Radio’s Support for Canadian Talent

The CRTC and other industry organizations provide support for Canadian artists, through various funding incentives and initiatives.

Canadian broadcasters reinvest in developing Canadian content

Canada’s Broadcasting Actrequires that each element of the Canadian broadcasting system contribute to the creation and presentation of Canadian programming.

Canadian Content Development (CCD) consists of various funding initiatives by broadcasters to help create and promote audio content for broadcasting using Canadian resources. These initiatives provide support, promotion, training and development of Canadian musical and spoken word talent, including journalists. The CCD policy replaces the former Canadian Talent Development (CTD) policy.

Commercial radio licensees are required to contribute financially to support CCD. The CRTC reviews radio broadcasters’ contributions to CCD in each of these circumstances: new licence application, licence renewal or transfer of ownership.

Applications for new stations or licence renewal support Canadian artists

All commercial radio broadcasters must make annual financial contributions to support CCD. Contributions are based on each station’s revenue. This requirement applies to all licensed commercial stations, including those licensed in the future.

Annual CCD contributions fall into two categories, basic and over and above:

  • The basic CCD contribution is mandatory. Licensees must direct at least 60% of their basic contribution, based on previous year revenues, to either FACTOR or MUSICACTION. The remaining 40% can be directed to any eligible CCD initiative at their own discretion.
  • Broadcasters can also make additional annual CCD contributions over and above the basic requirement. In this case, at least 20% must be directed to either FACTOR or MUSICACTION. The remaining portion may be directed to any eligible CCD initiative, at the discretion of the licensee.

Ethnic stations or those that broadcast mainly spoken word material are not required to contribute to FACTOR or MUSICACTION – since these stations make limited use of Canadian music. They can direct their annual basic and over and above CCD contributions to eligible initiatives that support their content.

Transfer of ownership or control of radio stations

Radio stations applying for transfer of ownership or control must commit a minimum direct financial contribution to CCD. The amount is 6% of the value of the transaction, of which:

  • 3% must be allocated to the Radio Starmaker Fund or Fonds Radiostar
  • 2% goes to FACTOR or MUSICACTION
  • 1% is allocated to any eligible CCD initiative, at the purchaser’s discretion

In transfer situations, the CRTC will forgo benefit requirements for unprofitable stations under certain circumstances.  For details, read paragraph 126 of the 2006 Commercial Radio Policy and paragraph 70 of the 1998 Commercial Radio Policy.

CCD funding eligibility

In addition to FACTOR and MUSICACTION, the CRTC considers the following parties and initiatives to be eligible for CCD funding: 

  • National, provincial and territorial music industry associations (MIAs).
  • Schools and educational institutions that are accredited by provincial authorities. Contributions must specifically benefit students of music and journalism, including scholarships and the purchase of musical instruments.
  • Initiatives, including talent contests, for the production and promotion of local music and local musical artists – particularly emerging artists.
  • Independent parties dedicated to producing new spoken word content that would otherwise not be produced for broadcast.
  • Audio content that further advances the objectives of the Canadian broadcasting system as outlined in the Broadcasting Act. This includes community radio funds, Native radio and other specialized audio broadcasting that serve the needs and interests of children, Aboriginal peoples or persons with disabilities.

Initiatives that aren’t targeted toward development of Canadian audio content will no longer qualify as eligible CCD initiatives. These include:

  • visual arts exhibitions, theatre and dance
  • grants to schools and educational institutions that offer courses in broadcasting or are devoted to the continuing education of radio station staff
  • broadcaster memberships in music associations, and broadcasters’ fees for attendance at conferences

Consult a general listing of CCD initiatives approved to date. For a full explanation of the current CCD policy, read paragraphs 97-128 of the 2006 Commercial Radio Policy.

Canadian Association of Broadcasters

The Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB) is also committed to a number of initiatives designed to promote Canadian music. More information can be found at FACTOR, MUSICACTION, Radio Starmaker Fund and Fonds Radiostar.

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