CRTC. It was directed to consider
whether the Canadian content level of such a service should conform to that
required of conventional radio and, with respect to French language music,
whether the required level should be based on the total number of channels
distributed rather than the Canadian-produced channels.
"An approach based on the policy for conventional radio would be entirely
inappropriate for the service we propose," Ms. Shaw stated back in April.
"If the Commission were to then modify the current conditions imposed on
our service, we would have no alternative other than cancelling our
Today, the CRTC decided not to change the conditions of the license. Said
Ms Shaw, "We are very pleased." The new service will be available across
the country later this year.

Zeroes and ones
By Grandpa Zheng

Surfing with BSKyB
British Sky Broadcasting will offer Internet access with its digital TV
service next year, today's Financial Times reported. The decoders,
available from September 1997, will not only enable the reception of 200 to
300 TV channels but also allow users to access the Internet via a
conventional TV set. Too bad that BSkyB didn't listen to audience research
results  they show that this is exactly what an average viewer does not
want to do.

Flying with Bill
Today, some guy by the strange name of WinNews@microsoft.com sent me an
email. It contained this announcement:
"Write a short essay on what you think is the future of computing. If your
essay is the best, Bill will fly you and a companion to Redmond, WA !"
I'm quite impressed by the fact that Mr Gates even has a flying license.

Waiting for RTL and SAT.1
Holger Zeissler <Holger.Zeissler@darmstadt.netsurf.de> has noticed that the
Web sites of the two largest German commercial TV stations, RTL and SAT.1,
have something in common: They're still not operational. SAT.1 offers at
least a page with a preview, while RTL just describes some boring old
movies it airs (or rather: aired) during the summer. There's no word yet on
when each of the services will be launched.
Both stations' reluctance to display on the World Wide Web is remarkable
considering the fact that smaller stations such as Pro Sieben and RTL2 have
been present there for quite a while. And even the public broadcasters ARD
and ZDF, considered old-fashioned by many viewers, already have their own
Web Sites.
www.*.de (* = rtl, sat1, ard, zdf...)

Copyright 1996 by Peter C. Klanowski, pck@LyNet.De. All rights reserved.

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