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TRANSCRIPT OF PROCEEDINGS FOR THE CANADIAN RADIO-TELEVISION AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION TRANSCRIPTION DES AUDIENCES DU CONSEIL DE LA RADIODIFFUSION ET DES TÉLÉCOMMUNICATIONS CANADIENNES SUBJECT / SUJET: APPLICATIONS FOR BROADCAST LICENCES / REQUÊTES POUR LICENCES DE RADIODIFFUSION HELD AT: TENUE À: Conference Centre Centre des conférences Outaouais Room Salle Outaouais Place du Portage Place du Portage Phase IV Phase IV Hull, Quebec Hull (Québec) November 13, 1998 13 novembre 1998 tel: 613-521-0703 StenoTran fax: 613-521-7668 Volume 2 Transcripts Transcription Afin de rencontrer les exigences de la Loi sur les langues officielles, les procès-verbaux pour le Conseil seront bilingues en ce qui a trait à la page couverture, la liste des membres et du personnel du CRTC participant à l'audience publique ainsi que la table des matières. Toutefois, la publication susmentionnée est un compte rendu textuel des délibérations et, en tant que tel, est enregistrée et transcrite dans l'une ou l'autre des deux langues officielles, compte tenu de la langue utilisée par le participant à l'audience publique. StenoTran Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission Conseil de la radiodiffusion et des télécommunications canadiennes Transcript / Transcription Public Hearing / Audience publique Applications for Broadcast Licences Requêtes pour licences de radiodiffusion BEFORE / DEVANT: Andrée Wylie Chairperson / Présidente Vice-Chairperson, Radio- television / Vice- présidente, Radiodiffusion Joan Pennefather Commissioner / Conseillère Andrew Cardozo Commissioner / Conseiller ALSO PRESENT / AUSSI PRÉSENTS: Geoff Batstone Commission Counsel / Avocat du Conseil Dylan Jones Policy Co-ordinator (BSSI) Morag York Policy Co-ordinator (TVNC) Mike Burnside Hearing Manager / Gérant d'audience Diane Santerre Secretary / Secrétaire HELD AT: TENUE À: Conference Centre Centre des conférences Outaouais Room Salle Outaouais Place du Portage Place du Portage Phase IV Phase IV Hull, Quebec Hull (Québec) November 13, 1998 13 novembre 1998 Volume 2 StenoTran ii TABLE OF CONTENTS / TABLE DES MATIÈRES PAGE Presentation by / Présentation par: Television Northern Canada Incorporated 379 (Continuation / Suite) Assembly of First Nations 506 Christina Keeper 522 Silver Birches Senior School 539 Government of the Northwest Territories, Education, 556 Culture & Employment Inuit Tapirisat of Canada 565 Mr. Ted Montour 573 Canadian Cable Television Association / 589 Association canadienne de télévision par câble Friends of Canadian Broadcasting 652 Brenco Media Limited 668 Centre for Research-Action on Race Relations / 684 Centre de recherche-action sur les relations raciales Mr. Clarence Michon, Mr. Adam Beach and 700 Mr. Joseph Driver CanWest Global Communications Corporation 725 Rosemarie Kuptana & Company 735 Canadian Conference of the Arts / Conférence 747 canadienne des Arts and Canadian Screen Training Centre / Réseau d'ateliers cinématographiques canadiens WETV Development Corporation 758 Communications & Diversity Network 778 StenoTran iii TABLE OF CONTENTS / TABLE DES MATIÈRES PAGE Reply by / Réplique par: Television Northern Canada Incorporated 792 StenoTran 379 1 Hull, Quebec / Hull (Québec) 2 --- Upon resuming on Friday, November 13, 1998 3 at 0900 / L'audience reprend le vendredi, 4 13 novembre 1998, à 0900 5 1859 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good morning, Mr. 6 Tagalik and colleagues. 7 1860 I would like to advise participants 8 that there is a revised list and order of appearance 9 for intervenors which is available at the back table 10 and probably in the examination room. Obviously, you 11 can ask Madam Secretary if you would like to have a 12 look at it. 13 1861 Madam Secretary, would you please 14 invite the participants to continue. 15 1862 MS SANTERRE: Thank you, Madam Chair. 16 We will proceed with the questioning of the applicant, 17 TVNC. 18 1863 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. 19 PRESENTATION, Continued / PRÉSENTATION, suite 20 1864 Commissioner Cardozo ... 21 1865 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you, 22 Madam Chair. 23 1866 Good morning. Welcome back. I will 24 carry on with some questions on the programming segment 25 before my colleagues move on to some of the other StenoTran 380 1 areas. 2 1867 Let me pick up on a couple of things 3 that we talked about yesterday. Looking at the 4 schedule, I have a couple of more questions. 5 1868 I meant to ask this question 6 yesterday. What is this program about: "The Absolute 7 Truth...About Aboriginal Women"? That is an 8 interesting name for a program. 9 1869 MS O'SHAUNESSY: That particular 10 series is a talk show, consisting of four aboriginal 11 women from all walks of life, discussing aboriginal 12 issues. It is a one-hour talk show. 13 1870 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And would 14 those be the same four people? Are they the same four 15 hosts? 16 1871 MS O'SHAUNESSY: From what I gather 17 from the proposal, it will be the same four women. 18 1872 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And 19 "Aboriginal Justice"? 20 1873 MS O'SHAUNESSY: It is from the 21 Aboriginal Justice Learning Network. The producer is 22 Rod Carleton. It will be on aboriginal justice and the 23 way the court is done in the north, through 24 participating with the youth and the elders for 25 healing. StenoTran 381 1 1874 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And "The 2 Spirit of Denendeh"? 3 1875 MS O'SHAUNESSY: That is an NNBAP 4 member, the Native Communications Society. It is 5 produced out of Yellowknife and it is for the Dene 6 region -- the Dene people. 7 1876 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: The two 8 programs, that is, the Australian program and the 9 Native American program on Friday at 1500, what are 10 those about? 11 1877 MS O'SHAUNESSY: The Australian 12 program is dealing with issues -- like a historical 13 look, back from the 1800s to mid -- I think it was the 14 1950s, with the "Black Man's War". It is an hour in 15 length and it will be in English. 16 1878 The "Waka Huia" from New Zealand is 17 also an hour long. It is a series on the tribal 18 history of the Maori. It will be in the Maori 19 language, but with English subtitles. 20 1879 As for the other foreign content with 21 U.S. programming, we have the "Aubenocheeyug", which is 22 a children's program that will be in the language. 23 1880 And "Heartbeat Alaska", which we 24 currently have on the TVNC schedule, is produced by 25 Jeannie Green. It starts off with a few minutes of StenoTran 382 1 news and then goes into current events and what is 2 happening in Anchorage or the Alaska area. 3 1881 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So those are 4 the foreign programs essentially? 5 1882 MS O'SHAUNESSY: Yes, they are. On 6 the schedule there are 4.5 hours per week of foreign 7 content. 8 1883 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Would you be 9 looking at other indigenous peoples as well? 10 1884 MS O'SHAUNESSY: Most definitely. 11 1885 From the research that was done to 12 assist us in putting this schedule together, we just 13 wanted to get a feel for what was out there in terms of 14 foreign content, and there is a lot of programming. So 15 it would cover -- the 4.5 hours per week would be a 16 complete mixture of various indigenous peoples. 17 1886 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: The Canadian 18 content figure that you have given, which is 90 per 19 cent, the other 10 per cent or so are precisely these 20 programs, are they? 21 1887 MS O'SHAUNESSY: The foreign content, 22 with the 4.5 hours, is 3.5 per cent. So we definitely 23 exceed the 90 per cent Canadian content. 24 1888 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So you are not 25 looking at "Seinfeld" and "Jerry Springer" and stuff StenoTran 383 1 like that to fill up your foreign content? 2 1889 MS O'SHAUNESSY: No, we aren't. The 3 programs that we have will be almost all original 4 programming. So there is nothing that we will be 5 pulling from the shelf. It is new material. 6 1890 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I have a 7 question from yesterday regarding languages. 8 1891 We talked about English services, 9 French services and other aboriginal languages. What 10 you were telling us was that -- I think it was about 84 11 out of 125 hours are English? Is that right? 12 1892 MS O'SHAUNESSY: Eighty-four of the 13 121.5. 14 1893 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Then you have 15 7.5 French -- 16 1894 MS O'SHAUNESSY: That's right. 17 1895 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: -- and the 18 remaining are aboriginal. 19 1896 MS O'SHAUNESSY: Thirty hours are 20 aboriginal. 21 1897 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I look at 22 that, and the 84 English is there, as I understand it, 23 for two reasons. One is that it is the language other 24 than aboriginal languages that most aboriginal people 25 speak, although those in Quebec, as Madam Obomsawin StenoTran 384 1 told us yesterday, also speak French, or that is their 2 first or second language, especially the people in 3 Quebec. 4 1898 We were talking about issues of 5 language recovery and the popularity of programs in 6 various aboriginal languages. 7 1899 The other importance of having the 8 English was to be able to communicate with non- 9 aboriginal English-speaking people. So there is quite 10 a conundrum here. There is a squeeze of only so many 11 hours, and probably more demand for all of the 12 languages: English, the aboriginal languages and 13 French. 14 1900 My question is: Do you see that 15 breakdown changing over time where you may need to 16 increase the French and the aboriginal languages and 17 reduce the English, given that one can't really find 18 more hours in the day? At 121.5, you are about 16 or 19 17 hours a day, which is about as much as people are 20 going to watch. 21 1901 MS O'SHAUNESSY: From the proposals 22 that I received, the majority of them were in the 23 English language. But what we will be doing, over 24 time -- 25 1902 We did get many proposals and this is StenoTran 385 1 just a sample schedule. We will get hundreds and 2 hundreds more proposals and the program director can 3 then make sure there is a balance with the languages. 4 1903 With the aboriginal languages, we 5 will look at increasing them. 6 1904 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Yes, but what 7 you are talking about more is the supply aspect of it; 8 the proposals for programs. The other aspect is their 9 demand, and my sense of it is that there is quite a 10 demand for aboriginal languages -- more aboriginal 11 language programming than you have here. 12 1905 Is that a fair assumption? Or would 13 you not know that yet? 14 1906 MR. FARMER: I believe it was pointed 15 out yesterday that aboriginal languages are on the 16 upswing. The situation that is occurring is that many 17 of our youth are speaking the languages in southern 18 communities where the adults have yet to actually be as 19 fluent in the language as the youth. So as our 20 generations become older we will see a regeneration of 21 language beginning to come to the forefront, and 22 certainly television will be affected by that. 23 1907 MR. TOURIGNY: I think it will also 24 depend -- I know it will depend on viewer feedback. 25 1908 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I'm sorry? StenoTran 386 1 1909 MR. TOURIGNY: Viewer feedback on 2 what works and what doesn't work and how many requests 3 we get for different types of language programming. 4 1910 MS McLAUGHLIN: If I may add to that, 5 in the research we conducted focus groups both in rural 6 aboriginal communities and in urban, and the issue of 7 language was discussed. While it was certainly of 8 interest to both further their understanding of their 9 own language and hear stories in their language, the 10 key was to see themselves and their stories told. 11 1911 There was a concern, actually, that 12 if it was too much in the individual languages that a 13 lot of this oral tradition of sharing would be lost 14 because the youth did not speak their own language. 15 They really relied on English. 16 1912 So it was important to them to not 17 have too much of the individual languages on the 18 schedule. 19 1913 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So the oral 20 tradition could be maintained through English. 21 1914 MS McLAUGHLIN: Yes. That was the 22 very strong message we got through the research. 23 1915 MR. FARMER: We look at English as an 24 aboriginal language, as well as French. 25 0910 StenoTran 387 1 1916 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Mr. Farmer, 2 this is just for my personal interest. 3 1917 What you seem to be saying, if I hear 4 you right and add my own thought to it, is that 5 aboriginal languages are probably maintained among 6 elders, and it's this middle group of middle-aged 7 people who have lost the language because of cultural 8 assimilation and what else, and it's the younger 9 generation who are increasing their interest in 10 aboriginal languages? 11 1918 MR. FARMER: In the last five, ten 12 years, this is the first time that we've seen immersion 13 education, which means in my community total immersion 14 exists where students are growing up with the Cayuga 15 language. 16 1919 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And that 17 hasn't existed in the recent past? 18 1920 MR. FARMER: Never before in the 19 context of education. 20 1921 So we're going to see some trends and 21 change. You can see it in the community radio where 22 language is becoming more predominant. You can see it 23 on the signs even more in stores and on placemats for 24 restaurants and such, where language is used far more 25 frequently than it was ten years ago. StenoTran 388 1 1922 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Let me ask 2 about closed captioning. 3 1923 MS MacDONALD: I just wanted to add 4 something. With the Haa Shagoon on the programming 5 here, just to give you an example of how the aboriginal 6 languages work in the north, Haa Shagoon is done in 7 aboriginal languages. In the Yukon there are eight 8 aboriginal languages that are used. Within that time 9 period, it may be that one language will be used, like 10 Tlingit language, and then the next show it may be 11 another southern Tutchone language or even within that 12 time block they might do three different interviews 13 with elders and three different languages will be used. 14 1924 The main thing here, as we mentioned 15 yesterday, is that our versioning is very important, 16 that we have to subtitle. Hearing the language is very 17 important, but also to communicate we need to subtitle 18 in versions so that English people will be able to 19 understand. The language component is very important 20 to aboriginal people. It is the basis of our culture. 21 What Mr. Farmer has said is correct, with the 22 demographics of the people that are speaking the 23 language, but it's very important for us to have 24 aboriginal languages. 25 1925 You'll see most of the northern shows StenoTran 389 1 that are on the schedule here, they do produce in 2 aboriginal languages already. 3 1926 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: For example, 4 one of the programs that we talked about yesterday at 5 11:30 on Monday, Labradorimiut was going to be in 6 English and Inuktituk. Is that where you would have 7 English subtitles when people are talking Inuktituk. 8 Is that the kind of thing? 9 1927 MS O'SHAUGHNESSY: It alternates. 10 The way it is on TVNC right now it alternates. One 11 week it's in English, the next week it would be in 12 Inuktituk. 13 1928 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And the 14 subtitling would be in the other language? 15 1929 MS O'SHAUGHNESSY: On APTN? 16 1930 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Yes. 17 1931 MS O'SHAUGHNESSY: That's right. 18 1932 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So, if it's 19 Inuktituk, subtitling would be in English? 20 1933 MS O'SHAUGHNESSY: But it wouldn't be 21 for all shows. 22 1934 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I want to move 23 to closed captioning. We've had a policy for some time 24 which allows for and encourages closed captioning for 25 the deaf and hard of hearing. StenoTran 390 1 1935 What we've expected is that over the 2 course of a licence or by the end of a licence period 3 that broadcasters would have up to 90 per cent of their 4 programming in general closed captioned and 100 per 5 cent of news. Your streams of revenue are comparable 6 to other of these specialties that have the same kind 7 of expectation and being on basic, as you are 8 requesting, perhaps one would say that you have the 9 same obligations. 10 1936 So, what I want to find out about is 11 what your targets are with regards to closed 12 captioning. I didn't notice the item specifically 13 noted in your expenditures. 14 1937 MR. TOURIGNY: The other specialties 15 use a lot of shelf product, both foreign and domestic, 16 which were originally produced with closed captioning 17 embedded in the programs. So, it cost them nothing. 18 1938 The bulk of our programs are all 19 original; they're new, yet to be produced. We have all 20 these submissions and, ultimately, we'll have to decide 21 which ones are a go. Presumably, programs produced 22 through Telefilm will receive assistance for closed 23 captioning. Any drama or children's programming 24 through Telefilm would end up with closed captions. 25 So, that's not in our budget. That's in the budget of StenoTran 391 1 the producer to work out with Telefilm. 2 1939 The only in-house production we do is 3 our daily news program and the daily phone-in show. We 4 haven't budgeted for doing closed captions in our news 5 programming. We have budgeted $500,000 a year for 6 versioning so as to make the aboriginal language 7 programming more accessible to a broader audience. 8 1940 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Which is more 9 open captioned? 10 1941 MR. TOURIGNY: It would be open 11 captioned, right. 12 1942 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Are there 13 competing demands on closed captioning? The only one I 14 can think of is subtitling. When you have subtitling, 15 you're using a certain amount of space on the screen. 16 Is that a major impediment to closed captioning? 17 1943 MR. TOURIGNY: I'm sorry, I don't 18 understand the nature of your question. 19 1944 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: If you've got 20 subtitling taking up a certain amount of space on the 21 screen, does that make it more difficult to do closed 22 captioning? 23 1945 MR. TOURIGNY: It would be pointless 24 to do closed captioning if you've got open captioning 25 because the subtitling is just like open captioning. StenoTran 392 1 1946 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So then, in a 2 sense, you've got captioning where you've got 3 subtitling? 4 1947 MR. TOURIGNY: That's right. 5 1948 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Then for the 6 rest of your programming where you don't have 7 subtitling, you don't have a competing demand for that 8 space. So you could have subtitling there? 9 1949 MR. TOURIGNY: You could have closed 10 captioning. 11 1950 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Sorry, closed 12 captioning. 13 1951 MR. TOURIGNY: Yes, closed 14 captioning. That's not competing for the same space 15 because the closed captioning is embedded in line 21 on 16 the vertical blanking interval, whereas the open 17 captions are embedded in the video portion of the 18 signal. 19 1952 As I said, the only in-house 20 programming we do is our news and public affairs. 21 There may be, at some point into the licence term, 22 where we could acquire the software to provide closed 23 captions for the news program. I understand most news 24 rooms do that and the cost of the equipment has come 25 down. It's like a teleprompter feed. They take it off StenoTran 393 1 of that and put it in and the software provides the 2 closed captioning. 3 1953 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So what you're 4 saying there may be the possibility to do it. What I 5 want to ask you is: Would you accept a condition of 6 licence or a requirement or an expectation that you 7 would meet these sorts of targets of 90 per cent of 8 closed captioning by the end of your licence period? 9 1954 MR. TOURIGNY: That's 90 per cent 10 overall. I think we could look at doing 100 per cent 11 of our news by the end of the licence term. We would 12 commit to get the software and we would probably 13 institute that before the final year, I think probably 14 by year five. It might be a million and a half dollars 15 to get something set up to do that. I don't know what 16 the costs are. I know the costs have been coming down. 17 It might be considerably less. I haven't been really 18 in touch with the cost factor on that. 19 1955 The rest of the programming is really 20 a function of the independent producer and where they 21 shop around to get their money and whether there's a 22 budget in there for closed captioning. Maybe Roman 23 could speak to that for a moment. 24 1956 MR. BITTMAN: Almost all of the 25 independently-produced programming that has a component StenoTran 394 1 of provincial or federal monies or a broadcaster has a 2 requirement of the closed captioning to be embedded in 3 the program before it's delivered. 4 1957 So, a good portion of the independent 5 production would have that in it. So, that would 6 assist in this direction. 7 1958 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: What you're 8 saying is you probably wouldn't have a hard time 9 getting to 90 per cent by the end of your licence term, 10 if not earlier? 11 1959 MR. BITTMAN: I can't say for sure, 12 but that would be my inclination to believe that would 13 be the case, yes. 14 1960 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I just want to 15 repeat, from our perspective, this is a policy that we 16 take quite seriously. You're asking for basic carriage 17 and a certain licence fee that would grant you a 18 certain revenue stream, and that revenue stream puts 19 you in the range of other broadcasters. So, you could 20 see that it wouldn't be an unreasonable demand. 21 1961 MR. TOURIGNY: He was talking about 22 the independent producers. We also have to look at the 23 NNBAP members who produce 30 per cent of the 24 programming on the schedule. They've been cut back 25 considerably. I don't know that IBC, particularly if StenoTran 395 1 it's live programming, can be closed captioned. Maybe 2 on their children's series, which is partially funded 3 through Telefilm, they probably could. 4 1962 But on a day-to-day basis, the 5 programming coming out of OkalaKatiget, Labrador is a 6 very small communication society which is trying to do 7 radio, television and a newspaper. They're really 8 stretched to the limit. To ask OkalaKatiget to provide 9 their programming with closed captions embedded in it I 10 think is unreasonable. 11 1963 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: They've got 12 the cutbacks but you've got the budget. 13 0920 14 1964 MR. TAGALIK: But we didn't put, you 15 know, closed captioning as an option when we looked at 16 the costs associated with doing programming. And if 17 you are doing a program in an Aboriginal language, your 18 funds are geared towards that. And if you try and do 19 it so that the English script is good enough to be 20 closed captioned, I think is, especially for the NNBAP 21 members is a weight that I don't know that they could 22 bear. 23 1965 MR. TOURIGNY: On the other hand, I 24 guess we can recognize that there has to be symmetry in 25 the system. And when you licence people and there is a StenoTran 396 1 common expectation throughout the broadcasting system 2 that these objectives should be met, we feel that there 3 is a responsibility there. If it means we have to 4 divert more of APTN's finances to the NNBAP members to 5 help them do whatever is necessary to do the closed 6 captioning -- see, a lot of these -- 7 1966 COMMISSIONER CARDOZA: Could I ask 8 you -- I will move on to the next question, then, maybe 9 I could just ask you to give this some consideration 10 between now and your reply at the end of the day and if 11 you have got any more specific position on that you can 12 let us know. 13 1967 MR. TOURIGNY: I think we would like 14 to consult our NNBAP members. I do not think there is 15 a problem outside of that programming, but I think 16 there could be a problem inside the programming. 17 1968 COMMISSIONER CARDOZA: But if you 18 could give us as specific a comment as you can in your 19 replies, I think that would be helpful. 20 1969 Let me lastly just ask you about 21 productions. Mr. Tagalik and Mr. Tourigny, during the 22 TV policy hearings a few weeks ago you appeared then 23 and spoke about the reflection of Aboriginal peoples in 24 other programming beyond APTN. 25 1970 Do you see an avenue for StenoTran 397 1 co-productions in shared windows once you get going, or 2 from what you are doing already with TVNC, whereby some 3 of the other broadcasters and you would do 4 co-productions and share windows? 5 1971 MR. TAGALIK: Yes, by all means. I 6 think we look at the mainstream media today, a lot of 7 that programming for Aboriginal people is not produced 8 by Aboriginal people. And I think, you know, we would 9 certainly encourage the whole Aboriginal television and 10 film industry to, you know, really jump-start them in 11 this area. And, you know, I think anywhere we can get 12 help for Aboriginal producers is a bonus for the whole 13 community. So I do not see that being a problem or, 14 you know, we certainly would be open. 15 1972 MR. TOURIGNY: I will just give my 16 comment and then maybe Roman can expand on it. I think 17 the economics of producing high quality programming 18 pretty much warrants that you have got several equity 19 players in there. APTN is not planning on taking 20 equity positions, we are just planning on a licence 21 fee. But Roman is an independent producer and I have 22 been speaking with Catalyst Entertainment, the producer 23 of "Tales from the Longhouse", which is a very high 24 budget animation live action puppet combination where 25 they take a lot of these mythical characters in StenoTran 398 1 Aboriginal history and culture and provide a very high 2 quality production. 3 1973 They have got -- maybe Roman can get 4 into this a little bit more because he has been 5 speaking to them, too. But they are looking at TV 6 Ontario, CBC, us, France as a co-producer. But APTN 7 would not be a co-producer but Catalyst Entertainment 8 is getting all these other partners together and 9 spreading the cost over several broadcast windows. 10 1974 MR. BITTMAN: In the couple of 11 productions that I have been working on, first and 12 second windows between two broadcasters are very 13 common. In terms of co-production, again, a very 14 common thing to do. With "Chiefs", we have already NAT 15 involved in the States, and TVO is very interested and 16 probably the CBC would be interested, too, if we want a 17 second or third window situation. 18 1975 In other productions, we have a lot 19 of -- using the international treaty obligations that 20 Canada has with 20-odd countries, we can also find 21 co-productions offshore in the market. So 22 co-productions is the way things are financed these 23 days. 24 1976 COMMISSIONER CARDOZA: The flip side 25 of the issue reflecting -- StenoTran 399 1 1977 MR. TOURIGNY: This is the prospectus 2 on "Tales from the Longhouse". It is a very high 3 quality production and we intend to be involved with 4 the licence fee. 5 1978 COMMISSIONER CARDOZA: The flip side 6 of the issue of co-productions and reflection of 7 Aboriginal peoples and other broadcasters is that the 8 more you do, is there the danger that the others will 9 feel they can do less? 10 1979 I think especially of high profile 11 events like the National Aboriginal Achievement Awards, 12 which CBC has carried now for one or two years. Will 13 they say, well, let APTN do it now, we will not do it. 14 And do you -- are you concerned that that might happen 15 with -- perhaps not reflection in a number of programs, 16 but certainly some of the bigger events? 17 1980 MR. TOURIGNY: I think there has been 18 an increase in Aboriginal presence across mainstream 19 media over the last couple of years, certainly on CBC. 20 In presence and in themes, Gary Farmer is involved in 21 or acting in a series that will be on Global this 22 coming season. 23 1981 COMMISSIONER CARDOZA: Let me tell 24 you, I am in that series, too. When they were filming 25 that series, they put out a call for people to show up. StenoTran 400 1 So I was one of the 20 or 30,000 people in the 2 background. I am not sure anyone will ever be able to 3 identify myself, but I will always remember that Gary 4 Farmer and I were in the same movie. 5 1982 MR. TOURIGNY: So I -- you know, 6 CBC's licence renewal is up next year. I think you can 7 rest assured we will be there and we will be pushing 8 that same theme that the national broadcaster has an 9 obligation. It is not just the national broadcaster, 10 it is all of the broadcasters. And I think they are 11 showing much more openness these days. And it is not 12 as if we are competing with them. I mean, we go into 13 this as partners. If we can work a second window with 14 Canwest, and they will be up later today as a positive 15 intervenor. They are very happy to see us coming along 16 and David Asper has been talking to our members of the 17 -- our advisory group in Winnipeg and they are looking 18 at a whole variety of things which could include 19 co-production, second windows and so on. 20 1983 MR. TAGALIK: I think, too, the 21 history of TVNC and CBC working together in the north, 22 you know, we cover a lot of events together and it 23 could be the bullhead whale hunt this past summer or 24 the Inuit Circumpolar Conference. It is just not 25 feasible to do a production on your own when you can, StenoTran 401 1 you know, put a team together and cover such a thing. 2 And the same thing will be with the Nunavut 3 celebrations. You know, it is a team effort, you know, 4 that gets the most effective coverage, especially of 5 news. Other sectors would have to be more a 6 case-by-case basis, I would say. 7 1984 COMMISSIONER CARDOZA: Have you 8 talked about news, about sharing news footage? Do you 9 think that other broadcasters will pick up any of the 10 news feeds for particular stories? 11 1985 MR. FARMER: I think we are going to 12 provide a coverage that has never been provided before 13 in the history of broadcasting. So certainly, you 14 know, that they are going to be watching us for leads 15 and angles on stories that they have never dreamed of. 16 So it will bring a whole new wealth of information to 17 the Canadian public. 18 1986 MR. TOURIGNY: It already occurs. 19 Southern broadcasters have purchased IBC footage on a 20 number of occasions and I think as well from NNBY, in 21 the Yukon. So there is already a north-south flow. 22 And once we go national, we will be covering probably 23 stories that, you know, are a little down in the notch 24 from the mainstream media, they did not make the line 25 up that night. So we will have our people there and it StenoTran 402 1 will be made available on a cost recovery or profit 2 basis. 3 1987 COMMISSIONER CARDOZA: Last, I just 4 want to ask about the funds, the Canadian Television 5 Fund and Telephone and just ask you how things are 6 working, how you find things are working with the $1 7 million or $2 million envelope that has been set aside 8 for Aboriginal productions. 9 1988 MR. TAGALIK: When we were here for 10 the policy hearings, that is one issue we raised. And, 11 you know, we would like it to reflect more of the 12 percentage of the Aboriginal population. And it 13 certainly is not $2 million out of $200 million. And I 14 think, you know, that, there should be a bigger 15 commitment. And TVNT, I think, you know, all the time 16 that we have been out there, we have been pushing the 17 Aboriginal envelope and we really got them to set aside 18 that $2 million for Aboriginal producers. 19 0930 20 1989 So I think that is one area we are 21 not going to stop on. We really feel that there has to 22 be more put in. Plus, we feel that there should be 23 some kind of jump-start fund to help us, if possible, 24 in this area. We are into a whole new area for 25 aboriginal people, and there is a lot of capital StenoTran 403 1 involved and a lot of probably new television 2 facilities or cameramen, and stuff like that, that will 3 be out there looking to get started. 4 1990 I think it needs to be jump-started. 5 It certainly is not adequate today. 6 1991 I was fighting over that small 7 envelope as it is, not only for TVNC but for all the 8 other broadcasters as well. 9 1992 MR. BITTMAN: As a supplement on 10 that, those two funds are both set aside for 11 independent producers and for aboriginal language 12 productions with a little exception for Metis producers 13 who do not have aboriginal language as their first 14 language. 15 1993 We feel because of the aboriginal 16 language requirement, we will find a niche most 17 comfortably on the new network. 18 1994 Over and above that, of course, 19 aboriginal producers can access the regular Canadian 20 Television Production Fund and Telefilm Funds in the 21 normal way. 22 1995 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: That covers my 23 questions on programming. Thank you very much. 24 1996 Thank you, Madam Chair. 25 1997 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. StenoTran 404 1 1998 Commissioner Cardozo's questions on 2 closed captioning raise an issue I had never thought 3 of. 4 1999 Presumably the reason why you cannot 5 subtitle and closed caption effectively at the same 6 time is that the question who has the equipment to get 7 the closed captioning still sees the subtitle, because 8 it is not removable. Is that correct? 9 2000 So the advantage of not -- 10 2001 MR. TOURIGNY: That's right. It 11 would be a waste of resources to closed caption a 12 program that was already subtitled. 13 2002 THE CHAIRPERSON: And the cost of 14 closed captioning is higher than subtitling? 15 2003 MR. TOURIGNY: No. Subtitling is 16 more expensive. 17 2004 THE CHAIRPERSON: Subtitling means 18 the same thing as open caption. Right? 19 2005 MR. TOURIGNY: Yes. But I think 20 there is different software involved with the closed 21 captioning. I am not sure. 22 2006 And it is all based on English. I 23 know in French the subtitling is facing many more 24 problems than in English. 25 2007 THE CHAIRPERSON: Because the StenoTran 405 1 syllabification, et cetera, is apparently much more 2 difficult. So you may have the same problem. 3 2008 MR. TOURIGNY: Yes. Taking Inuktitut 4 into English subtitles may be impossible. We don't 5 know that. 6 2009 THE CHAIRPERSON: Is it still in 7 French a problem -- 8 2010 MR. TOURIGNY: Yes. 9 2011 THE CHAIRPERSON: -- in achieving the 10 same thing. Apparently, it doesn't lend itself very 11 easily. 12 2012 It raises interesting questions. 13 What was it when we heard some French groups? For 14 example, it could translate that "un homme indigné" and 15 "un homme indigne" would be the same. And I am sure 16 your lawyer sees the difference. 17 2013 One is a dignified person and the 18 other one is a very angry person. 19 2014 They showed us examples where it was 20 completely confused because the equipment was not able 21 to do it. 22 2015 MR. TOURIGNY: We are going to caucus 23 on this. But I think the commitments we can make 24 certainly would be to the English language programming. 25 I don't see a problem there. StenoTran 406 1 2016 THE CHAIRPERSON: Right. But the 2 other may be difficult. 3 2017 MR. TOURIGNY: Right. 4 2018 THE CHAIRPERSON: What does the 5 equipment cost currently to the television viewer to 6 decode the closed captioning? What is a ballpark 7 figure of the cost to the consumer? 8 2019 If it is closed captioned, you need a 9 piece of equipment to uncode it unless it is on the 10 SAP, I suppose. 11 2020 How do you get it on the -- 12 2021 MR. TOURIGNY: It used to be called a 13 telecaption, a black box that sat on the screen. 14 2022 I know that years ago when cable 15 companies were buying cable companies, they would put 16 so much money to make all these decoders available. 17 2023 I know when Maclean Hunter bought 18 Ottawa Cablevision, they filled a warehouse full of 19 telecaption, closed captioning decoders to give away. 20 And they are still sitting there. 21 2024 THE CHAIRPERSON: So there is no 22 problem with the consumer cost of getting the closed 23 caption visible on the screen. 24 2025 MR. TOURIGNY: Our technical person 25 is not here today, and I apologize for that. StenoTran 407 1 2026 THE CHAIRPERSON: SAP is audio. 2 2027 MR. TOURIGNY: SAP is audio. But it 3 could be like the V-chip. I think there has been a 4 move to have these devices embedded in new TV sets. 5 But I am really not up on it. 6 2028 THE CHAIRPERSON: Because it could be 7 an issue to the consumer if it is an expense. But you 8 think it is not. 9 2029 I have some questions on the 10 licensing framework and on finance. 11 2030 The questions on the licensing 12 framework may be reduced because I see at page 6 of 13 your presentation that you support the alternative of 14 employing paragraph 9(1)(h) of the Broadcasting Act and 15 believe that: 16 "...this mechanism will fully 17 achieve our goal of national 18 distribution and availability." 19 2031 My interest this morning is to ensure 20 that you impart to us any remaining concerns you have 21 about the licensing mechanisms that are used so that 22 you feel completely free to discuss with us -- and I 23 will try to direct the discussion in that way -- the 24 advantages and disadvantages of the various means. 25 2032 We do not intend to limit you in StenoTran 408 1 doing that. 2 2033 I do believe, however, that it may 3 not be necessary or fruitful to get into arguments 4 about what an affiliate means, et cetera. 5 2034 Would you agree that in light of the 6 legislation and the regulations and what they mean, and 7 in light of the deficiency questions that you were 8 asked, that there are problems with 37(b) and 17(5)? 9 2035 MS COURTEMANCHE: We agree that -- as 10 you noted earlier, you did not want us to sort of argue 11 what is the appropriate interpretation of the term 12 "affiliate". 13 2036 THE CHAIRPERSON: You may argue what 14 you want. I am just trying to be constructive -- 15 2037 MS COURTEMANCHE: We agree that there 16 is an interpretation problem. Section 17(5) is very 17 clear. I don't think there is any problem with the 18 Class 1 or Class 2s, to the extent that you have 19 determined that a service is in the national public 20 interest and it should be carried on a mandatory basis. 21 As long as you have satisfied yourself of the factual 22 determination of what constitutes a service that is in 23 the national public interest, you could go ahead. 24 2038 Then you are left with the conundrum 25 of what do you do with the DTH services that don't have StenoTran 409 1 an equivalent provision in that part of the 2 regulations; whether you can or cannot use 37(b). 3 2039 But having looked at that, we then 4 saw the Commission's amendment to its Notice of Public 5 Hearing and we looked at Section 9(1)(h) and believe 6 that where the Commission believes that service should 7 be carried on certain terms and conditions, it would in 8 that circumstance be able to deal with all classes of 9 distribution undertakings, regardless of whether you 10 are a Class 3, a DTH distributor, a Class 1 or Class 2. 11 2040 So it is a fully encompassing 12 provision, and it gives you all the discretion and 13 flexibility you require in order to make sure that the 14 plans that are contained in the application are fully 15 met and that the distribution aspirations of the 16 application can be met by the Commission. 17 2041 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mr. Tourigny or Mr. 18 Tagalik, what is your main goal in this application? 19 Is it how to characterize the service, what it is 20 called? Or is your main goal ensuring that it gets 21 mandatory distribution? 22 2042 MR. TOURIGNY: I'm sorry, could you 23 repeat the question? 24 2043 THE CHAIRPERSON: There is confusion 25 on -- not confusion, but there are alternatives on both StenoTran 410 1 the characterization of the service as a conventional 2 network service, a television programming service; 3 whether it is a specialty service; whether it is like 4 the Atlantic service or Access Alberta. It could be 5 called the Satellite-to-Cable service. 6 2044 I note in passing that all three -- 7 37(b), 17(5) and 9(1)(h) -- refer to programming 8 services. 9 0945 10 2045 So that is an issue, how it is 11 characterized, and we can discuss what disadvantages 12 and advantages there may be in the characterization, if 13 you don't take into consideration amendments -- very 14 long amendments that take a long time -- to the 15 regulatory framework as it is. 16 2046 So there is the issue of how you 17 characterize it and then what mechanism you use to 18 distribute it. 19 2047 What is your main goal? Are there 20 reasons, whether they be financing, funding, 21 recognition, that make it important for you how you 22 characterize it? Or is your main goal some reasonable 23 means of getting mandatory carriage nationally? 24 2048 MR. TAGALIK: I think if you look at 25 the history of aboriginal broadcasting and you look at StenoTran 411 1 TV, you see there really was initially the government 2 commitment to do a northern and southern aboriginal 3 television system, which would be publicly funded and 4 publicly based. 5 2049 I think we are here today -- we 6 basically are letting the government off the hook. The 7 government has not lived up to its obligations to fund 8 a publicly funded aboriginal television system. That 9 is why it is hard to categorize our application. Does 10 it fit here? Is it a specialty service? 11 2050 Certainly, when we went into this, we 12 did not want to look at a specialty service. We wanted 13 to provide a very basic level of service on basic 14 cable. 15 2051 If you look at the aboriginal 16 community, it certainly isn't a rich community that 17 could afford something on a higher tier. And we don't 18 have the funds today from the government to do the kind 19 of programming we are looking at doing here. And I 20 think the government should feel ashamed of something 21 like this, and that they take a decade of indigenous 22 people around the world and you show them the kind of 23 commitment the government has in this area. 24 2052 So I think we have been forced into 25 this route out of necessity. We have certainly tried StenoTran 412 1 all the way to work through the government. You look 2 at TVNC. TVNC funds are always being cut. We just 3 can't keep going the way we are going. And we can't 4 fill the schedule today based on government funding. 5 2053 So when we put our application 6 together we really wanted mandatory carriage on basic 7 to provide the funds to do the programming necessary to 8 fill the schedule and to fill the gap that is there. 9 2054 It is really hard to categorize this 10 in the conventional way. 11 2055 I know that I could get really upset 12 about this, but I think -- you know, the need is there 13 and -- 14 2056 THE CHAIRPERSON: It is too early. 15 2057 MR. TAGALIK: -- that is why we put 16 the application forward -- 17 2058 THE CHAIRPERSON: It is only a 18 quarter to ten, Mr. Tagalik. Don't get upset. 19 2059 My question is more related to the 20 mechanics of it. You tell us this morning, before we 21 gather all of the information to make a decision, what 22 you see as being the disadvantages or the advantages of 23 the mechanics we use to get your goal. 24 2060 I gather from your last comment that 25 mandatory distribution is your main goal; that the StenoTran 413 1 service that you have proposed be carried -- and 2 obviously it is very important as well that it be 3 carried for a fee. That is your main goal. 4 2061 And I can ask your advisors perhaps 5 to help us understand whether what I call the 6 characterization -- that is, what do you call it? 7 Because it is not quite the same as anything else. 8 That has an impact on any aspect -- whether it be 9 funding, whether the way you are recognized has an 10 impact on any other aspect -- 11 2062 MR. TAGALIK: I was just getting at 12 that to show you where we are coming from and how we 13 put it together and what we are asking for. 14 2063 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes, but my 15 question is: If you are called a television network, 16 is that helpful to you even if it appears to create 17 some problems? If you are called a specialty service, 18 does that create problems of perception, which then may 19 affect funding or the view people have of it? 20 2064 You are a hybrid, but we have had 21 satellite-to-cable services, like ASN and Access, where 22 there may be a combination of cable delivery and over- 23 the-air delivery. Is that a problem? 24 2065 For example, if you were called 25 satellite-to-cable, does it matter if the regulations StenoTran 414 1 that allow for simultaneous substitution may not 2 protect you? 3 2066 Does it matter to you whether you are 4 on the basic band, or very low down on the band, as you 5 would be if you were a conventional television service? 6 2067 I gather from reading your 7 application that you don't, because you are prepared to 8 go north of 60. 9 2068 Are there things that matter to you 10 as to what the Commission ends up calling you to 11 achieve your goal? I would like to hear about that. 12 Then, I would like to hear whether you feel that there 13 are such advantages and disadvantages in the mechanism 14 we use to ensure that there is mandatory carriage. 15 2069 Is that clear now? 16 2070 MR. TOURIGNY: I think so. I will 17 start -- 18 2071 THE CHAIRPERSON: It is not whether 19 we should do it or not, but how we should do it. 20 2072 MR. TOURIGNY: Yes. 21 2073 THE CHAIRPERSON: The other question 22 will be raised as well, obviously, but my part of the 23 questioning is to ensure that you tell us, on both of 24 these, what the problems of using one or the other are. 25 2074 MR. TOURIGNY: We see no problem with StenoTran 415 1 being called a television network. That is the form we 2 filled out and it was a deliberate choice. 3 2075 We consulted Commission staff prior 4 to filling out that application because, you are right, 5 we -- 6 2076 THE CHAIRPERSON: But we get smarter 7 as the days go on. 8 2077 MR. TOURIGNY: I am not faulting CRTC 9 staff. I had thought, intuitively, that because we are 10 satellite-to-cable it might be more appropriate to fill 11 out the specialty form, just the way it was structured, 12 because we don't have a bunch of over-the-air 13 transmitters in the south and so on, and in 14 consultation it was decided that it was more 15 appropriate -- that we are not applying for a specialty 16 service, we are applying for a television network. 17 2078 If we were applying for a specialty 18 service we would have done that. 19 2079 So we see no downside to being called 20 a national aboriginal television network. Or you could 21 call us, I think, a satellite-to-cable network, if that 22 was appropriate. 23 2080 One thing we are not, due to the 24 connotation associated with it in the Commission's 25 various statements, is a specialty service, because the StenoTran 416 1 Commission, from day one in 1984, said that a specialty 2 service is a discretionary service. It is a niche 3 service and we don't fit that mould. 4 2081 So there is a large downside to being 5 characterized as a specialty service. You get into the 6 access rules. You get into a whole range of things. 7 We consider ourselves to be a core service. 8 2082 THE CHAIRPERSON: All of these are 9 arguable, of course, because we have considered, as you 10 well know, some services in languages other than French 11 and English. Telelatino, for example, would produce 12 what is a core service that looks a lot like a 13 television network. Its specialty, by virtue of its 14 language -- that is what makes its niche. 15 2083 I understand your view, but, you 16 know, you are getting close. Of course, the mandatory 17 part would not be -- that is one characteristic of a 18 specialty service, that normally -- but it can be -- 19 2084 There are the access rules and it can 20 be distributed on basic, so it is not that foreign 21 to -- 22 2085 But satellite-to-cable, you don't see 23 a problem, for example -- 24 2086 Is simultaneous substitution, for 25 example, important to -- StenoTran 417 1 2087 MR. TOURIGNY: It is not a problem 2 with us, because nobody else in the world, other than 3 sharing first and second windows within Canada, will be 4 airing the same programming as us. Simultaneous 5 substitution is normally against U.S. stations, so that 6 is not an issue. 7 2088 THE CHAIRPERSON: And you have 8 already said that the benefit is not for you a show 9 stopper, this being the benefit of being on the basic 10 band. You are prepared to be on a higher band -- 11 2089 MR. TOURIGNY: No, we are realistic. 12 2090 THE CHAIRPERSON: -- which would be 13 one advantage of calling you a conventional television 14 network. 15 2091 So what you are saying is, you would 16 rather not be called a specialty service because it 17 carries connotations, but a hybrid type of satellite- 18 to-cable television service -- you don't see a problem. 19 2092 MS COURTEMANCHE: No, I don't see a 20 problem. What APTN was trying to respond to in its 21 application was the invitation of the Commission in its 22 network hearing that it come up with a formula whereby 23 the service would be widely available. And when we 24 looked at that we said that there is a provision, as 25 you know, which is 17(5), which talks about programming StenoTran 418 1 services. 2 2093 Now, a programming service is a 3 defined term in the distribution regulation. It means 4 a program that is distributed by a licensee. 5 2094 So if you look at that definition you 6 would say that it could encompass anything. It could 7 encompass conventional. It could encompass a specialty 8 service. I mean, any service could be found to be 9 mandatory under 17(5), as long as you have met the 10 factual determination on whether or not it is a service 11 which serves the national public interest. And then, 12 wanting to -- 13 2095 THE CHAIRPERSON: It is, I think, in 14 the national public interest. 15 2096 MS COURTEMANCHE: Absolutely. Then, 16 in order to capture the DTH distributors, because 17 unfortunately there is not an equivalent provision in 18 that part of the regulations, if you are qualified as a 19 television network undertaking, as a national network, 20 we argued -- and whether successfully or not we will 21 find out -- but we argued at the time that, yes, we 22 should be carried also by DTH distributors. 23 2097 Now, looking at 9(1)(h) itself, 24 9(1)(h) just speaks again of programming services, and 25 "programming services" is not a term that is defined StenoTran 419 1 under the Broadcasting Act, but rather just 2 "programming undertaking". And programming undertaking 3 includes all classes of undertakings that provide 4 programming, including specialties, conventional or 5 whatever. 6 2098 Given that there is a bit of a 7 conundrum with 37(b), if you are asking us which is the 8 framework that would probably not require any 9 regulatory amendments, and which would ensure that we 10 would be made available in the manner that was proposed 11 in the application, meaning Class 1s, Class 2s and DTH 12 distributors, with encouragement to Class 3s, at that 13 point I would say that your most effective regulatory 14 tool would be 9(1)(h). 15 2099 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, if we used 16 some other tools, other than 9(1)(h) -- unless there 17 was some amendment, and the Commission was prepared to 18 make an amendment -- and you would have no means of 19 getting mandatory carriage on DTH, how important is 20 that financially to your -- 21 2100 MS COURTEMANCHE: We have argued that 22 we could use 37(b) to get mandatory carriage. Whether 23 you are persuaded or not is another issue. But 24 because -- 25 2101 THE CHAIRPERSON: On DTH? StenoTran 420 1 2102 MS COURTEMANCHE: That's right. 2 APTN. The issue revolves around whether they have 3 affiliates or not. It is not your tradition, but we 4 are saying that we are not only a network, we are also 5 acting as an affiliate. So we could be found to be a 6 part of the priority service under 37(b). 7 2103 The issue is whether you are 8 persuaded or not, but that is certainly our argument 9 going in, that you could use 37(b). But if you have 10 any reservations about 37(b), then, by all means, use 11 9(1)(h) -- 12 2104 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes, but my 13 question was different. My question was: If the 14 Commission used a regulatory tool that did not allow 15 mandatory carriage on DTH, what, in your view, is the 16 effect on the viability of your service? 17 2105 MR. SUART: If we didn't have the DTH 18 revenue which is in the business plan, our revenues 19 would decrease by about 6.5 per cent, or by about $8 20 million, over the licence term. 21 2106 THE CHAIRPERSON: And what is your 22 view about the overall effect of that? 23 2107 MR. SUART: That would amount to 24 approximately $1 million a year. There might be some 25 minor savings in administrative, technical, sales and StenoTran 421 1 promotion, but, more likely, the biggest part of that 2 $1 million would come out of the average $10 million 3 programming budget. 4 2108 THE CHAIRPERSON: If the Commission 5 were to choose 9(1)(h) -- 6 2109 MR. TOURIGNY: Excuse me, 7 Commissioner Wylie. I would like to go back to the 8 DTH. I think that distribution on DTH is absolutely 9 essential, because that is what is reaching into 10 uncabled areas of the country, where we are going to 11 reach the aboriginal population in mid-Canada, in the 12 northern parts of the provinces and the rural areas and 13 so on. 14 1000 15 2110 So, I think if the service qualifies 16 for mandatory carriage, it's implicit that the 17 Commission has arrived at the conclusion that it is of 18 national public interest, in my view. And if it is of 19 national public interest, then it should be widely 20 available. DTH is a competitor to cable. It's treated 21 as the same thing, as Class 1 BDU. 22 2111 So, it's absolutely essential that we 23 get the DTH market, not just for the revenue but to 24 provide the service. 25 2112 MS COURTEMANCHE: Plus the Commission StenoTran 422 1 has said that its regulations on distribution 2 undertakings should be symmetrical. So it would be, I 3 think, unsymmetrical to say that cable has to be 4 treating a service as mandatory and DTH not have the 5 equivalent obligation. 6 2113 THE CHAIRPERSON: Again, I go back to 7 we're talking about efficient or effective mechanisms 8 that would provide you with what you want immediately, 9 and the disadvantages of the mechanisms to your 10 proposal in substance. 11 2114 So, if we were to use 9(1)(h) as a 12 mechanism, as you know, the Act says that it's on terms 13 and conditions -- or let me go back to the exact 14 language -- on such terms and conditions as the 15 Commission deems appropriate. Have you addressed 16 yourself -- I don't think I saw that in your written 17 proposal or in the deficiency responses -- addressed 18 yourself to what you would like that order to look 19 like? You've already seen a TVA proposal that has been 20 put out for public comment. 21 2115 What terms and conditions would you 22 like in it, if that were the mechanism used to achieve 23 your aims? 24 2116 MR. TOURIGNY: I'll start off and 25 then maybe Sylvie can fill in. StenoTran 423 1 2117 I thought the framework that you used 2 for TVA was appropriate and we would like to see a 3 similar type of framework, with the encouragement for 4 Class 3s and the mandatory for the 1s and 2s. 5 2118 THE CHAIRPERSON: But just as one 6 example, I would remind you that if we use the TVA 7 model, it wouldn't match what you've put forward. We 8 can discuss that also later in finance. 9 2119 MR. TOURIGNY: Yes, but I was about 10 to add that the (b) part of that answer was that the 11 terms and conditions would also include a fee. 12 2120 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes, and also your 13 Class 2s you say you only want -- 14 2121 MR. TOURIGNY: We're giving them a 15 one-year break. 16 2122 THE CHAIRPERSON: If you don't have 17 all of the terms that you think are required for you in 18 an order under 9(1)(h) now, would you have one by reply 19 so that you could put on the record, or are you 20 satisfied now that you've thought through what you want 21 in that order or what you think would be in the public 22 interest for the Commission to put in the order? 23 2123 MR. TOURIGNY: We'll bring that 24 forward at the reply stage. 25 2124 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes. Then, of StenoTran 424 1 course, should the Commission approve your application, 2 we can look at whether it would approve what you want. 3 But just to make sure that you have put forward the 4 mechanism that you would want and that effectively 5 would achieve your aims. 6 2125 Is there anything else you want to 7 tell us about the licensing framework that I haven't 8 asked you? Any answer you want to give me that I 9 didn't ask the question for? 10 2126 MR. TOURIGNY: You mean some things 11 we've rehearsed and are -- 12 2127 THE CHAIRPERSON: Well, I'd like to 13 be more specific. We just want to make sure that 14 you're satisfied you have covered what you feel are 15 potential problems of how this is done, should it be 16 done. 17 2128 You'll be back at the reply after the 18 interventions, if there's anything else, but for now 19 you're satisfied that we've covered everything and that 20 you can perhaps discuss further with counsel what you 21 think this order should contain to satisfy your goals 22 and after some of our questioning you may have changed 23 your mind about some of them. 24 2129 MR. TOURIGNY: Thank you. 25 2130 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, finance. It's StenoTran 425 1 obvious, and it should be obvious to you, as well, that 2 one of the questions that comes back to our mind and 3 will perhaps to others is whether your financial plans 4 are such that they will not put upward pressure on the 5 rates to keep afloat as time goes by, and that the fee 6 that is suggested is a fee that will be sufficient to 7 meet your financial requirements to have this service 8 continue. 9 2131 It has lead me to look at certain 10 things, such as your revenues and the assumptions. We 11 just raise one question about giving the Class 2s a 12 break in the first year which, if I look at your 13 Schedule 27, which is your revenue calculations, ends 14 up costing you, I suppose, in Year 1 $200,000 or 15 $206,000. 16 2132 How has this been calculated? Do you 17 assume 100 per cent of Class 1s from day 1, I guess so, 18 from the number that's there? I'm curious as to why 19 you think that it's necessary to give Class 2s a break 20 and why, with a reasonable timeframe to get going, to 21 implement, Class 2s have greater difficulty 22 reorganizing their lineups to accommodate you? Is that 23 based on particular evidence that you've gathered that 24 Class 2s will have a greater problem in carrying you 25 once an order is issued, assuming the Commission has, StenoTran 426 1 between the effectiveness of the order and its 2 decision, a reasonable time. 3 2133 MR. TOURIGNY: We just thought that, 4 you know, the Class 2s are under 6,000, I believe, that 5 they just needed more flexibility, more time, maybe to 6 get decoders or channel alignments. We realize we have 7 to work with cable in a partnership to get the service 8 up and running and to be successful. 9 2134 We wanted to be as cable friendly as 10 we could be under the circumstances. 11 2135 THE CHAIRPERSON: That leads to my 12 next question, which is: You've been on the eligible 13 list now for a while. How many Class 2s have 14 voluntarily carried you? 15 2136 MR. TOURIGNY: The problem with -- 16 2137 THE CHAIRPERSON: And raises the 17 questions of over and above missing out on the other 18 $206,000, if they were carried right away, you're 19 making a very large assumption that half of them -- let 20 me rephrase this. 21 2138 You're making the assumption it's 22 more difficult for Class 2s to get organized. 23 2139 MR. TOURIGNY: That's right. 24 2140 THE CHAIRPERSON: But then you make 25 the assumption that half of them will, nevertheless, StenoTran 427 1 even though they're not forced to, when they've had 2 that option and never used it. I find it difficult to 3 understand, given the fairly tight revenue. 4 2141 Have you talked to Class 2s that have 5 lead you to believe that you had to be that flexible to 6 get along with cable, as you say? 7 2142 MR. TOURIGNY: No, we haven't. I 8 mean, ideally, we'd like to have all of Class 2s on day 9 1. When we were drafting this in April, we were trying 10 to make it as easy on the smaller systems as possible. 11 That's all. 12 2143 THE CHAIRPERSON: But not because 13 representations were made to you that that was 14 necessary? 15 2144 MR. TOURIGNY: No. 16 2145 THE CHAIRPERSON: It was just an 17 assumption made, because one could argue that it will 18 be even more complicated for large systems for Class 19 1s. 20 2146 MR. TOURIGNY: Because of the traps. 21 2147 THE CHAIRPERSON: The traps, and it 22 is complicated because it's larger, et cetera. In any 23 event, we'll speak to you at reply because not only are 24 you depriving yourself of those funds, but I find it 25 quite difficult to make the leap that the Class 2s who StenoTran 428 1 haven't carried you, when they have the possibility, 2 will just voluntarily, rather than wait until the 3 effectiveness of the order kicks in for them. 4 2148 But, anyway, the question the 5 Commission always asks is: What if all of this doesn't 6 come to fruition, what's your cushion, what's your 7 possibility, if any of the pieces of the financial 8 puzzle don't come together, and whether you don't want 9 to have every opportunity on your side to have some 10 contingency, if things don't measure up where there is 11 discretion. 12 2149 With the Class 1s, you haven't had 13 discussions or not fruitful discussions as to the 14 capacity to do this? 15 2150 MR. TOURIGNY: We've had discussions. 16 I don't know that they could be characterized as 17 fruitful. 18 2151 We've met twice with the CCTA and 19 with one of the larger MSOs, another larger MSO never 20 returned our calls. We did speak on a more informal 21 basis during the cable convention in Montreal in May. 22 The cable industry is rolling out digital. They've 23 been talking about it since I don't know when, but 24 certainly going back to the structural hearing in 1993. 25 Now they're finally getting there. There's been many StenoTran 429 1 delays, and they're looking for digital services 2 because they're investing heavily in these boxes and 3 they're looking for services. So, their position, 4 strictly from a business viewpoint, is we need stuff to 5 put on the digital tier and that's where you guys are 6 going to go. 7 2152 THE CHAIRPERSON: And, similarly, how 8 do you arrive at the assumptions that you will be able 9 to get 25 per cent of Class 3s in Year 1 and as many as 10 70 per cent in Year 7? Is that because, in that case, 11 you will give them a financial break? 12 2153 MR. TOURIGNY: We feel a lot of our 13 Class 3s are in remote and underserved areas and that 14 many of them would have significant aboriginal 15 populations. So there would be local pressure, and 16 often these Class 3s are locally owned. 17 2154 We have a data base that brings our 18 information into every band office and every reserve 19 and every Friendship Centre. So, they all know this is 20 out there; they all know it's coming. 21 2155 THE CHAIRPERSON: But 70 per cent of 22 Class 3s would not cover only Class 3s where there's 23 First Nation or aboriginal population. How many of 24 Class 3s would be in that situation, do you know? 25 2156 MR. TOURIGNY: We don't know. StenoTran 430 1 2157 THE CHAIRPERSON: You don't know. 2 You can't even guess? 3 2158 MR. TOURIGNY: There's over 1,300 4 Class 3s. They're all in remote and underserved areas. 5 So we went on a ballpark on that. 6 2159 THE CHAIRPERSON: So that revenue 7 becomes also a leap of faith in some sense as to 8 whether that can be achieved. 9 2160 The other question I have with your 10 sources of funding -- is there something else? 11 2161 MR. SUART: For Class 3s there is an 12 incentive program, as well as the two-year half fee for 13 the first two years. 14 2162 THE CHAIRPERSON: And incentive 15 program with the equipment? 16 2163 MR. SUART: With the IRDs, that's 17 right. 18 2164 THE CHAIRPERSON: Which has been 19 factored into your expenses? 20 2165 MR. SUART: That's correct. 21 2166 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, obviously, 22 even the advertising, I guess, when we go back to Class 23 2s will, in some sense, follow how many people you 24 reach; correct? 25 2167 MR. SUART: That's correct. StenoTran 431 1 2168 THE CHAIRPERSON: In your sources of 2 funding, have you looked at other sources, let's say 3 from Indian Affairs and Northern Development and any 4 other government department, or the funding that you 5 now have seems to be the only factored into your 6 proformas. But have you explored whether there are 7 other sources of funding? 8 2169 MR. TAGALIK: Yes, we have. The 9 government funding you see here is for the NNBAP 10 program and that will be phased out by 2004. We can 11 always only get a commitment of two years from the 12 federal government currently for our program. So, 13 we're reasonably happy that they will phase it out at 14 least not right away, that they will carry over into 15 2004. 16 1015 17 2170 And we have tried, as I said earlier, 18 to hit the government every chance we get. And, you 19 know -- 20 2171 THE CHAIRPERSON: That is before you 21 decided to hit us. 22 2172 MR. TAGALIK: Yes. 23 2173 MR. TOURIGNY: No sense, as well. 24 But we had a meeting it was a month ago, I believe, 25 with heritage. And they told us directly there is no StenoTran 432 1 new programs, there is no new money. And then a week 2 later, I think, the heritage minister, announced there 3 was $5 million for the Montreal Symphony. But the 4 message they were giving us was the cupboard is empty. 5 2174 THE CHAIRPERSON: What about Indian 6 Affairs and Northern Development? 7 2175 MR. GIBERSON: If I may answer that, 8 I have a list here of some of the places where we met 9 repeatedly, with Prime Minister's Office, the Deputy 10 Prime Minister's Office, Canadian Heritage, with a 11 variety of directors, Industry Canada, Indian and 12 Northern Affairs, Natural Resources Canada, Foreign 13 Affairs, Human Resources Development, Treasury Board, 14 Health Canada, Office of the Interim Commissioner, 15 Nunavut and Western Economic Diversification. And that 16 is just in the last while. But we have repeatedly over 17 the last few years been continuing to go back to try to 18 get he some restoration of funds ever since we have 19 been hit with the program review. 20 2176 THE CHAIRPERSON: And those efforts 21 would have been -- would have preceded this proposal as 22 well as subsequent, would have been subsequent to the 23 proposal as well? 24 2177 MR. GIBERSON: We have been actively 25 trying to restore funds and the programming since 1993, StenoTran 433 1 in fact. 2 2178 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, sources of 3 funding from Cancom are not included in your pro 4 formas. 5 2179 MR. SUART: No -- 6 2180 THE CHAIRPERSON: Why is that? Is 7 that because it is not assured enough? 8 2181 MR. SUART: The way we did it was 9 simply identifying the systems that the service would 10 be carrying in and the fees we would be getting from 11 that service. So if it was a class 3 system that was 12 getting the service, then we accounted for it under 13 cable. 14 2182 MR. TOURIGNY: I think the question 15 was the $400,000 that Cancom has committed to us this 16 year. The Cancom decision came out after our 17 application was filed, on June 6. So to the best of 18 our knowledge, when we filed on June 6, there was 19 nothing that was committed from Cancom. 20 2183 THE CHAIRPERSON: And what is your 21 view now as to whether these funds will materialize or 22 the help -- I think in some cases it would be services, 23 right, rather than money? 24 2184 MR. TOURIGNY: Well, Cancom operates 25 our Whitehorse uplink. They lease it from Telesat and StenoTran 434 1 they pay the operating costs for that. And they help 2 out Aboriginal radio in the north. And they provide a 3 back haul facility for Wawatay, in Northern Ontario. 4 2185 The sort of cash contribution was an 5 unknown at the time of putting the application 6 together. It has since -- I think Cancom has since 7 filed with the commission that it intends to provide 8 TVNC with $400,000 over the next -- their broadcast 9 year, that would be September 1, this year, to August 10 31, 1999. 11 2186 That, quite frankly, to put this 12 application together and the research and the 13 engineering and market research and so on, Price 14 Waterhouse Coopers, we were using next year's operating 15 revenue to pay the bills on that. So the Cancom money 16 -- 17 2187 THE CHAIRPERSON: Well, pre-operating 18 costs, you mean. 19 2188 MR. TOURIGNY: Just for putting this 20 application together. 21 2189 THE CHAIRPERSON: That is what I 22 mean, pre-operating. 23 2190 MR. TOURIGNY: So when the Cancom 24 money comes in, that is going to help offset the money 25 that we borrowed from next year's budget. So it really StenoTran 435 1 will not show up in these financials. 2 2191 THE CHAIRPERSON: The money will not 3 show up, but the expenses would show up in the 4 pre-operating expense. 5 2192 MS HUTTON: Yes, where you see the 6 $405,000 in the first pro forma, that is for the 7 application and the Cancom money would be $215,000 to 8 the end of our fiscal year. And 350, I think. They 9 have a 10 per cent holdback in the letter that we have 10 gotten. So the expectation is that we will get close 11 to 375. And the 10 per cent holdback, I think is due 12 to problems with their revenue and they will give us an 13 update on that later on. 14 2193 MR. GIBERSON: I might also add that 15 Heritage Canada has put some money forward to assist us 16 in this application as well. 17 2194 THE CHAIRPERSON: Which, again, would 18 not show up in the -- either as debt or expenses 19 carried forward in the operating pro formas. That 20 would all be pre-operating -- put against pre-operating 21 costs? 22 2195 MS HUTTON: Yes, that is correct. 23 2196 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, how did you 24 arrive at the 15 cents? Did you say this is how much 25 money -- well, first let me ask you, the funding from StenoTran 436 1 the government, you are reasonably satisfied that you 2 will have it until 2004. Now, what makes you sure that 3 it will disappear in 2004? 4 2197 MR. TOURIGNY: Well, we have been 5 having an ongoing dialogue with heritage. They had 6 hoped to phase it out the year that we launched, once 7 we got a cable fee. And we convinced them that we 8 needed a going forward, that there would be -- 9 2198 THE CHAIRPERSON: You convinced them 10 by showing them your pro formas and including the 15 11 cents per subscriber revenue that you would get? 12 2199 MR. TOURIGNY: Yes. 13 2200 THE CHAIRPERSON: That you 14 nevertheless still required it? 15 2201 MR. TOURIGNY: That's right. 16 2202 THE CHAIRPERSON: They actually have 17 seen your pro formas? 18 2203 MR. TOURIGNY: When we filed the 19 application with the commission, on June 6, we gave a 20 copy to Heritage as well. 21 2204 THE CHAIRPERSON: No, but when you 22 arrived at a conclusion that they would keep the 23 funding, it was on the basis of knowing the particulars 24 of the application and the 15 cents per subscriber per 25 month? StenoTran 437 1 2205 MR. TOURIGNY: That is correct. 2 2206 THE CHAIRPERSON: And, as a result, 3 you convinced them to carry this until 2004 and then it 4 would disappear and you would be -- you would have to 5 rely on the 15 cents advertising and whatever other 6 funds you could raise from wherever, but it would not 7 be this particular fund? 8 2207 MR. TOURIGNY: That's right. And it 9 will be a great relief to us to be self-sufficient 10 because, really, when you rely heavily on government 11 funding it is, during the past few years it has not 12 been fun. 13 2208 THE CHAIRPERSON: They eventually 14 have to give you some funds to cover the cost of the 15 efforts you have made in getting the funds. 16 2209 MR. TOURIGNY: That is correct. That 17 is why they have supported us. Because, goodbye, it's 18 been nice knowing you. 19 2210 THE CHAIRPERSON: So let's go back to 20 the 15 cents. How did you arrive at this? I mean by 21 that did you look at what a decent service would be, 22 and then the funds that you are getting and what you 23 hope you will get as national advertising and then say, 24 well, to make this work we need 15 cents? Or, did you 25 say 15 cents seems to be reasonable because as, Mr. StenoTran 438 1 Tagalik says, it is less than a chocolate bar and a 2 coke? 3 2211 MR. TOURIGNY: We initially thought 4 we could do this for 10 cents a month. 5 2212 THE CHAIRPERSON: So you did 6 calculations. 7 2213 MR. TOURIGNY: We thought a ballpark 8 that we could do it at 10 cents a month before we did 9 any business plan. 10 2214 Subsequent to the focus groups and 11 the research, the feedback that people wanted a daily 12 newscast and that we would ultimately need an east-west 13 feed, and so on, that there would be certain 14 infrastructure costs. 15 2215 When I said initially we thought at 16 10 cents, that was a year ago in November at the third 17 network hearing. Once we started putting our minds to 18 it and figuring out what the network would be required 19 to do to serve the population, it became apparent that 20 10 cents was not going to do it. So we factored out 21 the -- we would very much like to have a larger 22 programming budget, because there is not a lot of shelf 23 product. A lot of this is new programming. We feel 24 that it is -- it is going to be very tight on the 25 programming side because there is no real cheap source StenoTran 439 1 of programming for first run. 2 2216 MR. SUART: I would just like to add 3 that one of the other things in developing the business 4 program is that we did look to see what other services 5 would have to create a programming budget, what would 6 be reasonable. And we tried to create a realistic bare 7 bones service using the existing TVNC infrastructure so 8 that we could lower the wholesale fee to the lowest 9 possible amount. But TVNC -- actually AFT -- APTN has, 10 as Pat said, has very little off-the-shelf programming. 11 It is not part of any large corporate group. So it 12 does not have the opportunity to share the 13 administrative costs. It has to maintain the northern, 14 over-the-air transmitters. 15 2217 And also, as part of the research and 16 part of what the channel wanted to do was to do this 17 news coverage, which also has an impact on the 18 programming budget. So we ended up at a reasonable fee 19 of 15 cents, I think, which is rather low. 20 2218 THE CHAIRPERSON: On the fee, as you 21 know, there are cases where services have been licensed 22 to have a fee. And if the service is mostly in 23 English, it has a lower fee in -- or a lower fee in the 24 Quebec market and the francophone market than it has in 25 the anglophone market to recognize, I guess, a StenoTran 440 1 different value, perhaps, to the audience or to the 2 consumer. 3 2219 Has it not occurred to you that with 4 the relatively low amount of French language 5 programming as opposed to English or subtitling, that 6 it would follow, perhaps, more the symmetry of the 7 regulatory framework in place to have a differentiated 8 fee in French markets, French language markets? 9 2220 MR. TOURIGNY: I think if we were to, 10 for example, cut the fee in half in Quebec, we would 11 have to add, maybe, a penny -- 12 2221 THE CHAIRPERSON: Have you tried 13 these calculations? 14 2222 MR. TOURIGNY: No, we have not. 15 2223 THE CHAIRPERSON: Where it would be 16 lower -- have you thought of that as, perhaps, a fairer 17 way of doing it? 18 2224 MR. TOURIGNY: No, we hadn't. We 19 thought that this service should be universally 20 available across the country. And if you started 21 having -- you know, the primary audience is Aboriginal 22 people. And my understanding is that the bulk of 23 Aboriginal people in Quebec, the James Bay Cree and the 24 Inuit do not use French. 25 2225 They have -- if they have a second StenoTran 441 1 language, it is English. 2 2226 MS COURTEMANCHE: The other thing we 3 considered is when the commission gave 13 cents to TFO 4 for its carriage in New Brunswick, it did not 5 distinguish whether, you know, the subscriber was 6 English or French. I mean, everyone had to pay equally 7 for the French service at the same rate. So we thought 8 that that principle could apply for APTN. 9 2227 MR. SUART: And I would also like to 10 add that nobody in the interventions, as far as we are 11 aware, talked about that issue in terms of the 12 differentiation in fee, or a fee at all, in fact. 13 2228 THE CHAIRPERSON: And so you did not 14 run numbers or calculations as to whether it would have 15 to be 16 cents in English Canada if it were 10 in 16 French markets. You have no perception of what that 17 would do. 18 2229 MR. TOURIGNY: We did not work on 19 alternative models, no. 20 2230 THE CHAIRPERSON: Because you do make 21 the idea that the programming would be of interest to 22 not only Aboriginal people but to every one. So that 23 since most of your versioning and so on will be in 24 English when it is in the language that is not 25 Aboriginal, one could argue that the service will have StenoTran 442 1 less value to the francophone. 2 2231 MS MacDONALD: If I might just add in 3 here is that one of the things with APTN is we want to 4 provide a bridge of understanding between Aboriginal 5 people and non-Aboriginal people in this country. And 6 that means not with just with English speaking Canada, 7 but with French speaking Canada as well. 8 2232 In Quebec, there are French-speaking 9 Aboriginal people. And I was very surprised a few 10 years back when I went there and found that up until 11 grade 3 or 4, I am not too sure, maybe grade 5, that 12 Aboriginal people in Quebec were required to learn 13 French first and then afterwards they could go and 14 learn their own language. 15 2233 When we are looking at bridging 16 understanding, we want the French francophones of this 17 country not only in Quebec, where there is a large 18 population, but across this country to understand 19 Aboriginal people as well and understand what our 20 culture and our traditions are and to give more of an 21 understanding. I think that is how we come to be, you 22 know, united Canadians. 23 2234 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, the bank 24 letter you filed is based on the funding which I guess 25 is a term loan of what, 2.2 million, and an operating StenoTran 443 1 line of credit of 200,000? 2 2235 MS HUTTON: That is correct. 3 2236 THE CHAIRPERSON: And remind me how 4 you arrive at this cushion of 173,000, or contingency. 5 2237 MS HUTTON: You are speaking about 6 the difference between the operating costs and the 7 pre-op years in the revolving line of credit, the 8 difference between the $1.9 million and the $2.2 9 million? 10 2238 THE CHAIRPERSON: Which is what you 11 call your contingency or cushion or somewhere in the 12 application, forgive me now, I am not quite sure. I 13 think it was in the deficiency letter you were asked 14 the usual question what happens if this does not all 15 function exactly as you wished and I think a sum of 16 $173,000 was a cushion. 17 2239 I forget what it was based on. It 18 was based on something from the past. I am sorry. 19 2240 If not, I will find it and I will get 20 back to you on what that comment was. My notes do not 21 indicate. I just have a question mark. I thought you 22 would immediately tell me what that was. 23 2241 MS HUTTON: I am sorry. 24 2242 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, the bank 25 letter is conditional upon approval of the CRTC, of a StenoTran 444 1 licences mandatory analogue carriage on a national 2 basis for a seven-year period, subject to a subscriber 3 fee of 15 months for a cable service commencing 4 September '99. 5 2243 Now, is the promise of funding would 6 have been based on financial projections, as I see in 7 the first paragraph, that clearly indicated, for 8 example, that you were expecting 50 per cent of class 9 2s to come in the first year. 10 2244 MS HUTTON: Yes, that is correct. 11 2245 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, is it your 12 impression that the bank is satisfied with simply these 13 estimations and the money will be advanced, including 14 the operating loan if that does not actually come to 15 pass? 16 2246 Do you have any sense about how 17 strongly the Royal Bank meant it when they said it was 18 conditional upon approval of? I suppose you could read 19 that condition as not meaning all your financial 20 projections coming to fruition, simply the conditions 21 that are expressed there. 22 2247 MS HUTTON: I suppose you could. I 23 think they assumed that the revenue would be 24 forthcoming. Certainly that was -- we only submitted 25 this plan. StenoTran 445 1 1030 2 2248 I must tell you that getting them to 3 stretch out and give us this line of credit was a bit 4 of a stretch for them so that they were very careful in 5 their analysis of the plan because we are non-profit; 6 that's not usually the type of business model that they 7 are approached with, this kind of -- 8 2249 THE CHAIRPERSON: With regard to the 9 cushion, I am advised that it is the staff who came to 10 this conclusion that you have a contingency plan. So, 11 obviously, you will want us to tell you how you do it 12 rather than the other way around. I may or may not get 13 back to you on this one, but obviously don't look for 14 it, you won't find it. 15 2250 You see, I could be very helpful here 16 and find you some extra money. 17 2251 MS HUTTON: Please. 18 2252 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, let me see, in 19 your financial projections forecast satellite charges 20 to uplink and downlink your signal are fixed and appear 21 to be based on the long-term contract. Is that the 22 arrangement you have for the uplinking and downlinking? 23 2253 MR. SUART: That would be a new 24 arrangement, yes. 25 2254 THE CHAIRPERSON: But you are StenoTran 446 1 satisfied that it would be one with fixed pricing, non- 2 escalating -- 3 2255 MR. SUART: As I understand it from 4 the letter, I think they said a five-year fixed term. 5 2256 THE CHAIRPERSON: Fixed term. 6 2257 With regard to the funding and 7 Heritage Canada, do you have a memorandum of 8 understanding or is it simply an oral discussion with 9 them as to continuing the funding to 2004? Is there 10 something in writing to that effect? 11 2258 MR. GIBERSON: Are you referring to 12 Heritage Canada? 13 2259 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes. Did I say 14 something else? 15 2260 MR. GIBERSON: No, I just wanted to 16 be clear. 17 2261 There is nothing that says that the 18 funding will officially be cut off. There was a letter 19 actually that was submitted to the Commission that said 20 that the program is ongoing and that there is nothing 21 to indicate that that would change at this time. 22 However, in our discussions with them, they felt that, 23 if we were to be granted a licence of this nature, it 24 meant that we were self-sufficient and then they were 25 questioning whether the contribution should continue. StenoTran 447 1 But there is nothing specifically in writing that says 2 it will cut off at that time. 3 2262 THE CHAIRPERSON: My question was 4 broader than that. It was, is there a memorandum of 5 understanding now related to the funding? 6 2263 MR. TOURIGNY: Yes. There is, in all 7 of these programs -- it is called the Northern 8 Distribution Program that was created going back to the 9 days when Flora MacDonald was Minister of 10 Communications. It was part of the package that came 11 forward with the new legislation. 12 2264 THE CHAIRPERSON: So the continuation 13 of that funding would be, pursuant to that same 14 document, -- 15 2265 MR. TOURIGNY: That's correct. 16 2266 THE CHAIRPERSON: -- to 2004. 17 2267 Is that something that the Commission 18 has a copy of? 19 2268 MR. TOURIGNY: I don't know if the -- 20 2269 THE CHAIRPERSON: Would you have a 21 problem filing one with us? 22 2270 MR. TOURIGNY: Certainly not. 23 2271 THE CHAIRPERSON: I will check with 24 the staff if that's the only documentation -- 25 2272 MR. TOURIGNY: We have, I think, a StenoTran 448 1 two-year -- it is a renewable agreement, I think -- 2 2273 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes, but on the 3 same terms and basis. 4 2274 MR. TOURIGNY: -- and we get two-year 5 renewals where for most other organisations it is on a 6 year-to-year; we have convinced them that we need a 7 two-year. But in Treasury Board, when they file the 8 main estimates, they only project out two years because 9 the next Finance Minister is liable to come in and 10 rewrite the books; so they can't project, and they 11 don't for the CBC or anyone else, go out -- 12 2275 THE CHAIRPERSON: But the renewal is 13 on the basis of those terms. 14 2276 MR. TOURIGNY: That's correct. 15 2277 THE CHAIRPERSON: If we don't have a 16 copy of that, we would like to -- 17 2278 MR. TOURIGNY: It might have been 18 filed with the original application. 19 2279 THE CHAIRPERSON: Apparently not. 20 2280 MR. TOURIGNY: Apparently not? 21 2281 THE CHAIRPERSON: So would you accept 22 to file that with the Commission? 23 2282 MR. TOURIGNY: When would you like 24 that? 25 2283 THE CHAIRPERSON: Well, as soon as StenoTran 449 1 possible. I will let you deal with counsel -- 2 2284 MR. TOURIGNY: All right. Certainly. 3 2285 THE CHAIRPERSON: I don't know 4 whether or not this is something that you have any 5 problem putting on the public file. You can have a 6 look and see, if you want to claim confidentiality for 7 any of it, it would have to be claimed. 8 2286 MR. TOURIGNY: No, no. It is a 9 public document. 10 2287 THE CHAIRPERSON: If not, you could 11 file it and it could be then on the public file. 12 2288 MS MacDONALD: I just wanted to 13 add -- you were talking about the NNBAP members and 14 Heritage Canada -- that NNBAP members in the north have 15 been trying to arrange meetings with Heritage Canada to 16 determine this, and one of the things that it is very 17 important for us to understand too is, if they are 18 making this commitment, that it be the same as this. 19 We haven't been able to get together with Heritage 20 Canada to have this meeting. I know, just for 21 myself -- there are other NNBAP members on the TVNC 22 board now that have probably done more work in this 23 area, but I know that we have been trying to reach them 24 and trying to get their commitment because we are the 25 ones that are actually getting funded. StenoTran 450 1 2289 THE CHAIRPERSON: This may be a 2 difficult question to answer, but if you are very 3 successful and there is great interest in the service 4 were it to be given mandatory status, do you think that 5 that will lead to less ability to get funding 6 everywhere -- Heritage Canada appears to be the case, 7 self-sufficiency is the goal -- or will it encourage 8 funding to improve if it is doing well? 9 2290 MR. TOURIGNY: It is hard to predict 10 government. The Department of Canadian Heritage has 11 recently been examining the whole issue of devolving 12 the NNBAP program so that it would operate outside of 13 government. 14 2291 THE CHAIRPERSON: Well, devolving it 15 to the consumer, obviously. 16 2292 MR. TOURIGNY: There are two 17 programs. There is the Northern Distribution Program 18 which funds TVNC; that one will phase out once -- 19 2293 THE CHAIRPERSON: And that would be 20 devolving the cost of funding it to the general 21 population? 22 2294 MR. TOURIGNY: We would hope that the 23 NNBAP funding would remain in place because that's the 24 funding that supports NNVI and NIBC and the northern 25 producers, Wawatay and so on. StenoTran 451 1 2295 THE CHAIRPERSON: And there, you 2 would think that, if it is working well and if it is 3 successful, there may be more interest in funding 4 rather than less. 5 2296 MR. TOURIGNY: I don't know. Again, 6 going back to Flora MacDonald in the late 1980s, when 7 this package came forward there was the Northern 8 Distribution Program package, which is TVNC, there was 9 the National Broadcast Reading Service, voiceprint, 10 which didn't have continuous funding, I think it was 11 funded for the first two years, and there was a promise 12 of $150,000 or $250,000 to conduct a southern 13 feasibility study on providing funding for aboriginal 14 programming in southern Canada. That money disappeared 15 off the books; it was never implemented, the study was 16 never undertaken because I feel the government didn't 17 want to raise expectations, they didn't want to get 18 into a southern NNBAP. 19 2297 MR. FARMER: You have to realize that 20 the northern component represents about $150,000 and 21 the southern component is about $1.9 million. I don't 22 think they want to enter into that kind of financial 23 commitment at all. 24 2298 THE CHAIRPERSON: Let me go back to 25 Cancom. You talked about the money from Cancom being StenoTran 452 1 applied to cover some of your pre-operating expenses. 2 Now, Cancom, if I understand, provides free satellite 3 uplink and space segments as well as sales and 4 marketing services. Did you tell me what you expect 5 will happen with that help? 6 2299 MR. TOURIGNY: We could only reflect 7 what is in the latest two-year renewal decision of 8 Cancom, and those commitments are in place for the next 9 two years. We have been led to believe we will get 10 $400,000; we have a letter to the effect that we will 11 get $400,000 -- 12 2300 THE CHAIRPERSON: But that's over and 13 above? 14 2301 MR. TOURIGNY: Yes, that's over and 15 above the other thing. 16 2302 THE CHAIRPERSON: Over and above, and 17 that's what you would apply to pre-operating expenses. 18 2303 Now, the help on the uplink and space 19 segment expenses, is that factored into your 20 projections? 21 2304 MR. TOURIGNY: No. It is not a cost, 22 it is not a -- 23 2305 THE CHAIRPERSON: No, but is it 24 factored in that that cost does not have to be borne in 25 your proformas? If you weren't getting that from StenoTran 453 1 Cancom, presumably you would have to factor it in. You 2 factored in the fact that it is a reduction. 3 2306 MS HUTTON: Yes, we have, and Cancom 4 doesn't help with the space segment, it just helps with 5 the -- 6 2307 THE CHAIRPERSON: Pardon me? 7 2308 MS HUTTON: It doesn't help with the 8 space segment, it just helps now with -- 9 2309 THE CHAIRPERSON: With the uplink? 10 2310 MS HUTTON: -- the uplink in 11 Whitehorse. 12 2311 THE CHAIRPERSON: And the fact that 13 that portion was paid by someone else is reflected. 14 2312 MS HUTTON: Yes, it is. 15 2313 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, is there any 16 answer on the financial aspect that you want to give me 17 and I didn't ask the question? 18 2314 MR. TAGALIK: I think what we are 19 asking in the 15 cents is very reasonable. We thought 20 initially it could be less, but if you look at less 21 than 15 cents, then we have to start trimming down 22 programming, trimming down the news, and it really 23 affects the whole business plan that we have with the 24 banks to help us before we get totally up and running. 25 2315 We feel it is a very good bargain. StenoTran 454 1 As I said, it costs like a chocolate bar and a pop for 2 a year per subscriber, and that, we think, is a small 3 price to pay for the benefits you get out of what we 4 are asking for. 5 2316 It is not extravagant, it is a very 6 solid business plan, everyone supports the idea. When 7 we raise a bit of a cost, like 15 cents, there is no 8 backlash from the consumer. It is less than the cost 9 of inflation per year. We really feel that it is a 10 bargain. You couldn't get a better deal for 15 cents 11 anywhere. 12 2317 MR. TOURIGNY: It is less than 1 per 13 cent of the basic cable bill. 14 2318 THE CHAIRPERSON: And I suppose 15 eating one less chocolate bar a year would be healthy 16 as well. It then would reduce the need for herbal 17 medicine, though. 18 2319 MS MacDONALD: Another thing is that, 19 as a non-profit, all revenues or any sort of monies, 20 everything goes back into the company, the 21 organization. So it is not like we are in here to make 22 money and that sort of thing, we are just trying to 23 provide a service, and 15 cents is what we have 24 determined would help us achieve that. 25 2320 MR. SUART: I would add one more StenoTran 455 1 thing. In terms of the business plan, we have built in 2 a small cumulative surplus which amounts to about 5 per 3 cent of the overall revenues. 4 2321 THE CHAIRPERSON: That may be where 5 the staff found the $173,000. We will have to get into 6 that mystery. 7 2322 MR. SUART: Yes, but a cumulative 8 surplus is very useful, for example if certain things 9 don't happen or the technical costs are higher or 10 whatever. So we had built in a margin -- 11 2323 THE CHAIRPERSON: Far less expensive 12 than an application for a rate increase. 13 2324 Thank you very much. 14 2325 We will take a 15-minute break now 15 and pursue with the other parts of the questioning. 16 Nous reprendrons dans 15 minutes. 17 --- Short recess at / Courte suspension à 1044 18 --- Upon resuming at / Reprise à 1103 19 2326 THE CHAIRPERSON: Welcome back. 20 2327 Commissioner Pennefather, please. 21 2328 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you, 22 Madam Chairman. 23 2329 I am going to pursue a few questions 24 on distribution and technical points, but before I do 25 that I have a couple of follow-up questions on StenoTran 456 1 programming. 2 2330 I have a quick question about 3 Telefilm funding which you spoke to Commissioner 4 Cardozo about. I just wanted to be clear. You spoke 5 about the specific Aboriginal Fund, and I believe that 6 Mr. Bittman also mentioned the fact that aboriginal 7 producers could have access to Telefilm's main fund for 8 their programs. 9 2331 I was a little concerned that 10 Telefilm Canada, in their letter of support, really 11 only refer to the fund, the $1 million set aside for 12 production in the aboriginal languages. That brought 13 to mind a question on a broader issue, really; not only 14 should we be assured that aboriginal producers have 15 access to funds in general, but also the broader 16 question of an aboriginal network does not thereby mean 17 that the broadcasting system as a whole should not have 18 a greater reflection of aboriginal cultures and 19 languages in this country. This response, although I 20 understand the context in which it is written, may 21 raise that concern. 22 2332 I wonder if you had a comment on 23 that. In terms of the efforts you are making to 24 present different points of view and a diversity of 25 programming within the system as a whole, does that StenoTran 457 1 mean that the rest of the system is off the hook, so to 2 speak? 3 2333 MR. TAGALIK: I think, when we spoke 4 at the Policy Hearings, we also said that the other 5 broadcasters have to carry part of their own mandate 6 they have been given under the Commission to totally 7 reflect the Canadian mosaic, and aboriginals do make up 8 a portion of that mosaic. I think we said that in 9 terms of employment, training and opportunities in 10 front of the camera, behind the camera, all these 11 commitments still have to be there. 12 2334 We will keep pushing that as well, 13 representing aboriginal peoples. If you leave 14 something and you don't monitor it, it tends not to be 15 fulfilled, and we at the time of licence renewals will 16 always be here to make sure that the aboriginal content 17 and that is well reflected. 18 2335 MR. TOURIGNY: If I could add to 19 that, as part of the follow-up to the third network, 20 the panel at that time asked us to file subsequent 21 criteria that could be used in assessing the 22 performance of conventional broadcasters in serving the 23 needs of the aboriginal community, and we did submit 24 that. So I think, then, the ball really is in the 25 Commission's court, when these broadcasters come up for StenoTran 458 1 renewal, to see how they have done and how they have 2 improved. 3 2336 MR. FARMER: if I can speak from the 4 experience of someone who has worked in the high end 5 entertainment field for a long time, $1 million, as you 6 may or may not know, you can not even make a feature 7 film for that amount of money. Certainly, with 8 something like the effort that Smoke Signals have 9 presented to the population at large this season, where 10 it remained about 18th on the box office throughout the 11 whole summer extension of examining box office, we 12 could never create a product like Smoke Signals with 13 the current status of funding that exists in Canada. 14 2337 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: This 15 brings me to my other question on the programming side. 16 Very quickly, I am looking at the broad strokes here in 17 terms of drama, for example, which are the red squares. 18 Drama, as you have just mentioned, Mr. Farmer, is an 19 expensive proposition. Something like "Theatre of the 20 First Peoples", "Silent Tears" and others, what kind of 21 budgets are we talking about for dramatic 22 programming -- and it is original programming, as I 23 understand it. 24 2338 MR. FARMER: Most of the producers 25 that are producing dramatic programming are working in StenoTran 459 1 a 30-minute format, or 17 up to 30 minutes; most of 2 those productions are coming in around $50,000 per 3 half-hour, approximately, currently. But that is not 4 the broadcast standard at all; the standard is about 5 five times higher than that. 6 2339 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: In that 7 context, then, with the other forms, how are you 8 approaching support for script development? 9 2340 MR. FARMER: We have no mechanism -- 10 2341 MR. TOURIGNY: We have I think it is 11 $55,000 in the first year and $60,000 in the second, 12 and it goes down after that. 13 2342 I think Roman can speak to how this 14 will trigger other script money and so on. 15 2343 MR. BITTMAN: Fifty-five thousand 16 dollars, of course, will be about what you need to 17 develop a one-feature script. So we obviously have to 18 leverage this money, and we will. So we would expect 19 that we would have $3,000 to $5,000 or $6,000 units 20 available for development and that the producer would 21 be obliged to find perhaps $12,000 or $14,000 or 22 $16,000 beyond that, typically. So that would make a 23 reasonable development budget for dramatic series or 24 dramatic special. 25 2344 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you. StenoTran 460 1 It is an important consideration. I just wanted to be 2 clear about that, so that on the record we are aware 3 that script development is not only for aboriginal 4 producers but for screenwriters across the country, a 5 very important component of moving things forward, 6 particularly in the dramatic area. 7 2345 One last question on programming, if 8 I may. 9 2346 I see that music and dance, in the 10 grey boxes, there is only one, but I am assuming that 11 music, dance and other performing arts are present 12 within some of the other areas? 13 2347 MS O'SHAUGHNESSY: That's correct. 14 2348 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: 15 Proportionately, how much youth programming is in your 16 schedule at this time? I understand it is a tentative 17 schedule, but the focus on youth came up in several 18 interventions, and I just wanted to check that. 19 2349 MS O'SHAUGHNESSY For children's 20 programming, I have 16.5 hours per week and for youth 21 about 3 hours; so 19.5 for children and youth. 22 2350 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Is the 23 focus on youth music or is it talk or is it drama or 24 all? 25 2351 MS O'SHAUGHNESSY: An example of a StenoTran 461 1 youth show would be "AYTV". It is fast paced, it is 2 interactive; it will be also on the Internet. We also 3 have "Quajisaut", which is an NNBAP member. Within 4 that half-hour, it can contain music segments, it can 5 be cultural, it can be educational. 6 2352 There is also another half-hour youth 7 program from the Beaufort-Delta region. It is not 8 currently aired on TVNC but it is something they would 9 like to bring forth to APTN because of the youth 10 category being somewhat unrepresented. 11 2353 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you 12 very much. I will move on. There are many very 13 interesting programming questions, but I want to move 14 on to a slightly different line of questioning on the 15 distribution side and pick up on some of the points 16 that the Chair was discussing with you and go at 17 specific issues related to channel capacity, placement 18 of the service, the use of restricted channel and go 19 back a little bit to the incentive program for the 20 Class 3s. 21 2354 On channel capacity, on page 25 of 22 your Schedule 29, the supplementary brief, you state 23 that 89 per cent of all Class 1 and Class 2 cable 24 subscribers have at least one unused channel in their 25 cable system. Are you saying that 89 per cent of cable StenoTran 462 1 systems or 89 per cent of cable subscribers have access 2 to at least one vacant channel? 3 2355 MR. SUART: That was 89 per cent of 4 cable subscribers. 5 2356 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: 6 Subscribers? Okay. 7 2357 I understand your data comes from 8 MediaStats. Can you give the staff a more specific 9 reference, perhaps later, in terms of where this 10 information -- 11 2358 MR. SUART: Yes, we can undertake to 12 do that, yes. 13 2359 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: I am sure 14 you understand the reason that I am concerned to 15 clarify your findings. The Commission has placed on 16 public file the Cable Capacity Report and, for example, 17 for Class 1 cable systems with 20,000 or more 18 subscribers, the information indicates that only 40 per 19 cent, or 2,009,777 subscribers have access to at least 20 one unused channel. 21 2360 How do you reconcile your findings 22 and that? 23 2361 MR. SUART: We did look at the CRTC 24 data, the July 1998 data, which came off after we filed 25 our submission. If you break it down in English and StenoTran 463 1 French, it is very interesting. 2 1115 3 2362 In the French marketplace, 75 percent 4 of the subscribers have at least one or more channels 5 available, one or more vacant channels, according to 6 that data. On the English side, there is only about 35 7 percent who have one or more channels. 8 2363 But there are certain systems like 9 Edmonton that has 40 percent, or Halifax that has 13 10 percent. 11 2364 The vacant channels that are listed 12 are a little misleading in the sense that if you look 13 at a 77-channel system -- 14 2365 I happened to be in British Columbia 15 last week, and there is a system in that data that says 16 they have 77 channels, zero vacant channels, yet they 17 have two Canadian duplicate services, one non- 18 programming, two exempt other, and five alphanumeric. 19 So they have ten. 20 2366 That's even before the four U.S. 21 services that were post May 1996. So you have at least 22 ten channels that are there in some sense. 23 2367 One of those channels I happened to 24 be watching. It is an alphanumeric channel. It is an 25 airline departure and arrival channel. So even though StenoTran 464 1 the system has zero vacant channels, it still has that 2 as a channel. 3 2368 To my mind, APTN would certainly rank 4 above an airline arrival and departure channel. 5 2369 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: I am 6 assuming then that in your analysis you are combining 7 vacant and available channels in terms of what you see 8 as the capacity out there? Is that in a nutshell what 9 your analysis is doing? 10 2370 MR. SUART: In a sense, yes; it is 11 saying that there are vacant channels. But if you take 12 some of the alphanumerics off, certainly there would be 13 more channels available. 14 2371 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: As you are 15 aware, a number of cable systems have recently added 16 new services to their channel line-ups. Would this 17 impact on the figures you have provided in your 18 application? 19 2372 MR. SUART: As far as I understand, 20 the CRTC data takes into account the vacant channels 21 as, I believe, January 1999 as a projection. So any of 22 those cable systems that would add any of those 23 services would have taken that into account. 24 2373 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Despite 25 that, you still would hold your argument that the StenoTran 465 1 capacity out there is -- am I exaggerating in saying 2 that it is not an issue? 3 2374 MR. SUART: I wouldn't say it is not 4 an issue. Certainly some of those services have been 5 on there for a while and they are very instrumental to 6 the cable operator, such as a TV listings channel. But 7 it is certainly not zero in terms of vacant channels in 8 a lot of cases. 9 2375 Again, I think for a service like 10 this, they certainly could make room. 11 2376 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: In most 12 cases, requiring a distributor to use one of these 13 channels would mean the distributor would probably have 14 to stop carrying either an exempt alphanumeric or 15 foreign programming service or a non-programming 16 service, such as you have described, or such as 17 Internet access. 18 2377 What kind of impact would this have 19 on cable subscribers and cable operators? 20 2378 MR. TOURIGNY: Initially in the last 21 package that was launched last fall, the Commission had 22 designated four Canadian services that would have 23 immediate access. There was History, Comedy, The 24 Headline News -- and I forget what the other one was. 25 2379 That was originally talked about as a StenoTran 466 1 $2.00 package. Then all of a sudden things changed and 2 it turned into a 16-channel package. So the cable 3 industry knew that American services prior to May 1996 4 were grandfathered and that any additional foreign 5 services that they decided to bring on-stream -- Food 6 TV, Speed Vision, Golf, and there may be one or two 7 others -- were vulnerable to the access rules for the 8 launch of the remaining specialty services on the first 9 part and to any other services -- 10 2380 Like 100 Huntley Street in Toronto, 11 every time a service comes around where cable does not 12 have equity, they have all sorts of problems with it. 13 2381 But they created their own 14 vulnerability in having to remove services by putting 15 services on there that they knew under the access rules 16 would have no status and would have to be dropped. 17 2382 So they will have to deal with their 18 own consumers on that matter. 19 2383 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: You are 20 saying that there will be some changes. 21 2384 MR. TOURIGNY: Potentially. I know 22 here in Ottawa it is because it is a bilingual market, 23 and there are a lot of priority services, English and 24 French. Ottawa for sure is a problem, and there may be 25 one or two other major markets in the country. StenoTran 467 1 2385 They are upgrading constantly, and 2 there are the alphanumerics. There is the Shopping 3 Channel. We could easily take over that spot. 4 2386 I am sure cable doesn't want to lose 5 that because they get revenues; they get commissions 6 off of that. 7 2387 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Yes, there 8 are cost implications. 9 2388 MR. TOURIGNY: It is drop that or all 10 of a sudden magically find space. They magically found 11 space for 16 channels, where a year or six months 12 earlier they were saying there was no space. We are 13 confident that the cable industry will find the space. 14 2389 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Could we 15 go on then to the placement consideration. I believe 16 you have repeated that, and you said on page 24 of 17 Schedule 29 that: 18 "Many large urban systems have 19 placed CPAC and provincial 20 legislatures north of 60 on the 21 channel line-up. This is where 22 APTN could be located if it 23 can't be accommodated farther 24 down the aisle." 25 2390 Could you give us your views on how StenoTran 468 1 these placement problems could be addressed? Again, 2 what kind of service would be bumped in terms even of 3 placement north of 60? 4 2391 Are there any further concerns and 5 any further explanation you want to give about why you 6 would accept this placement north of 60? 7 2392 MR. TOURIGNY: Well, we are a new 8 service coming in, and we don't want to create a lot of 9 discomfort for subscribers, or as little as possible. 10 This is why we have tried to work with cable as a 11 partner in this. 12 2393 Certainly our preference would be 13 below 60. But if there are no available channels -- in 14 other words, if there is no Home Shopping network, if 15 there is no alphanumeric, or so on, then we would 16 accept -- the same way in Ottawa CPAC was moved up 17 above 60 and the Women's Television Network and Vision 18 were relocated to a much higher area. 19 2394 That is where the new bandwidth comes 20 in. When they upgrade, it always at the top end. In 21 the middle, they have a bunch of traps. We are not 22 asking them to start changing their trap configuration. 23 That would be unreasonable and we wouldn't want that. 24 The basic band is full of priority services: the CBC 25 and the local off-airs. We are not looking at StenoTran 469 1 disturbing any of the existing services. It would be 2 licensed services. 3 2395 So if they can't find room for us 4 below 60 in an alphanumeric or a restricted channel 5 that is not too badly impaired -- and we would have to 6 check that through Industry Canada and have them tested 7 -- then we would be happy to locate above 60. 8 2396 Ultimately, it is going to be a 9 digital world and your channel placement really isn't 10 going to have that much bearing on it. 11 2397 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: In the 12 same vein then as to why you have approached the use of 13 the restricted channels, I was a little concerned to 14 know also just how far you would go with that; what you 15 mean by severely impaired channel. 16 2398 MR. TOURIGNY: We would have to get 17 an engineer to say a certain amount of interference -- 18 normally, a restricted channel is local channel 19 interference, although I think Channel 17 is adjacent 20 to airline radio frequencies, or something. 21 2399 If it is a minor impairment on 22 Channel 9 in Ottawa, or in Toronto where it is -- 23 2400 If it was determined by Industry 24 Canada or an engineering study that there wouldn't be a 25 lot of ghosting or ingression, then we would happily StenoTran 470 1 occupy that channel. 2 2401 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: On to the 3 next point, which is the incentive program for Class 3s 4 which we discussed earlier -- and I don't need to have 5 you repeat that from the financial point of view. 6 2402 I want to know if there was an update 7 on the fact that in your application you said you were 8 unable to speak to the Canadian Cable System Alliance 9 to make them aware of this program, or you had not been 10 able to contact the other systems. 11 2403 I think you also mentioned that in 12 the response to deficiencies. 13 2404 Is there any update on that in terms 14 of their reaction? 15 2405 MR. TOURIGNY: No, they have not 16 returned our call. We left a message several weeks 17 ago, prior to filing. It was in the summer. And the 18 call was not returned. 19 2406 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: As we said 20 earlier, you don't know if this incentive program has a 21 reaction one way or the other, or will work at all. 22 2407 MR. TOURIGNY: No. 23 2408 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: We 24 discussed Cancom but I wanted to discuss another 25 agreement from a technical point of view. StenoTran 471 1 2409 It is my understanding that you 2 indicate you have a proposed five-year agreement with 3 Cancom for carriage. Could you provide us with some 4 details of this agreement, such as the number of 5 uplinks and the number of separate feeds that would be 6 included as part of this agreement in terms of APTN? 7 2410 As we mentioned earlier, I believe we 8 are talking about three feeds for APTN; that this is 9 what is supplied in the Cancom agreement that you 10 propose? 11 2411 MR. SUART: In the agreement as far 12 as talking about uplink spacing, we are doing three 13 feeds for the northern, as well as the eastern and 14 western feed for that full amount. 15 2412 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: It is a 16 northern? How many feeds are there? I am having 17 trouble -- 18 2413 MR. SUART: There are three feeds. 19 2414 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Three. So 20 that is part of your agreement with Cancom. 21 2415 MR. GIBERSON: That is what was 22 submitted to us. That is what we had asked for. 23 2416 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Can you 24 give us an idea of the rates or terms that would form 25 part of that agreement, or supply that information to StenoTran 472 1 us? 2 2417 Would that be a problem? 3 2418 MR. GIBERSON: In terms of the quote 4 itself? 5 2419 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Yes. 6 2420 MR. GIBERSON: We would have to check 7 on the confidentiality of the rates. But if not, there 8 would be no objection. We would be able to give that 9 to you. 10 2421 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you. 11 2422 MR. TOURIGNY: Those costs are 12 reflected in our financials. 13 2423 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Specific 14 to the links and how it works? Is there anything over 15 and above what is in the financials? 16 2424 If the specific agreement could be 17 supplied, that would be helpful. 18 2425 MR. SUART: We will undertake to get 19 you that information if we can. 20 2426 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you. 21 2427 On the technical side, I only have 22 one question. 23 2428 Regarding your response to a 24 clarification question, you indicated that you planned 25 to lease a studio in Edmonton or another suitable StenoTran 473 1 location, and you describe some of the technical 2 facilities and features you expect the leased facility 3 to provide. 4 2429 Have you taken any further steps to 5 confirm that such a studio is currently available for 6 lease and within your price range? 7 2430 MR. TAGALIK: When we initially 8 looked at a southern location, we were looking at 9 price, accessability and location. We were at the 10 beginning looking at Edmonton, where there was a 11 possibility that we had a good deal on a studio. But 12 since then, we have had further work on it and we are 13 looking at Winnipeg being more of a central location. 14 2431 We have a partner today who will be 15 possibly intervening that possibly wants to look at 16 shared studio costs. 17 2432 I know there is a breakdown on the 18 leasing costs, on the capital costs, on all the things 19 associated with the studio in the south. 20 2433 MR. SUART: We can provide a 21 breakdown which is listed in the expenses, if you so 22 desire. But we have not had any further conversations 23 since we filed the information in June. 24 2434 If the question is "is there going to 25 be any difference between moving from Edmonton to StenoTran 474 1 another market", we feel that any costs like that will 2 be negligible to the application. 3 2435 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: You are 4 not at this stage able to say that the studio is 5 currently available. But you expect to confirm this 6 within the next -- 7 2436 MR. TOURIGNY: Our technical advisor 8 spoke with the people in Edmonton and got pricing on 9 the available facilities. There was a location where 10 we could co-site and uplink in Edmonton. There is now 11 a very strong possibility that we can co-site with 12 another broadcaster in Winnipeg. 13 2437 They have not made any written 14 commitments, but we assume that the leased space would 15 be the same in Winnipeg as it would be in Edmonton. 16 The real estate values are comparable and the quality 17 of the equipment is comparable. 18 2438 Our requirements are the same. If we 19 need 3,000 feet, it's 3,000 feet. If we need four 20 VCRs, it's the same. You just take whatever was costed 21 out. 22 2439 There was research done on it in 23 Edmonton that would be applicable to any similar 24 market. 25 2440 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Digitally StenoTran 475 1 equipped? 2 2441 MR. TOURIGNY: Yes. 3 2442 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Again, 4 just looking at the digital universe -- we have talked 5 about it in terms of carriage -- but in terms of 6 production, have you any comment on digital programming 7 and how that will affect your future? 8 2443 Are you planning to do planning in 9 digital? 10 1130 11 2444 MR. TOURIGNY: All of our production 12 equipment that we are leasing, and eventually will buy, 13 is all digital based. Yes, they will be using file 14 servers, digital cameras and digital special effects 15 for the newsroom. 16 2445 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you, 17 Madam Chair. Those are my questions for the moment. 18 2446 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. 19 2447 Commissioner Cardozo has a few more 20 questions. 21 2448 I would like to indicate at this time 22 that we are planning to continue to sit until one 23 o'clock in order to accommodate some intervenors who 24 have time scheduling problems. 25 2449 So we will continue until one o'clock StenoTran 476 1 with interventions and take our lunch break at that 2 time. 3 2450 Commissioner Cardozo ... 4 2451 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you, 5 Madam Chair. 6 2452 I have a few questions on marketing. 7 Let me start by asking you about your reach figures. 8 You have indicated on page 28 of the supplementary 9 brief that you are expecting a reach of 8 per cent. 10 Could you give us a bit of information as to how you 11 arrived at that figure? 12 2453 MS McLAUGHLIN: Yes. What we did was 13 use a fairly predictive model that we have used in 14 other applications, that being PWC, before the 15 Commission. 16 2454 We took the market research and we 17 broke it into categories in terms of population: 18 English, French and aboriginal population. Then we 19 took their commitment to purchase the system and view 20 it, and we applied a factor to it. 21 2455 And when we applied the factor 22 individually to each population, added it up and 23 divided it by the Canadian population, it came to 8 per 24 cent. 25 2456 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: With regard to StenoTran 477 1 the aboriginal population that you were looking at, 2 what is the expectation there in terms of the 3 viewership? 4 2457 MS McLAUGHLIN: I believe we have 5 estimated that 40 per cent of that 8 per cent total 6 reach would be aboriginal population. 7 2458 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: All right, but 8 among aboriginal peoples, are you looking at a 9 viewership of close to 100 per cent? 10 2459 MS McLAUGHLIN: No. We are looking 11 at a subset of that. We are looking at a subset -- and 12 I can get you the exact number. 13 2460 I believe our firm commitment for 14 viewing was 36 per cent. So we took half of that, 15 which would be 18 per cent, and then we took a third of 16 the "most likely to view", which is a softer indication 17 of viewership. We add that up and again go to the 18 population. We recalculate it and it comes out to a 19 factor that contributes to the total of 40 per cent of 20 "are tuning" as aboriginal. 21 2461 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So that would 22 explain why you are looking at 8 per cent as a reach, 23 whereas your public opinion poll -- and I think this is 24 the Pollara study -- found that 11 per cent of those 25 polled would definitely watch an aboriginal channel. StenoTran 478 1 2462 MS McLAUGHLIN: That is the general 2 population. That is the "definitely watch", and you 3 have to factor in the soft commitment to watching as 4 well. 5 2463 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I would assume 6 that the soft commitment would be the 47 per cent, and 7 you said "probably". 8 2464 MS McLAUGHLIN: Yes, that's right. 9 I'm sorry -- 10 2465 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Do you have a 11 sense of the people who say "probably", whether they 12 think they will actually watch, or that they may have 13 certain types of programs that they are interested in? 14 Do you have any more information on who the 15 "probablies" were? 16 2466 MS McLAUGHLIN: Yes. 17 2467 I want to step back for a second to 18 explain how this research was conducted. 19 2468 The description that we provided of 20 the channel was in the broadest sense. It didn't delve 21 into any of the particular aspects. It didn't talk 22 about any of the particular benefits that are intrinsic 23 in a service like this. So it was the most objective 24 presentation of this service that we could achieve. 25 2469 In this case it wasn't a selling StenoTran 479 1 piece. So when people say that they will definitely 2 watch, there is an assumption in their mind of what it 3 is, and there is something that we have said, 4 obviously, that has appealed. For people who say that 5 they will probably watch, there is a softer response 6 because they can't conceptualize the programming, or 7 what we have said doesn't match something that they 8 prefer to watch. 9 2470 We have to assume that, with 10 promotion and exposure to the service, we will be able 11 to convert some of that "probably" to definite watches. 12 2471 Now, within that context, we also 13 conducted focus groups to investigate the type of 14 programming that people would like to watch, and that 15 was both within the aboriginal community and non- 16 aboriginal community. The schedule that you see before 17 you is a function, in part, of what was available in 18 terms of producers, but it does pay particular 19 attention to the information that we were given by the 20 potential consumers of this service within the focus 21 groups. 22 2472 We have documentaries, which was very 23 important to them. Educational programming was very 24 important to them. Programs that involve things 25 indigenous to the aboriginal people -- spiritual StenoTran 480 1 healing, spiritual habits, outdoor activities, the 2 whole history of the aboriginal people, biographies of 3 them. We have covered off all of that and, while I 4 can't give you a hard figure of what percentage -- it 5 is my professional estimation based on that soft 6 position -- we do believe that that which we couldn't 7 provide by way of a description we have incorporated 8 into the product. 9 2473 In fact, we asked them what we had to 10 do to sell them on this service, in terms of finding 11 out the programming, and that has been incorporated. 12 2474 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I notice the 13 table on page 11 of the Coopers Lybrand Pollara study 14 where you looked at the preferred types of programming. 15 Is that where -- 16 2475 MS McLAUGHLIN: That is part of the 17 source of the information. That is a representative 18 sample of Canada at large. And then within the focus 19 groups we got to explore each one of those categories, 20 because, of course, "nature shows" is a very broad 21 category, so we had to understand what that meant. 22 2476 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: All right. So 23 you are saying that of the people who said they would 24 watch, you have a total of 58 per cent, and 11 per cent 25 said definitely and, in your view, they had a better StenoTran 481 1 idea of what your service was, and the 47 per cent 2 probably didn't have a full conceptual idea of what the 3 service was? 4 2477 MS McLAUGHLIN: No. It is not that 5 any particular group would have a better view, but one 6 of the words that was used in that description was 7 "yes", or they had a sense of what aboriginal 8 programming was about. 9 2478 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: One of the 10 things I found intriguing was that, of the 11 "definitelies", in the question about likelihood to 12 watch, 11 per cent said that they would definitely 13 watch. But when it came to paying the 15-cent basic 14 fee, 28 per cent said definitely yes. I thought that 15 was quite intriguing. Seventeen per cent were willing 16 to pay for something that they weren't definitely going 17 to watch. 18 2479 MS McLAUGHLIN: I think that speaks 19 to -- 20 2480 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: It is usually 21 the other way around; people want the service and don't 22 want to pay for it. 23 2481 MS McLAUGHLIN: That is absolutely 24 the case. I think that addresses some of the questions 25 that have been put forward here today, in terms of what StenoTran 482 1 the effect would be on cable subscription if a channel 2 was moved. It speaks to a level of interest and 3 support for this service that, frankly, I would never 4 have guessed and have not see in any of the others that 5 I have worked on. It is simply because conceptually, I 6 believe, as we found in the focus groups, it makes 7 sense to people to support a channel that provides 8 insight into a way of life that exists amongst us, but 9 isn't open to us necessarily, and that it has a value 10 system. 11 2482 Quite frankly, one of the things that 12 came out of this was that it is truly unique 13 programming, which would be so refreshing. 14 2483 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Just to 15 clarify it for the record, these two questions were 16 asked of the same people? 17 2484 MS McLAUGHLIN: That's correct. 18 2485 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: There were not 19 different studies or different people? 20 2486 MS McLAUGHLIN: No. What we had to 21 do was ascertain the impact of the 15 cents. 22 2487 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: All right. 23 Let me ask you one question which relates to the focus 24 group research study by Coopers & Lybrand. They talk 25 about a number of people who were enthusiastic about StenoTran 483 1 the service: "This enthusiasm was tempered by some 2 concerns about how the service would be programmed and 3 received". 4 2488 On page 7, let me read this 5 paragraph, which is about what one of the respondents 6 said: "We can talk about how nice this would be, but 7 we have to recognize that we are going for the lowest 8 common denominator. People may feel that they should 9 watch, but will they really? All of my friends are 10 aboriginal and we watch `Seinfeld'. Yes, we are not 11 mainstream, but we want entertainment. The programming 12 is going to have to be competitive." 13 2489 Do you think you can be competitive 14 with "Seinfeld"? I know that "Seinfeld" is over, but 15 the re-runs are going to be with us for a long time and 16 will continue to have considerable draw. 17 2490 MS McLAUGHLIN: I don't expect this 18 service, or in fact many services, will ever be on a 19 competitive level with "Seinfeld". That was a 20 phenomenon. 21 2491 But just going to more mainstream 22 television programs, this channel will have programming 23 that attracts a core audience for sure. It will also 24 have a large number of people who come in and out. I 25 think the average number of services that the average StenoTran 484 1 consumer tunes to is approximately five. So if you 2 look at your spectrum of choices, that means there are 3 a lot of services that just get light tuning by a 4 significant number of people. I think this service 5 will qualify as one of them, but there will be a core 6 audience that will be attracted to it. 7 2492 I think that what you are going to 8 find is that not all programs, the way it has been set 9 up, appeal to all people. So within the context of 10 this schedule you are going to develop pockets of 11 tuning and core tuning to certain segments of the 12 programming. 13 2493 So, competitive in terms of sheer 14 volume of numbers? No. Competitive in the sense that 15 it attracts a solid and loyal audience? Yes. And 16 competitive that someone will purchase the airtime to 17 support it? Absolutely, because there will be 18 demonstrable proof that there is a core audience. 19 2494 MR. FARMER: I believe, given the 20 budget and the creative talents that exist in our 21 community, that I can easily compete with "Seinfeld" 22 any day of the week. 23 2495 MS McLAUGHLIN: I stand corrected. 24 2496 THE CHAIRPERSON: And that is a 25 comment from an actor. StenoTran 485 1 2497 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Lastly, let me 2 ask you about the marketing plan. 3 2498 You indicate on page 30 of the 4 supplementary brief that you are going to spend 5 $200,000 on the initial marketing plan and 3.5 per cent 6 on promotion thereafter. I wonder if you could share 7 some details with us -- and I am thinking back to the 8 person I just quoted, who is also thinking about 9 "Seinfeld" and everything else. How do you keep that 10 person coming back? How do you get that person, first, 11 and how do you keep that person coming back? How do 12 you plan to build loyalty and that type of thing? 13 2499 MR. FARMER: We believe that in the 14 early stages of our broadcast that our network is going 15 to be the most exciting thing on the tube. It is going 16 to be so widely diverse and creative in its nature, 17 because most of the productions that we are presenting 18 have been independently produced by individuals from 19 specific regions and specific backgrounds in culture 20 and education. We think it is going to be extremely 21 creative and that it will potentially change the face 22 of how people treat broadcasting, with the 23 responsibility -- 24 2500 Given the concepts of native 25 teachings, and such, it is really going to have a StenoTran 486 1 dramatic impact on how television is dealt with in the 2 future. 3 2501 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: How do you 4 plan to hold that viewership? 5 2502 MR. FARMER: I think it is only going 6 to gain in popularity as we get stronger and gain a 7 larger audience share and begin to find, as well, what 8 a dramatic impact this is going to have on our 9 aboriginal business aspects, because it is youth -- 10 2503 I truly believe, publishing the 11 magazine for the last six years, that we are at the 12 forefront of developing aboriginal business at that 13 level. Those paybacks are going to start to develop 14 our network into something which is world class. 15 2504 MS McLAUGHLIN: I would like to add 16 that part of the research that we did was to identify 17 the ways and means that people have of gathering 18 information on what is available on television. 19 Because, clearly, in order for them to enjoy the 20 quality of programming we are going to offer they are 21 going to have to know that we are there. 22 2505 Again, there is sort of a two-part 23 approach to this. We have a core audience which we 24 recognize initially will be predominately aboriginal 25 people. So the question is simply: How are we going StenoTran 487 1 to reach them initially and then spread this out? 2 2506 Our research indicated that there is 3 a strong connection to friendship centres across the 4 country, to band offices on reserves, and that there is 5 really an oral tradition of sharing and communication 6 here that, although I suppose every one of us claims to 7 engage in, not in the manner that aboriginal peoples 8 do. 9 1145 10 2507 So, initially what we're going to do 11 is continue the communication that TVNC started, the 12 tradition of communicating what is happening with their 13 programming to these band offices, to the Friendship 14 Centres. We're going to do that in a very aggressive 15 manner. 16 2508 There is the TVNC newsletter. That 17 will go out. It will have all the details of what 18 we're doing. That will be expanded to cover the 19 broader audience. We'll create new mailing lists. 20 We'll produce flyers. You've seen our logo. It's very 21 striking. That logo will be intrinsic. We're going to 22 brand this network. It will become clear. 23 2509 We're going to develop a print 24 campaign using publications like Mr. Farmer's 25 Aboriginal Voices, and there's several other good StenoTran 488 1 aboriginal publications out there that we'll be 2 involved in. On the simplest level, every participant 3 and the focus groups that use the TV listings. 4 2510 So, we're going to use a very tried 5 format, but one that obviously is very effective, and 6 we're going to buy space in TV Times and TV Guide that 7 indicates prior to launch that the service is here. 8 Then based on the research that we have in terms of 9 general appeal programs, as they come up weekly on the 10 schedule, if we have a particular feature, I think Mr. 11 Bittman referred to a profile on Indian Chiefs, we will 12 identify those individually and say, this week at this 13 time. 14 2511 So, it's a typical broadcast 15 promotional schedule in that sense. But we're just 16 starting it off in a different manner going after our 17 core audience. 18 2512 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And are you 19 looking at expanding the TVNC web site, I would assume? 20 2513 MR. TAGALIK: Yes. Just to reflect 21 the change, we do have a Home Page now and as we evolve 22 into APTN, so would the Home Page. 23 2514 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Once you're 24 licensed. 25 2515 MR. TAGALIK: Yes. StenoTran 489 1 2516 MS MacDONALD: I just wanted to add, 2 you were talking about market research and everything. 3 I just have to state that aboriginal people are in the 4 public eye now. We have the Royal Commission; we have 5 the federal government's efforts to recognize and 6 define inherent rights to self-government; we have land 7 claim negotiations across the country; we have our 8 healing foundation set up to deal with the injustices 9 of the past. 10 2517 Our time is now. We're the focus of 11 this world as we know it in this country. It's time 12 now. If we're focused on, I think that it's very 13 important that the non-aboriginal people realize where 14 we're coming from in all this. So, I can't see that 15 there will ever be a less -- you know, it's only going 16 to grow more with all these things that are set up, 17 that there will be more focus on the aboriginal people 18 here and that this will not go away, and that they will 19 have an avenue now to see our perspective of things. 20 2518 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: That covers my 21 questions on marketing, unless anybody else has 22 anything else to add to that. 23 2519 Thanks for that. Thank you, Madam 24 Chair. 25 2520 THE CHAIRPERSON: I have one more StenoTran 490 1 question. If you were given a licence, whatever you 2 call it, let's say it's something other than what you 3 have now very clearly, satellite to cable or whatever 4 type of licence, what happens to your current licence 5 and when? 6 2521 MR. TOURIGNY: We received an 7 administrative renewal that takes us to August 31st, 8 1999. So, APTN would come into effect September 1st, 9 1999. 10 2522 THE CHAIRPERSON: And? 11 2523 MS. COURTEMANCHE: The licence would 12 simply expire, TVNC, and we would not look towards a 13 renewal. So, what would happen is that the TVNC 14 licence would terminate at midnight on August 31st and 15 at 01 minute the APTN licence would come into effect. 16 2524 MR. TOURIGNY: And we listed in the 17 application all the transmitters that we couldn't 18 reoperate, so they would be folded into that new 19 licence. 20 2525 THE CHAIRPERSON: And if for any 21 reason there was a delay, either in implementation or 22 because of the Commission's delay, then you would need 23 a short-term renewal of some sort? 24 2526 MS. COURTEMANCHE: We would need an 25 administrative renewal. StenoTran 491 1 2527 THE CHAIRPERSON: In which case, 2 either it would expire or eventually you would have to 3 surrender the licence. But there is no question that 4 you will fold your current operation into this proposal 5 as quickly as possible? 6 2528 MR. TOURIGNY: Fifteen cents we can 7 only run one network. 8 2529 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very 9 much. Counsel. 10 2530 MR. BATSTONE: Good morning. It's 11 still morning, not by much. 12 2531 I have a few questions, and I'd like 13 to start out with one question specifically about 14 subscriber fees. 15 2532 As you likely know, the Commission 16 has expressed a concern in the past that it would not 17 generally approve a subscriber fee for a conventional 18 undertaking. Certainly in the context of the 19 application there's been discussion of it this morning, 20 but you applied for a television network. 21 2533 I'm just wondering if you could sort 22 of provide your reasons for the record as to why APTN 23 should be entitled to a subscriber fee where the 24 Commission has generally not permitted that? 25 2534 MR. TAGALIK: What we're looking to StenoTran 492 1 do is provide a very bare bones core service that is 2 essential. We are a non-profit organization. All the 3 funds would go back into programming. Public funding 4 is not currently available any more, and we don't 5 really want to get into a second class kind of service. 6 2535 We're looking at a basic core service 7 that really meets the needs of aboriginal people. I 8 think no one that we've talked to denies that this 9 service is not needed. It is very needed and it is 10 very crucial. 11 2536 I don't know if that totally answers 12 your question. 13 2537 MR. TOURIGNY: I think we've already 14 been through the fact that it's only going to happen 15 with a subscriber fee. It's not going to happen 16 through government funding; it's not going to happen 17 through advertising alone. 18 2538 There's the precedent of the TFO in 19 New Brunswick as well. 20 2539 MR. BATSTONE: Although in that case 21 the Commission was very careful to set specific 22 limitations as to the approval for that particular 23 situation. But I think I understand what you're 24 saying. 25 2540 MS COURTEMANCHE: But the point being StenoTran 493 1 is that we wouldn't believe that this application would 2 trigger a bunch of new applications for a similar 3 conventional fee. We think that in the same manner 4 that you have structured the TFO decision to a very 5 narrow circumstance, we think there's only ever going 6 to be room in Canada for one aboriginal television 7 network and, therefore, this application and the 8 granting of the carriage fee will not cause a floodgate 9 of applications of a similar nature, if that's where 10 your concern is. 11 2541 We think that this decision can be 12 very narrowly construed to this service alone. 13 2542 MR. BATSTONE: That was going to be 14 my next question, and I think I've heard some of the 15 reasons already. But what would be the specific 16 circumstances that would differentiate this from any 17 others who might come forward asking for a similar 18 treatment? 19 2543 MR. TOURIGNY: We went through our 20 list of what we think is the criteria for mandatory 21 service. It was listed in our reply to interventions 22 and very responsive to the objectives of the 23 Broadcasting Act, highly distinctive programming, 24 programming that isn't available anywhere else on the 25 system, very high Canadian content, and, in our case, StenoTran 494 1 non-profit. 2 2544 But those are on the record in our 3 replies to interventions. 4 2545 MR. BATSTONE: Thanks. Turning now 5 to paragraph 9(1)(h) of the Broadcasting Act, this has 6 also been discussed a fair bit over the course of these 7 few days. 8 2546 As I think perhaps Ms Courtemanche 9 mentioned, it's a very broad-based discretion. What 10 would you suggest are the appropriate criteria that the 11 Commission should look at when determining if a service 12 should get mandatory carriage under paragraph 9(1)(h)? 13 2547 MR. TOURIGNY: I think it's the same 14 criteria that we have filed, the ones I just talked 15 about. 16 2548 The 9(1)(h) is a tool that the 17 Commission can use to further the broadcasting policy 18 set out in Section 3. So, you look in Section 3 and 19 you say, is there something in there that hasn't been 20 adequately fulfilled. Yes, the proper role of 21 aboriginal people hasn't been properly fulfilled. So, 22 there's an objective of the Act that's sitting there 23 kind of in a vacuum. It's a gap that we talked about. 24 2549 So, you go further down, 9(1)(h) will 25 trigger the fulfilment of that objective. So you stay StenoTran 495 1 confined within the Act. You don't have to go to 2 Regulations. 3 2550 MS COURTEMANCHE: But the point being 4 is that we agreed that before you get mandatory 5 carriage or whether you apply 9(1)(h) or whether you 6 use 17(5) or 37(b) in the Regulations is that the 7 Commission has to find that that particular service 8 will be a distinct and important component in the 9 Canadian broadcasting system and will strongly serve 10 the national public interest. 11 2551 I'll quote some of the things that we 12 said in our reply to interventions is that the Canadian 13 context level should be significantly higher than what 14 is currently required under the television regulations; 15 that the programming in the service should be 16 distinctly Canadian and not industrial productions; and 17 that the programming in the service should be 18 unavailable anywhere else, it shouldn't be recycled 19 programming and that you should have nation-building 20 functions. 21 2552 So, those are very precise and 22 concrete licensing terms that would help you limit the 23 floodgate issue, if that's what is your concern, and 24 would really solely apply to very, very few services. 25 We're contending, of course, they apply to APTN. StenoTran 496 1 2553 MR. BATSTONE: Thank you. I had a 2 question in response to questions from Commissioner 3 Pennefather about carriage by Cancom of the APTN. I 4 was just wondering about the current carriage of TVNC. 5 Are you carried by Cancom? 6 2554 MR. TOURIGNY: No, we're not. We're 7 on the eligible list. We've been hanging there on the 8 eligible list for several years now. 9 2555 Cancom is committed to marketing our 10 service at the various trade shows and so on, but we're 11 not part of the Cancom package. 12 2556 MR. BATSTONE: Two programming 13 questions. In response to a deficiency, I think, you 14 indicated that none of APTN's regularly scheduled 15 programming would be broadcast on CBC North, but at the 16 same time I notice that in the schedule there are two 17 news programs -- Igalaaq and Northbeat -- which I 18 believe are programmed by CBC North. Would that mean 19 that they're only shown on APTN or would they also be 20 shown on CBC? 21 2557 MR. TOURIGNY: No. That was probably 22 an oversight on our part. In fact, we give CBC North 23 better air time than the main network allows that 24 regional service. 25 2558 MR. BATSTONE: The second programming StenoTran 497 1 question, then, relates to news and how your news 2 programs would serve the needs of people in all regions 3 of Canada. 4 2559 Would you have news gathering or 5 production facilities outside of the north, then, to 6 gather and collect the news from the south? 7 2560 MR. TOURIGNY: Yes, we have budgeted 8 for eight stringers that will be equipped with digital 9 cameras. We've got this all costed out. We assume 10 we'll have probably more than eight stringers, plus the 11 NNBAP members will cover the north, feeding in. 12 2561 If there's major events going on, 13 we'll use fibre backhaul or satellite backhaul. We may 14 do longform programming in the south if there's a big 15 convention or a big meeting or something going on. We 16 could pool our feed with NewsWorld. I'm sure they 17 would be glad to get our feed. 18 2562 MR. BATSTONE: Thanks. Turning now 19 to finance questions. The first one has to do with the 20 projections for Class 1 BDUs. 21 2563 What I'm wondering about is in the 22 event that there was some lag in the time period 23 between when you began carriage by Class 1 BDUs and in 24 the time period between when you receive the revenues 25 from that, have you incorporated that into your StenoTran 498 1 projections and, if not, is that likely to be a 2 significant issue? 3 2564 The reason I ask this is that 4 obviously the Class 1 revenues are a critical source of 5 revenue; it's the majority of revenue for the service. 6 If there was a lag even by perhaps a small percentage 7 of Class 1 BDUs, that seems to me could result in a 8 significant amount of revenue not being received by 9 APTN, when it would be projected to be received. 10 2565 MR. SUART: A short lag of like a 11 month or two or even three months possibly we could 12 handle. 13 2566 MR. BATSTONE: There would be 14 sufficient contingency funds? 15 2567 MR. SUART: Yes, whatever the normal 16 procedure is for cable operators to get the funds. It 17 would not be a problem. We have that accounted for. 18 2568 MR. BATSTONE: My second finance 19 question is sort of an overall question. 20 2569 We talked about various different 21 assumptions to the revenue forecasts, specifically the 22 takeup by Class 2s in the first year and the takeup by 23 Class 3 systems after that, similarly DTH. If any one 24 or more of those assumptions were not to materialize, 25 would that directly affect the viability of the system? StenoTran 499 1 I guess what I'm saying is to what degree could you 2 afford to have some of those assumptions not 3 materialize and still be viable? 4 2570 MR. SUART: We built in a surplus 5 into the forecast, which was designed to give us a 6 little bit of breathing room, not very big breathing 7 room but a little bit of breathing room. It works out 8 to about 5 per cent of our revenues overall. 9 2571 Class 2 and Class 3 systems, in terms 10 of subscribers, their revenue contribution is 11 relatively small. So, for example, if we didn't get 12 187,000 Class 3 subscribers in Year 1, the revenue 13 impact of that would be relatively small, $400,000, 14 well within the surplus. 15 1200 16 2572 So we can handle those kind of 17 things. But, again, it is a relatively small surplus, 18 so -- 19 2573 MR. BATSTONE: And would it be the 20 same situation with the DTH? For example, if the 21 commission did not grant mandatory carriage under 22 9(1)(h), and concluded that it could not grant carriage 23 under 37(b) of the regulations on DTH, would that cause 24 too large a hit, or -- 25 2574 MR. SUART: Roughly speaking, under StenoTran 500 1 DTH, our surplus is roughly about $1 million a year and 2 the revenue from DTH is about $1 million a year. So 3 that would take all of it a way, which would not be 4 favourable. We would probably have to take some minor 5 hit on some other areas. So that would maintain a 6 little extra surplus for anything else that might come 7 up, obviously. We could probably handle something, but 8 not all of it. 9 2575 MR. BATSTONE: That gets to my next 10 question, then. 11 2576 MR. GIBERSON: Excuse me, I just 12 wanted to make a point about the DTH that there is a 13 financial consideration but the real core about DTH 14 coverage is access to remote, underserved areas. And 15 that is a crucial element. 16 2577 MR. BATSTONE: I understand that. It 17 is more, perhaps, a hypothetical question. In terms of 18 if, some -- one or more of the assumptions were not to 19 turn out as forecasted and there was less revenue, I 20 mean I think you have talked with the Commissioners a 21 little bit about what areas would be cut first. I am 22 wondering if you could comment specifically on the 23 capital expenditures at the end of year five. Is that 24 something that would be reduced, or -- 25 2578 MR. SUART: The capital expenditure StenoTran 501 1 at the end of year five really are a situation where we 2 could cut that. But, frankly, there is just 3 replacement of the leased equipment that we are doing 4 for the first five years. At that point we could just 5 release that equipment if we were not going to put the 6 money into the capital. It just, you know, obviously 7 drags it out a little longer. 8 2579 MR. BATSTONE: Okay. Thank you. 9 2580 Just two questions left. The first 10 one, I understand from your application that the 11 business plan is predicated on APTN launching on 12 December 1, 1999. If APTN is licensed, how much lead 13 time would you would you need to have to launch on that 14 date? 15 2581 MR. TOURIGNY: As much as possible. 16 We are starting from -- not from scratch, we have TVNC, 17 but we have a lot of programming to find, an awful lot 18 of deals to cut, an awful lot of decisions to make. We 19 have to get the infrastructure in. 20 2582 We had been tentatively thinking 21 mid-February would be a likely time line. But, you are 22 right. This is a crucial issue for us because we have 23 got to get to -- the wheels are in motion and we are 24 going to be working on things like the program advisory 25 committee and a lot of structural things and moving StenoTran 502 1 this thing forward. But we cannot start talking money 2 with anyone until we have got the decision and then we 3 have got to scramble and get things going. 4 2583 MR. BATSTONE: So would six months do 5 it? I guess that is a bit of a February, then. Just 6 asking. 7 2584 MR. TOURIGNY: I think a seven-month 8 gestation period would -- the baby wouldn't be too 9 premature. 10 2585 MR. BATSTONE: Last question, then -- 11 my wife is at six months right now -- anyways, last 12 question, and this goes to some questions that were 13 asked earlier with respect to a two-fee structure for 14 English-speaking Canada and French-speaking Canada, and 15 I am aware of your position there. But if the 16 commission were to conclude that two fees would be 17 appropriate, what would you consider would be the 18 maximum fee in either market? 19 2586 MR. TOURIGNY: We will have to get 20 back to you on reply, because we have not considered a 21 two-tier structure. 22 2587 MR. BATSTONE: Okay. If you could do 23 that. 24 2588 MR. TOURIGNY: Guylain is going to 25 have to start. We have to look at the subscriber base StenoTran 503 1 in Quebec. 2 2589 MR. BATSTONE: I have just been 3 reminded I forgot one question. I completely forgot 4 one question. It has to do with the -- I am just going 5 to keep talking until it comes back to me. 6 2590 It has to do with the -- I almost had 7 it. It has to do with the available channels issue and 8 whether or if a channel were -- you have said that it 9 would be possible to sort of remove a channel in a 10 discretionary tier, for instance, perhaps one of the 11 ME-TV channels. In a system where there is not 12 otherwise capacity to put APTN on. 13 2591 I am wondering if that presents 14 problems from a technical standpoint given the way that 15 the services are trapped. Because if you remove 16 someone from a discretionary tier, presumably APTN is 17 not seeking something on a discretionary tier. 18 2592 MR. TOURIGNY: That is the problem 19 that the cable industry took on when they decided to 20 launch that big tier with unprotected services. So if 21 they want to change out all those traps to accommodate 22 us, I do not think they will do that, and I think they 23 will magically find a channel. 24 2593 MR. BATSTONE: So you do not think 25 there will be -- StenoTran 504 1 2594 MR. TOURIGNY: They found capacity to 2 launch that bigger package whereas just months 3 previously, there was, you know, the Commission could 4 only licence four for immediate access, that is all 5 they had room for. 6 2595 MS COURTEMANCHE: Changes to your 7 trap would be your last resort. You would look at 8 non-programming services and other services before 9 going there that are currently not trapped right now. 10 So it is your absolutely last resort. 11 2596 So I think they would either build 12 new capacity, which is what they are doing anyway in 13 order to accommodate digitization, without looking at 14 fiddling with your traps. 15 2597 MR. TOURIGNY: Just the shopping 16 channel, that is on basic. 17 2598 MR. BATSTONE: Okay. Thank you very 18 much. Those are all my questions. 19 2599 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Did I 20 hear you give us what you want as an implementation 21 date if you were licensed? 22 2600 MR. TAGALIK: September 1, '99. 23 2601 THE CHAIRPERSON: And so that if 24 there were an order issued, under 9(1)(h), that is what 25 the effective date is that you would want. StenoTran 505 1 2602 Taking into consideration, obviously, 2 sufficient time if that were to be -- if you were to be 3 licensed for the cable industry to adjust and so is 4 that what I -- you were contemplating, a February 5 decision, is that what you were thinking? 6 2603 MR. TOURIGNY: That is correct. 7 2604 THE CHAIRPERSON: In your pregnancy 8 test? 9 2605 MR. TOURIGNY: Well, I thought this 10 item may not make the December Commission meeting, it 11 could probably make the January meeting. 12 2606 THE CHAIRPERSON: We will have to 13 discuss our agenda with you. This, I believe, 14 completes the first phase. 15 2607 MR. TAGALIK: Excuse me. I just had 16 a point of clarification. 17 2608 THE CHAIRPERSON: You are not going 18 to ask me any questions. 19 2609 MR. TAGALIK: No, no, we just looked 20 at government funding phasing out by 2004. The program 21 I was talking about was the distribution program, not 22 the NNBAP program. But that was the only one. 23 2610 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, that 24 will clarify the record. 25 2611 So we thank you for your StenoTran 506 1 participation today, Mr. Tagalik, and your colleagues. 2 And we will now hear intervenors and eventually see you 3 back in reply. Thank you. 4 2612 THE CHAIRPERSON: Madam Secretary, 5 please would you invite the first intervenor. 6 2613 MS SANTERRE: Thank you, Madam Chair. 7 I just wanted to remind the intervenors that -- 8 2614 THE CHAIRPERSON: Order please, order 9 please. 10 2615 MS SANTERRE: Thank you. I just want 11 to remind all the intervenors that they are allowed 10 12 minutes for their presentation. I would like now to 13 invite the Assembly of First Nations to appear. 14 2616 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good afternoon. 15 Bonjour. Allez-y quand vous êtes prêt. 16 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 17 2617 MR. SWITZER: My name is Maurice 18 Switzer, Madam Chair and Commissioners. I am the 19 Director of Communications with the Assembly of First 20 Nations. 21 2618 I want to express the appreciation of 22 the National Chief, Phil Fontaine, for the opportunity 23 for this representation, and at the same time express 24 his regrets that he unfortunately cannot be here. I 25 also think it is appropriate for me to express our StenoTran 507 1 appreciation to the Algonquin people to allow us to 2 meet on their traditional territories. 3 2619 It is appropriate, I think, that this 4 hearing take place in the days following Remembrance 5 Day. Like most Canadians, Aboriginal people watched 6 some very moving coverage of Remembrance Day ceremonies 7 and saw appreciation expressed to the people to whom we 8 really owe our freedom. 9 2620 Aboriginal people, First Nations 10 people, did not get to see much tribute paid to our 11 veterans and most people who watched television, for 12 example, or watched the coverage of Remembrance Day in 13 their media, would not have known about the stories of 14 people like Tommy Prince, the most decorated Canadian 15 veteran of this century, a First Nations soldier from 16 Winnipeg. Or about the stories of Frances Pemagopapo, 17 from Perry Island, in Ontario who during the First 18 World War was, as a sniper, was credited with 19 dispatching 378 enemy soldiers. And was awarded the 20 military medal and when he came home had trouble 21 getting the same pension that his non-Aboriginal 22 colleagues received. 23 2621 Most Canadians would not know that 24 First Nations or Aboriginal or Indian people 25 volunteered and enlisted in higher numbers than any StenoTran 508 1 other identifiable group in this country. 2 2622 For example, in the First World War, 3 the community of Skoogog had every single eligible male 4 member of their community volunteer for military 5 service. That was a story across this country as First 6 Nations and Aboriginal people felt an obligation to 7 protect the interests of the Crown that had promised 8 them in 1763 that they would be sovereign people in 9 their own territory. 10 2623 So a lot of these are the type of 11 stories that are really important, that Canadians -- 12 all Canadians here, not just Aboriginal people -- that 13 they are not hearing. And it is innovations like the 14 Aboriginal people -- Aboriginal People's Television 15 Network that is going to make sure that those stories 16 are heard and told. 17 2624 If it were not bad enough that the 18 stories that the existing media organizations cannot 19 find the time to tell these stories, it is even worse 20 that unfortunately some of the mainstream media 21 organizations are even stifling Aboriginal voices. And 22 we have some recent examples. The most notable of 23 which was the group of newspapers owned by David Black, 24 in British Columbia. 25 2625 At a crucial point in this country's StenoTran 509 1 history over a crucial issue, censoring his 60 British 2 Columbia editors from publishing information that would 3 be perceived to be supportive of the Nis'ga treaty, a 4 landmark event in Aboriginal First Nations relations 5 with this country called Canada. 6 2626 So there is a need, obviously, for 7 people, First Nations Aboriginal people to be able to 8 tell their own stories. 9 1215 10 2627 The licence application by TVNC to 11 create a national aboriginal television network is a 12 major step for the First Nations in Canada. In the 13 past we have not been well served by the mainstream 14 media. One has only to look at how the events of 1990, 15 the Oka Crisis as it was called, were reported and 16 portrayed in the media. The images that were beamed 17 into Canadian homes that summer were mainly of people 18 wearing battle fatigues and balaclavas, carrying guns 19 and blocking roads, and Canadians could not be blamed 20 for being left with the impression and perception that 21 First Nations peoples were just itching to fight and 22 that the country was about to sink into a civil war. 23 2628 The media latched on to images, and 24 they became the story, and very little was said about 25 the very legitimate claims by our peoples and the StenoTran 510 1 injustices that had become the root for this 2 dissatisfaction and anger. 3 2629 The Royal Commission on Aboriginal 4 Peoples was created after the events at Kanesatake, and 5 its role and mandate was to look at all the issues and 6 propose a new blueprint for the relationship between 7 Canada and the First Nations and aboriginal peoples. 8 The report made numerous observations, some of which 9 are especially relevant today in the context of these 10 hearings, and I will quote from pages 624 and 621 of 11 the RCAP Report: 12 "As long as other Canadians 13 appropriate the stories, 14 experience, culture and 15 spirituality of aboriginal 16 peoples, aboriginal people will 17 remain stereotyped, 18 misunderstood and ultimately 19 unheard. There is an urgent 20 need for aboriginal media to 21 assume the role that a 22 storyteller used to fulfil, 23 fostering the discovery and 24 rediscovery of aboriginal 25 identity and community." StenoTran 511 1 2630 And, further: 2 "Aboriginal perspectives in 3 mainstream and aboriginal media 4 should be central factors in the 5 formation of aboriginal and non- 6 aboriginal culture, identity and 7 community." (As read) 8 2631 One of the roles of the Assembly of 9 First Nations is to promote and enhance the 10 relationship between Canadians and First Nations 11 peoples in Canada. If Canadians better understood who 12 we are and what our aspirations are, they would better 13 understand us and it would result in a better 14 relationship between the two solitudes. 15 2632 Mainstream media has failed miserably 16 in bridging that gap. They could argue that their role 17 is not public education, but that's an implicit civic 18 responsibility of the mass media and it is one that's 19 not being adequately fulfilled. 20 2633 The RCAP makes mention of this in 21 many places in its report, and I quote one. Major 22 concerns made by aboriginal broadcasters and 23 journalists focused on 24 "... access to mainstream media, 25 broader access to media networks StenoTran 512 1 in regions of the north that do 2 not receive TVNC, aboriginal 3 media for people living in the 4 south and assurance of access to 5 information and media 6 independence." (As read) 7 2634 The CRTC has recognized this. The 8 simple fact that the Commission has invited TVNC to 9 prepare and submit a clear plan for the creation of the 10 first aboriginal television network in Canada shows 11 this, and the CRTC is undoubtedly aware of the RCAP 12 Report's observation that showed the urgent need for 13 "... the creation of a third 14 national broadcasting network, 15 an autonomous aboriginal 16 language service similar to the 17 CBC". 18 2635 That was on page 635 of the Royal 19 Commission Report. 20 2636 The RCAP Report then recommended that 21 aboriginal radio and television programming be 22 available to all Canadians via cable TV, building on 23 the service of TV Northern Canada and the radio 24 services of aboriginal communication societies. The 25 CRTC also recognizes that it is not enough to grant a StenoTran 513 1 licence to such an operation; it must also provide it 2 with the means to generate revenue and become a 3 progressive and successful enterprise that will be able 4 to respond to the needs of all its viewers by offering 5 programming that responds to their interests. 6 2637 In that respect, the CRTC must 7 provide the APTN, as it will be called, with the 8 potential viewers by ensuring that cable operators, 9 satellite direct-to-home operators and other 10 distributors carry the station. Without such 11 distribution, the network will never be able to fulfil 12 its mandate. RCAP had this to say on that subject: 13 "For the relatively modest price 14 of a satellite downlink, cable 15 networks could carry TVNC and 16 independent aboriginal 17 programming." (As read) 18 2638 However, we believe that the CRTC 19 must not consider the APTN as a "specialty channel". 20 We are not just a curiosity to be thrown in in a mixed 21 bag along with lifestyle, cooking or sports 22 attractions. We are distinct peoples with languages, 23 cultures and histories, and as such we must be given 24 the same consideration and opportunities as the French 25 and English networks such as CBC, TVA and others. StenoTran 514 1 2639 To truly be a national network and be 2 able to live up to this mandate, we must be part of the 3 basic cable package of all the cable and other 4 operators. This new channel will become a major tool 5 to promote and enhance communications between the 6 mainstream and aboriginal communities in Canada. This 7 network will make a huge difference in the lives of our 8 peoples, and as we strive to develop a new relationship 9 with Canada and its citizens, the aboriginal peoples' 10 television network will be a bridge to greater mutual 11 understanding. 12 2640 This is an idea whose time has come, 13 and it is an opportunity that the CRTC can ill-afford 14 to pass. 15 2641 Meegwetch. Thank you. 16 2642 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, 17 Mr. Switzer. 18 2643 Commissioner Cardozo. 19 2644 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thanks, Madam 20 Chair. 21 2645 Thank you, Mr. Switzer, and our 22 regards to Mr. Fontaine as well. I understand that he 23 was available earlier, but we have a tendency of going 24 on and on and asking all of the questions we want 25 sometimes, which is what I will do to, but not keep you StenoTran 515 1 all day, I assure you. Just a few questions. 2 2646 As I understand the AFN, you 3 primarily represent status Indians? 4 2647 MR. SWITZER: We represent First 5 Nations people on or off reserve. Our constituency is 6 roughly two-thirds of a million people, 630,000. 7 2648 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Is it fair to 8 say -- this is my reading of the statistics -- that 9 about half your constituency lives on reserve and half 10 off reserve? 11 2649 MR. SWITZER: That's the demographic, 12 yes. 13 2650 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: What is your 14 sense of the number of people, the proportion, who live 15 in the north essentially, the Territories and perhaps 16 northern Ontario and a few places in northern Manitoba, 17 where they do get TVNC, and the proportion of First 18 Nations people who don't get TVNC in its current 19 format? 20 2651 MR. SWITZER: I maybe can't give you 21 the information you want, other than to say that my 22 personal experience is that our constituents that live 23 in -- the further north, the more "remote", the more 24 dependent and appreciative First Nations people are of 25 this kind of service. Many First Nations people feel StenoTran 516 1 that this kind of voice or message or service is almost 2 more representative of them than their Member of 3 Parliament, because this is where they hear and see 4 themselves, where they don't in any other place. 5 2652 A general answer is that the more 6 remote, obviously, the more dependent people are on 7 certain information. 8 2653 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: To get to the 9 people who are not served now -- and these are 1996 10 stats, which I think many would argue tend to 11 underestimate the number of aboriginal peoples, but if 12 you go by the proportions here at least, Winnipeg, for 13 example, has an aboriginal population of about 45,000, 14 Edmonton 32,000, Vancouver 31,000. These are people 15 who would not be getting TVNC at this point because it 16 is just in the north. 17 2654 MR. SWITZER: It is my understanding, 18 right. 19 2655 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So these are 20 some of the types of residents who you would want to 21 get APTN to. 22 2656 MR. SWITZER: Uh-huh. The sense that 23 people, because they happen to live in urban centers 24 and they are aboriginal or First Nations people, 25 somehow have lost their desire to be interested in StenoTran 517 1 their culture just couldn't be further from the truth. 2 If anything, my experience is they want it more, which 3 explains the need and use of 112 friendship centres 4 across the country. It is really an important network 5 for First Nations and aboriginal people. 6 2657 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I would like 7 to read you a quote from one of the people who wrote 8 in. This is L.C. Cross from Kahnawake, and it is 9 Intervention No. 266. I will just read a short 10 paragraph: 11 "As an elderly person living on 12 a reserve I feel that our youth 13 should see their natives on 14 television. All they see is a 15 negative portrayal that news 16 puts on. If it is something 17 bad, that is all the news will 18 show, never anything good. The 19 youth need role models and what 20 life is like on other 21 reservations. We really need a 22 channel like APTN. I too would 23 certainly enjoy hearing native 24 news, what is happening on other 25 reservations throughout Canada StenoTran 518 1 and stories with native 2 content." (As read) 3 2658 I don't mean to be doing a commercial 4 here for APTN, but -- 5 2659 MR. SWITZER: That's okay. 6 2660 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: -- this is 7 somebody who has written from the heart in a sense. 8 2661 Is that fairly typical of what people 9 would feel about this type of service? 10 2662 MR. SWITZER: We have a bias, of 11 course, but I think that's an excellent expression of 12 opinion. Here is the most modern of technologies that 13 will help maintain cultural values, the oldest cultural 14 values in this place we call "Turtle Island". And 15 because people happen to be elders or older people, it 16 doesn't mean they don't understand the value of the new 17 technology, whether it is computers or direct-to-home 18 satellite or whatever. They understand that those 19 messages that can come in can support and reinforce the 20 cultures that are in danger of being lost. 21 2663 So, ironically, the newest technology 22 can help preserve that culture, those traditions. 23 2664 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Various people 24 talked about healing today and yesterday, and certainly 25 the AFN has been very much involved in the federal StenoTran 519 1 government's Healing Fund and the new foundation. 2 2665 Can APTN play a role in healing? 3 2666 MR. SWITZER: As the political 4 advocacy group for First Nations people, there is no 5 aspect of our job that something like APTN can't 6 support or help. It is just getting our messages out 7 more directly to our constituents about all things, 8 about benefits that they may not be aware that accrue 9 to them, whether they are health, education. It is 10 just a tremendous vehicle. 11 2667 As someone in the communications area 12 of our organization, this would just be the greatest 13 gift that we could have in helping serve our 14 constituents better. 15 2668 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Lastly, you 16 talked about mandatory carriage and you believe that 17 the CRTC must go for that. The other side of the 18 story, of course, is that cable companies feel that 19 there isn't room for it. 20 2669 Is there a view -- and we will 21 probably be supported by some consumers -- that they 22 don't want another change in the channel lineup, they 23 don't want another charge on them, they don't want to 24 pay for something that they are not going out and 25 asking for. StenoTran 520 1 2670 At the AFN you have been in these 2 types or discussions or battles over the years. I am 3 not asking for a battle plan, but what is your advice 4 to us, if we were to license in that manner, on how it 5 can be sold to people or explained to people? 6 2671 MR. SWITZER: I wouldn't sell it like 7 it is cod liver oil and it is good for you. I alluded 8 in the remarks to the public education aspect and I 9 really believe that this is a critical time in the 10 history of this country, particularly as it relates to 11 the First Nations people and the aboriginal people, and 12 there has to be a commitment made to public education. 13 The federal government is making it with our 14 organization through Public Education Strategy and the 15 Agenda for Action, it is called. 16 2672 It is a critical juncture, and costs 17 aside, Canadian viewers have been asked to support much 18 less important, in my biased view, broadcast 19 entertainment than the type of important information 20 that this initiative represents. This is really public 21 education. There will be elements of entertainment, 22 there will be elements of all sorts of things, but it 23 is critical that Canadians understand not just the 24 history but the contemporary issues affecting the First 25 Nations people. StenoTran 521 1 2673 The demographics speak to situations 2 where, in the province of Saskatchewan, certainly into 3 the new millennium, more than 50 per cent of the 4 children in elementary schools are going to be First 5 Nations children. So the need for that understanding 6 now is critical. 7 2674 That would be my justification. 8 2675 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Why can't we 9 just wait a few more years till we get to a digital 10 universe and there is no capacity problems and 11 everything can be put on the air? 12 2676 MR. SWITZER: With all of the issues 13 out there, whether it is land rights issues or treaty 14 resolutions, the Royal Commission was very clear that 15 to wait for these problems to resolve themselves in 16 some way could have disastrous effects, particularly on 17 the young generation that's there. 18 2677 So I think there is some urgency to 19 this sort of initiative. 20 2678 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thanks very 21 much. Those are my questions. 22 2679 MR. TOURIGNY: Thank you. 23 2680 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thanks, Madam 24 Chair. 25 2681 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, StenoTran 522 1 Mr. Switzer. 2 2682 MR. TOURIGNY: Meegwetch. 3 2683 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you for being 4 with us, and have a nice weekend. 5 2684 Madam Secretary. 6 1230 7 2685 MS SANTERRE: The next intervention 8 will be by Christina Keeper. 9 2686 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good afternoon, Ms 10 Keeper. 11 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 12 2687 MS KEEPER: Tansi; hi. My name is 13 Tina Keeper, and I am here today to make a presentation 14 in support of the application for the Aboriginal 15 Peoples Television Network. 16 2688 I have been on the periphery of the 17 development for the APTN, in an advisory capacity and 18 as a friend of the project. When I was asked to 19 participate in that role, I was very honoured because I 20 believe this network is vital to Canada. 21 2689 I feel privileged to be here to speak 22 to the question of whether to approve the application 23 made for the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network. I 24 speak here today as an aboriginal person of Canada and 25 as one who has worked in the Canadian television StenoTran 523 1 industry for several years. 2 2690 I believe that we are at a crucial 3 place in our country's history, one in which a new 4 relationship must be forged between the aboriginal 5 people of Canada and the rest of the country. It will 6 occur only when ignorance is replaced with 7 understanding, when education and sharing become 8 priorities. 9 2691 I believe that this responsibility 10 lies not only with the but as 11 much with aboriginal people ourselves. This initiative 12 is part of that responsibility and for me, personally, 13 participating here today is part of that 14 responsibility. 15 2692 I don't think I need to reiterate the 16 difficult and harrowing experiences that have occurred 17 in this country because of an inequitable relationship 18 between our government and the aboriginal people of 19 Canada. Although I do think it is necessary to speak 20 to the issue of inequity, it is an old truth that binds 21 us all as it has permeated the psyche of this country. 22 2693 It is a deeply held belief that is 23 manifest in so many facets of our lives and in 24 particular in the arena of communications. It is the 25 desire or perceived need by non-aboriginal individuals StenoTran 524 1 and systems to control and interpret aboriginal 2 content. 3 2694 In July of this year the Assembly of 4 First Nations, which is the national political body for 5 Canada's First Nations, released a report which said: 6 "The Assembly of First Nations 7 National Chief is calling on all 8 Canadians to speak out against 9 'Indian-bashing' by the 10 country's media." 11 2695 And: 12 "The national chief noted that 13 Canada's media has yet to 14 respond to major criticisms 15 levelled at them by the Royal 16 Commission on Aboriginal 17 Peoples, including charges that 18 mainstream coverage of native 19 issues was 'spotty, misinformed, 20 stereotyped, and sensational'." 21 (As read) 22 2696 Perhaps to many mainstream Canadians 23 and perhaps to some of you here today these types of 24 comments may seem over-reactive, redundant even, as 25 these are the types of statements our political bodies StenoTran 525 1 have been making for a long time. 2 2697 There is an old saying: "When 3 nothing changes, nothing changes". 4 2698 Changes that are necessary to effect 5 positive change in the nature of the relationship 6 between native and non-native Canada cannot be so slow 7 in coming. I believe it is of paramount importance 8 that, as we quickly approach the next millennium, 9 systemic racism must be confronted to make way for a 10 new relationship. 11 2699 My experience as an actor has been 12 primarily in CBC televised productions. I worked for 13 six seasons on the television series "North of 60" and 14 in various other awards shows and specials. I have had 15 the tremendous opportunity to develop as an actor and 16 to meet people all over this country, and for all of 17 this I will be eternally grateful. 18 2700 But, in participating in over 90 19 production segments, I have rarely had the opportunity 20 to work with crew members who are aboriginal and, to 21 the best of my knowledge, I have worked with only five 22 aboriginal people in the capacities of producer, writer 23 or director: three writers, one writer/director and 24 one producer/writer/director. 25 2701 I know that these are not the only StenoTran 526 1 aboriginal people who have worked for the CBC in these 2 capacities, but given the extent and the role of the 3 Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in this country, they 4 hardly seem adequate when one is considering, 5 essentially, what should be intrinsic to aboriginal 6 programming in Canada: increased aboriginal control of 7 the production and content. 8 2702 The CBC, as an institution which has 9 certainly provided French Canada with programming and 10 opportunities has not always considered aboriginal 11 programming a priority. This reluctance is definitely 12 not confined to the CBC. In fact, they have been the 13 forerunners in terms of aboriginal content. 14 2703 But we are the original people of 15 this country, and we have a rightful place in the 16 television programming of this country. Up to this 17 point, we have not been given that chance, and it is 18 difficult to fathom why without concluding that this 19 has been the result of systemic racism. 20 2704 I am not implying that only we, as 21 aboriginal people, should or can produce work on 22 aboriginal people and their experiences, but it is time 23 that we be allowed space on the stage as well. It is 24 time that we be given the opportunity to share who we 25 are, our cultures, languages, experiences; to be the StenoTran 527 1 interpreters of our own stories. We have the 2 knowledge, experience, manpower and support that is 3 needed to produce our own work. 4 2705 In the 1997 Speech from the Throne, 5 excerpt on Canadian unity, Building a Stronger Canada, 6 it said: 7 "Our values of openness, 8 tolerance and sharing, our 9 qualities of social and 10 linguistic diversity, and our 11 high standard of living equip us 12 exceptionally well for the 13 challenges of a new age. 14 Canadians want a just and 15 sharing society. A prosperous 16 society. A tolerant and highly 17 diverse society. A society that 18 fosters excellence and 19 creativity. Realizing these 20 aspirations fully will require 21 the active engagement of 22 Canadians in all walks of life, 23 as well as our institutions, 24 businesses, voluntary 25 organizations and our StenoTran 528 1 governments. It will require 2 collaboration and partnership. 3 It will require reaching out." 4 2706 This initiative, the Aboriginal 5 Peoples Television Network, is potentially momentous in 6 the direction of a more positive future for Canada. 7 This new direction, however, cannot be achieved without 8 firm decisions and definite commitments; the steps must 9 be tangible. 10 2707 We have lived in an atmosphere in our 11 relationship to one another that has been strained and 12 tenuous and at times difficult to foresee whether it 13 could ever change. I truly believe that the Aboriginal 14 Peoples Television Network will be a gift to this 15 country, benefiting not only the aboriginal people but 16 all other parts of the cultural mosaic that is Canada. 17 2708 Ekosi; thank you. 18 2709 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. 19 2710 Commissioner Pennefather? 20 2711 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you, 21 Madam Chair. 22 2712 Hello and welcome. Thank you for 23 coming all the way to this important hearing. I would 24 like to congratulate you for your contributions as an 25 actress and as a participant in Canada's arts and StenoTran 529 1 cultural community. 2 2713 MS KEEPER: Thank you. 3 2714 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: And thank 4 you for your very eloquent words this morning. 5 2715 In your written submission you 6 mentioned, and brought forward as you did today, your 7 experience as a female native actor. I would like to 8 take advantage of your presence to explore that a 9 little further in talking about your career to date and 10 your observations on mainstream media as well, in terms 11 of the opportunities that are or are not available to 12 native actors, native writers, native directors and 13 producers. And perhaps you wouldn't mind giving us a 14 focus too on women native actors, writers. 15 2716 What do you think will be the key 16 differences that APTN will make in your professional 17 life and in the professional lives of those younger 18 actors and actresses who are coming along? 19 2717 MS KEEPER: I would think that the 20 major contribution to artists and producers and the 21 like will be that they will be able to work. They will 22 be able to have a forum that really has not been there 23 before. 24 2718 When somebody is an artist or chooses 25 to be a writer, director, producer, whatever you choose StenoTran 530 1 to be, it is because that is what you want to do; you 2 believe in it, for whatever reason. Up to this point, 3 for myself personally, what I have seen is that there 4 is a lot of reluctance on the part of the systems that 5 are in place to give you an opportunity to do your 6 work. 7 2719 As an actor, I am hoping that I will 8 have an opportunity, but a lot of times I don't. I 9 have never been offered a role on stage that is a non- 10 native role. I have been faced with comments by media, 11 and other people, that assume that I have no training; 12 that I was literally picked off the street for this 13 job. 14 2720 That is what I am talking about when 15 I talk about deeply ingrained thought in this country. 16 That becomes the biggest barrier, I think. It is a 17 patronizing attitude that believes that you are not 18 really as able; that you are not really a thinker; you 19 are not really capable. 20 2721 Here we are. It is 1998. We have an 21 old tradition in my family that is very strong. I come 22 from a family that has a long history of leadership. 23 The battles that we are battling today is stuff that we 24 were battling at the turn of the century. And now we 25 are at the turn of a new century, and it is time that StenoTran 531 1 we need in this country to say that we are here; we are 2 part of this country; and we are as capable as anybody 3 else in this country. 4 2722 When people argue that mainstream 5 Canada maybe is not as interested in aboriginal 6 programming or aboriginal stories, or aboriginal 7 artists, even images of aboriginal people, I don't 8 think that is true. I say that because having worked 9 on "North of 60" for many years, I can honestly tell 10 you when we were in production before we first went to 11 air in the first season, I thought the show would never 12 make it. I thought Canada is not going to accept this 13 show. 14 2723 In the first season we had two non- 15 native leads out of four. But I thought: Here is a 16 predominantly native cast, set in a native community. 17 They are never going to go for it. We are going to be 18 back home in a couple of years. 19 2724 I was as surprised as anybody that 20 Canada has embraced that show. 21 2725 Speaking of "Seinfeld", I was just 22 told by my producers in CBC focus groups that "North of 23 60" was the number one missed show of shows that had 24 been cancelled after last season, beating out 25 "Seinfeld". StenoTran 532 1 2726 I think that says a lot about what 2 Canadians -- 3 2727 We have, I think, a misconception 4 about what our Canadian audiences want. I think we try 5 to manipulate it a lot of times, especially in terms of 6 Canada and television programming. We have amazing 7 opportunities that the Americans often -- they have 8 formulated a type of programming that is very 9 successful, but Canada is much more accepting of a 10 broader range of programming. 11 2728 I think that is an opportunity that 12 APTN -- I think it is a great opportunity for Canada. 13 2729 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you. 14 I always know how important it is to listen to the 15 experiences of those like yourself, working in film and 16 television, or in any area, to try to understand and to 17 hear what systemic barriers really are. 18 2730 It is often so hard, as I have 19 discussed and been witness to and experienced, to put 20 your finger on -- in fact, it is almost impossible -- 21 where it is coming from. 22 2731 MS KEEPER: Yes, absolutely. I 23 believe that. It is very covert a lot of the time. 24 2732 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: But you 25 moved from there to a discussion of the opportunities StenoTran 533 1 for Canada as a whole and for Canadian programming as a 2 whole in a comment that would have suited well our 3 earlier discussions on Canadian television in general. 4 2733 That is part of your discussion about 5 the opportunities offered by APTN. But in your remarks 6 today and in your written comments you have also 7 indicated that the other important mandate will be to 8 break down these barriers. 9 2734 Those are two very big 10 responsibilities in terms of offering opportunities for 11 those in arts and culture and for programming and ideas 12 and exchange of ideas of aboriginal Canadians, but also 13 to break down barriers between aboriginals and non- 14 aboriginals. 15 2735 What is the most important effect 16 that APTN will have on mainstream media? 17 2736 MS KEEPER: The first thought that 18 comes to my head is that it will challenge mainstream 19 media. At this point, I don't think it was -- 20 particularly south of 60, that without a national 21 network like this the challenge really isn't there. 22 2737 The Royal Commission on Aboriginal 23 Peoples has made its report. It was made public quite 24 some time ago. And yet it seems to have very little 25 impact on mainstream media. StenoTran 534 1 2738 That is what I mean. I think it is 2 our responsibility to start challenging mainstream 3 Canada. It is our responsibility not just to sit back 4 and say "this is what you are doing wrong" -- if 5 nothing changes, then somebody has to take the ball and 6 say: "What can we do to change this?" 7 1245 8 2739 I think that is what will happen in 9 terms of aboriginal media, like a native newscast. 10 They will start to challenge the mainstream media. So 11 that when you say "Here is one report on this story, 12 and here is another report on this story, coming from 13 the horse's mouth" -- 14 2740 I think once it is out there -- and I 15 think that is great for Canada. I think that a lot of 16 racism is based in fear. That is because there is a 17 lot of ignorance. People just don't know. This is the 18 opportunity to start sharing. 19 2741 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you 20 very much for those thoughtful comments. We could 21 discuss this at length, but I think you have made your 22 points very, very clearly. This brings me to one last 23 question which Commissioner Cardozo also asked, in 24 terms of how you think Canadians will react. 25 2742 If we look at this in terms of the StenoTran 535 1 discussions we have had about APTN becoming part of 2 mandatory carriage, it may result in the replacement of 3 other television services. 4 2743 Since we are talking about one 5 important component of this as making sure that all 6 Canadians and all aboriginal Canadians have the widest 7 possible access to this service, if it is going to 8 fulfil the mandates you and I have been discussing, how 9 do you think Canadians will react? We are told that 10 there will be customer concern about losing services 11 and those services being replaced by an APTN-type 12 service. 13 2744 What would one do about that to 14 promote and to market the service? 15 2745 MS KEEPER: I agree. I would be 16 surprised if the initial reaction was not one of 17 concern in the general public. But with the right 18 marketing, with the right kind of voices attached to 19 this network, and where you have public people who are 20 trusted being part of the marketing of this, I don't 21 think it would take very long to change that attitude. 22 2746 I think that you will be quite 23 surprised. I always look back to my experience in 24 "North of 60", just because I was so surprised. I just 25 never expected it. Right from the get-go it was very StenoTran 536 1 successful. I think that it will be the same with 2 APTN. I think that Canada is really ready for this. 3 2747 For some reason we have a lot of fear 4 in this country about giving a place on the stage, as 5 it were, to aboriginal people, and hardly ever is it 6 not successful. As an artist, that is how I see it. 7 People want to know and people are excited about their 8 own country and who is here. 9 2748 I don't think it would take a lot of 10 work. I think that people would be very quick to 11 change their opinion. 12 2749 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you 13 very much. It is good to have an artist here. 14 2750 MS KEEPER: Thank you. 15 2751 THE CHAIRPERSON: Commissioner 16 Cardozo ... 17 2752 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I have a 18 comment and a question. 19 2753 I thought it was interesting in 20 response to Commissioner Pennefather's question about 21 the effect of APTN on the other media that you said it 22 would challenge the mainstream media. I read that as 23 competition, which is something that we tend to 24 encourage a lot in a lot of fields. So that is an 25 interesting thought. StenoTran 537 1 2754 I spent some time going through the 2 various letters that came in, in addition to the 3 briefs, and there were some 300 or so. As you may 4 know, or as you would expect, "North of 60" comes up 5 quite a lot. For the most part, people are saying they 6 would like to see more of "North of 60" and that type 7 of programming. 8 2755 There was one comment where someone 9 said: "I have been on a lot of reserves and I have 10 never seen one like the one on `North of 60'", that it 11 was rather a glorified version. I am wondering if that 12 is something that mainstream media does, or that the 13 mainstream networks do, such that in "North of 60" you 14 have a lot of the story, more than we have ever had 15 before in any other program, but yet there is an 16 element of glorifying or whitewashing or not presenting 17 the full story. 18 2756 MS KEEPER: I would say two things. 19 One is that often mainstream media comes in with a 20 particular bias, and I think that is because of the 21 history. I really do. I believe there is a particular 22 mindset and that people understand that from the time 23 they are very young, and in particular our generation. 24 I think that with the younger generation that is 25 changing. StenoTran 538 1 2757 It colours what is in the media. 2 2758 I remember in university being told 3 by my professors that I was biased, and I would think 4 "And you're not?" 5 2759 That is one of the biggest things 6 about mainstream media. They come in with a particular 7 point of view. 8 2760 Also, a lot of times they don't have 9 a lot of the information. They don't know what our 10 history is. They don't know what has governed Indian 11 people's lives and what has dictated how we live or 12 where we should live. A lot of people just don't know 13 that information, and it is the same with people in the 14 media. 15 2761 I don't think it is uncommon today. 16 I live in Winnipeg and there are headlines such as 17 "Poor Indians Getting Slot Machines". That will be a 18 headline. It perpetuates that same thinking about 19 Indian people. 20 2762 That is one of the things that 21 happens with the media. 22 2763 I have lost my thought, too. 23 2764 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: It is going 24 around. 25 2765 You mentioned "Seinfeld". There is a StenoTran 539 1 school, which I think is in Maniwaki, and a number of 2 the students wrote in. Some of them talked about more 3 of "North of 60". The other thing they said is that 4 they would like to see a native "Seinfeld". So maybe 5 if there had been a native "Seinfeld" it would have 6 done as well as "North of 60". 7 2766 Those are my questions. Thank you 8 very much. 9 2767 THE CHAIRPERSON: Your comment about 10 a professor wondering whether he was biased or you are 11 biased reminds me of one I had. A student was 12 complaining how difficult he was to understand because 13 he had such an accent, to which he answered, very 14 annoyed: "What accent? I don't have an accent." 15 2768 Thank you very much for your 16 participation. 17 2769 MS KEEPER: Thank you. 18 2770 THE CHAIRPERSON: Madam Secretary ... 19 2771 MS SANTERRE: I would now like to 20 invite Silver Birches Senior School to appear. 21 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 22 2772 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good afternoon, Mr. 23 Swanson. I hope your children are behaving in your 24 absence. 25 2773 MR. SWANSON: They best be. StenoTran 540 1 2774 Actually, we have a wonderful school, 2 a wonderful climate, so I have no doubt that they will 3 be very, very busy. 4 2775 As a matter of fact, one of the 5 things they are doing this afternoon is that we are 6 having a mini-United Nations Day and many of our 7 children will be presenting speeches in a variety of 8 languages. Some of our kids will be videotaping it and 9 I look forward to seeing it when I get back. 10 2776 Members of the Commission, Madam 11 Chairman, I thank you for the opportunity of presenting 12 at these hearings. Every now and then we find 13 ourselves presented with an opportunity to truly make a 14 difference, and I believe that this is one of those 15 opportunities. 16 2777 Instituting APTN as a working reality 17 will provide significant opportunity in both mainstream 18 and aboriginal sectors of society. For many years 19 government agencies and aboriginal peoples have sought 20 ways and means by which to provide impetus and 21 opportunity for varied and meaningful job creation. 22 APTN can become such a vehicle because it has the 23 potential to provide diverse opportunity and stimulus 24 to a multitude of people; a people, I must add, with a 25 profusion of untapped energies, talents and resources. StenoTran 541 1 Writers, actors, artists, technicians, support 2 personnel, directors, producers and a myriad of others 3 could discover work opportunities and subsequent 4 economic benefit fro APTN. Truly, this is important. 5 Yet even more important are the social, psychological, 6 cultural and aesthetic values inherent in an 7 opportunity that has been a long time coming. 8 2778 Canada's vast expanse lends to the 9 isolation and physical segregation of our aboriginal 10 people. Settlements are scattered from coast to coast, 11 border to border. The allure of larger towns and 12 cities has resulted in the scattering of aboriginal 13 people from the Atlantic to the Pacific. The advent of 14 APTN has the potential to provide a focal point for the 15 sharing of cultures and ideologies and the linking of 16 people and communities. 17 2779 Yesterday you mentioned something 18 about the programming. I was thinking about it last 19 night, how embryonic in nature it is at this time. I 20 remember when our first child arrived. It was so neat. 21 Then my wife and I said: "Now what do we do? Where do 22 we go from here?" So we nurtured, and we helped, and 23 we assisted. Now we have this beautiful 24-year old 24 who is out travelling the world. We have other 25 children as well, who are equally as beautiful. But it StenoTran 542 1 was the beginning that was so fearful, and the end 2 product has become so beautiful. In a sense I see APTN 3 having that kind of potential. 4 2780 Canadians need to know the history 5 and culture of our aboriginal peoples, just as the 6 Cree, the Mohawk, the Blackfoot, the Carrier, the 7 Nahani and the Inuit, to mention but a few, need the 8 opportunity to share a heritage rich in tradition and 9 diverse in history. The opportunity for sharing is 10 limitless. 11 2781 Just envision, if you will, the 12 benefits of an historical visit depicting the 13 contributions and sacrifices which aboriginal people 14 made in the first and second world wars and in the 15 Korean conflict. 16 2782 I have a number of uncles who served 17 in these positions. I am named after two of them who 18 didn't come back. 19 2783 It was interesting to hear various 20 people mention these different aspects. They are 21 important. 22 2784 Just imagine the sense of pride and 23 self-worth conjured up when true-life heroes are 24 depicted and portrayed in a positive light equal to all 25 races, to all Canadians. APTN can provide this kind of StenoTran 543 1 sharing, this kind of focus, this kind of revelation. 2 What will be required first and foremost, however, is 3 opportunity. 4 2785 Unfortunately, our aboriginal people 5 simply do not have enough in the way of the role models 6 and heroes that CTV, CBC and a host of other networks 7 are so expert at creating. This is, in part, simply 8 due to the fact they did not have the resources, the 9 expertise, nor the medium to promote and create on such 10 a grand scale. But things are changing, thankfully. 11 2786 The granting of this licence can 12 further augment the positive. This opportunity is 13 tremendously important, just as heroes are important. 14 2787 Graham Greene and Chief Dan George 15 have long been two of my favourites because invariably 16 they represented dignified success. These aboriginal 17 men, whose sense of honour and accomplishment were 18 portrayed through their characters, became a source of 19 verification that aboriginal people can succeed in any 20 venue. They became heroes worthy of imitation. They 21 set standards for us to emulate and strive for. They 22 personified realized dreams, signifying that it was 23 okay for us to dream too. And they came to us via the 24 big screen or television. 25 2788 APTN can begin to provide this kind StenoTran 544 1 of opportunity to the aboriginal community and to 2 society at large. Aboriginal people need to see the 3 Ted Nolans and the Buffy St. Maries of the sporting and 4 music industry experiencing success outside the 5 community. 6 1300 7 2789 The following anecdote is an example 8 of what I mean. Sunday evening a group of my 9 aboriginal students and I are going to watch the 10 Belleville Bulls play hockey against the North Bay 11 Centennials in North Bay where I live. When I first 12 asked the students what game they wanted to see, the 13 answer right away was, "Belleville, we want to go see 14 the Bulls." I said, "Why Belleville? They're not 15 doing that great." They all said, "Well, Jeremy 16 Cheechoo plays for them. Don't you know that?" Like, 17 "Come on, Mr. Swanson, get on the ball here." But I 18 did know that. 19 2790 What struck home once again to me was 20 that these kids need heroes, and they're constantly 21 seeking them out. They have their needs, wants and 22 dreams, just like you and I. We saw that with the 23 class of kids that were here today and yesterday. 24 2791 They showed me one of their videos 25 they had done, and I said, "Wow." I wasn't surprised StenoTran 545 1 by it, but I was impressed by it. The rest of Canada 2 needs to see and understand that there are many, many 3 positives with being associated to being an aboriginal 4 Canadian. What better vehicle is there to deliver this 5 message and, at the same time, promote opportunity. 6 2792 In order for a consistent abatement 7 of the biases and misunderstandings inherent in 8 aboriginal-white relations to occur, there must be an 9 established medium through which opportunity to 10 influence the perceptions and realign misconceptions is 11 provided. APTN can do that. Educating people is 12 extremely important. That's what I do. That includes 13 all people. 14 2793 Highlighting the works of acclaimed 15 authors such as Emily Carr and Pauline Johnson equates 16 to sharing and educating. Introducing the works of 17 young authors and artists such as Connie Cook and David 18 Bouchard provides incentive and bridge building. 19 Presenting stone sculpture, pictorial displays, their 20 history and construction, services the uneducated as 21 well as the educated. The non-native world needs to 22 see aboriginal Canadians as contributors, as men and 23 women of character, as creative self-reliant 24 individuals with a great deal to offer. 25 2794 Aboriginal people, particularly our StenoTran 546 1 youth, need to realize that there is hope and yes, 2 indeed, success is attainable. APTN can foster this 3 vision. It will provide varies opportunities. 4 Aboriginal people of all ages, backgrounds, education, 5 needs and wants will obtain access to a medium through 6 which countless ideas can be nurtured, myths exposed, 7 achievements highlighted and people promoted. What an 8 exciting proposition!. What an opportunity! 9 2795 The benefits to be derived from APTN 10 are as profound as they are varied. The potential for 11 making significant social, psychological and 12 educational gain is real. It is easy to imagine how 13 the establishment of a long-distance education program 14 beamed directly into your home can enable the 15 disenfranchised; how it can stimulate challenge and 16 inform; how the introduction of telecasts focusing on 17 aboriginal communities from various regions across 18 Canada would help dissolve the sense of isolation that 19 impedes success; of how better understanding can be 20 nurtured and promoted through exposure and education; 21 of how opportunity can be advertised and successes 22 shared; of how proactive lifestyles are better suited 23 to producing positive lifelong results. 24 2796 There often exists a tremendous void 25 in the lives of the youth that I interact with on a StenoTran 547 1 daily basis. Missing is that essential sense of 2 belonging, of being part of something that makes us all 3 feel valued. APTN could, through creative programming, 4 go a long way towards alleviating this very real, very 5 vital need. 6 2797 In essence, this application is about 7 far more than being granted the right to broadcast. 8 Your decision will be historically and socially 9 significant. Your judgement will determine whether or 10 not you feel the provision of this opportunity for our 11 aboriginal people is essential to their wellbeing, to 12 their continued growth, to their ability to bring 13 together peoples from all sectors and regions of 14 society, and to extinguish many of the prevalent biases 15 and prejudisms too often accepted as truisms. 16 2798 In closing, being the helpful sort 17 that I am and Mr. Nice Guy, let me offer just one 18 thing. If there's one thing that ever comes out of my 19 ten minutes of fame or, as Andy Warhol would say, your 20 five minutes, and when you deliberate on all the facts 21 and figures and put it all together, if there's any one 22 thing that you could remember, I would hope that it 23 would be the fact that embodied in no other application 24 will you find such a meaningful opportunity, that once 25 in a lifetime opportunity to make a significant StenoTran 548 1 difference in the lives of so many of our aboriginal 2 and non-aboriginal people and, in so doing, setting the 3 stage for an even better Canada. 4 2799 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. 5 Swanson. Commissioner Cardozo. 6 2800 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you, 7 Madam Chair and Mr. Swanson. 8 2801 Andy Warhol said 15 minutes of fame. 9 2802 MR. SWANSON: I'm like you with 10 numbers, I didn't have my calculator. 11 2803 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Let me keep 12 you going for another five minutes and ensure that you 13 get all 15. 14 2804 You talk about that once in a 15 lifetime opportunity to make a significant difference 16 to the lives of people, and you open by saying, every 17 now and then we find ourselves presented with an 18 opportunity to truly make a difference. I'm sure that 19 all the people who put the APTN application together 20 feel that way and I think that all of us at the 21 Commission also feel that way. 22 2805 But as I've learned very fast with 23 licensing, for every great, positive idea, there are 24 legitimate ideas as to why you should not go that 25 route. What's even worse is when we're in a StenoTran 549 1 competitive situation and you get seven good 2 applications and there's one spot. 3 2806 In this case I don't know if there's 4 even a question as to whether there is that one spot. 5 So, let me ask you. You mentioned CBC and CTV. 6 They've indicated in their written submissions, CBC has 7 said they're in favour of the channel, they think it's 8 a good idea but it shouldn't be carried on a mandatory 9 basic basis. CTV hasn't quite said what they think 10 about it, but they don't believe it should be licensed 11 on a mandatory basic basis. That is one of the key 12 issues we're looking at here. 13 2807 Let me ask you as a principal, you 14 mentioned the aboriginal students, I take it the school 15 is a fairly multi-cultural school? 16 2808 MR. SWANSON: Yes, about 10 per cent 17 of our population are aboriginal students. They come 18 from as far away as Fort Albany and up into Winisk, 19 Attawapiskat, Moosonee, Moose Factory, and then we have 20 Quebec Cree that come in as well. 21 2809 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: If licensing 22 this station would mean putting them on basic and 23 ordering the cable companies to carry them on sort of 24 the basic level without having to ascribe to an upper 25 tier and without having a choice as to whether or not StenoTran 550 1 they would carry it, the concern is that you may have 2 to bump another channel further up in numbers. 3 2810 My guess is the 10 per cent who are 4 aboriginal would not mind that, and among the others, 5 there would be a variety, perhaps many, who would not 6 mind that either and some who would. How would you, if 7 you were standing up at an assembly and trying to 8 convince the kids or the parents of your school that 9 this is a worthwhile channel, what's your message to 10 them as to why they should support not only the APTN, 11 but putting them on basic and paying the 15 cents a 12 month extra for it? 13 2811 MR. SWANSON: It's the Canadian thing 14 to do. That's how I would probably begin. 15 2812 In my population, the people that I 16 have and the people that I deal with -- and I can only 17 speak from my own personal experience -- they would be 18 very receptive to this kind of programming simply from 19 the fact that in our work environment up in North Bay, 20 where we're certainly not a southern environment, 21 people are acutely aware of many of the needs of the 22 native community. We foster tremendous amounts of 23 interaction, not only amongst aboriginal Canadians but 24 all of our minority groups so that they're promoted and 25 there's a lot of sharing and there's a lot of StenoTran 551 1 interaction and support there. 2 2813 So, the sell wouldn't be a really 3 difficult one. What we have to do and emphasize is 4 that the provision of opportunity for all Canadians has 5 to be part and parcel of our television networks and of 6 our broadcasting and of our programming. I think my 7 question would be: Let me ask you a question. We have 8 100 per cent taken up with the various networks now. 9 What percentage is allocated to aboriginal Canadians, 10 and the answer would be none probably. And I would 11 say, well, we just want a little share. We just want 12 to get our foot in the door. We think it's long 13 overdue because here's what we're going to do for you. 14 We're going to do something for you -- and I think 15 that's the key. We're going to provide a service 16 unlike any other. 17 2814 And then I would start into my 18 salesman's pitch and away I would go. But that is 19 where I would begin. 20 2815 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: What kind of 21 takeup would you get? 22 2816 MR. SWANSON: I think I'd get very 23 positive feedback. People would say to me, "Well, what 24 are you going to do? What are you going to show? How 25 are you going to do it?" StenoTran 552 1 2817 I saw a tape out in the foyer today 2 done by a group of students. If I had an example, I 3 would use that as an example just to say, "This is the 4 kind of positive programming that you're going to get." 5 2818 There's another thing that I have 6 people come to me all the time about, and they say to 7 me, "There's so much garbage on TV; there's so much 8 violence; there's so much this and so much that. What 9 alternatives do we have?" or "How do I control the TV 10 that my children watch?" They're always looking for 11 answers and for different forms of entertainment and 12 education. What a wonderful opportunity APTN is going 13 to be if it's allowed to become a reality, very unique 14 in its programming. 15 2819 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Let me read to 16 you from one of the letters that came in. This is from 17 a student by the name of Priscilla Keys. For the 18 record, it's submission number 300. I believe -- I 19 can't tell from here for sure -- she's one of the 20 students from Maniwaki. I'll read part of it, and I'd 21 like to get a sense of whether you hear similar sorts 22 of things. 23 "Most channels we have are based 24 on sports and other networks 25 that I'm not interested in. I StenoTran 553 1 was just thinking, if they are 2 putting this network called APTN 3 on cable, I want to know when 4 they're putting it on. I'm 5 willing to learn about what was 6 done in the old days. I would 7 like to see some networks about 8 pow-wows and arts and crafts and 9 how our ancestors lived in the 10 old days. Maybe the APTN can 11 put more movie series than I can 12 ask for. [And this is the line 13 I like] Native cooking would be 14 the best for my grandmother." 15 Including that last line or not, does that capture a 16 sense of what some of the aboriginal students at your 17 school would be interested in? 18 2820 MR. SWANSON: Very much so. I think 19 you could expand on that even more so. 20 2821 What we're finding now is that 21 children are better informed, more aware of the various 22 cultural differences, although some still have a very 23 difficult time with it and need support to get through 24 it. 25 2822 But I think what you'll find is that StenoTran 554 1 the programming once again will grow and become more 2 diverse and more pertinent. Yes, cooking is certainly 3 an aspect that would be considered, of course, but I'm 4 very confident that, given the opportunity, they're 5 going to surprise all of us with the creativity part of 6 it and the kinds of programming that can be done. 7 2823 We have a drama club going at my 8 school. Some of my native kids are quite involved in 9 it. The kids are writing this, it's their own drama 10 production, just to give you a feel for this type of 11 thing. It's called The Five Families. What they're 12 going to do is they're going to dramatize the history 13 of five different families. We have a Vietnamese 14 family; we have an aboriginal family; we have some 15 Scots in there; and French Canadian; and one group 16 says, "Well, we're just Canadian." The kids are going 17 to put this together. These are grades 7, 8 and 9 kids 18 who are doing this type of thing. Adults, I'm sure, 19 can become even more creative. But very pointed and 20 very much in tune to what some of the needs are. 21 2824 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: If they're 22 planning to get that play on TV, they'd better get 23 their proposal in quick in case we do licence. 24 2825 MR. SWANSON: We have bids from NBC 25 and -- StenoTran 555 1 2826 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thanks very 2 much for that. I'm glad I was able to get you the full 3 15 minutes, as Andy Warhol would want. Thanks for your 4 presentation. 5 2827 MR. SWANSON: Thank you for the 6 opportunity. 7 2828 THE CHAIRPERSON: When Priscilla's 8 grandmother watches CPAC, she may conclude that 9 Priscilla doesn't like her cooking. 10 2829 Thank you, Mr. Swanson. Have a good 11 trip back. 12 2830 MR. SWANSON: Thank you. 13 2831 THE CHAIRPERSON: And keep those kids 14 in line. 15 2832 MR. SWANSON: That we do. Thank you. 16 2833 THE CHAIRPERSON: We'll adjourn for 17 lunch until 2:30. Nous reprendrons à deux heures et 18 demie. 19 --- Recess at / Suspension à 1315 20 --- Upon resuming at / Reprise à 1430 21 2834 THE CHAIRPERSON: Order, please. 22 2835 Madam Secretary? 23 2836 MS SANTERRE: Thank you, Madam Chair. 24 2837 I would like now to invite the 25 Government of the Northwest Territories, Education StenoTran 556 1 Culture & Employment, to present their intervention. 2 2838 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good afternoon, 3 gentlemen. 4 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 5 2839 MR. CLEVELAND: Thank you, Madam 6 Chairman. My name is Mark Cleveland. I am appearing 7 on behalf of the Honourable Charles Danson, the 8 Minister of Education, Culture and Employment with the 9 Government of the Northwest Territories. 10 Unfortunately, Mr. Danson legislative schedule got 11 changed at the last minute, so he is unable to 12 participate so he asked if I would come down. 13 2840 THE CHAIRPERSON: Give him our 14 regards. 15 2841 MR. CLEVELAND: Thank you. I am the 16 Deputy Minister and I am joined by Mr. Peter Crass, who 17 is the broadcasting coordinator for the department. 18 2842 I would like to just begin by 19 thanking you all for the opportunity to speak in 20 support of the application of Television Northern 21 Canada. As you are most likely aware, the Government 22 of the Northwest Territories has been a very active 23 partner in the development of TVNC and is a major 24 supporter of Aboriginal broadcasting. The GNWT has 25 held a seat on the board of directors of TVNC since its StenoTran 557 1 beginnings. 2 2843 In 1992, or since 1992, TVNC has been 3 broadcasting to every community in the Northwest 4 Territories as well as the Yukon Territory, Nunavut and 5 northern Labrador. It has proven extremely successful 6 in providing a service which even with the best will in 7 the world, no other network in existence can offer. 8 2844 There are regular programs on CBC 9 North, using Aboriginal languages and occasional on the 10 CBC national network which reflect and depict some of 11 the issues and concerns of Aboriginal people. However, 12 the programming on TVNC is indeed unique. 13 2845 TVNC is unique in that clearly it is 14 owned and operated by its membership and with the 15 exceptions of the Government of the Northwest 16 Territories and Yukon College, its full members are not 17 all not-for-profit Aboriginal communications societies 18 and corporations who are responsible to boards of 19 directors which represent the Aboriginal communities 20 each of those societies is formed to serve. 21 2846 The programming is planned, produced 22 and broadcast by Aboriginal people, primarily for the 23 benefit of Aboriginal people. 24 2847 TVNC has given northern Aboriginal 25 people their voice. It has provided Aboriginal StenoTran 558 1 communities have been able to access programming 2 dealing with issues, lifestyles, political changes, 3 economic realities and cultural and linguistic 4 aspirations from an Aboriginal perspective and not 5 necessarily from the perspective of albeit well meaning 6 non-Aboriginal producers and programmers. 7 2848 At the same time, non-Aboriginal 8 viewers within the TVNC broadcast area have been 9 exposed to cultures, the languages, beliefs and the 10 world view of Aboriginal people. 11 2849 I would just like to say at this 12 point, Madam Chair, that I may be one of the few people 13 in this room that never watched "Seinfeld", but I have 14 watched a lot of TVNC. 15 2850 The programming on TVNC has had a 16 profound effect on those of us who have been fortunate 17 to receive the signal. We are more aware and have a 18 deeper understanding and respect for all of the 19 cultures and languages of the north. 20 2851 The programming of TVNC has not only 21 addressed the specific needs of distinct cultural and 22 linguistic groups, but it has also become a major force 23 in fostering communication, understanding, respect and 24 positive collaboration between cultures across the 25 north. StenoTran 559 1 2852 The experience of the past six years 2 of TVNC can be viewed as an extremely comprehensive 3 pilot project for Aboriginal communications across 4 Canada. New communication skills have been developed 5 and certainly jobs for Aboriginal people have been 6 created. 7 2853 Northern people do have a better 8 understanding of each other's culture and the viewing 9 audience has tuned in with both enthusiasm and with 10 pride. We believe the evolution of TVNC from a 11 northern Aboriginal television network into a national 12 Aboriginal television network is a natural step to take 13 and the Government of the Northwest Territories is 14 fully supportive of that effort. 15 2854 I would like to make it clear that in 16 doing so, we as a northern government are not seeking a 17 position on the board of directors of the APTN and we 18 support the proposal that the new board of directors be 19 exclusively Aboriginal. 20 2855 We are confident that the separate 21 northern switching mechanism that is proposed by TVNC 22 in its application will still offer us the opportunity 23 of broadcasting proceedings from the Northwest 24 Territories legislative assembly and NWT educational 25 programming on a regional rather than a national basis. StenoTran 560 1 2856 TVNC has worked diligently to 2 incorporate the needs and aspirations of southern 3 Aboriginal organizations and independent producers to 4 ensure that the national network truly represents 5 national interests. 6 2857 Those national interests include not 7 only the interests of not only Aboriginal people but of 8 all Canadians. Just as TVNC programming has helped to 9 build cultural pride within the northern Aboriginal 10 cultures and has successfully nurtured understanding of 11 Aboriginal issues within the northern non-Aboriginal 12 population, so too will APTN provide both a voice for 13 all Canadian Aboriginal cultures and a forum for 14 discussion with all non-Aboriginal Canadians in 15 developing an understanding and mutual respect between 16 the groups. 17 2858 TVNC was born in an era of adequate 18 government funding. APTN will be born in an era of 19 greatly reduced government funding, an era of necessary 20 self-sufficiency. A major and positive difference 21 between TVNC and APTN, apart from its broadcast area, 22 is that, with the support of the commission, mandatory 23 carriage on cable systems throughout the country will 24 ensure that Aboriginal broadcasting will not only reach 25 all Canadians but it will also become self-sustaining. StenoTran 561 1 2859 The income derived from the mandatory 2 carriage, as described in the application, will 3 primarily be used to offer direct support to Aboriginal 4 production in the form of broadcast licence fees. This 5 support is critical to the development of Aboriginal 6 programming and to the development of the Aboriginal 7 production sector within the national broadcasting 8 environment. 9 2860 The Aboriginal people of Canada 10 deserve such consideration and recognition of their 11 vital role within this nation. Canadians deserve and 12 need access to the first cultures of this country and 13 APTN will provide the first real exposure of aboriginal 14 cultures to many Canadians. 15 2861 The range and depth of programming 16 that is planned for APTN, conceived, produced and 17 broadcast by Aboriginal people of Canada will go a long 18 way to ensuring the inclusion of Aboriginal people in 19 the Canadian consciousness. 20 2862 Public support for the new national 21 network I think has been well demonstrated by TVNC in 22 their application and its viability has been well 23 demonstrated. Inclusion of this service within basic 24 cable packages across the country can only serve to 25 strengthen the Canadian broadcasting industry and our StenoTran 562 1 nation as a whole. 2 2863 I would encourage the commission to 3 grant the national broadcast licence with mandatory 4 carriage on cable systems to the Aboriginal people of 5 Canada for the benefit of all Canadians. 6 2864 Thank you, Madam Chair. 7 2865 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. 8 Cleveland, Mr. Crass. 9 2866 I find interesting in both your 10 written application intervention and your oral one 11 today that you refer to it TVNC as having been a pilot 12 project. I assume you mean a pilot project for TVNC. 13 And that is an interesting perspective to add to the 14 comfort of its success that it is building on something 15 that has been there already. And I am not sure that we 16 have heard that perspective, you know, as succinctly 17 put as characterizing it as a pilot project for what is 18 to come if they are granted the licence. 19 2867 I also see that although in your 20 written intervention, you had indicated that you sat on 21 their board, that you would not now. What is your -- 22 you say you are comfortable with the project but you 23 want the legislation to be broadcast. 24 2868 What I would like to comment on is 25 the extent of your level of comfort considering, StenoTran 563 1 despite the separate feed of your level of comfort of 2 the, this transformation of the pilot, so to speak, to 3 APTN with regards to your territory, whether you have 4 some concern about what it may do to the programming 5 overall vis-à-vis the north. 6 2869 MR. CLEVELAND: Thank you very much. 7 2870 I should, I think, make sure that it 8 is clear and there is no misunderstanding. 9 2871 As a pilot project, I think you 10 framed it very well. It certainly is an explanation of 11 moving from something that is proven in our case to a 12 bigger situation. I would not want to in any way 13 denigrate the work of TVNC. 14 2872 THE CHAIRPERSON: Oh, no, absolutely 15 not. It would be that there is a level of comfort 16 there perhaps about the success of the bigger project 17 than if you hadn't had your hand in it at all. 18 2873 MR. CLEVELAND: Yes, thank you. In 19 terms of the development of the application and our 20 comfort level, I believe that the working relationship 21 we have had in the territories has been a very positive 22 one. 23 2874 We believe that the arrangements that 24 have been proposed in the application continue -- will 25 continue to meet northern needs as well as expanding StenoTran 564 1 the programming so that, in fact, northern Aboriginal 2 communities will have a greater opportunity than they 3 have now to see some of the activities that are 4 occurring across Canada. Certainly the feedback we 5 have received has been very positive in that regard. 6 And, as we mentioned in our documents, we really do not 7 have any concerns about the proposed approach as it 8 relates to programming. Thank you. 9 2875 THE CHAIRPERSON: Wonderful. If you 10 are pleased, we are pleased. And we certainly thank 11 you for making what is obviously a long trip to come 12 and see us. I am sure the applicant appreciates it and 13 so do we because it indicates the extent to which you 14 are comfortable with the project with regard to your 15 people, so to speak, and that is helpful. 16 2876 Thank you, Mr. Cleveland, Mr. Crass. 17 We hope you have a good trip back and a nice weekend. 18 2877 MR. CLEVELAND: Thank you very much. 19 I appreciate the time of the commission. 20 2878 THE CHAIRPERSON: Madam Secretary. 21 2879 MS SANTERRE: Thank you, Madam Chair. 22 2880 The next intervenor will be the Inuit 23 Tapirisat of Canada. 24 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 25 2881 MS FORD: Good afternoon, Madam StenoTran 565 1 Chair, Commissioners. 2 2882 My name is Violet Ford, and I am 3 speaking on behalf of the Inuit Tapirisat of Canada. 4 The Inuit Tapirisat is a national organization reaching 5 the Inuit of all the regions of the Inuit across the 6 north. 7 2883 Our mandate spans a broad range of 8 political, economic, social and cultural concerns but 9 communications and particularly Aboriginal broadcasting 10 have always been especially important to us. And I am 11 pleased to have this opportunity to address you today 12 on the future of television in northern Canada. 13 2884 As some of you may know, ITC has a 14 long history of support for Aboriginal broadcasting. 15 In 1978, we initiated "Inukshuk", the pilot television 16 project that later became the Inuit Broadcasting 17 Corporation. We believed then and believe now in the 18 importance of autonomy for Aboriginal broadcasters. 19 And so IBC has operated as a completely independent 20 entity since its incorporation in 1981. But we remain 21 very proud of these achievements as well as the 22 extraordinary work of Okalakatiget, TNI, and the 23 Inuvialuit Communications Society and indeed the 24 accomplishments of all of TVNC's member organizations. 25 2885 These broadcasters have created a StenoTran 566 1 whole in new industry in our communities. They fought 2 for and won recognition for Aboriginal language in the 3 Broadcast Act. They produced cutting-edge programming 4 on shoe-string budgets and they have been instrumental 5 in promoting and preserving the languages and the 6 cultures which form the heart of Aboriginal Canada. 7 2886 It is difficult to explain to 8 southerners just what Aboriginal television has meant 9 to us. When we are growing up in our communities, 10 there were simply no Inuit on television at all. We 11 appeared occasionally as comic characters in 12 commercials or in TV movies, usually portrayed by 13 Japanese actors or Anthony Quinn. 14 2887 All that changed with the 15 introduction of IBC, Okalakatiget, TNI and ICS. 16 Suddenly, we were seeing ourselves, hearing our own 17 music and stories, watching events in our own 18 communities, all produced by our own directors and 19 film-makers. Our people were on television. Even 20 better, our people were making television. 21 2888 I know the same thing was happening 22 in Sioux Lookout, Ontario, and in Thompson, Manitoba. 23 Right across Canada, Aboriginal peoples were seeing 24 themselves through their own eyes for the first time. 25 2889 Our programs were on late at night, StenoTran 567 1 squeezed in between "The National" and "Barney Miller" 2 reruns, but we were on air. 3 2890 And then, in 1992, came TVNC and 4 suddenly there was a whole channel that was about us. 5 2891 It was a strange new territory at 6 first. Inuit were not used to sharing programmings 7 with Cree, Dogrib, Slavey and Ojibway producers, but 8 our communities were absolutely fascinated. 9 2892 We had not had the opportunity to see 10 how our northern neighbours lived. And their stories, 11 their lives, seen through the eyes of our producers 12 were a revelation to us. We hope the Commission will 13 make that same opportunity available to all Canadians. 14 2893 From an Inuit perspective, that is a 15 capsule history of Aboriginal television in Canada. 16 Since 1982, we have seen extraordinary growth, the 17 emergence of mature, sophisticated broadcast 18 organizations, the evolution of multifaceted 19 broadcasting services and the emergence of 20 extraordinary talent, cutting-edge video-makers like 21 Martin Kreelak and Sak Kunuk, who began their careers 22 with IBC. That is the sunny side of the story. 23 2894 On the darker side, the Aboriginal 24 broadcasters of Canada have been subjected to funding 25 cuts or freezes literally every year since 1984. Both StenoTran 568 1 the broadcasters and TVNC itself have lost significant 2 amounts of funding. The message from government has 3 been consistent, if not always pleasant. The 4 Aboriginal broadcasting industry must seek revenues 5 from sources other than government. 6 2895 Starting well, the broadcasters have 7 taken up that challenge. 8 1445 9 2896 Well, the broadcasters have taken up 10 that challenge with imagination and vigour. They have 11 marketed their programming, they have launched 12 corporate subsidiaries, and now, in submitting this 13 proposal, they are seeking the support of the 14 Commission to expand their services into southern 15 Canada. The additional revenue they generate through 16 this expansion will flow directly into production: it 17 will provide critical support to existing northern 18 broadcasters and nurture the growing independent 19 aboriginal production community in northern and 20 southern Canada. 21 2897 This is a truly win/win situation. 22 Aboriginal broadcasters will gain much needed revenue, 23 and southern viewers will finally get to experience 24 Canada's most unique and distinctive broadcast service. 25 2898 What will the extension of this StenoTran 569 1 service into southern Canada mean? First, it will mean 2 that thousands of Inuit and First Nations people living 3 in cities will have the opportunity to plug back into 4 their own cultures. But more important, as many of the 5 interveners have mentioned, it means that southern 6 Canada will finally see us through our own eyes. 7 Television conveys the subtleties of culture more 8 effectively than any other medium. Many thousands of 9 studies have been written about Inuit psychology or 10 Ojibway culture or Cree humour; not one of those 11 studies can convey our reality as effectively as a 12 single half-hour episode of Super Shamou, IBC's Inuit 13 superhero in gumboots. APTN will present the full 14 spectrum of contemporary Aboriginal life through news, 15 drama, humour, how-to programming and documentaries, 16 and for the first time Canada and the world will see us 17 as we are. 18 2899 We assume we don't have to convince 19 the Commission that APTN deserves national carriage on 20 its artistic merits. APTN is more than a cultural 21 curiosity. Even at its current low level of funding, 22 the network has consistently broken new ground and 23 provided a forum for some of Canada's most exciting new 24 filmmakers and video producers. 25 2900 We also assume the Commission StenoTran 570 1 recognizes the need for an aboriginal perspective in 2 news and current affairs. In recent years, media 3 coverage of aboriginal issues in Canada have created a 4 widespread perception of reservation-bound natives 5 racked by poverty and alcoholism, who appear 6 periodically on TV screens waving guns on a blockade 7 with another incomprensible demand. This sad and 8 dishonest cliché is reflected in dwindling public 9 interest in aboriginal issues. 10 2901 Most Canadians have a very limited 11 understanding of the positive political, social and 12 economic links between Canada and its First Nations. 13 How many Canadians know that the new Territory of 14 Nunavut will come into existence on April 1st of next 15 year? How many understand the issues underlying the 16 Nisga'a Land Claims Settlement? The licensing of TVNC 17 will finally provide us all with a service that does 18 justice to the vitality and complexity of native 19 Canada. 20 2902 The final issue we would like to 21 address is the question of cost, the $1.80 per year per 22 subscriber that TVNC requires as the price of survival. 23 Yesterday Abraham noted that that was the price of a 24 coke and a chocolate bar. In our settlements, that's 25 the price of a coke or a chocolate bar. In any case, StenoTran 571 1 given that 68 per cent of southern viewers surveyed 2 said that they would gladly pay the necessary 15 cents 3 per month for TVNC, the point would seem to be moot. 4 2903 We realize the Commission must deal 5 with a complex range of regulatory and legislative 6 issues and we respect your need to operate within that 7 framework. But Inuit tend to be direct, and perhaps in 8 this case we can help you get right to the heart of the 9 matter at hand. The decision facing the Commission is 10 this: Will you integrate Canada's aboriginal peoples 11 into Canada's television system? Or, for the sake of 12 15 cents a month, will you relegate us once again to 13 the margins? 14 2904 Commissioners, many of us have used 15 the word "challenge" in our presentations. In ITC's 16 view, the aboriginal broadcasters in this room have met 17 every conceivable challenge for the last 20 years. In 18 the seventies they met the challenge of developing 19 pilot projects like Ironstar and Inukshuk in remote 20 communities across Canada. In the eighties they meet 21 the challenge of creating full-service, professional 22 broadcasting organizations in an era of dwindling 23 resources and political support. In the nineties they 24 met the challenge of initiating the world's first 25 aboriginal television network. The broadcasters have StenoTran 572 1 met every challenge. 2 2905 Now, Commissioners, the challenge is 3 yours. 4 2906 APTN has a service to provide. It is 5 undeniably important, it is popular, and it is the most 6 Canadian service imaginable. So it is up to you. If 7 you believe that aboriginal people have something to 8 say to the rest of Canada, if you believe that our 9 culture, our vision and our way of life are in fact an 10 integral part of this country, then give us our 11 national voice. Let us bring you into our communities. 12 Let us give you the best of our music and introduce you 13 to the best of our artists. Let our writers and our 14 journalists tell you our stories. 15 2907 Our culture is our greatest treasure, 16 and through APTN we want to share that treasure with 17 Canada. Commissioners, we hope you accept. 18 2908 Thank you. 19 2909 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you -- it is 20 Ms Ford? 21 2910 MS FORD: Yes. 22 2911 THE CHAIRPERSON: Your eloquence is 23 such that I am sure any questions from me at this stage 24 would be clumsy, so I won't ask any. 25 2912 MS FORD: Thank you. StenoTran 573 1 2913 THE CHAIRPERSON: We thank you very 2 much for your presentation which is, in and of itself, 3 helpful to the process and we thank you for coming. 4 2914 MS FORD: Yes, and, by the way, this 5 is Terry Rudden. He is an advisor for ITC on 6 communications issues. 7 2915 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good afternoon. 8 2916 MS SANTERRE: Excuse me, Ms Ford, can 9 I have a copy of your presentation, because of the 10 particularity of the names that you used in your 11 presentation, for the court reporters? 12 2917 MS FORD: Yes. 13 2918 MS SANTERRE: Thank you. 14 2919 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very 15 much. 16 2920 Madam Secretary. 17 2921 MS SANTERRE: I would like now to 18 invite Mr. Ted Montour to present his intervention. 19 2922 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good afternoon, 20 Monsieur Montour. Proceed when you are ready. 21 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 22 2923 MR. MONTOUR: Thank you. Thank you, 23 Madam Secretary. 24 2924 I am pleased to be here today in 25 unceded Algonquin territory, and I would like to begin StenoTran 574 1 by expressing my thanks, Madam Chair, to Commissioners 2 and to CRTC staff for extending to me the invitation to 3 appear in support of my friends at TVNC/APTN. 4 2925 I come from the Grand River Territory 5 of the Six Nations in southern Ontario. I can remember 6 when the first televisions appeared in my community and 7 in my family. Where we lived we were within broadcast 8 range of the upper New York State, Buffalo flagship 9 stations of the U.S. networks, as well as the CBC. 10 2926 My earliest memories of television 11 include the CBC news, Ed Sullivan, Warner Brothers 12 cartoon characters, the Three Stooges, the Walt Disney 13 show, Hockey Night in Canada, Hopalong Cassidy, the 14 Lone Ranger and Tonto, the Cisco Kid, and Dizzy Dean 15 and PeeWee Reese doing the baseball game of the week. 16 2927 I saw war on the television news, 17 lessons in politics and international conflict, made 18 all the more real to me by the fact that I had family 19 subject to the draft in the United States. There were 20 individuals whom I knew from my home community, boys 21 with whom I had gone to school or played ball or 22 hockey, enlisted in various branches of the United 23 States armed forces and who were sent to Vietnam. 24 2928 I have also, as the eldest son of a 25 teacher, been an avid reader almost all of my life -- StenoTran 575 1 texts, novels, magazines, newspapers -- and I listened 2 to radio, rock, news and sports. 3 2929 I have had the good fortune to meet 4 some of the individuals to whom I was first introduced 5 by the television: George Armstrong, Jay Silverheels, 6 Pierre Trudeau, Patrick Watson and Laurier LaPierre, to 7 name a few. 8 2930 I have enjoyed seeing the talents and 9 accomplishments of friends like Gary Farmer and Graham 10 Greene on both the small and big screens, although not 11 enough. 12 2931 I have spent eventful years here in 13 the National Capital, dealing on both sides of the 14 camera with television journalists through every round 15 of constitutional talks since 1982, through the tragic 16 death of Minnie Sutherland and through the tense and 17 dangerous summer of 1990. 18 2932 I have also watched my two pre-school 19 nieces effortlessly manipulating the television 20 satellite remote control -- not to mention hiding it 21 from their father to tease him -- or watching 22 themselves on tape, celebrating a birthday or pow-wow 23 dancing or figure skating. 24 2933 All of this anecdotal information to 25 say that I have been observing and absorbing the StenoTran 576 1 influences of television most of my life. 2 2934 We can see from the results of TVNC's 3 consumer research conducted earlier this year that both 4 aboriginal and non-aboriginal Canadians agree on the 5 need, and the value for the Canadian consciousness and 6 experience, of having a national aboriginal television 7 service. 8 2935 I asked myself, in the course of 9 writing my letter of support for TVNC and deciding to 10 seek the opportunity to appear and intervene, what 11 observations and persuasion I could offer while taking 12 up the valuable time of everyone here today. I found a 13 part of my answer in Gary Farmer's Supplementary Brief, 14 Schedule 29 in the TVNC application, and I quote, 15 "... the opportunity for programming to be developed on 16 concepts of peace and harmony." I found another part 17 of my response in a recent edition of The Sports 18 Network's Off The Record interview show featuring 19 former NHL Coach of the Year Ted Nolan. And I found 20 yet another part of my answer as I was writing this and 21 listening to the discussion on Newsworld's "Benmerguy 22 Live" broadcast about the Nisga'a Treaty in British 23 Columbia. 24 2936 Aboriginal artists, producers and 25 broadcasters need more and better access to development StenoTran 577 1 and production resources and to bigger and broader 2 audiences than they now have. Canadian viewers will 3 benefit from the stories, perspectives and advice that 4 are available from aboriginal Canada. We have our own 5 unique ways of telling Canadians about Canada and we 6 have the storytellers to convey the message. 7 2937 I had occasion earlier this summer to 8 speak with a successful Canadian TV drama producer who 9 had a keen and genuine interest in telling stories from 10 the point of view of aboriginal dramatic characters. 11 Her belief that Canadian commercial television, and 12 audiences, would respond positively to more such 13 characters and stories and her willingness to back up 14 that belief with action were profoundly heartening to 15 me. 16 2938 Today's cable television viewing 17 universe includes History Television, where I have seen 18 several films from Ted Turner's "Native Americans" film 19 series and, more recently, a story about highly 20 decorated aboriginal veteran Tommy Prince, who has 21 already been mentioned here today, and I ask myself, 22 why not on an aboriginal channel. 23 2939 I see the work of established and 24 emerging aboriginal artists, speaking of both our 25 traditions and our contemporary lives, in languages and StenoTran 578 1 media that are universally understood and accessible. 2 2940 As I said, we don't lack for stories 3 or storytellers. 4 2941 I am a sports fan. I see Ted Nolan 5 being interviewed on TSN, graciously and deftly 6 fielding questions which practically beg a bitter or 7 rancorous answer about his treatment at the hands of 8 the NHL. I cannot help but wonder how he might respond 9 to more empathetic, but equally pointed, questions from 10 an aboriginal interviewer. 11 2942 I see the Creator's game, lacrosse, 12 Canada's national sport, enjoying unprecedented growth 13 and popularity internationally, with six new competing 14 nations at this year's quadrennial World Championships 15 in Baltimore, Maryland. The Iroquois Nationals 16 finished fourth overall in a field of eleven national 17 sides at that tournament. 18 2943 The National Lacrosse League 19 professional series, in the winter months, fills arenas 20 in Buffalo and New York and Philadelphia, and has its 21 playoff and final games carried on ESPN. The NLL has 22 one new and still-struggling Canadian franchise and to 23 date no Canadian TV coverage. Yet several years ago, 24 during the last major league baseball players' strike, 25 TSN coverage of the Mann Cup Canadian Senior Major StenoTran 579 1 Lacrosse finals between Six Nations and New Westminster 2 drew and held credible numbers. The producer, the 3 play-by-play and colour announcers all told me the same 4 thing -- sponsorship. 5 2944 The North American Indigenous Games 6 draw more athletes and participants than the Maccabia 7 Games, and tie site alternates between Canada and the 8 United States. I can think of no greater incentive 9 for young aboriginal athletes to participate and 10 compete than the prospect of one's performance being 11 seen live on TV by friends and family back home and 12 across the country. 13 2945 While on the subject of television 14 sports and the dearth of aboriginal sports television 15 and coverage in particular, let us consider the 16 possibility and the opportunities for partnership that 17 I see here. In the same way that arts and culture and 18 fiction or dramatic television production by and for 19 aboriginal Canadians benefit from collaboration and 20 partnership with mainstream and commercial TV 21 broadcasters and producers, so also should aboriginal 22 sports programming producers contemplate partnerships 23 with the TSN's and the Sportsnets of the world. 24 2946 Turning to news and public affairs, I 25 mentioned that I had been watching CBC Newsworld StenoTran 580 1 earlier this week when Ralph Benmerguy's topic for the 2 day was the Nisga'a Treaty signed this summer in 3 British Columbia. I was successful for the first time 4 in actually getting through and on the air. Instant 5 national dialogues such as this can only benefit 6 Canadians. 7 1500 8 2947 Eight years ago, I entered a newly 9 opened restaurant in the Byward Market in search of 10 some lunch, and a television. I was hungry and, 11 because the building in which the Assembly of First 12 Nations' offices were then housed was not hard-wired 13 for cable, I was looking for the latest live Newsworld 14 coverage of the confrontations, with the SQ at 15 Kahnasetake and Kanawake and in other First Nation 16 communities across Canada. 17 2948 The events of the so-called Oka 18 crisis of 1990 and the arresting and disturbing images 19 of Quebec police, and then Canadian soldiers, invading 20 First Nation communities are burned into my memory. 21 The "raw and unedited" live broadcasts, and the 22 commentary from increasingly shocked and fatigued CBC 23 news-readers and analysts literally put a newly minted, 24 and not at all widely watched, Newsworld on the 25 Canadian and international TV broadcast map. StenoTran 581 1 2949 Each time I returned to my same seat 2 in this restaurant, I was joined by the staff, other 3 patrons, and colleagues and fellow volunteers who were 4 involved in keeping the AFN offices open seven days a 5 week, around the clock, throughout that summer. 6 2950 Never have I had a more graphic 7 object lesson in the power of television to galvanize 8 viewers and shape public opinion, nor a more moving 9 testimonial to the interest and support for First 10 Nations among "ordinary" Canadians. 11 2951 The other jarring realization for me 12 was the almost total absence of analysis, opinion, or 13 other commentary from aboriginal journalists. A 14 handful of spots, a barely perceptible nod to 15 "balance", a vacuum noted and commented upon by 16 international correspondents and observers, and most 17 glaringly more air time for reporters in or at the 18 Kahnasetake Treatment Centre compound -- talk about 19 becoming "part of the story". 20 2952 Nor was I impressed by the seemingly 21 inexhaustible capacity of the Canadian media to swallow 22 whole, and then regurgitate, the "operative statement" 23 of the day from the Canadian Forces spinners. 24 2953 In this, and many other situations in 25 which I have been involve personally and StenoTran 582 1 professionally, the explanation, the excuse, for such 2 obvious, not to mention conscious, omissions, has been 3 this precious "balance" or "impartiality". 4 2954 Aboriginal professionals are 5 arbitrarily deemed to be somehow inherently incapable 6 of being objective about aboriginal issues. 7 2955 I see no such rationalization offered 8 for the nationalist media of Quebec, or the right-wing 9 broadcasters and journalists in the west and elsewhere 10 in Canada, nor indeed for feminist commentators. No 11 one questions their capability to be objective about 12 the PQ or the Bloc, or the Tories or Reform, or 13 "women's issues" -- certainly not openly. 14 2956 Approval and endorsement by this 15 Commission for the Aboriginal Peoples Television 16 Network, in particular for mandatory carriage, will 17 send a message of balance and fairness far stronger 18 than any individual producer, programmer, or outlet can 19 deliver. 20 2957 Thank you; merci. 21 2958 LA PRÉSIDENTE: Merci, Monsieur 22 Montour. 23 2959 Conseillère Pennefather. 24 2960 CONSEILLÈRE PENNEFATHER: Merci, 25 Madame la Présidente. StenoTran 583 1 2961 Thank you for your presentation. I 2 really appreciate you, as has been previously done here 3 today, taking us through a personal history and your 4 relationship with television and its particular 5 influence. 6 2962 Listening to the first part, the 7 shows you were describing puts us pretty well in the 8 same age bracket. But I think your point is a little 9 different, although from my point of view it did form a 10 view of the world that was not exactly reflective of my 11 gender either or of other influences. 12 2963 I think you have been quite eloquent 13 and clear on that point. 14 2964 I noted in your written submission 15 that you are a communications expert and a policy 16 adviser, and I noted your comment: 17 "For many years, Canadian 18 commentators, opinion leaders, 19 legislators have espoused the 20 need and the place for an 21 aboriginal presence and voice in 22 the country's communications 23 media." 24 2965 It is the larger picture, which I 25 think is important. StenoTran 584 1 2966 I have two questions. One is how you 2 feel the APTN service will influence the mainstream 3 media. How will it change the presence of aboriginal 4 journalists on mainstream media, et cetera? 5 2967 Certainly as a viewer you will be 6 able to get a point of view that is different in 7 watching a service, should it be licensed, such as 8 APTN. But on the main services, what change will there 9 be there? 10 2968 My second point is perhaps the one I 11 would like you to start with, and that is: How do you 12 see a service like APTN situating itself in the global 13 communications environment? 14 2969 MR. MONTOUR: If I could, I would 15 refer to a conversation I had about a year and a half 16 ago with an acquaintance, a friend of my mother's 17 actually, who along with his wife was her host in 18 Europe several years back when she was representing our 19 community government in Europe. This gentleman and his 20 wife were both journalists, professors of journalism 21 based in Paris. 22 2970 They were actually the source or the 23 inspiration for some of my comments about the 24 international impact about how things like Oka were 25 perceived outside of our borders. StenoTran 585 1 2971 I think quite frankly -- and again, 2 building on the comments from the presentation team, 3 particularly about the exportability and potential for 4 productions by aboriginal producers in Canada to other 5 countries. 6 2972 I think that APTN and the producers 7 that provide it with programming will find very, very 8 ready markets internationally for their product. I 9 would not at all be surprised if they were to find 10 downstream -- maybe more closely downstream than they 11 would like -- that their correspondents, their on-air 12 people, their producers and suppliers become the 13 subjects of international demand, as well as domestic 14 demand here. 15 2973 I think for good or ill -- and I 16 don't think there is very much ill or downside to it -- 17 that having greater exposure for aboriginal 18 journalists, whether it be through an aboriginal medium 19 or otherwise, can only lead to more and better 20 opportunities for those individuals and encourage our 21 young people to pursue those kinds of professional 22 goals as well. 23 2974 Although I would hesitate to 24 characterize it too deeply in this way, but if APTN 25 were to be kind of a farm system for journalism in StenoTran 586 1 general -- one of may I might add, these days -- that's 2 all to the good. I think ultimately if someone who is 3 seen for a couple of years on APTN suddenly becomes 4 seen on CTV or CBC, maybe they will go from becoming 5 the aboriginal J.D. Roberts of MuchMusic to the John 6 Roberts of CBS News. That's all to the good, as far as 7 I am concerned. 8 2975 It makes room for people who are 9 coming up. 10 2976 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: I think 11 that "opportunities" point is very important. I hear a 12 story that has a familiar ring to it about being 13 successful abroad before being recognized in ones own 14 country. 15 2977 But I have a feeling that -- 16 2978 MR. MANTOUR: But we can come home 17 again. 18 2979 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Yes. I 19 have a feeling that you were actually looking at this 20 from many different points of view. 21 2980 What brought me to ask you the 22 question also about the global environment was access 23 to different points of view. You quoted from the 24 supplementary brief: 25 "The opportunity for programming StenoTran 587 1 to develop on concepts of peace 2 and harmony." 3 2981 It is in the context of the global 4 environment that I was interested in how Canada's 5 positioning will then be changed, or not, by an APTN as 6 part of our environment and what that will mean in the 7 global communications world. 8 2982 MR. MONTOUR: To be as brief as I 9 could be about it, I think that Canada's place, 10 Canada's reputation, cannot be but enhanced, 11 particularly when it comes to notions of peace. Our 12 international diplomatic reputation for peacekeeping 13 and peacemaking being what it is, I see a considerable 14 amount of compatibility there. 15 2983 Quite frankly, things like the notion 16 of peace as it is currently used in the world 17 vocabulary could do with a bit of recasting and 18 updating. But in terms of communications and 19 communications media, I believe that not only in those 20 countries elsewhere in the world where there are 21 indigenous populations and which I see certainly as 22 being prime international supporters and potential 23 markets as well, but elsewhere where there are 24 considerable numbers of people with a keen personal 25 interest, such as in western Europe, whether it be StenoTran 588 1 Germany or France or Belgium, or wherever, about North 2 American -- or American, I should say -- aboriginal 3 peoples, I think that, as I said before, it can't do 4 anything but enhance and embellish Canada's standing 5 internationally and our reputation. 6 2984 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you 7 very much for those comments, and thank you for being 8 here today and sharing your thoughts with us. 9 2985 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. 10 Montour. 11 2986 MR. MONTOUR: Thank you. 12 2987 THE CHAIRPERSON: Madam Secretary? 13 2988 MS SANTERRE: Thank you, Madame 14 Chair. 15 2989 The next intervention will be by the 16 Canadian Cable Television Association, Association 17 canadienne de télévision par câble. 18 2990 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good afternoon, Mr. 19 Watt, Mr. Thomson, Ms Kirshenblatt. 20 2991 You are not Mr. Stursberg, I hope. 21 2992 MR. THOMSON: No, thank goodness. 22 2993 THE CHAIRPERSON: I was asking Ms 23 Kirshenblatt. 24 2994 MR. THOMSON: No, thank goodness. 25 2995 THE CHAIRPERSON: I made that mistake StenoTran 589 1 before, where a gentleman appeared instead of a lady, 2 and somehow or other -- I forget what confusion I 3 caused, but it was serious. 4 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 5 2996 MR. THOMSON: Good afternoon, Madam 6 Chairperson, Commissioners. My name is Jay Thomson, 7 and I am Vice-President, Legal and Regulatory Affairs, 8 for the Canadian Cable Television Association. 9 2997 With me today are Dave Watt, CCTA's 10 Senior Vice-President of Economics and 11 Telecommunications, and Bev Kirshenblatt, CCTA's 12 Regulatory Counsel. 13 2998 Our President, Richard Stursberg, was 14 to have been here. He was here yesterday. 15 Unfortunately, he could not be here today because he is 16 travelling outside of the country. 17 2999 Madam Chairperson and Commissioners, 18 both the CRTC and the cable industry want to create 19 more choice for consumers. The Commission's strategy, 20 as set out in its 1997 Vision statement, is to 21 encourage competition to create consumer choice. 22 3000 Less than a year ago, the regulations 23 governing broadcasting distribution undertakings were 24 updated to reflect the current environment of 25 competition. For the cable industry, the future is StenoTran 590 1 digital distribution, which will increase channel 2 capacity so that there will be room for many new and 3 exciting services. 4 3001 We believe that it is against this 5 backdrop that the Commission should consider what is 6 the best way to introduce new services to Canadians. 7 3002 It is important for the Commission 8 and others, including the applicant, to appreciate that 9 CCTA supports the concept of a national aboriginal 10 programming service -- one that both reflects the needs 11 and aspirations of native people across Canada, and 12 serves as a bridge between natives and non-natives. 13 3003 What we are opposed to, however, is 14 the mandatory carriage arrangements, because such an 15 approach contradicts the whole notion of customer 16 choice. In our view, new services must be licensed in 17 a way that ensures greater customer choice and not less 18 choice. This means digital carriage licensing with an 19 option for analog carriage. In this way, the people 20 who want the service can purchase it and pay the 21 appropriate fee. 22 3004 Since TVNC's application was filed, 23 the Commission has approved an application for the 24 Canada-wide distribution of the TVA network. In that 25 decision, the Commission determined that the mandated StenoTran 591 1 rebroadcast of a signal must not result in any direct 2 or indirect costs to consumers. The TVNC application 3 by contrast would lead to direct and forced rate 4 increases to consumers. 5 3005 TVNC's proposed service, if licensed, 6 carries significant financial implications. We 7 estimate that the ongoing costs to deliver the signal 8 into cable households would be nearly $33 million a 9 year, or 36 cents per month per subscriber. 10 3006 This amount is based on APTN's 11 monthly subscriber fee of 15 cents, an SRDU signal 12 downlink fee estimated at a minimum of 5 cents -- and 13 it could actually be very much higher -- and the 16.2 14 cents per subscriber cost established by the Commission 15 for each of a cable company's channels. 16 3007 There are also one-time costs 17 associated with the CRTC forcing a service on basic. 18 These include expenses related to informing customers 19 of the change in the line-up through channel line-up 20 stickers and explanatory letters and, in order to 21 receive the signal, additions to headed equipment. 22 3008 We estimate that the cable industry 23 would incur one-time charges of nearly $4.8 million, 24 with line-up sticker costs at 40 cents per subscriber 25 and headend expenses at $3,500 each, for 500 headends. StenoTran 592 1 1515 2 3009 Of these costs, given present 3 regulations, only 20 cents per month -- the 15-cent 4 signal fee and the 5-cent SRDU fee -- could be passed 5 on to consumers. This would leave 16 cents per 6 subscriber per month in recurring costs and $4.8 7 million in one-time costs unrecovered. For these 8 costs -- for the channel costs and the costs of 9 building the plant that delivers the signals -- the 10 question arises: How can we recover them? 11 3010 Consider that the cable industry has 12 increased average channel capacity from 45 to 73 13 channels during the 1990s by investing $3.8 billion 14 over the past decade. The present value cost of a 15 channel, as determined by the Commission, is in the 16 order of $90 million. Given the strict regulation of 17 basic rates, the forced placement of APTN on basic 18 service would mean that cable companies could not 19 recover one cent of the $90 million investment to 20 provide the basic one-way analog channel capacity. 21 3011 In southern Ontario in the past six 22 months two other channels have been ordered onto basic 23 service, CrossRoads TV and, just recently, TVA. Again, 24 under the Commission's basic rate regulations, the 25 costs associated with distributing these services StenoTran 593 1 cannot be recovered. 2 3012 Should APTN also be forced onto basic 3 this would mean three new channels on basic without the 4 possibility of cost recovery. 5 3013 This is an unsustainable situation. 6 We believe that these channels must be made available 7 in a manner which allows cable operators to recover 8 their costs. 9 3014 Moreover, the problems with mandatory 10 carriage are not restricted to the economics of the 11 cable business. As well, mandatory carriage will have 12 a negative effect on consumers. 13 3015 As I noted earlier, the pass-through 14 provisions in the BDU regulations would allow 20 cents 15 to be added to each customer's bill if APTN is licensed 16 in the way they propose. We do not think that the 17 Commission in this competitive environment should be 18 contemplating a regime under which it forces consumers 19 to pay for services they may not want. 20 3016 As well, many cable companies will 21 not have sufficient capacity to accommodate the 22 proposed service. 23 3017 I would be pleased to discuss 24 specific examples with the Commission. 25 3018 In those cases, in order to make room StenoTran 594 1 for the channel, if ordered on basic, another channel 2 must be moved to a tier, if there is room, or perhaps 3 dropped completely if there is no room. Everyone is 4 disrupted when channel line-ups change. Basic only 5 subscribers will lose an existing service or will have 6 to pay more to retain it if it is bumped to a 7 discretionary tier. 8 3019 Tier subscribers, in turn, may lose 9 an existing service, since there is only a fixed number 10 of analog channels. Simply put, customer disruption, 11 lost services and higher prices lead to customer 12 dissatisfaction. 13 3020 Given all of the above, we think that 14 the Commission should adopt a flexible approach to 15 allow the placement of services in a manner that would 16 both suit the market and the service. It is our 17 position that the service should be licensed for 18 digital carriage, with an option for analog carriage, 19 as the Commission did in the last round for the 20 majority of English specialty services. This has 21 proven to be highly successful for consumers, the 22 services and the cable industry. 23 3021 This approach would allow customers 24 to determine what services they do and do not want to 25 receive. During the transition from analog to digital StenoTran 595 1 technology some cable operators may even have the 2 capacity to carry the proposed service on an analog 3 channel and may decide to do so due to market demand. 4 3022 As we have stated on numerous 5 occasions, the industry will be motivated to add 6 services, rather than restrict access, as it rolls out 7 its digital offering. Accordingly, we do not think 8 that there is a need to rely on legislative provisions 9 to force carriage. If licensed for digital, the 10 applicant's service will effectively be assured 11 distribution and thus assured the opportunity to prove 12 its value to Canadians. 13 3023 As you can see, Commissioners, our 14 concern is not with the merits of the TVNC application. 15 The bigger question is: On a going forward basis, how 16 can the cable industry recover its costs for the 17 investments it is required to make? All of the issues 18 we have raised regarding channel costs, one-time costs, 19 accommodating new channels and bumping existing 20 channels are part and parcel of this general concern. 21 A business that cannot recover its costs is no business 22 at all. 23 3024 These are our comments and we welcome 24 your questions. 25 3025 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. StenoTran 596 1 Thomson. 2 3026 Commissioner Pennefather ... 3 3027 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you, 4 Madam Chair. Good afternoon. 5 3028 I would like to start at the end of 6 your presentation today and at the beginning of your 7 written presentation and go through some of the points 8 you have raised. 9 3029 I had some previous questions and I 10 would like some further explanations on what you 11 prepared today. 12 3030 My first question is pretty 13 straightforward. You begin your intervention and you 14 say at the end of your comments today that you support 15 this application: that is, a national aboriginal 16 programming service. Why do you support this 17 application? 18 3031 MR. THOMSON: The cable industry is 19 always interested in increasing the number of choices 20 that we can make available to our customers. We are 21 always interested in finding new programming 22 opportunities that respond to the interests of 23 Canadians. 24 3032 As you have been shown by the 25 applicant in its appearance, and as you have heard from StenoTran 597 1 their supporting intervenors, there is interest in this 2 service. There are merits to this service. It is a 3 service that we think we can offer to our subscribers 4 and that subscribers will be interested in taking on a 5 discretionary basis. Therefore, it will improve the 6 whole package that we offer to our customers. That is 7 why we support it. 8 3033 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: In looking 9 at your support and the attractiveness of this concept 10 to a number of Canadians, you also emphasize or mention 11 the fact that it is a national service that is 12 proposed, and I think you also say that it has an 13 objective of ensuring a broader availability of 14 aboriginal programming. 15 3034 As I understand it, though, one of 16 the key features of assuring that is that, in fact, it 17 is in the interest of this service and in the national 18 interest to have it available across the country. 19 3035 It is key, in other words, according 20 to the presentation we have received, to its viability 21 and to its reaching its goals and its objectives and 22 its very fundamental mandate to have that capacity to 23 reach Canadians from coast to coast to coast. 24 3036 This is where I think the nub of the 25 question comes. How do you see that being StenoTran 598 1 accomplished? 2 3037 You support the application and the 3 purposes of this application, and there is an objective 4 here which you have also mentioned in terms of 5 increasing the availability of aboriginal programming. 6 This particular application certainly purports to do 7 that, but it will only do that if it has a national 8 reach. 9 3038 Do you agree with that? If you do, 10 what are the ways that that can be assured? 11 3039 MR. THOMSON: First of all, I think 12 it is up to the applicant to demonstrate the extent to 13 which they need certain regulatory approaches in order 14 to meet their business plans. We are not here to 15 necessarily discuss the applicant's business plans. 16 3040 But what we can tell you, and what 17 the thrust of our intervention is, is that the cable 18 industry, the Canadian broadcasting system, is moving 19 to digital. That is our future. That is the future of 20 all of the services that Canada will have in the 21 future. 22 3041 For us, digital roll-out will be on a 23 national basis. It has already started. It is already 24 available on a national basis through DTH providers. 25 There are MDS providers who are on digital. Cable has StenoTran 599 1 started to roll out digital in certain markets, and we 2 will be moving forward on that plan in the next year. 3 3042 Our view is a national digital 4 service that we provide to our customers. 5 3043 Any programming service that is 6 offered, therefore, will also have national 7 distribution. It will be made available to Canadians 8 across the country on a digital basis. 9 3044 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: When is 10 this future? 11 3045 I don't mean that facetiously. It is 12 a factual question, because you have referenced other 13 licensing procedures where that was key. And I believe 14 there were dates given and those dates changed, for a 15 number of reasons. 16 3046 It is a very important question 17 because in supporting this application you are saying 18 that its future lies in the digital future. But when 19 will that be? And if it is a serious proposal on your 20 part, that is to say that you suggest we wait for 21 digital to be available before this licence is granted, 22 it is important to know when that will be. 23 3047 MR. THOMSON: As we have had the 24 opportunity to explain to the Commission on other 25 occasions, obviously, the roll-out of digital is StenoTran 600 1 something that we are motivated toward. It is not 2 always in our hands. We are waiting for the new open 3 cable boxes that will be available within the next 4 year. 5 3048 Once those boxes are available we 6 will be moving forward aggressively with digital roll- 7 out plans. 8 3049 Yes, we are still waiting for those 9 boxes, but they will, at some time in the near future, 10 we strongly hope, will be available, and at that time 11 the roll-out across the nation will begin. 12 3050 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Is there 13 any range of timing on that? 14 3051 Certainly, would it be in time for 15 the proposed launch date of this service, mentioned 16 earlier today? 17 3052 MR. WATT: As you know, Shaw has 18 rolled out 70,000 boxes at the current time in Calgary 19 and Toronto. Shaw has committed to rolling out in 20 other locations over the next year, and has stated to 21 you in the capacity reports that they intend to meet 22 the 15 per cent penetration of digital boxes in their 23 serving territories by September of next year. 24 3053 The other major MSOs are behind Shaw. 25 There will be a roll-out by those MSOs over the next StenoTran 601 1 year. Whether they would be willing to make a 2 statement to the effect that they anticipate reaching 3 15 per cent penetration, I don't know. Shaw has 4 certainly made that commitment. 5 3054 I can tell you that the other major 6 MSOs will be rolling out within the next six to nine 7 months. 8 3055 MR. THOMSON: We are not the only 9 ones who are optimistic about the future of digital 10 cable. 11 3056 As you heard yesterday from the BSSI 12 representatives, they are of a strong belief that the 13 cable industry will be rolling out digital as well. 14 They see it as our competitive response to their 15 availability of digital, which is very much the case. 16 3057 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: If APTN 17 were licensed primarily on digital, with an option of 18 analog carriage, when do you expect that it would be 19 broadly available? Because you made the point that 20 digital access would guarantee this national coverage. 21 3058 And what do you mean by "national 22 coverage"? 23 3059 MR. THOMSON: As we said, in a 24 digital environment we will be looking to add services. 25 So, to the extent that APTN is available as a digital StenoTran 602 1 service and we have a digital roll-out, it will be 2 carried, because we will have capacity for it and we 3 will need to fill it up. 4 3060 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Just so I 5 understand, when you say that, how many Canadians will 6 have the service? Does that mean 70,000 Canadians, 7 because the boxes have been -- 8 3061 What is the timeframe for a fully 9 national distribution of the service on a digital 10 basis? 11 3062 MR. WATT: I may have misled you a 12 little bit. You may think when I say "major MSOs" that 13 I am only referring to the four largest: Vidéotron, 14 Rogers, Shaw and Cogeco. That is not the case. 15 Halifax Cablevision, Fundy, et cetera, Cable Regina, so 16 on and so forth, also have digital plans in the works. 17 So it would spread from coast to coast. 18 3063 I think your question is trying to 19 probe us for a specific forecast in terms of numbers as 20 we go forward. It is a difficult question. 21 3064 As you know, the penetration of 22 analog boxes today is in the 8 to 9 per cent range of 23 the population. 24 3065 It really does become a question as 25 to the additional attractiveness that the DBC boxes StenoTran 603 1 will bring in terms of the quality of the picture and 2 the variety of programming choices that can be made 3 available on the boxes. There are limits with respect 4 to analog boxes. 5 1530 6 3066 So, we anticipate with good 7 programming that the penetration of digital boxes will 8 be far in excess of what has been achieved with 9 analogue boxes. But we can't give you today an 10 absolute estimate as to the numbers. 11 3067 But, as Mr. Thomson indicated, and as 12 I did as well, these boxes will roll out over the next 13 six to nine months and they will be of the latest 14 standard, which should make them more appealing to 15 people. They will also be able to offer Internet 16 services, which should also make them more appealing. 17 We do hope to have a much greater penetration of these 18 boxes. 19 3068 MR. THOMSON: Part of our proposal, 20 as we've outlined, is digital with an option for 21 analogue carriage, which is the same approach that has 22 been taken for the majority of the English language 23 services that were licensed recently. They've done 24 very well. They have national distribution. 25 3069 So, the possibility for those systems StenoTran 604 1 that may not be rolling out digital as quickly as 2 others is where there's demand to put it on an analogue 3 tier and make it available that way. 4 3070 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Yes, I 5 wanted to get to that next. Let's leave the digital 6 for a moment and your proposal is optional to analogue 7 in the current environment. 8 3071 What is the potential for APTN being 9 carried on the analogue in terms of capacity? Is this 10 list given to me because it's to demonstrate lack of 11 capacity of availability? 12 3072 MR. THOMSON: This is an example of 13 two cable systems, two Rogers cable systems, one in 14 Kitchener-Grand River, and the other one in Ottawa. It 15 demonstrates, at least in these two systems, that there 16 is no available channel capacity; there are no open 17 channels; there are no vacant channels that can be 18 filled at this time. 19 3073 So that if you were to force any 20 service onto basic in either these two examples, then 21 something would have to be dumped. 22 3074 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Are you 23 currently not increasing your analogue capacity, 24 though, to accommodate the needs of digital? 25 3075 MR. THOMSON: Yes, and that's because StenoTran 605 1 we need that analogue capacity to convert to digital. 2 If we don't have it, we can't move to digital. 3 3076 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Is this 4 extra capacity not what you're using, though, in the 5 meantime to add new services as you did just a couple 6 of weeks ago? I think new services were added to the 7 analogue channels. This is where I'm not too sure I 8 understand why there isn't the possibility in the 9 analogue world to have some availability for a new 10 service, since some were just added recently. 11 3077 MR. WALL: The 78-channel systems 12 that you see before you here are a 550 megahertz 13 system. Many of our members have had 450 megahertz 14 systems. So when they say they are expanding capacity, 15 they are expanding up from a 60-channel system to the 16 78-channel system. These systems are already at the 17 78-channel level. 18 3078 Further, to pick up on Mr. Thomson's 19 point, a plan for digital in many of the systems is to 20 take the 78-channel system and take three of the 21 channels, analogue channels, compress them so that you 22 then derive 24 channels. And this is in effect what 23 Shaw has done in both Calgary and Toronto, and that 24 gives you the additional capacity for a digital 25 service. StenoTran 606 1 3079 Now, you do have to have those three 2 analogue channels available to digitize. So, in order 3 to prepare or provide a digital offer, we do have to 4 take some of these channels to digitize. Now, there 5 are other systems that are expanding beyond 550 6 megahertz. In those systems you face a couple of 7 situations. One, it may be the case that they would 8 have an incremental analogue channel, but as cable 9 systems roll out, the way you do it is 10 street-by-street, neighbourhood-by-neighbourhood, so 11 that you would not have the additional channel 12 throughout the entire serving territory until you had 13 actually completed the entire exercise. 14 3080 Maybe to backtrack just a shade, 15 because I think there's maybe some confusion with the 16 capacity reports, we did take a look at the Mediastats 17 number that indicated 89 per cent of subscribers would 18 have one or more vacant channels. We went to the very 19 document that the Commission raised with the applicant 20 this morning, the capacity report, from the information 21 filed with the Commission. What you see there 22 addresses your comment that you'd be putting more 23 channels on and you found room. That is in fact the 24 case based on the Mediastats numbers. There was 25 additional capacity. We filled that with the third StenoTran 607 1 tier. 2 3081 With respect to the comment this 3 morning that, gee, there are a lot of alphanumeric 4 services, et cetera, et cetera, there was no magic in 5 finding the channels for the third tier. The third 6 tier channels came from reducing the number of 7 pay-per-view channels and reducing the number of 8 alphanumeric channels. So that pretty much what you 9 see here is the product of a culling of the 10 non-programming offerings and a cutback of the 11 pay-per-view offerings. 12 3082 So, I hope that clarifies the 13 capacity issue somewhat. 14 3083 Maybe even a more important point is 15 to impress upon you that capacity costs money. It 16 costs, as I said, $90 million to provide a channel. 17 The carriage of a channel on basic allows us no return. 18 So, we're confronted with, as you know, $5 billion of 19 loans, which has gone to build the infrastructure that 20 provides the 78 channels. We have interest expense of 21 in excess of $600 million a year. It was interested to 22 me that APTN actually was receiving their money from 23 the Royal Bank at a very low rate -- the prime plus one 24 and a quarter per cent. We probably should send their 25 people in to negotiate some of our loans. They StenoTran 608 1 obviously did a very good job. 2 3084 The point of this being that we would 3 all like to have more capacity. To add capacity costs 4 money. This is a concern we have with not only this 5 application but with respect to the other channels that 6 have been put on basic recently. We have a large debt. 7 We have to pay that interest expense. We need channels 8 to digitize. We have to spend the money to buy the 9 boxes. It's, as we state in our opening statement, an 10 unsustainable situation. 11 3085 We would be overjoyed for the federal 12 government to grant $50 million a year to run APTN, pay 13 for the programming, pay for the channel costs, pay for 14 the downlink. That would be wonderful, but 15 unfortunately we're not in that situation. From our 16 perspective we need to recover our costs and that's a 17 primary concern for us here today. 18 3086 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: You've 19 given us that analysis. I certainly had some questions 20 which would have given you the opportunity to look at 21 the incremental costs. I'll come back to that in just 22 a minute. 23 3087 I have a couple other questions on 24 capacity and choice. Very quickly, then, your 25 alternative solution to APTN's proposal of mandatory StenoTran 609 1 carriage is digital with option to analogue carriage. 2 You suggest, as well, that APTN should be added to the 3 eligible satellite lists, although they are currently 4 already on both Part II and Part III of the lists. 5 3088 Would this achieve the objective of 6 broader availability of aboriginal programming to 7 Canadians? We noticed that even if they are on the 8 list, currently cable systems have not elected to carry 9 TVNC. So, in those terms if it's optional to analogue, 10 how is that a solution to a more broad distribution of 11 aboriginal programming? 12 3089 MR. THOMSON: First of all, while 13 TVNC is on the eligible satellite list, as I believe 14 you heard this morning, it's not being uplinked by 15 Cancom. So, it's not being made available. 16 3090 In any event, as we understand it, 17 the APTN service will be much different than the TVN 18 service. Certainly the applicant went to great lengths 19 to explain the differences in the additions that 20 they're going to introduce with respect to their 21 programming. 22 3091 Our fundamental argument on the 23 choice issue is that there should be a flexible 24 approach that allows greater opportunity for consumers 25 to make choices as to which programming services they StenoTran 610 1 take and pay for. APTN filed consumer research to 2 demonstrate that there's a strong interest in their 3 service and a willingness to pay for it. If, indeed, 4 they're confident in their consumer research, then they 5 should be willing to go out and sell their service to 6 cable operators, to consumers, and to ensure by calling 7 upon those people that say that they're willing to buy 8 it, they're interested in buying it, to in fact do so 9 and ask their cable companies to carry it. On that 10 basis, it will receive wide distribution. 11 3092 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: I'm sure 12 they'll be happy to comment on that to you, but I am 13 curious as to why you feel this mandatory carriage 14 contradicts the whole notion of customer choice. It 15 would appear to me that what we're talking about is 16 increased choice in terms of aboriginal programming as 17 a goal and a concept of an aboriginal service. 18 3093 When other services are offered and 19 added to packages, how have you determined that in fact 20 those services meet what you call I think it's in your 21 written application fit individual markets? Is that 22 the basis on which you would decide, with your flexible 23 approach, which services fit individual markets? What 24 markets are you talking about there? 25 3094 MR. THOMSON: The best of all StenoTran 611 1 possible worlds for us and for consumers, we believe, 2 would be for a service such as APTN and other services 3 to be offered as part of the digital package, made 4 available across the country, carried across the 5 country in those digital packages because, as I said, 6 we all need services, and then consumers will have the 7 opportunity to make their choices. We're not yet in 8 that world. 9 3095 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Are you 10 talking a pick-and-pay world? 11 3096 MR. THOMSON: Ultimately there will 12 be strong aspects of pick-and-pay in the digital 13 environment. But we're not there yet. 14 3097 So the next best step is to look at 15 who's the next closest to the consumer in terms of 16 choosing which services are put out there and made 17 available to them. At this stage, that's the cable 18 operator. The cable operator is closest to its market. 19 It knows what its subscribers want to watch, what they 20 want to pay for. It hears from its subscribers on a 21 regular basis. 22 3098 So, it is the one at this stage that 23 is closest to the market and, therefore, able to best 24 assess market demand and make the appropriate choices 25 that deal with consumer demand and also with the myriad StenoTran 612 1 of business issues that must arise whenever a new 2 service comes along and decisions have to be made about 3 where it goes, how it's marketed, if it goes on at all. 4 3099 The worst approach, in our opinion, 5 with respect, is for the Commission to make those 6 decisions, the Commission being further away from the 7 market than obviously the cable operator. The 8 Commission make a decision, it's imposed upon all 9 markets without an opportunity for the cable operator 10 to assess whether that service is appropriate for 11 basic, whether it should be on the first, second or 12 third tier, and the other decisions that go along with 13 that. 14 3100 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: I assume, 15 though, you do not mean the Commission does not have 16 any influence on the broadcasting system and our role 17 is not to assure that all aspects of the Broadcasting 18 Act are followed through in the broadcasting system of 19 this country, or are we further away from that too? 20 3101 MR. THOMSON: I'm not attempting in 21 any manner to undermine the Commission's mandate or the 22 powers it has to exercise that mandate. 23 3102 What I'm saying is that the 24 Commission itself is moving to a more competitive 25 environment. It's a new world out there. The old StenoTran 613 1 world, where cable operators were a monopoly, there 2 were obligations imposed, there were costs that they 3 had to bear, that's an old world. That's not the world 4 in which we operate now. We have to respond to DTH 5 providers; we have to respond to MDS providers; we have 6 to make decisions in our own market that are in the 7 best interests of our business, and that is in the best 8 interest of our customers. 9 3103 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: I think we 10 share a desire to do what's in the best interest of 11 Canadians and the public. In that light, let me turn 12 it around a little bit so I understand this question 13 more thoroughly from your point of view. 14 3104 I think you admitted that what's been 15 demonstrated is interest on the part of many Canadians 16 in such a service, and that -- I think the word 17 "competition" was used earlier -- it can compete, it 18 can provide competition on a number of levels. 19 3105 Is your only reason for not accepting 20 mandatory carriage the business case that it's a money 21 loser for you? Is that the bottom line for you? 22 3106 MR. THOMSON: We have two reasons. 23 We have the reason that it's a problem for consumers, 24 and I guess that ultimately comes back -- 25 1550 StenoTran 614 1 3107 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Is it also 2 an advantage for consumers? As you said, if it is that 3 good, it would be picked up. So there is an advantage 4 there, it is not just a problem. 5 3108 MR. THOMSON: I do not think it is an 6 advantage for consumers. It may be an advantage for a 7 group of consumers who are strongly interested in that 8 service and are willing to pay for it, to have it 9 forced upon their basic package. It is not the best 10 for consumers to have it forced upon them if they do 11 not want it and they do not want to pay for it. If you 12 put it in a discretionary package that is the best 13 approach for consumers. 14 3109 But ultimately what is best for 15 consumer is best for us. In the end that is a business 16 decision and moves to our bottom line and then gets 17 into this whole issue of the costs associated, as Dave 18 went through for us with respect to increasing 19 capacity. 20 3110 MR. WATT: I just -- one issue and 21 you might be coming to this later, but just in case you 22 are not, in terms of the. 23 3111 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Take this 24 opportunity to say everything you have to say, because 25 I may not, as the chair said earlier, ask the question StenoTran 615 1 but you may have the answer. 2 3112 MR. WATT: The reason being you are 3 focusing on consumer demand for this particular service 4 and I think the information that we have in front of us 5 is 70 per cent of Canadians are willing to pay 15 cents 6 per month per sub. 7 3113 Our question is and as we have 8 suggested in our written comments, we did not know the 9 full ins and outs of the satellite distribution of this 10 particular service. We could not glean from the 11 application whether this was a service which was only 12 going to be available through Cancom, or whether it 13 would be available in another fashion. If this service 14 is only available to be down linked from Cancom, then 15 one of two situations will hold. Either it may be that 16 Cancom has waived the down link charges for this 17 particular service. 18 3114 On the other hand, it may be that 19 their standard down link fee will apply. And that down 20 link fee ranges from 5 cents per sub per month up to 25 21 cents per month per sub, depending upon how many 22 signals are taken from Cancom and the size of the 23 subscriber base. 24 3115 So it could be the case that for a 25 large urban cable company that does not take many StenoTran 616 1 signals from Cancom, if Cancom is going to charge the 2 fee and if that is the only way in which the signal can 3 be sourced, it would not be a 15 cent per month charge, 4 it would be a 40 cent per month charge to the consumer. 5 And I don't know if the consumer demand would hold at 6 that level. 7 3116 Now, as I say, this is something the 8 Commission needs to look into. We are not sure of the 9 facts here. You were probing this morning a bit the 10 contractual arrangements with Cancom. We don't know 11 what they are. It may be the case that this service 12 will be available for down linking outside of Cancom 13 and this chart will not apply. But if it does apply, 14 the rate may be much higher and then we do not know 15 what consumer demand would be. 16 3117 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Yes. You 17 have already got the rate, I believe, to 20 cents as 18 opposed to 15 cents in this paper here. 19 3118 MR. WATT: Yes, we took the lowest 20 possible charge from Cancom. 21 3119 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Assuming 22 passing through of the costs of which you are not sure 23 at the moment and therefore your concept that it could 24 go even higher. And therefore you say: We do not 25 think the Commission in this competitive environment StenoTran 617 1 should be contemplating a regime under which it forces 2 customers to pay for services they may not want. 3 3120 Just so I am clear on what that means 4 to you, when you bring new services into the cable 5 system as you did just recently at rates that are 6 higher than 20 cents, as a customer, I did not have a 7 choice in that regard. So I am not quite sure 8 precisely what you mean by this comment of forcing 9 customers to pay for services they do not want. 10 3121 Fundamentally in a package, I will 11 get a change in services within that package at rates 12 that I -- are greater, as I understand it, than 20 13 cents. 14 3122 I just want to see from your point of 15 view what exactly you mean by that sentence. 16 3123 MR. WATT: Well, recently you will 17 have had channels added to the third tier. And we 18 offered a package of services to you that had, say, for 19 example, say ten channels around it in your package. 20 Well, let us get more realistic. Let us say it was 14 21 channels and I believe the range in Ottawa would have 22 been an incremental $5.95, something in that order, 23 about $6, say, rounded. 24 3124 The affiliation payments for each of 25 those services probably ranged from a low of 10 cents StenoTran 618 1 to a high of 40, 45, 50, something like that. The 2 totality of those affiliation payments would have been 3 in the order of, say, to keep it simple, say, $3, half 4 the charge that was levied on your bill. The other 5 half of the charge goes to pay for the channel costs 6 and our costs of operating. 7 3125 Now, when a channel is added to the 8 basic tier and when we choose to do that or are 9 required to do that, it is only the affiliation fee and 10 the SRDU down link fee that can be passed through to 11 you unless -- and Mr. Thomson will help me here -- 12 unless it is a specialty that is put on the basic tier, 13 in which case, a 2 cent cost recovery fee can also be 14 added to the charge. 15 3126 So those are the ways in which your 16 basic cable bill can increase. Until a year and a half 17 ago, there was also a cap X allowance which, in effect, 18 did allow us to capture some of the cost of adding 19 additional channels to provide basic service. We were 20 allowed to increase our rates in relation with the 21 capital expenditure that we were expending. 22 3127 MR. THOMSON: You raised the example 23 of services that have been recently added and let us 24 take "SportsNet", which was just recently added across 25 the country. In some markets, that service is on basic StenoTran 619 1 and in other markets it is on a tier of. And that is a 2 decision that has been made by the cable operator 3 within their own market based on the existing 4 competition. If, for example, Look TV is in the market 5 and is offering a strong sports service on basic, then 6 the local cable operator may have chosen to react the 7 same way. 8 3128 In other markets, the operator chose 9 to put "SportsNet" on a tier and perhaps move another 10 sports service down to basic. In other markets, they 11 put "SportsNet" on a third tier. These are decisions 12 that each cable operator has been able to make based on 13 their market, based on the demand and based on the 14 competitive forces. 15 3129 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: So I 16 understand, you just said that one cable operator may 17 have decided to move a sports service down to basic. 18 Would the costs of moving it to basic be the same as 19 what you say here in terms of putting a service like 20 APTN on basic? What was it, 90 million? 21 3130 MR. WATT: The channel costs would be 22 the same, yes. 23 3131 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: So it is 24 possible for you to accept the costs of moving a 25 service to basic at X dollars if you feel there is a StenoTran 620 1 market for it? 2 3132 MR. THOMSON: But there are tradeoffs 3 in that there is an opportunity for the operator to 4 determine whether the tradeoffs make sense from a 5 business perspective, whether there is an opportunity 6 somewhere else to recover those costs. 7 3133 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: In looking 8 all of this, do you have any -- let us get back to a 9 slightly broader picture and I will let my colleagues 10 have some questions because I do not want to monopolize 11 all the time. 12 3134 But do you have any other suggestions 13 for this is an important concept and an important 14 service that is being proposed and a service which has 15 said that it is not viable without mandatory carriage. 16 You oppose that mandatory carriage. You have offered 17 an alternative which you assume will achieve the same 18 results, national coverage of an Aboriginal service, 19 which will increase the, as you have said is a good 20 idea, the availability of that Aboriginal programming. 21 3135 Do you have any other alternatives or 22 suggestions to offer us in terms of how we can achieve 23 this goal? 24 3136 MR. THOMSON: With the going 25 imposition that the digital option is obviously our StenoTran 621 1 first choice and that the mandatory-to-basic option is 2 our last choice, there are possible other alternatives. 3 3137 One alternative would be to licence 4 the service as a specialty service and make it subject 5 to the CRTC's access rules for specialty services. 6 3138 So that, come next fall, September of 7 1999, depending on where operators are with respect to 8 the digital roll out and so on, there is an obligation 9 to carry specialty service in analogue at that time and 10 APTN would join that group and be an analogue specialty 11 service subject to the commission's access obligations. 12 That would be one alternative. 13 3139 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you 14 very much for responding to my questions. And I will 15 -- that is it for now. 16 3140 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. 17 3141 Mr. Thomson, in your remarks today, 18 you say that if we were to retain or accept this 19 proposal or at least you are of the view, you are 20 opposed to it because it is mandatory carriage and such 21 an approach contradicts the whole notion of consumer or 22 customer choice. 23 3142 Now, you did not say cable choice, 24 you said customer choice. So I suspect what you mean 25 is you want this customer choice in cable in my home StenoTran 622 1 would be I do not like it any more, I am turning it 2 off. It is not like I can go to another cable company. 3 Presumably I could take DTH, I suppose. 4 3143 So I am living in Ottawa and I am 5 looking at this. So I take tier 1, so I get TSN, so 6 I've got lots of sports. Did I miss any survey or 7 question to me in my home as to whether I would like 8 more sports? Whether as a choice I want more sports? 9 Like, did Rogers actually survey or ask or find out 10 whether people wanted more sports? Did I miss anything 11 in my mailbox? Like, was I asked? Was there something 12 sent out to establish why the cable company thinks I 13 need more sports? 14 3144 MR. THOMSON: When CCTA participated 15 in the last round of specialty hearings, we did 16 consumer research, generally speaking, on -- 17 3145 THE CHAIRPERSON: Generally speaking, 18 though. I think I heard you say that the cable 19 operator wants to be able to decide market by market 20 because he knows what Ottawans want. Did you do a 21 survey of that was narrow enough to say that Ottawa 22 people wanted more sports? 23 3146 MR. THOMSON: I do not believe that 24 -- 25 3147 THE CHAIRPERSON: Or was I ever asked StenoTran 623 1 or phoned questions? 2 3148 MR. THOMSON: I don't know whether 3 you were or not, I was not phoned. 4 3149 THE CHAIRPERSON: Do you know, Mr. 5 Watt, whether Rogers conducted any such survey? 6 3150 MR. WATT: No, I don't know for 7 certain. I know that there are ongoing focus groups 8 that go on all the time. I do not know -- 9 3151 THE CHAIRPERSON: As to what people 10 may want or not. 11 3152 MR. WATT: Well, that's right. When 12 considering placement of that channel. But I do not 13 know about Ottawa. 14 3153 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, can I ask any 15 of you three if you remember or know what the basic 16 regulated rate is for "SportsNet"? 17 3154 MR. THOMSON: I believe it is 76 18 cents or in that neighbourhood. 19 3155 THE CHAIRPERSON: Seventy-six cents. 20 And I do not think -- 21 3156 MR. THOMSON: I hear someone 22 whispering 78 from the audience. 23 3157 THE CHAIRPERSON: Well, that's what I 24 thought, that it was 78, but I am not going to argue 25 that because sometimes people put their two cents in. StenoTran 624 1 I did not intend that as being, the two cents being the 2 markup, I was not trying to be funny. 3 3158 This is a serious affair. I am now 4 getting "SportsNet" as well as the tier that has TSN. 5 I was never asked whether I wanted it. And whether you 6 are charging it to me now, eventually, if you are a 7 good businessman, as you say you are, you will charge 8 me 78 cents. My option will be to disconnect cable. I 9 have great difficulty in you coming and telling me one 10 month later as an Ottawan and giving me this sheet and 11 saying it goes against customer choice. 12 3159 I am not talking here about money, I 13 am talking about customer choice. Your argument about 14 customer choice. What do you have to say to that? 15 3160 MR. WATT: Well, it really is a 16 matter of customer choice, I think, in our view. It is 17 an issue you face in a competitive marketplace. Look 18 TV has placed "SportsNet" on its basic package. Look 19 TV has launched an aggressive advertising campaign in 20 the Greater Toronto area. 21 3161 They will do the same in Ottawa 22 within the next six months. 23 3162 A cable operator has to decide 24 whether he wants to leave that competitive challenge 25 open or unmet and allow consumers to -- who want that StenoTran 625 1 package and there is demonstrated demand for sports in 2 the survey work that we did do whether you wish to 3 standby lose those customers or whether you wish to 4 keep them. And for us it is for the reasons I stated 5 earlier. Our business is a high fixed-cost business, 6 relatively low variable cost business so we make a lot 7 of margin on each customer and that margin goes to pay 8 for the huge interest and depreciation expenses of the 9 plant. 10 1605 11 3163 So for us to lose a customer is a 12 very, very bad thing. It is a bad thing for all 13 competitors, but, in an industry characterized by high 14 fixed costs, it is an especially bad thing. 15 3164 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, I would like 16 to understand better how you arrived at your costs. On 17 your ongoing annual costs, the subscriber fees, what 18 does that amount represent? I guess that's 13 million, 19 right? 20 3165 MR. WATT: Yes. If we look at page 3 21 of the remarks, this is the APTN proposed subscriber 22 fee of 15 cents per sub times the second year-end 23 projected number of subscribers. 24 3166 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes, but how are 25 those costs to the cable industry? StenoTran 626 1 3167 MR. WATT: Those are costs that we 2 must pass on. 3 3168 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes, but you are 4 not -- okay, that's fine. So it is not a cost that is 5 absorbed, you pick it up from the subscriber and you 6 pass it on to APTN. 7 3169 MR. WATT: Yes, that's what we have 8 said. 9 3170 THE CHAIRPERSON: Because I thought 10 at first, when I looked at that, it is 13,000 and it 11 represents the cost of collecting the money and mailing 12 it to TVNC. 13 3171 MR. WATT: No. 14 3172 THE CHAIRPERSON: And I didn't see 15 those costs established other than maybe in sticker 16 update/information. So that's the money you collect 17 and pass on. 18 3173 MR. WATT: Precisely. 19 3174 THE CHAIRPERSON: And perhaps you 20 would want to argue that maybe there is a cost because 21 that 15 cents has so annoyed the customer that he 22 disconnects or I don't know what, and therefore it is a 23 cost. 24 3175 MR. THOMPSON: There will also be a 5 25 per cent levy on that for the Canadian Programming Fund StenoTran 627 1 and the community channel. 2 3176 THE CHAIRPERSON: And is that 3 included in that? 4 3177 MR. THOMPSON: No, it is not. 5 3178 THE CHAIRPERSON: And the downlink 6 fees, you have discussed. 7 3179 Now, the channel cost, Mr. Watt, 8 that's a lost opportunity cost of 16 cents for a 9 channel. 10 3180 MR. WATT: It is a lost opportunity 11 cost. It is a lost actual cost. It is the cost that is 12 not recovered. When you say "an opportunity cost", we 13 would hope to recover that; whether we do or not is an 14 open question. 15 3181 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes. So it is 16 16 cents. That is the rate that the Commission has 17 established when you lease a channel to a third party. 18 That's the 16 cents? 19 3182 MR. WATT: That is correct. 20 3183 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, in your view, 21 was that 16 cents arrived at for a general purpose of 22 establishing the cost of a channel or was it arrived at 23 for the purpose of the regulated cost of leasing a 24 channel to someone who wants to make money from its 25 use? What led to the establishment -- StenoTran 628 1 3184 MR. WATT: I am not sure I can answer 2 that question. What I thought it was established for 3 was to fix an amount which would recover the cost of 4 that particular channel regardless of the purpose for 5 which that channel was used. 6 3185 THE CHAIRPERSON: Well, we can debate 7 that, but certainly the exercise was as a result of 8 establishing what is the cost that would be fair to 9 charge a third party who is going to lease a channel 10 for the purpose of a commercial operation of his own -- 11 and you can, of course, now say every channel is 16 12 cents and every time there is lost opportunity. In 13 fact, you make more money than that on some channels, 14 et cetera. So it was established when the Commission 15 was trying to establish what was the cost of a channel 16 to a third party. At least that much is true. 17 3186 MR. WATT: Yes, that was the purpose. 18 I know the mechanical way in which it was done was to 19 take our actual plant cost, distribution plant cost, 20 amortize it on a 10-year life -- 21 3187 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes, I understand. 22 3188 MR. WATT: -- and assume that a 23.5 23 per cent return on net fixed assets before tax was 24 achieved, and the operating expenses -- 25 3189 THE CHAIRPERSON: So the best you StenoTran 629 1 could say is that this sum represents an opportunity 2 cost, that normally you could get something to put in 3 there on which your channel will return you that much 4 at least, or lease it to someone else. 5 3190 MR. WATT: I struggle with the word 6 "opportunity". It is an actual cost. 7 3191 THE CHAIRPERSON: Lost opportunity 8 cost. If you are forced to take a channel that you 9 could lease or use for 16 cents, if that's the value of 10 it, and somehow or other the regulatory system forces 11 you to use it for something else, would it not be fair 12 that the cost that you factored in here is the lost 13 opportunity to use that channel for other purposes? 14 3192 Why do you have a problem with that? 15 If you were trying to explain to an accountant what 16 this line is, "Channel costs, 16 cents a customer", 17 what would you say to him? 18 3193 MR. WATT: What would I say to -- 19 3194 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes, as to what 20 that represents, that cost? 21 3195 MR. WATT: That represents the cost 22 of putting the fibre optic cable from the headend, 23 where the signals are collected, running it down the 24 street or on a telephone pole -- 25 3196 THE CHAIRPERSON: Oh! So it is a StenoTran 630 1 lost opportunity for recovery, then, is the way you 2 would put it, that if you can't charge that 16 cents 3 somehow or other, the cost of providing it is not 4 recovered. 5 3197 MR. WATT: Well, in the first 6 instance, the cost has to be realized, and then you 7 come to the issue as to whether you can recover that 8 cost or not. But, to my mind, the first issue is the 9 incurrence of the cost, and having incurred the cost, 10 it has been calculated that it costs $90 million, and 11 if you recover that over 10 years across all the 12 subscribers in the country, it would come to a monthly 13 cost of 16.2 cents per sub per month. 14 3198 So now you go forward with that 15 particular channel and say, I need to find something to 16 go on that channel that will return to me 16.2 cents. 17 3199 THE CHAIRPERSON: Is that how our 18 system is built when you look at the basic service? 19 3200 MR. WATT: That's not how it was 20 originally built. The way our system, to establish 21 basic rates, was originally established was on what 22 would, back in time, have been called a rate base rate 23 of return basis, so it is not done on a per-channel 24 basis, but rather was done on an entire licence basis. 25 So all the plant costs and the operating expenses were StenoTran 631 1 considered, and then a rate was set for basic cable, 2 say $15, which recovered those capital costs and 3 allowed a return on those as required in order to keep 4 people investing in the cable company and recover the 5 operating costs so that all the costs were recovered, 6 but since it was a monopoly, you were only allowed to 7 make, say, a certain amount. 8 3201 THE CHAIRPERSON: You are not 9 saying -- 10 3202 MR. WATT: Pardon me? 11 3203 THE CHAIRPERSON: You are not saying 12 what that was? 13 3204 MR. WATT: It varied over the years. 14 It varied. 15 3205 THE CHAIRPERSON: Now, I would like 16 to understand, having asked you about this, on the next 17 page you have 16 cents per subscriber per month in 18 recurring costs. How do you arrive at the 16 cents per 19 subscriber per month? What numbers from the previous 20 page did you put in the calculation to arrive at that? 21 3206 MR. THOMPSON: That's the 16.2 22 rounded off to 16. 23 3207 THE CHAIRPERSON: So that's the cost 24 of the channel -- 25 3208 MR. THOMPSON: Yes. StenoTran 632 1 3209 THE CHAIRPERSON: -- that you are not 2 recovering, however one describes it, and then the one- 3 time cost unrecovered would be the same type of 4 division but by taking the $4.8 million sticker update/ 5 information in the headend equipment to arrive at 6 those. Right? It is 4.8 million divided by the number 7 of subscribers. 8 3210 MR. WATT: That's right. 9 3211 MR. THOMPSON: There is another cost 10 that we haven't factored in here that is potentially 11 bearable by certain of our members, and that is with 12 respect to copyright fees. 13 3212 In the event that APTN is licensed as 14 a national network as opposed to a specialty service, 15 then it will be considered a distant signal for 16 copyright purposes for cable systems. 17 3213 There are some cable systems, 18 certainly in the southern Ontario market, where they 19 don't have to pay distant signal royalties because they 20 don't currently carry any distant signals. If APTN is 21 forced upon them and they have to carry it, they will 22 suddenly begin to incur as much as 70 cents per 23 subscriber per month in new copyright royalties. That 24 hasn't been included. 25 3214 THE CHAIRPERSON: Do you know -- you StenoTran 633 1 may not, but do you know what happens with the 2 distribution of the cable-to-satellite ASN service with 3 regard to copyright? Because they must be distant 4 somehow in the same manner, if we were to characterize 5 APTN that way. Do you know whether cable operators 6 have to consider that a distant signal? 7 3215 MR. THOMPSON: ASN, because it is not 8 available off air anywhere, is considered a non- 9 broadcast service and, therefore, not a distance 10 signal. If the APTN service is available off air in 11 certain markets, which I understand it will be -- 12 3216 THE CHAIRPERSON: But if it were not 13 in the majority of the markets, is it possible that it 14 would have the same treatment as ASN? 15 3217 MR. THOMPSON: The determinative 16 factor is the status of the signal at its origination. 17 3218 THE CHAIRPERSON: Okay. 18 3219 These are my questions. 19 3220 Commissioner Cardozo. 20 3221 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Just a few 21 quick questions. 22 3222 Thank you for your presentation. I 23 appreciate the detail you have provided us about the 24 business issues concerning cable in this matter, and 25 especially the clarifications you have provided to my StenoTran 634 1 colleagues. I would just like to go through a few 2 quick questions that I have in my attempt to try to 3 understand things better. 4 3223 You mentioned that Shaw has rolled 5 out is it 70,000 boxes at this point? 6 3224 MR. WATT: Yes. 7 3225 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: About that. 8 So do I understand from that that they would have the 9 capacity for APTN with the boxes? 10 3226 MR. WATT: Yes, I believe they would. 11 3227 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: You have 12 talked about giving people what they want, and the 13 matter was discussed with Commissioner Wylie a bit, but 14 I am wondering, with everything that's on basic now, is 15 it your view that consumers want all of those channels 16 more than they want APTN? 17 3228 Put differently, is it possible that, 18 of that choice, there is a channel that would be less 19 popular than APTN? 20 3229 MR. THOMPSON: I suppose that's 21 possible that there will be, amongst the millions of 22 subscribers to basic service, those that like certain 23 services on the basic more than they like others and 24 that there will be potentially those that would prefer 25 to have APTN or some other service instead of something StenoTran 635 1 that they are currently receiving. But, if it ends up 2 being the case where some service has to be bumped from 3 basic in order to make room for APTN, somebody will be 4 losing a service that is important to them and that 5 they value and that they have come to enjoy over the 6 years. Not only will consumers be losing a channel, 7 depending on what happens, if there is no room for it 8 to be carried anywhere else, there are other factors 9 that come into play such as the jobs of the people who 10 work at that channel. 11 3230 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I guess the 12 question is, is that a net loss or will some people 13 feel that maybe it is a net gain -- they have lost 14 something but they have gained something. There is an 15 element of -- 16 3231 MR. THOMPSON: I am sure that some 17 people will consider it a net gain and others will 18 consider it a net loss. 19 3232 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: With regard to 20 choice, Commissioner Wylie talked about the Sportsnet, 21 how that was added on -- and I have to tell you I live 22 in Ottawa too, and some days, with all these hearings, 23 I just don't get to open all my mail, so I am glad she 24 had the guts to ask that question because sometimes I 25 don't open all my mail and I thought maybe that StenoTran 636 1 questionnaire slipped by me too. 2 1620 3 3233 Really, what we are talking about is 4 the cable operator being able to make the choice, not 5 the customer making the choice. 6 3234 I have nothing against SportsNet, but 7 I didn't get to say yes, I want SportsNet, or I don't 8 want it. And what if I didn't want it? 9 3235 MR. THOMSON: We are not at that 10 stage yet, where we can provide individual services to 11 consumers and withhold those that they don't want. As 12 I said earlier, the next best step is to deal with the 13 one who is closest to the market. And right now that 14 is the cable operator. 15 3236 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So you don't 16 want to really talk about customer choices you have 17 talked about, but rather cable operator choice. The 18 cable operators will make the choice for us, the 19 consumers. 20 3237 MR. THOMSON: At this stage, the 21 cable operator has to be able to make that choice. 22 That will change when digital comes along. But that's 23 where we are at now. 24 3238 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: You say 25 digital is about to roll out, and you were suggesting StenoTran 637 1 that perhaps by next year we will have the open cable 2 box. 3 3239 I look at the timing of when APTN 4 would be interested in rolling out. Given that Shaw is 5 already rolling out its digital set-top box and would 6 be able to accommodate it, given that digital is coming 7 fairly soon, and APTN does not want to roll out until 8 the fall of next year, we are not talking about a big 9 gap of time, are we? 10 3240 Their request for mandatory carriage 11 is really quite a temporary thing, because at some 12 point we have digital. And then you are not so 13 concerned about whether you will get them on or not. 14 3241 MR. THOMSON: I think the answer is 15 yes. But if what is being contemplated is where they 16 would be put on a mandatory to basic basis, or launched 17 on a mandatory to basic basis and then shortly 18 thereafter switched over to digital, I don't think that 19 is workable. 20 3242 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: But your 21 recommendation is license them on a digital basis. 22 Part of the concern about them wanting to be launched 23 sooner than that and your concern about us ordering 24 cable companies to do that is your problem of cable 25 capacity. The issue of capacity, in your view, is StenoTran 638 1 likely to be solved fairly soon with the digital roll- 2 out? 3 3243 MR. THOMSON: Certainly once digital 4 is available, there will be significantly more capacity 5 and arguably there won't be the kind of crunch that we 6 have now. 7 3244 MR. WATT: I might add that it is a 8 difficult proposition when we say there will be much 9 additional capacity. There will be much additional 10 digital capacity. But whether that frees up analog 11 channels still in analog format, I think is still an 12 open question. 13 3245 People have talked about going at 14 this two ways. There is one school of thought that 15 says certainly you have to maintain the current basic 16 services on analog, because not everybody will have a 17 box. So you don't free any of those up. 18 3246 I don't think it really clearly 19 solves the problem of scarce analog capacity either. 20 It may be the case -- I guess it depends precisely. 21 3247 You could say that we will take all 22 the scrambled services today, take eight analog and 23 free those up; get rid of all the analog boxes. And 24 then you could say I will only take six out of those 25 eight to digitize, giving me 48 or 50 digital channels. StenoTran 639 1 But I have now opened up two free analog channels to 2 carry an additional analog service. 3 3248 I guess that is conceivable. But I 4 don't know if that is precisely how it will unfold. 5 3249 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: On the matter 6 of competition, a point was made earlier today by 7 Christina Keeper that if APTN were licensed, it would 8 provide competition in this sense: that with regard to 9 the reflection of aboriginal people and programs that 10 reflect their experience on other channels, there would 11 be competition. Where other channels could ignore it 12 and not do much now, if there was APTN who was doing 13 this, they would feel a certain sense of competition to 14 either meet that standard or to meet that kind of need. 15 3250 Do you see that point? 16 3251 MR. THOMSON: We are certainly not 17 experts in programming and the decisions that 18 programming undertakings will make as to the type of 19 programs they want to offer or counter-program with 20 other broadcasters. 21 3252 But if that is indeed the case, that 22 will occur whether the service is mandatory to basic or 23 made optional to subscribers. 24 3253 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Except if it 25 is optional and nobody carries it, then it is sort of StenoTran 640 1 like the tree falling in the forest: nobody will hear 2 it. 3 3254 MR. THOMSON: But I don't think there 4 is a suggestion here that if it is made optional, no 5 one will carry it. 6 3255 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: But TVNC has 7 been available to cable operators, and I am not aware 8 that it has been taken up in a big way. 9 3256 MR. THOMSON: But it has not really 10 been available to cable operators, because it is not 11 being uplinked to the satellite anywhere. We can't 12 access it. 13 3257 And it is a different service too. 14 It is a service that, as has been discussed here, is 15 primarily focused on the north and not as of interest 16 to the southern population. 17 3258 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I just want to 18 make the observation that I am a little troubled by 19 some of the characterizations when you talk about 20 "imposed and forced upon the consumer". Sometimes -- 21 and perhaps this is not what you are suggesting, and 22 correct me if I am wrong. 23 3259 It is a facile argument to say 24 Ottawa, the regulator, is forcing this down your 25 throats, and so forth. I would find that of great StenoTran 641 1 concern as a commentary on the Commission, because I 2 think one of the things that the Commission does fairly 3 well, and has for a long time, is the public process. 4 3260 If we were to make a determination of 5 that kind, it would be after the kind of public process 6 we have just had. 7 3261 I don't think you are suggesting 8 that. But I would suggest that it is not being forced 9 on people from on top in a distant way, in a vacuum; 10 that through our public process here, and other 11 processes, there is some connection we have to 12 Canadians. 13 3262 MR. THOMSON: And we would agree 14 wholeheartedly with you. We are firm believers and 15 supporters of the public process that the Commission 16 undertakes. 17 3263 There are those who still make those 18 points, not necessarily within our industry. But you, 19 I am sure, have read them in editorials over the past 20 while. And there are certainly those of our customers 21 who make those points. And when they make those 22 points, they make them to us. We are the ones who get 23 the complaints and have to deal with them. 24 3264 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: They make them 25 to us too. StenoTran 642 1 3265 MR. THOMSON: I am sure they do. 2 3266 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And they make 3 some comments to us about you. 4 3267 MR. THOMSON: They copy us and 5 sometimes they copy you. 6 3268 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And we copy 7 you too. So let's keep that open. 8 3269 Thank you very much. It is very 9 helpful. 10 3270 THE CHAIRPERSON: And you obviously 11 have to believe in the public process to be here at 12 4:30 on Friday -- and heaven knows until how late. 13 3271 Counsel, please. 14 3272 MR. BATSTONE: I have a few 15 questions. I will get away from your oral presentation 16 for a moment. 17 3273 You said in your written intervention 18 that the Commission should determine what is a service 19 that is of national public interest. I would like to 20 get your views on the criteria the Commission should 21 use to determine whether a service is of national 22 public interest. 23 3274 MR. THOMSON: We outlined in our 24 written submission what we think some of the tests 25 should be, and we don't really have anything to add to StenoTran 643 1 that. 2 3275 The issue really is not whether this 3 service is a 17(5) service or some other kind of 4 service. The issue is whether the Commission 5 ultimately wants to make it mandatory to basic. That 6 is a decision within the Commission's jurisdiction. 7 3276 The mechanics that are used once that 8 decision is made are secondary and really up to you. 9 3277 MR. BATSTONE: So these would be the 10 arguments made with respect to over-the-air service 11 across Canada, that type of thing. 12 3278 Is that correct? 13 3279 MR. THOMSON: That's right. 14 3280 MR. BATSTONE: A couple of questions 15 we asked of TVNC this morning we would also like to ask 16 of you. 17 3281 If the Commission were to license 18 APTN, how much lead time would cable systems need in 19 order to be able to begin distributing it? 20 3282 MR. THOMSON: If the question is if 21 the Commission licenses it for mandatory-to-basic -- 22 3283 MR. BATSTONE: Licenses it as 23 proposed in their application. 24 3284 MR. THOMSON: Okay. Just recently 25 the Commission decided to grant national mandatory StenoTran 644 1 status to the TVA network. 2 3285 Given what we have outlined about the 3 difficulties of channel realignment, the costs 4 associated with those kinds of changes and the 5 notification procedures we have to go through, whatever 6 decision the Commission ultimately makes, we would hope 7 that they would find some way to match one with the 8 other so that when a launch takes place, it can be 9 coordinated. 10 3286 So we don't have to go to consumers 11 one time and say: "Here's a new service. Here's a 12 change to your channel line-up." And then six months 13 later say: "Here's another service. Here's a change 14 to your channel line-up, and here's the cost associated 15 with it too." 16 3287 In terms of lead time, the bigger 17 issue is the coordination, I think. 18 3288 MR. BATSTONE: I understand that, and 19 I take your point. But the TVA process is ongoing now. 20 3289 Can you give us a better sense of how 21 much time you would need so we can decide if it is 22 possible to coordinate it with the TVA? 23 3290 MR. THOMSON: My understanding is the 24 applicant has looked toward September of 1999. That is 25 a key date for a number of other reasons with respect StenoTran 645 1 to other services. It would probably be an appropriate 2 date, and something that we could move towards, if the 3 scenario developed as they proposed. 4 3291 MR. BATSTONE: Once again, if the 5 Commission were to approve the application on the terms 6 that were requested, how long would it take for cable 7 operators to begin collecting the fees and remitting 8 them to APTN? 9 3292 MR. THOMSON: With sufficient advance 10 notice -- and let's say it is September 1, 1999 that 11 they begin to be provided across the country. 12 3293 We would know that in advance. We 13 would back up the notification requirement 14 appropriately into the summer. So the fees would start 15 coming in presumably with the monthly bills in 16 September. 17 3294 As with any other programming service 18 for which we recover a cost and pass it through, it is 19 usually within the next month following. 20 3295 Is that right? 21 3296 MR. WATT: That's right. Again, 22 though, regardless of whether we -- 23 3297 If we chose not to pass this fee 24 through to consumers for two or three months because we 25 didn't want to have two basic rate increases in the StenoTran 646 1 same calendar year -- which is very problematic for 2 customers -- then it would still be the case. We would 3 still be liable for payment of the fee to the channel. 4 3298 There is not necessarily a direct 5 link between the receipt of the moneys from the 6 customer being passed through to the channel. 7 3299 I don't know precisely how these are 8 done. I presume that on a monthly basis an invoice is 9 sent from the channel and then it is payable within 30 10 days. 11 3300 MR. BATSTONE: Thank you very much. 12 3301 With respect to the distant signal 13 issue with respect to the royalties, Commissioner Wylie 14 mentioned the Atlantic Satellite Network. I was 15 wondering if perhaps a better example would not be the 16 TFO service, which I presume would be over-the-air in 17 Ontario but which is carried off satellite in New 18 Brunswick. 19 3302 Another one, I guess, would be Access 20 Television in Alberta, which, as I understand it, has 21 two over-the-air transmitters but is carried on cable 22 in other markets. 23 3303 MR. THOMSON: TVO, TFO are considered 24 distant signals and distant broadcast signals for 25 copyright purposes outside the Toronto market where StenoTran 647 1 they originate. 2 3304 Interestingly enough, Access Alberta 3 is considered not to be a distant signal. I think that 4 is on the basis, as far as the Copyright Board is 5 concerned, that it did not originate somewhere as an 6 off-the-air free signal. 7 3305 MR. BATSTONE: It may be that they 8 don't have transmitters any more. I am not totally 9 certain on that. 10 1635 11 3306 I just had a question in relation to 12 the channel line-up sheet that you handed out today. 13 3307 I noticed that the Ottawa line-up is 14 dated as of December 15, 1998. My more knowledgeable 15 colleagues here have told me that, in fact, this 16 represents some changes from the current line-up. Is 17 that correct? 18 3308 MR. THOMSON: That's right. Because 19 it is dated in the future, December 15, 1998, it 20 includes the addition of -- I believe it is Canal D, if 21 you see Channel 60, which will be added as of December 22 15. That is my understanding. 23 3309 MR. BATSTONE: Again from my more 24 knowledgeable colleagues, I understand that a number of 25 services will be moved as well. StenoTran 648 1 3310 CTV SportsNet is currently on 66, I 2 understand, and it looks like it is moving down the 3 dial to 27. 4 3311 MR. THOMSON: That is what this would 5 indicate, yes. 6 3312 MR. BATSTONE: Will there be a 7 channel line-up sticker issued as a result of this 8 realignment? 9 3313 MR. THOMSON: Yes. 10 3314 MR. BATSTONE: There will? 11 3315 MR. THOMSON: Yes. 12 3316 MR. BATSTONE: Is it your experience 13 that there is always one associated with a realignment? 14 3317 MR. THOMSON: I believe that is the 15 case, yes. 16 3318 It is incumbent upon us, as 17 operators -- or our members, as operators, to inform 18 their customers when there have been changes to the 19 line-up. 20 3319 They do occur, but we try to co- 21 ordinate them as best we can and reduce the frequency 22 as much as possible. 23 3320 MR. BATSTONE: I have two more 24 questions. 25 3321 We heard earlier from TVNC that it StenoTran 649 1 would be prepared to accept a restricted channel in 2 certain circumstances if the degree of impairment 3 wasn't too great. Do you have a sense of how many 4 systems might have a minimally impaired restricted 5 channel, if you will? 6 3322 MR. THOMSON: I couldn't say that I 7 have a sense on a national basis, but the examples that 8 we have here, that we have handed out with the channel 9 line-up, you will see that in the second column under 10 "Designation" there is an "R". In those cases those 11 represent restricted channels. 12 3323 Obviously, there are different 13 categories of restricted, because there are some 14 broadcast services, including U.S. 4+1 services, that 15 are carried on restricted channels in these two 16 systems. 17 3324 MR. BATSTONE: My final question is a 18 hypothetical question. 19 3325 We were discussing earlier about the 20 possibility of having to remove a service from the 21 basic service and replace it with APTN. I am just 22 wondering if there is a possibility for the basic 23 service fee to actually go down in a situation where 24 that would happen, if, for instance, the APTN service 25 replaced a service which had a higher subscriber fee. StenoTran 650 1 3326 Is that a possibility? 2 3327 MR. THOMSON: Yes, that is possible, 3 but what would have to be removed -- if you are talking 4 about specialty services with pass-through fees, it 5 would have to be a Canadian service that was bumped off 6 the basic because U.S. services aren't permitted on the 7 basic service. 8 3328 So to the extent that there are 9 signals being carried on basic with pass-through fees 10 and there is a change and the fee is lower for APTN 11 than it is for YTV or Vision or Newsworld, if those are 12 the ones that are bumped, then the rate will go down. 13 But I think the complaints will go up. 14 3329 MR. BATSTONE: Are there any non- 15 Canadian services for which a fee is collected? 16 3330 I don't know the answer to that, I am 17 just wondering. 18 3331 MR. THOMSON: There are no non- 19 Canadian services distributed on the basic service with 20 a subscriber fee. 21 3332 MR. BATSTONE: All right. Thank you. 22 Those are all of my questions. 23 3333 THE CHAIRPERSON: I have one more 24 question. 25 3334 On page 4 of your presentation, the StenoTran 651 1 sticker update information of 40 cents per subscriber, 2 amounting to $3 million, is that the full cost of a 3 sticker, as if APTN was the only change? 4 3335 MR. WATT: Yes, that would be the 5 full cost. 6 3336 THE CHAIRPERSON: It is not an 7 incremental cost. 8 3337 MR. WATT: No. 9 3338 THE CHAIRPERSON: Do you expect that 10 on 1 September 1999, if this application were approved 11 as proposed, that that would be the sole change 12 requiring you to issue a sticker? 13 3339 MR. WATT: That is a good point. We 14 didn't consider that at the time, but it is very 15 likely -- 16 3340 THE CHAIRPERSON: There will be a 17 minimal incremental cost to have one more on a sticker, 18 if you were making changes? 19 3341 MR. WATT: I don't think you would 20 want to try to split it up -- 21 3342 THE CHAIRPERSON: But one would 22 assume that that would be a small incremental cost if 23 there were other changes. 24 3343 MR. THOMSON: It depends on how fancy 25 we make the sticker, I suppose. StenoTran 652 1 3344 THE CHAIRPERSON: Are you proposing 2 to put all kinds of Indian lore on it? 3 3345 You know what I mean. A sticker may 4 be necessitated in any event, and that is a very large 5 sum of your one-time costs, which may or may not be 6 fair. It would only be fair if there would be no 7 change on 1 September 1999, were it not for APTN. 8 Correct? 9 3346 MR. WATT: That's correct. 10 3347 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very 11 much, Mr. Watt, Mr. Thomson and Ms Kirshenblatt. We 12 appreciate your staying so late and your participation, 13 and we hope you have a nice weekend. 14 3348 MR. THOMSON: Thank you. 15 3349 THE CHAIRPERSON: We will hear one 16 more intervention and then take a 15-minute break. 17 3350 Madam Secretary ... 18 3351 MS SANTERRE: The next intervention 19 will be made by Friends of Canadian Broadcasting. 20 3352 THE CHAIRPERSON: Mr. Morrison, good 21 afternoon. 22 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 23 3353 MR. MORRISON: Thank you, Madam Chair 24 and Commissioners. Thanks also for the opportunity to 25 share the perspective of the steering committee of the StenoTran 653 1 Friends of Canadian Broadcasting on Television Northern 2 Canada's application. 3 3354 I was tempted to begin by saying "and 4 now for something completely different" -- 5 3355 THE CHAIRPERSON: That is what Zsa 6 Zsa Gabor was supposed to have said the seven times she 7 got married. 8 3356 MR. MORRISON: I am also noting, 9 Madam Chair, that the chair I am sitting in is very 10 warm. 11 3357 As you know, also, the 1996 Census 12 revealed that 800,000 Canadians reported that they were 13 North American Indian, Métis or Inuit, and that, for 14 methodological reasons, this figure under-reports the 15 total number of aboriginal Canadians. These aboriginal 16 Canadians are to be found in substantial numbers in all 17 parts of the country. In several census metropolitan 18 areas, for example, aboriginal people constitute close 19 to one-tenth of the population. 20 3358 The Broadcasting Act states: 21 "The Canadian broadcasting 22 system should...reflect...the 23 special place of aboriginal 24 people." 25 3359 It also states: StenoTran 654 1 "Programming that reflects the 2 aboriginal cultures of Canada 3 should be provided within the 4 Canadian broadcasting system as 5 resources become available for 6 that purpose." 7 3360 As you know, Friends of Canadian 8 Broadcasting supports TVNC's proposal to establish the 9 Aboriginal Peoples Television Network. 10 3361 Friends believes that there are at 11 least four important reasons for approving the 12 application. 13 3362 First, it responds to a Broadcasting 14 Act priority which has not yet been effectively 15 addressed in the broadcasting system. 16 3363 Second, it will strengthen the 17 programming capacity of Television Northern Canada and 18 provide a means for collaboration and second windows 19 among Canadian broadcasters. 20 3364 Third, it will link aboriginal people 21 in all parts of Canada. 22 3365 Fourth, it will offer the non- 23 aboriginal population for the first time an opportunity 24 to view a sustained and focused television programming 25 service produced from an aboriginal point of view. StenoTran 655 1 3366 We want to focus in this brief 2 presentation on the latter point. 3 3367 Friends believes that all Canadians 4 should have access to at least one programming service 5 produced from an aboriginal point of view. This is not 6 just our view; it is the intention expressed in the 7 act, and is, as the act says, "broadcasting policy for 8 Canada". 9 3368 While we do not wish to denigrate the 10 efforts of existing broadcasters to present aboriginal 11 themes in their programming, sometimes from an 12 aboriginal point of view, we suggest that existing 13 programming comes nowhere close to meeting the act's 14 intention, while this application promises to do so. 15 3369 Our principal recommendation is, 16 therefore, that the Commission should ensure that the 17 Aboriginal Peoples Television Network receives 18 widespread distribution. It should be available in 19 each Canadian household. 20 3370 When we scanned various 21 interventions, we noted with approval the unreserved 22 endorsement from CanWest Global Communications. We 23 were somewhat less impressed with the comments of Baton 24 Broadcasting and the CBC. Both reminded us of the 25 expression "all possible short -- short of actual StenoTran 656 1 help". 2 3371 The application before you is not 3 just another specialty channel; it meets and expressed 4 and, thus far, unfulfilled Broadcasting Act priority. 5 3372 The CBC, in particular, fails to take 6 broadcasting policy into account and sells TVNC's 7 proposal short when it describes the service as 8 "targeted essentially to a particular audience". 9 3373 The CBC opposes the use of section 10 9(1)(h) in this case. It states: 11 "We see its use in instances 12 where the Commission determines 13 a service is in the national 14 public interest and merits 15 mandatory carriage on what must 16 be considered to be an 17 extraordinary basis. And we see 18 its use in instances where the 19 Commission finds that the 20 Canadian distribution industry 21 has frustrated a licensed 22 Canadian service deemed to be of 23 national public interest from 24 reaching its intended audience 25 by failing to provide carriage. StenoTran 657 1 In our view, neither instance is 2 applicable, yet, in the case of 3 the TVNC application." 4 3374 We note that "yet" refers to a time 5 before the Corporation had a chance to read the 6 intervention of the Canadian Cable Television 7 Association. 8 3375 The CCTA, whose members control 9 coaxial access to seven million Canadian households, 10 has told you that the Aboriginal Peoples Television 11 Network is not a "national public interest service", 12 applying proposed criteria that would have excluded 13 CBC's television services until more recent times. 14 3376 Quoting the act's references to what 15 it terms "targeted audiences" -- almost as if they had 16 been talking with the CBC -- the association 17 conveniently ignores the vast discrepancy between the 18 attainment of the act's other priorities and those 19 directed toward aboriginal peoples. And it also 20 ignores the adjective "special" before "place of 21 aboriginal peoples" in the quoted sub-paragraph. 22 3377 The CCTA also proposes that you 23 license APTN only on a digital basis, knowing full well 24 that if you accepted its proposal you would be gutting 25 the financial viability of the application. StenoTran 658 1 3378 Witnessing this sophistry from the 2 cable industry's mouthpiece, would you expect its 3 members to turn their backs on their gatekeeper 4 ambitions and not frustrate "a licensed Canadian 5 service deemed to be of national public interest from 6 reaching its intended audience by failing to provide 7 carriage"? 8 3379 Stripped of its thin veneer of 9 plausibility, what the CCTA is really advocating is 10 that you refrain from mandating carriage, thereby 11 saving channel capacity for profitable and cheap 12 foreign services, help cable with its price-elasticity 13 modelling, and that you place the Aboriginal Peoples 14 Television Network on the shelf, with its business plan 15 in tatters, until the dawn of effective digital 16 distribution. 17 3380 Notwithstanding the CCTA's 18 longstanding efforts to mislead your Commission on this 19 issue, we all know that digital roll-out will be a long 20 time coming in Canada, that it will be costly at a 21 retail level and, consequently, will have low 22 penetration rates for the foreseeable future. 23 3381 Friends urges you to license the 24 applicant and to ensure its widespread dissemination 25 using the tools at your disposal. It is not just StenoTran 659 1 important for the citizens of Canada's First Nations, 2 it is important for all Canadians. 3 3382 Thank you. 4 3383 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. 5 Morrison. 6 3384 Commissioner Cardozo ... 7 3385 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you, 8 Madam Chair. 9 3386 Welcome, Mr. Morrison. I want to 10 quote one of the things you said in your written 11 submission, which you have touched on today as well. 12 3387 You say that the purpose of the 13 network is to offer the non-aboriginal population its 14 first opportunity to receive a substantial and 15 continuing television programming service produced from 16 an aboriginal point of view. That is part of the 17 objective. 18 1650 19 3388 Is it your view that non-aboriginal 20 people don't get very much information or perspectives 21 of aboriginal peoples, given the kinds of shows we do 22 have, such as North of 60? 23 3389 MR. MORRISON: You could go on and 24 give a longer list, but it wouldn't be a very long list 25 unless you were to go back to that CBC brief and look StenoTran 660 1 at some of the things that are distributed in the 2 northern service. 3 3390 I don't think any informed person or 4 even a reasonable person could come before you and give 5 a different answer. When we compare the lack of 6 availability of portrayal of aboriginal people from an 7 aboriginal point of view with the priority of the 8 governing statute, we find a huge discrepancy. Indeed, 9 I haven't seen the use of the word "special" too often 10 in the Broadcasting Act, but it's put in as an 11 adjective before the place of aboriginal peoples. 12 3391 So, it's the gap that ought to 13 concern you most, and I think it is one of the most 14 powerful reasons for responding positively to the 15 application and also the most powerful reason for 16 ensuring that there is widespread dissemination. 17 3392 If I could just add one thing, it 18 seems to me that in your questioning of the previous 19 witness, you were talking about sports as an analogy 20 and had you been consulted about wanting more sports 21 programming. It's very hard for people in general in 22 market research to comment on whether they want 23 something that they have never witnessed before. 24 Whether you would like beer if you'd never tasted it. 25 3393 So, we think that this is a real StenoTran 661 1 priority. 2 3394 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: What about the 3 concerns that the CCTA did raise, and let me ask about 4 two of the issues. One is about customer choice. 5 3395 I gather from their presentation that 6 they don't believe customers want this channel, and 7 that if we were to licence it and order cable companies 8 to put it on basic, that it would be imposed and it 9 would be forced upon customers. 10 3396 MR. MORRISON: I would like to see 11 their market research, if that is in fact the case. 12 But while I would be interested in that, it seems to me 13 that the concept of basic in the broadcasting act or in 14 your policies is one that there are certain services 15 that are regarded as fundamental that every Canadian 16 should have the right to receive, services that are 17 perhaps more important than others. 18 3397 I have witnessed predecessors of Mr. 19 Thomson and his absent President before your Commission 20 when you were a citizen and not a Commissioner, 21 Commissioner Cardozo. 22 3398 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I'm still a 23 citizen. They don't take that away from us. We can't 24 express our views, but we do keep our citizenship. 25 3399 MR. MORRISON: I thought that forcing StenoTran 662 1 you to live in the National Capital Region was just 2 about the same thing. 3 3400 What I wanted to say was that I 4 recall Chairman Spicer at one point, when the 5 predecessor of the current CCTA President was before 6 him opposing NewsWorld on a matter of a fee increase 7 and speaking for all of the cable customers of the 8 country, and Chairman Spicer at the time said, "If you 9 were Westinghouse, would you come before us and speak 10 for all the owners of refrigerators in the country?" I 11 think Chairman Spicer had a point there. 12 3401 The cable industry is learning slowly 13 to think in a competitive mode and to think in a market 14 mode, but our supporters tell us that they are very 15 unimpressed with the cable industry's response to their 16 concerns as subscribers, and I think they have a long 17 way to go before you should rely on them as an 18 indicator here of what people do and do not want. 19 3402 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Are you 20 disagreeing with the point that the cable operators are 21 closer to the customers and what they want than we are? 22 3403 MR. MORRISON: Yes. I think I speak 23 for a lot of Canadians when I express a certain -- in 24 fact, many people would get emotional about it. The 25 cable industry is held in rather ill repute by the StenoTran 663 1 Canadian public on a comparative basis. 2 3404 We have submitted polling data to 3 this Commission over a number of years that would 4 establish that. It's held in lower regard, for 5 example, than the telephone industry, which also 6 operates in a fairly strong mode vis-a-vis its 7 customers. 8 3405 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I think the 9 CCTA or the cable case has been based more around the 10 issue of customer choice, but is there an element of 11 gatekeeping there where they're making essentially 12 programming choices as to what we get to see and what 13 they think are important? 14 3406 MR. MORRISON: Gatekeeping and 15 packaging and a range of things, and I thought that the 16 questioning of your colleagues was quite proficient in 17 drawing out some of the contradictions in their 18 position. 19 3407 They are in the aggregate a 20 profitable industry, a regulated industry. Other than 21 basic, their rates are not controlled by this 22 Commission, and if there is a certain cost that you 23 decide that they have to bear, according to these 24 accounting allocations, to do the right thing in this 25 applicant's case, we're satisfied that they can StenoTran 664 1 accommodate those costs and we would like them to in 2 the national interest. 3 3408 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Lastly I want 4 to ask you a little bit about production and the role 5 of APTN in the Canadian production industry. It's an 6 area that you're quite familiar with and have talked 7 about the importance of Canadian content and Canadian 8 productions. 9 3409 What do you think APTN offers to the 10 Canadian production industry as an avenue or in any 11 other way? 12 3410 MR. MORRISON: Mr. Montour, I 13 believe, referred to the training issue. It's a very, 14 very important thing to provide first opportunities for 15 people to get a start in the television business, and 16 to provide that to the aboriginal population of Canada 17 in a focused way is an important contribution. 18 3411 But the opportunity to take creative 19 control and to present your cultures to others from 20 your own point of view is an opportunity to do 21 something very creative. You will be strengthening 22 and, in a way, balancing the access of Canadians to 23 their own cultures when you make these resources 24 available, as you should. 25 3412 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: What do you StenoTran 665 1 think of Tina Keeper's point that having APTN on the 2 scene would present a challenge to the other 3 broadcasters to do something about their, shall we call 4 it, lack of reflection of aboriginal people? 5 3413 MR. MORRISON: I hope she's right, 6 but having sat in the audience here and witnessed some 7 of the speeches by some of Canada's largest 8 broadcasters, one of whom I praised a few minutes ago, 9 about diversity in this country just a few weeks ago, I 10 think you have to keep an eye on them. 11 3414 It's a regulated industry and they 12 all have certain responsibilities vis-a-vis the 13 Broadcasting Act priority to aboriginal people. So, 14 while I would hope that the Aboriginal Peoples 15 Television Network would stimulate more and better 16 programming and, indeed, as I referred to in my brief 17 comments, second windows and collaboration amongst 18 broadcasters, sharing of costs, if anyone were to take 19 the view that that had handled the question of 20 aboriginal portrayal by the rest of the broadcasting 21 system, I think it would be your job, through the 22 licensing process and your normal scrutiny, to attach 23 conditions of licence and expectations to make sure 24 that that is not right. 25 3415 Hopefully Tina Keeper is right and my StenoTran 666 1 concern is misplaced. 2 3416 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thanks very 3 much. Those are my questions, Madam Chair. 4 3417 THE CHAIRPERSON: Commissioner 5 Pennefather. 6 3418 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you, 7 Madam Chair. I have a question of clarification, Mr. 8 Morrison. 9 3419 On page 3 you say that the Commission 10 should ensure that Aboriginal Peoples Television 11 Network receives widespread distribution, should be 12 available in each Canadian household. On page 6, 13 Friends urges you to license the applicant and to 14 ensure its widespread dissemination using the tools at 15 your disposal. 16 3420 Do you support mandatory carriage for 17 this application? 18 3421 MR. MORRISON: Yes, but we also have 19 quite a bit of respect for this Commission. You might 20 find more than one way to accomplish the widespread 21 distribution. 22 3422 So, while, yes, we support the 23 application without hesitation, we also have noticed 24 that it is wise to put one's confidence in the 25 Commission and the Commission staff to think of StenoTran 667 1 creative alternatives to accomplish the same result. 2 3423 The real goal is that the vast 3 majority, a large proportion of the Canadian public 4 have access to this signal in their household. You 5 know better than a group like the Friends of Canadian 6 Broadcasting what is the best means to achieve that 7 end. 8 3424 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: And do you 9 have a suggestion in that regard? 10 3425 MR. MORRISON: Licence them as they 11 request. 12 3426 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Mandatory 13 carriage? 14 3427 MR. MORRISON: Yes. 15 3428 THE CHAIRPERSON: It's so nice to 16 know that someone thinks we know better. You've seen 17 the light, Mr. Morrison. 18 3429 MR. MORRISON: I've got an 19 appointment in ten days' time to discuss that very 20 topic with a Liberal caucus committee examining your 21 role. 22 3430 THE CHAIRPERSON: I hope you tell 23 them. On that basis, you're welcome any time. Thank 24 you for your participation and have a nice weekend. 25 3431 MR. MORRISON: Thanks. StenoTran 668 1 3432 THE CHAIRPERSON: We will now take a 2 well-deserved break until 10 after 5:00 and come back. 3 We do regret keeping people late, but I think what's 4 more important is that we have a thorough look at 5 applications and a full chance to intervene. 6 --- Short Recess at / Courte suspension à 1700 7 --- Upon resuming at / Reprise à 1710 8 3433 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good afternoon. 9 Madam Secretary. 10 3434 MS SANTERRE: The next presentation 11 will be done by Brenco Media Limited. 12 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 13 3435 MS CHAMBERS: Thank you for the 14 opportunity to appear at this hearing. 15 3436 My name is Brenda Chambers. I am a 16 member of the Champagne-Asaak First Nation, in the 17 Yukon. I am here to support the licence application of 18 APTN. 19 3437 I am also here to say that Aboriginal 20 broadcasting is not an exercise in public relations. I 21 believe passionately in the need for Aboriginal access 22 to the media. I believe Aboriginal people need some 23 editorial control of that media. And I believe private 24 and public broadcasters have failed miserably in their 25 responsibility to provide that access and that control. StenoTran 669 1 3438 I have been producing television 2 programs for and about Aboriginal people for over 15 3 years. I am a former producer and general manager of 4 Northern Native Broadcasting, Yukon. I was involved in 5 creating NAIDA well over 14 years ago in the Yukon and 6 have also been involved in the creation of Television 7 Northern Canada. 8 3439 I have hosted a variety of television 9 programs. I have also been in the creation of 10 production funds and regulatory discussions and have 11 made numerous appearances before this Commission in 12 defence of Aboriginal broadcasting. 13 3440 And also with me is Jim Compton who 14 is also a producer out of Winnipeg and he has also 15 produced numerous programs in mainstream media. He is 16 here to answer any questions that you may have in 17 regards to productions in mainstream media. 18 3441 I currently operate a production 19 company called Brenco Media. My most recent work is 20 the CBC television series "All My Relations", which 21 aired on the network last March and on Newsworld in 22 June. 23 3442 With the exception of some technical 24 support, "All My Relations" was produced exclusively by 25 Aboriginal people. The series received tremendous StenoTran 670 1 feedback from all sectors of society, native, 2 non-native, business, political, academic and others. 3 There was overwhelming agreement that it provided a 4 much needed insight into the Aboriginal community. It 5 was a valuable form for the promotion of cross-cultural 6 understanding. Viewers felt strongly that the pilot 7 should become a permanent series on CBC television. 8 3443 This confirms, at least in my mind, 9 an appetite for knowledge and understanding of 10 Aboriginal culture, concerns and issues. And we can 11 extrapolate from the experience of "All My Relations" 12 the response to a greater concentration of Aboriginal 13 programming in Canada if a single pilot series can 14 generate such an enthusiastic response, imagine the 15 reaction to an entire channel dedicated to such 16 programs. 17 3444 When the CBC was created, some 60 18 years ago, the government of the day was very concerned 19 about Canadian identity. The surge of American radio 20 programs which washed over the 49th parallel and 21 spilled into the homes of Canadians, the dilution of 22 Canadian culture was a very real threat. The only 23 defence was to promote Canadian programming and 24 Canadian broadcast facilities. Hence, the creation of 25 the CBC. StenoTran 671 1 3445 So in December of 1928, Sir John Aird 2 was appointed to head a Royal Commission on 3 Broadcasting. Nine months later, he presented a 4 29-page report. It was short, but to the point. He 5 concluded that the interests of the public can be 6 adequately served only by some form of public ownership 7 and control. He was talking about giving Canadians the 8 ability to maintain and use their own voice, to tell 9 their own stories, to express their own beliefs. In 10 his words, Canadians want Canadian programming. 11 3446 And being a visionary, Aird looked 12 ahead to the future, concluding that television, not 13 much more than science fiction at the time, would soon 14 be a reality, and that same cultural principles would 15 one day apply to it, too. 16 3447 So I carry forward Sir John Aird's 17 argument to present day and I apply that argument to 18 the cultures that make up this country. Aboriginal 19 people want Aboriginal programming. We need ownership 20 and control. We want to avoid the same fate that Sir 21 John envisioned 70 years ago. We want to protect 22 ourselves. And the best way to do that is to utilize 23 the most powerful medium of the day. 24 3448 That means producing programs and 25 helping others produce programs about Aboriginal life StenoTran 672 1 in Canada. It means putting as many of our faces on TV 2 as we possibly can. That is not always an easy job. 3 3449 Storytellers are abundant, native 4 journalists and technical people are available. 5 Securing funding is an ongoing challenge, but the real 6 problem, I think is access. 7 3450 There has never been a real 8 commitment to Aboriginal broadcasting in Canada. The 9 federal government has provided television support for 10 radio and TV productions under a variety of programs 11 that has been more of an appeasement than a priority. 12 3451 The mainstream media, the non-native 13 media in Canada covers Aboriginal affairs in a reactive 14 way: Another report, another court case, a batch of 15 new statistics, a blockade, to catch the attention of 16 reporters and suddenly native people are in the news. 17 There is a short frenzy and then it is over. 18 3452 Public and private broadcasters 19 sending reporters to cover Aboriginal stories is not 20 the same as Aboriginal broadcasting. In reality, they 21 are simply fulfilling their licence obligations. As for 22 their moral obligations to Aboriginal people, native 23 people demand and have the right to their own voice. 24 Filtering that voice through the media is not 25 acceptable. The end result is an interpretation of StenoTran 673 1 what Aboriginal people are saying. 2 3453 We want an ongoing voice, we want to 3 develop our own news agenda, one that reflects our 4 concerns, view point and reality. We want to be able 5 to say to viewers and listeners: This is important to 6 us. 7 3454 And is Aboriginal culture important 8 to the rest of Canada? It certainly comes across as 9 valuable in official presentations to the United 10 Nations. The tourism industry certainly uses our 11 culture to sell Canada as a destination. Most museums 12 prominently and proudly display our cultural artefacts. 13 That all makes it very valuable. 14 3455 But how much is Aboriginal culture 15 worth to Canadians? 15 cents per household per month? 16 Maybe a little more than a cup of coffee a year? My 17 people need APTN and they need mandatory carriage to 18 ensure its vitality. To be clear, APTN must generate 19 considerable revenues to operate broadcasting. 20 3456 But unlike private broadcasters who 21 have shareholders to reward, APTN is not about money. 22 It is about culture, it is about identity, it is about 23 role models, inspiration and achievement. Aboriginal 24 people must have a guaranteed voice in the mass media. 25 Television is a crucial tool in our efforts to maintain StenoTran 674 1 a strong and distinct cultural identity. Ready access 2 to it TV across Canada will allow us to reflect our 3 lives to one another and to all our neighbours. No 4 other broadcaster has or will commit to making that 5 happen. So we must do it ourselves. 6 3457 By rejecting APTN's licence, you will 7 be rejecting our right to stand on even ground with 8 other cultural groups in Canada. By supporting this 9 application, you will giving us the opportunity to stop 10 the ghettoizing of Aboriginal culture. 11 3458 I have worked for many years to 12 enhance and promote the aspirations of Aboriginal 13 producers, broadcasters and people in Canada. And I am 14 anxious to continue producing programs for and about my 15 people. But to do the job properly, we need your 16 support of APTN. 17 3459 Thank you for the opportunity to 18 appear before you today. And remember: Canadians want 19 Canadian programming; Aboriginal people want Aboriginal 20 programming. Thank you. 21 3460 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Ms 22 Chambers. 23 3461 Mr. Compton? 24 3462 MR. COMPTON: Yeah, thanks. I was 25 not scheduled to appear today, but after hearing StenoTran 675 1 certain things today, I thought that I might add my 2 voice to the hearing. 3 3463 As well, you know, I am also a 4 producer of a show called "The Sharing Circle". And, 5 like my good friend, Gary Farmer, we are doing a piece 6 on it for the show. And I think it is an example of 7 how we have been forced to beg, borrow and steel to get 8 our programming up and running within this country. 9 3464 I am compelled to speak today. I 10 would like to thank Brenda for offering her seat to me. 11 I think one of the questions that I want to ask, and I 12 do not want to keep anyone here any longer than they 13 have to be, but one of the questions was from 14 Commissioner Pennefather was what can APTN do for 15 Canadians. And I would like to speak on what I know. 16 3465 I have been in the television 17 business for the last 17 years; nine with CBC and eight 18 in the privates. Over the last five years, I have done 19 a show called "The Sharing Circle". And I would like 20 to speak on how the privates and the public 21 broadcasters skirt their responsibilities in relation 22 to Aboriginal broadcasting based on the Aboriginal 23 broadcasting section of the act. 24 3466 For example, it has become a way of 25 looking good with the commission to say that when we or StenoTran 676 1 private broadcasters or the public broadcasters say: 2 Well, we want to get a licence and we are going to do 3 some Aboriginal programming, and I will use "The 4 Sharing Circle" as an example. I would say that maybe 5 I might not have a job when I get back, but that is 6 okay. 7 3467 We have been doing it for the last 8 five years and their application for a licence in 9 Manitoba under Craig Broadcasting was that they would 10 have Aboriginal programming. So they decided that they 11 will get some Aboriginal people who are in the business 12 and ask them to put on a show. So "The Sharing Circle" 13 was the show. 14 3468 When we started out, we had a 6 p.m. 15 time slot, we got cameras and we got editing equipment 16 and we were allowed to do 26 shows per year on a 17 52-week run. 18 3469 After two, three years of, like I 19 say, beg, borrowing and steeling to try and get the 20 program up. For example, you know, getting other 21 people to pay our travel to get to Ottawa to do a story 22 or airfares and what have you, and getting those things 23 happening, because we did not have a budget for travel, 24 for example, we found ourselves slowly being moved from 25 a 6 o'clock time slot. In our case it was 10 o'clock StenoTran 677 1 in the morning and at six in the evening on a Sunday. 2 We had, for Aboriginal people it was after church and 3 before bingo. So it was a good time slot. But as we 4 went along, it sort of went back to 8 o'clock, 9 5 o'clock and today we have an 11 o'clock time slot on 6 the station. 7 3470 At the same time, Craig Broadcasting 8 wanted to expand their horizon so they applied for a 9 licence in Alberta and again they use "The Sharing 10 Circle". 11 3471 And we had even made a video 12 presentation to the commission for the licence based on 13 that. And now they have a 6 o'clock time slot in 14 Alberta. But now, you know, like I say, we are at 11 15 o'clock in Manitoba and we have no way of getting a 16 good time slot for ourselves. We don't have the 17 resources to do what we want. 18 3472 Our camera is here. And they pay us 19 40 cents on the dollar for our camera, for example. So 20 they do not pay what it costs to do effective 21 programming. So I think it is one example of -- and I 22 don't know what is going to happen in Alberta, but I do 23 feel that if they wanted to skirt their obligations to 24 the Aboriginal section of the act, that they will and 25 they could. I think that will happen and it is all StenoTran 678 1 based on, I guess, revenues. 2 3473 But that is just one example of how 3 the public and the private people do that. I mean, I 4 worked nine years at CBC as well and I think that their 5 commitments were not always there for Aboriginal 6 programming which is something that as an Aboriginal 7 person I had strived to have on the air and thought I 8 did a good job. 9 3474 But, in the end, what happens with 10 Aboriginal people is we hit a wall. We cannot get any 11 further within the business. We can't become 12 producers. We cannot get into management. We cannot 13 decide on what kind of programming that we want that 14 will affect our people and that just does not happen. 15 3475 So I think that with an Aboriginal 16 network that is run by Aboriginal people that 17 understand Aboriginal issues, that understand 18 Aboriginal stories, that we will get, number one, 19 proper funding to do the programming and understanding 20 and insights to what we are all about and I think that 21 we can reflect that to other Canadians across the 22 country. 23 3476 Thank you. 24 3477 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. 25 Compton. StenoTran 679 1 3478 Ms Chambers, in your written 2 presentation, at the last sentence of -- the second to 3 last paragraph you say: By supporting APTN's 4 application, we will be able to stop the ghettoizing of 5 Aboriginal culture. 6 3479 We often hear this, you know, 7 allegations about ghettoizing being a problem. Do you 8 think -- do you mean that because you will have an 9 outlet when you don't have one, ghettoizing of culture 10 will stop? Or do you feel that having your own channel 11 will prevent ghettoizing? 12 3480 We usually get the contrary argument 13 that rather than have it richly, as Mr. Compton has 14 been alluding to in mainstream, that that is better 15 than having your own. 16 3481 So how are you using the word 17 "ghettoizing" here? To say that it is ghettoized now 18 because there is no outlet? Or an outlet of your own 19 goes against ghettoizing because of the control? 20 3482 MS CHAMBERS: Well, certainly the 21 control is very important. And I do mean that in the 22 sense that we are able to control and be responsible 23 for providing our stories in an Aboriginal context. So 24 I do mean it in that sense. But I also mean it in the 25 sense that the programming that is out there is never StenoTran 680 1 given a half-decent time slot and it is always at a 2 time slot that is non-prime especially for our audience 3 and certainly we are there, but it is not in the best 4 or we are never given a priority of where our shows can 5 be shown. 6 3483 THE CHAIRPERSON: And in a sense that 7 is what you referred to by "ghettoizing"? 8 3484 MS CHAMBERS: Yes. 9 3485 THE CHAIRPERSON: Put in spots that 10 are less appealing than the rest of the schedule. And 11 here you will have control not only over what you 12 produce but how you schedule, et cetera? 13 3486 MS CHAMBERS: Yes. 14 3487 THE CHAIRPERSON: So that -- because 15 you have probably heard the arguments that when you 16 give a special service and you call it a specific -- 17 you know, whether it is an Italian service or 18 Aboriginal service, that that is ghettoizing and not 19 something to be striven for. That, instead, the 20 Commission should be more demanding about how to serve, 21 in your case, Aboriginal producers, et cetera and 22 audiences on the mainstream channel. 23 3488 MS CHAMBERS: Yes. 24 3489 THE CHAIRPERSON: We thank you for 25 your presentation, Ms Chambers and Mr. Compton. And, StenoTran 681 1 again, we also thank you for your patience because it 2 is late and it is Friday. But we are happy that you 3 did come to speak to us or stay long enough to speak to 4 us, nevertheless. 5 3490 Did someone else have a question? 6 1730 7 3491 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Just one quick 8 question. 9 3492 You were talking about programming in 10 Winnipeg, Edmonton and Calgary, and looking at the 11 figures those are certainly the cities with the largest 12 aboriginal populations. Do you think that is why a 13 broadcaster is interested in having some aboriginal 14 programming in those cities and puts that as a key part 15 of their plan at licensing time, and do you find that 16 broadcasters do similarly in other cities where there 17 are much lower aboriginal populations? 18 3493 MR. COMPTON: I can't speak for the 19 cities where there are lower aboriginal populations. I 20 can't speak for Winnipeg and, of course, Edmonton. 21 3494 I think that it is a shell game a 22 little bit there. Essentially, they want the licence 23 and they will do whatever they have to do to get it. 24 So if they can have, if you will, some token Indians to 25 do a show and reflect on their networks, they will do StenoTran 682 1 that and, as Brenda says, ghettoize it once they have 2 the licence. 3 3495 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So, if APTN 4 were to be licensed and you have an aboriginal 5 television network, does that then cause them to say, 6 "Well, we don't need to do that any more, you are doing 7 that", or will they take the position that Tina Keeper 8 was suggesting, which was there is a challenge to them? 9 3496 Either of you could answer that. 10 3497 MS CHAMBERS: I can give you a really 11 good example of that. I think that it will encourage 12 other broadcasters to start really paying attention to 13 aboriginal issues out there. 14 3498 When I managed Northern Native 15 Broadcasting in Yukon there was a radio application for 16 a new service into the Yukon, and we kind of looked 17 back before Northern Native Broadcasting was even 18 created in the Yukon. Prior to the start of that 19 organization there was very little coverage of 20 aboriginal affairs in any kind of positive light in the 21 Yukon, it was a lot of negative statistics, all the 22 things against land claims. Once the organization 23 started up with radio and television we saw an 24 increased participation or increased stories about 25 aboriginal people in the media, both in print and other StenoTran 683 1 radio stations, in the Yukon, in Whitehorse. 2 3499 It was really interesting to take a 3 look back and see that increase because it certainly 4 went up, and I think today life in the Yukon -- 5 certainly it is a lot more aware because of the 6 broadcasting organization there. 7 3500 MR. CAMPTON: Just quickly, if they 8 are asked to follow the Broadcasting Act in relation to 9 aboriginal programming, then they should do it and they 10 should do it adequately. Then we wouldn't have any 11 problems. Then we wouldn't need an aboriginal network. 12 That's what I am saying. 13 3501 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I hear your 14 point. Thanks. 15 3502 Thanks, Madam Chair. 16 3503 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, 17 Ms Chambers and Mr. Compton, and have a good trip back. 18 3504 Madam Secretary. 19 3505 MS SANTERRE: I would like now to 20 invite the Centre for Research-Action on Race 21 Relations, le Centre de recherche-action sur les 22 relations raciales. 23 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 24 3506 M. NIEMI: Bonsoir, Madame la 25 Présidente, Madame la Conseillère, Monsieur le StenoTran 684 1 Conseiller. Une fois de plus on vous remercie de nous 2 avoir accordé l'opportunité de nous présenter et de 3 participer à ce processus. 4 3507 My name is Fo Niemi. I am the 5 Executive Director for the CRARR. Accompanying me is 6 Dr. Gail Guthrie Valaskakis, former dean of the 7 Communications Department of Concordia University and 8 former president of the Montreal Native Friendship 9 Centre, and currently special advisor to the Rector of 10 Concordia University on Aboriginal Affairs. 11 3508 Our organization is intervening in 12 this application for the APTN; our singular objective 13 is to support the application. We consider the 14 application as being very essential to the national, 15 multicultural, multiracial and bilingual fabric of 16 Canada and we fully believe in a need to have a 17 national professional television network with mandatory 18 carriage status. 19 3509 We would just like to focus on many 20 of the issues in our brief that have not been raised 21 here today. 22 3510 We believe that one of the most 23 important benefits of this national aboriginal 24 television network is that it will provide a much 25 needed voice for the voice and the face of the Canadian StenoTran 685 1 mosaic by portraying the realities and stories that 2 complete the Canadian mosaic and that complete the 3 Canadian identity experience, both at home and abroad. 4 3511 We believe that the station will 5 inform, educate and enlighten non-aboriginal Canadian 6 citizens and immigrants, especially newcomers, about 7 the aboriginal people of this country because we are 8 very concerned about the kind of stereotypes and bias 9 about aboriginal people and how this kind of bias and 10 stereotype can influence negatively the perception and 11 the attitudes of newcomers, immigrants and also young 12 people of all origins vis-à-vis aboriginal peoples of 13 this country. 14 3512 We believe, however, that this 15 national aboriginal television network, while being 16 indispensable, should not be used by the broadcasting 17 industry to relieve itself, particularly where the 18 television services are concerned, of the obligation to 19 faithfully and fairly represent and portray First 20 Nations people as required by the Broadcasting Act, and 21 also the television industry should not relieve itself 22 of the obligation that it has towards employment equity 23 as required by the Employment Equity Act, especially 24 when they have 100 employees or more. 25 3513 If you look at the most recently StenoTran 686 1 available report by Human Resources Development Canada 2 on employment equity listing the performance of each 3 communication company in the area of employment equity 4 for aboriginal people, we see that the situation is 5 extremely critical because many of these broadcasting 6 and telecommunications companies register zero in terms 7 of the number of aboriginal people among their staff. 8 3514 We also believe that APTN's 9 programming should address the needs and interests and 10 aspirations of French-speaking aboriginal people in 11 Quebec, particularly of some of the nations such as the 12 Montagnais-Atikamek, where the French is a language of 13 daily use. We also believe that, because of the 14 situation in Quebec and the social, political as well 15 as the historical context of Quebec relations with the 16 rest of Canada in dealing with aboriginal affairs, it 17 is important that there be a national voice that 18 reflects aboriginal concerns and aspirations in French 19 so that the rest of the French-speaking Quebec 20 community can better understand what aboriginal issues 21 are all about, especially when it comes to land claims 22 and other claims for resources and rights with regard 23 to fishing and hunting. 24 3515 One other factor that we are very 25 concerned about is the access on the part of APTN to StenoTran 687 1 funding from different public cultural programs and 2 private funds. As we raised earlier in our 3 intervention on Canadian television, we are very 4 concerned that many of these funds, both inside 5 government and private funds, are not accessible to 6 people of different ethnocultural and aboriginal 7 backgrounds, particularly where the barriers of 8 systemic racism are concerned. 9 3516 Therefore, we suggest that the CRTC 10 undertake all necessary and appropriate action to 11 ensure that these programs and private funds be 12 accessible because they are, in most cases, not that 13 much of a great help to a lot of people who don't fit 14 into the French Canadian or the English Canadian 15 culture mode of production. 16 3517 One other factor that can have an 17 impact on APTN survival of programming and operations 18 in the long term is advertising, as mentioned in the 19 application. Here again, we are concerned about the 20 fact that television advertising in its present state 21 is not representative of the multicultural and 22 multiracial realities of Canadian societies, both in 23 French and in English. 24 3518 Advertisers and the advertising 25 industry in particular are not that open to cultural StenoTran 688 1 and racial diversity in advertisements. If we are to 2 rely on the present state of the advertising industry, 3 then serious concern should be raised as to the ability 4 of the advertising industry to open up and to include 5 aboriginal peoples in its consumer markets, to consider 6 aboriginal people as important consumers and to reflect 7 aboriginal realities in its advertising and marketing 8 strategies. 9 3519 Here again we recommend that the CRTC 10 review existing advertising practices and codes to 11 determine the responsiveness to the multicultural and 12 multiracial realities of Canadian society, especially 13 where aboriginal communities are concerned. 14 3520 We would like to move now to the 15 issue of the need for the CRTC to act in such a way 16 that barriers of systemic racism are indeed addressed 17 and eventually reduced if not eliminated. 18 3521 We believe, instead of putting the 19 burden on the new network, APTN, to compete with the 20 shall we say very resistant industry when dealing with 21 diversity, especially when APTN can be considered what 22 we normally call a new kid on the block, that the CRTC 23 should act positively by investigating, probing and 24 demanding from industry the removal of these barriers 25 of racism that prevent the First Nations of Canada from StenoTran 689 1 establishing and operating a national television 2 network available to both southern and northern 3 residents. 4 3522 In conclusion, we believe that APTN 5 stands not only as a much needed instrument for 6 aboriginal development and empowerment but also as a 7 promising vehicle for public education, culture 8 enrichment and nation building. We strongly encourage 9 the CRTC to make the APTN into a tangible symbol of 10 pride and solidarity for Canadians of aboriginal and 11 non-aboriginal ancestries and a concrete reality for 12 Canada on the eve of the new century. We would also 13 like to raise the fact that there is still a lot of 14 work to be done in dealing with diversity in 15 broadcasting issues and we hope that the issue of 16 diversity is approached in such a way that we can have 17 a global and comprehensive strategy to ensure that the 18 aboriginal realities and the First Nations people are 19 indeed an integral part of whatever the CRTC does in 20 making sure that the broadcasting system reflects the 21 diversity of Canadian society. 22 3523 I would like now to invite 23 Dr. Valaskakis to make several short comments to 24 complement our presentation. 25 3524 DR. VALASKAKIS: Thank you. StenoTran 690 1 3525 I am here as a long-time member of 2 the board of CRARR but I am here wearing many different 3 hats, and one of the hats is as a researcher who has 4 worked in the north since 1971 on aboriginal 5 communications. 6 3526 In 1971 I was on the Arctic Institute 7 Task Force on Broadcasting in the North, and after that 8 I was evaluator of the Inuluktik Hermes (ph.) 9 Interactive Project, the Anek B (ph.) Inukshuk Project 10 for IBC Surveys for the native communications societies 11 for the NNBAP program and most recently I did some 12 royal commission work on northern broadcasting and 13 native broadcasting for their research report in that 14 area. 15 3527 Rather than take much of your time, 16 what I would like to do is pull out some points that 17 are sustained and substantiated in terms of research 18 that has been done over the last 25 years, 30 years, 19 and issues that have come forth over that same period 20 in regard to aboriginal broadcasting. 21 3528 First, we know not only from my 22 research but the many research reports that have been 23 done within a Canadian context in that period, that 24 media does play a real role in participatory 25 development and that the move from a history of non- StenoTran 691 1 native control and what I would call cultural 2 replacement to a reality of aboriginal empowerment, 3 nation building and self-determination has been a move 4 in which media has played a critical role. 5 3529 Second, aboriginal peoples watch 6 aboriginal television when it is available, listen to 7 aboriginal radio when it is available and they do so in 8 great numbers. In regard to IBC, over 85 per cent of 9 the people surveyed watched absolutely every time it 10 was on the Inukshuk programming. And when they do so, 11 they learn from that programming. They learn new 12 words, new concepts, they learn about their history, 13 they learn things that have to do with their own 14 identity, their own culture but also their self-esteem. 15 1745 16 3530 They learn things have to do with 17 inter-generational differences, and that communication 18 factor is very important in terms of crossing those 19 inter-generational borders, particularly when we have 20 an enormous group of young aboriginal people coming 21 into the Canadian reality. 22 3531 That aboriginal media play a role in 23 not only supporting aboriginal identity and cultures, 24 but languages as well. But while that is the case, 25 there is a very important role for aboriginal media to StenoTran 692 1 play in regard to English language programming. The 2 density in regard to aboriginal language is falling and 3 while language is a critical aspect of culture, it is 4 not the only aspect of culture. 5 3532 Information shared among aboriginal 6 peoples in English or, in the case of francophone 7 aboriginal peoples, in French is a meaningful concept. 8 3533 That southern aboriginal peoples have 9 for years asked for access to media which is very 10 difficult to make available to them; and their need is 11 extremely real and very important. 12 3534 That mainstream media has not and 13 cannot be expected to meet the broadcasting needs of 14 aboriginal peoples, not in terms of relation to 15 programming, not in terms of relation to employment, 16 and not in terms of widespread participation and 17 access. 18 3535 Mainstream is having your own 19 network. That is the reverse of ghettoization. You 20 are mainstream when you have your own network. 21 3536 And that aboriginal programs have 22 been supported in government policy since the 1970s, in 23 government programs since the 1970s, and in government 24 policy statements in regard to the CRTC as well. 25 3537 Sitting in this room, I feel like I StenoTran 693 1 am sitting in the shadow of Rhéal Therrien, because I 2 have sat here across from him on occasions before. I 3 think how touched he would be to be in this room for 4 this hearing, were he with us. 5 3538 It reminds me again of the many, many 6 times that we have discussed and made a commitment to 7 policy and programs in support of aboriginal 8 broadcasting. 9 3539 And that, as well, the Royal 10 Commission expressed tremendous concern on the part of 11 aboriginal peoples in regard to five issues. 12 3540 One was access, probably the most 13 important. A second was training. A third was media 14 resources and the availability of media resources for 15 aboriginal people. A fourth was funding. And a fifth 16 was the entrenchment of policy and legislation, but 17 also the manoeuvrability and the reality of programs -- 18 access and all these other factors -- in regard to what 19 is already in policy and legislation. 20 3541 Finally, in the long boom and bust 21 history of aboriginal peoples and government policy, I 22 think we have many examples of unintended planned 23 failure. And that unintended planned failure has to do 24 with not enough support or funding or structures to 25 support the initiative that was put in place. StenoTran 694 1 3542 For all these reasons, I say this is 2 the moment. It is a moment of incredible power for me, 3 because for 30 years I and many other people have 4 worked in regard to research in terms of aboriginal 5 broadcasting. Those people were all part of a system 6 that moves us toward this moment. 7 3543 This moment is one in which we have 8 within the palms of our hands the full reality of a 9 first broadcasting service for aboriginal peoples. We 10 have within our hands the block of a basic relationship 11 between aboriginal peoples and other Canadians. 12 3544 I urge the Commission, on the basis 13 of all of that work over those many, many years for 14 everyone, particularly the aboriginal community, to 15 approve APTN's application for a mandatory carriage on 16 basic service. 17 3545 Thank you. 18 3546 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Dr. 19 Valaskakis. 20 --- Applause / Applaudissements 21 3547 THE CHAIRPERSON: I am sure it is not 22 my words you are applauding. 23 3548 Commissioner Cardozo. 24 3549 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you, 25 Madam Chair. StenoTran 695 1 3550 Thank you, Mr. Niemi and Dr. 2 Valaskakis, for your presentation. Your written 3 submission and your verbal presentation today are very 4 clear, and there is not a whole lot more to say. 5 3551 I just have a couple of questions, 6 but first an observation. 7 3552 I note the particular race relations 8 perspective that you have brought to the discussion. 9 It has been talked about in various ways over the last 10 two days, but I think through you work and what you 11 have said today you have perhaps sharpened that focus 12 of this discussion. 13 3553 We discussed yesterday -- and I hope 14 I didn't take the wind out of your sails, Mr. Niemi, 15 the matter of French language presentation. 16 3554 What APTN is planning is 7.5 hours of 17 French language programming out of 121.5. In the 18 discussion they seemed to be open to more, recognizing 19 the precise point that you made about the Montagnais 20 and other aboriginal peoples in Quebec who are French 21 speaking besides their aboriginal language. 22 3555 What would your recommendation be 23 about a figure? 24 3556 You have suggested that they be 25 encouraged to increase over time. Have you got StenoTran 696 1 anything specific to recommend in that regard? 2 3557 MR. NIEMI: One of our advisors is an 3 aboriginal lawyer in Sept-Iles. In dealing with this 4 matter, because of the distinct context of Quebec with 5 regard to practically everything we do, it is important 6 perhaps to have a parallel or second phase of study or 7 consultation with aboriginal peoples in Quebec who 8 speak French, in order to see how we can best address 9 the needs or the aspirations of French speaking 10 aboriginal peoples there. 11 3558 The data also show that there are 11 12 nations in Quebec. Some are unilingual English; some 13 are French speaking; and other aboriginal people. 14 3559 The geographical spread is such that 15 it is important to look at how the French dimension 16 should be addressed. 17 3560 I think we can draw the parallel with 18 regard to the CBC or Société Radio-Canada, even though 19 it is considered the same company, but in terms of the 20 operations. The programming is practically as if it 21 were two different aspects of the same company running 22 in two different languages. 23 3561 We would suggest that that would be 24 one way for APTN to see how that French component of 25 its audience and the aboriginal peoples in Quebec StenoTran 697 1 should be addressed. 2 3562 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: With regard to 3 funds, you suggested that the funds that are provided 4 for production should be more attentive to aboriginal 5 needs. As you know, we don't run or control those 6 funds, but do sometimes make recommendations or voice 7 our opinions on them. 8 3563 Is that what you are suggesting we 9 should do? 10 3564 MR. NIEMI: In our previous 11 intervention on Canadian television, we already raised 12 the possible discriminatory nature of the definition of 13 Canadian citizens in the Canadian content policy. The 14 way it is now, in the Canadian content policy as used 15 by the Telefilm and Canadian Heritage and the CRTC, we 16 are talking about Canadian citizens. 17 3565 So if you have in this case 18 aboriginal people who are not Canadian citizens but who 19 can participate in a production, then that would be one 20 way of -- perhaps it would have an adverse impact or 21 discriminatory nature effect on those aboriginal 22 peoples. 23 3566 The other thing is when we have to 24 look at some of the practices, especially in the 25 evaluation -- StenoTran 698 1 3567 I'm sorry, this is Friday the 13th, 2 and we have been thinking of what bus we are going to 3 catch later to go back to Montreal. 4 3568 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: We are going 5 to keep everyone here for a long time, so you don't 6 have to travel on Friday, the 13th. 7 3569 MR. NIEMI: Thanks a lot. 8 3570 We have to give attention to certain 9 policies, administrative practices that can have an 10 opinion or adverse impact. We know in one case, for 11 example, in the evaluation of certain film production 12 proposals, the use of external evaluators who were 13 often white or who have no knowledge of aboriginal 14 context and culture -- some of those practices used by 15 some of these public cultural funding programs or by 16 private funds can have an adverse impact on proposals 17 by aboriginal peoples or minority film producers. 18 3571 My short answer to your question is 19 yes, it is important that somehow, through all 20 available powers and authority, that the CRTC should 21 see if they can take a look at some of these issues. 22 3572 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: At the way the 23 funds are used. 24 3573 Lastly, Dr. Valaskakis, I was 25 intrigued by your term "unintended planned failure". StenoTran 699 1 3574 Given the application we have before 2 us and the business and financial plan that they have 3 outlined, where some intervenors have said license them 4 but not on a mandatory basis, would that be unintended 5 planned failure? 6 3575 DR. VALASKAKIS: Absolutely. In my 7 view, absolutely. 8 3576 To license and not have it be 9 mandatory, I think this has been a long time coming, 10 and it deserves the best shot it can have. 11 3577 It is because the future of Canada 12 is, in my view, morally, and to some extent literally, 13 at stake in regard to its relationship with aboriginal 14 peoples; and because of the role that media plays in 15 that relationship, in the way that we represent 16 ourselves to each other, and in the need for our 17 independent voices, and the need for our own voices. 18 3578 You absolutely, I think, must give 19 this the best shot it can have. And the best shot it 20 can have is mandatory carriage on basic. 21 3579 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I had better 22 say thanks very much in case people start clapping 23 again. 24 3580 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Dr. 25 Valaskakis and Mr. Niemi. I hope you have a good trip StenoTran 700 1 back. Friday the 13th is fine. Just drive slowly. 2 3581 Madam Secretary. 3 3582 MS SANTERRE: Thank you, Madam Chair. 4 3583 The following intervenors have agreed 5 to come forward to present their interventions one 6 after the other. 7 3584 It will be Clarence Michon, Adam 8 Beach and Mr. Joseph Driver. 9 3585 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good afternoon, Mr. 10 Michon, Mr. Beach and Mr. Dreaver. 11 3586 First, we thank you for accommodating 12 us in sitting together. It saves some time. But I 13 hope you feel that you have all the time you need to 14 express yourselves to us. 15 3587 There is always travel time in 16 changing crew that is saved by agreeing to do this. 17 3588 Please proceed. 18 1800 19 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 20 3589 MR. MICHON: I certainly appreciate 21 the moral support. Generally my place is behind the 22 camera; however, I chose to be in front of the camera 23 today because I strongly believe in this initiative. 24 3590 Good afternoon, Madam Chair, 25 Commissioners, ladies and gentlemen. I would like to StenoTran 701 1 thank the Commissioners for affording me this 2 opportunity to voice my concerns as they relate to CRTC 3 Application No. 199804068, regarding Television 4 Northern Canada's application to obtain a broadcast 5 licence to operate as the Aboriginal Peoples Television 6 Network. 7 3591 I would like to capsulate my views 8 and concerns in this presentation for your review. I 9 must note that my opinions have been formulated as both 10 a Canadian and as a person of aboriginal descent, 11 neither taking precedent. 12 3592 In addition, I would also like to 13 mention that I have had a past association with the 14 applicant as a contributor to TVNC's programming. This 15 occurred when I was senior television producer with 16 Wawatay Native Communications Society in Moose Factory 17 for four years during 1993 through 1997. However, I am 18 currently an independent producer and have just moved 19 to the Ottawa region. 20 3593 I have reviewed schedule 29 of the 21 application submitted by TVNC and, in my opinion, I 22 have found it to be comprehensive and concise in its 23 objectives to become Canada's premier supplier of 24 aboriginal programming. I am assured and comfortable 25 with the fact that, as a national broadcaster, APTN StenoTran 702 1 will be an effective television network with the 2 ability to strengthen and promote the cultural, 3 political, social and economic aspirations of Canada's 4 aboriginal peoples. 5 3594 Without diminishing or negating any 6 of the elements of TVNC's application, I have expounded 7 upon four of the most compelling reasons why I think 8 TVNC should become Canada's next national broadcaster 9 as it takes the role of APTN. 10 3595 I have correlated the most intriguing 11 elements of TVNC's schedule 39 and the Canadian 12 Broadcasting Act for this purpose. 13 3596 First and foremost, with the 14 inception of TVNC we will finally see the objective, as 15 set out in section 3(d) of the Broadcasting Act, truly 16 realized. 17 3597 For the benefit of those who are not 18 familiar with that section I will quote it. It reads: 19 " -- through its programming and 20 the employment opportunities 21 arising out of its operation, 22 serve the needs and interests 23 and reflect the circumstances 24 and aspirations of Canadian men, 25 women and children, including StenoTran 703 1 the equal rights of a linguistic 2 duality and the multicultural 3 and multiracial nature of 4 Canadian society, and the 5 special place of aboriginal 6 peoples within that society." 7 (As read) 8 3598 I believe that Canada's aboriginal 9 peoples should be able to define their "special place" 10 within Canadian society as it relates to broadcasting. 11 I am certain the act was legislated to facilitate a 12 network such as APTN and not as a token gesture to 13 relegate aboriginal peoples to the fringes of that 14 society. 15 3599 I believe the opportunity has 16 presented itself for aboriginal peoples to now take 17 their special place in the broadcasting framework of 18 Canada through the establishment of APTN. This 19 opportunity should not be denied. 20 3600 Secondly, APTN will provide a forum 21 for Canadians to be exposed to the expression on 22 differing views on matters of public concern and be 23 provided with a balance on information on which to base 24 their opinions, as per subsections 3(I)-(iv) and 3(I)- 25 (i). StenoTran 704 1 3601 With the establishment of APTN, 2 aboriginal peoples of all of Canada can take their 3 cameras and open the aperture a bit to reveal a 4 comprehensive look at aboriginal concerns through 5 aboriginal eyes. In my opinion, this opportunity has 6 not been afforded to us on a consistent basis. With 7 the establishment of APTN, on a daily basis we will be 8 given that opportunity. This can go a long way in 9 fostering a better understanding of our concerns and, 10 ultimately, better relations between aboriginal peoples 11 and the Canadian general public. 12 3602 The third point I would like to 13 address is the issue of accessibility as it relates to 14 the Northern Native Access to Broadcasting Policy. 15 3603 The Northern Native Access to 16 Broadcasting Policy, as the name denotes, was designed 17 to accommodate and establish aboriginal broadcasting in 18 the north above the Hamelin line, the 50th parallel. 19 Upon review of the Northern Native Access to 20 Broadcasting Policy we have witnessed the success of 21 that initiative and it is probably the reason we are 22 here today. Much of that success can be attributed to 23 TVNC, which has proven itself to be a responsible 24 broadcaster with a great deal of vision and integrity. 25 3604 However, given the fact that many of StenoTran 705 1 Canadian aboriginal peoples reside in the south, it can 2 be contended that southern people of aboriginal descent 3 have not been afforded the same opportunities that 4 those in the north have. Also, for that matter, 5 Canadians in general have been denied the opportunity 6 to see the benefits of aboriginal broadcasting and all 7 its successes. 8 3605 The question remains: How do we 9 assure that southern aboriginal peoples and producers 10 will be given the same opportunities to express their 11 concerns to the Canadian general public through the 12 medium of television on a national level? 13 3606 The answer is simple: Provide a 14 broadcaster who has the integrity and the conviction 15 with the means to serve all of Canada's aboriginal 16 peoples. 17 3607 It is evident that TVNC is that 18 broadcaster, and they have been abundantly clear that 19 they will endeavour to do so as it evolves into APTN. 20 3608 The last point I would like the 21 Commissioners to observe is section 3(o) of the 22 Broadcasting Act. Again I will read it for 23 clarification. It states: 24 "Programming that reflects the 25 aboriginal cultures of Canada StenoTran 706 1 should be provided within the 2 Canadian broadcasting system as 3 resources become available for 4 that purpose." (As read) 5 3609 In the interest of pursuing what 6 "resources" means -- and this is on a personal level -- 7 I remain perplexed. Does it mean technological, human, 8 financial, or all three? 9 3610 The question is somewhat rhetorical. 10 I have already surmised that most of Canada's current 11 licensed broadcasters have not made a concerted effort 12 to avail their resources, in whatever form, to 13 accommodate aboriginal programming on a consistent 14 basis. Could it be because they do not find it viable, 15 feasible, or simply because they lack the apathy to do 16 so? 17 3611 By asking this question it is not my 18 intention to single out any broadcaster in particular 19 or to have them come to their defence; I am simply 20 pointing this out for one reason only. 21 3612 I believe that by providing TVNC with 22 a licence to operate as APTN, the funds generated 23 through licence fees will assure Canada's aboriginal 24 community the financial resources to carry on 25 broadcasting at a time when we are threatened with StenoTran 707 1 cutbacks. 2 3613 In addition, once those financial 3 resources are secured, then there will be opportunity 4 for the technological and human resources to 5 materialize. Given this assurance, TVNC can then 6 comfortably endeavour to become the national voice for 7 Canada's aboriginal peoples. 8 3614 In closing, at a time when Canadian 9 identity is being compromised through the influx of 10 foreign media, primarily U.S., aboriginal identity is 11 also being inundated and imposed upon that much more. 12 This leaves Canada's aboriginal peoples wading through 13 the deluge, searching for something they can hold onto, 14 something they can call their own. It is apparent, 15 then, that Canada's aboriginal groups have an urgent 16 need for the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network. 17 The time is now for APTN to be established, before our 18 identity becomes diluted to the point where we do not 19 recognize our identity in its truest form. I believe 20 it is not too late. 21 3615 Taking all that I have stated and all 22 of the elements of TVNC's schedule 29, it is evident, 23 in my opinion, that the Commission will be hard pressed 24 to deny a licence for TVNC to operate as APTN. 25 3616 Finally, I would like to leave you StenoTran 708 1 with these words. They are part of a speech that Ms 2 Laura Talbot-Allan gave on behalf of the Commission to 3 the International Symposium of the prestigious Carl 4 Bertlesman Prize, 1998, in which Canada was recognized 5 on the international stage as a leader and innovator in 6 communications technologies. 7 3617 In her closing remarks she said: 8 "Promoting one's culture is not tantamount to rejecting 9 the culture of others". 10 3618 With those remarks I hope the 11 Commission will view TVNC's application to operate as 12 the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network as an 13 exercise in integrity, innovation, boldness and perhaps 14 even moral obligation. 15 3619 I look forward to the positive 16 outcome in the coming months on this very important 17 initiative by TVNC. I wish the Commission and TVNC 18 well in their deliberations. Thank you. 19 3620 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. 20 Michon. 21 3621 Mr. Beach ... 22 3622 MR. BEACH: My name is Adam Beach. I 23 am Ojibway from northern Manitoba. I have been acting 24 for over ten years. 25 3623 I will never forget the time when I StenoTran 709 1 was on the set of the Disney movie "Squanto" and the 2 director asked me to "run like an Indian. Jump from a 3 ledge and say something in Indian". 4 3624 Of course, there were several 5 difficulties with what I was told to do, the least of 6 which was jumping from the ledge. 7 3625 First, how does one run like an 8 Indian? I guess I run like an Indian by virtue of 9 being a member of this continent's first peoples. But 10 one would gather from the director that there is an 11 Indian way of running, that all Indians run this way, 12 and this way is different from the way other 13 nationalities run. 14 3626 The second problem with what I was 15 told to do had to do with the language thing: saying 16 something in Indian. There is no one aboriginal 17 language. Plains Cree do not speak the same tongue as 18 northern Quebec Cree. Nisga'a peoples do not speak 19 Innu, and I don't know Mic Mac. To be indigenous does 20 not mean to be the same as all other native peoples; it 21 means that we are the original peoples of the land. 22 3627 I am confronted by stereotypes every 23 time I work. Sometimes I am asked to perpetuate 24 stereotypes, and sometimes I am given a hand in 25 breaking down some of the stereotypes that the StenoTran 710 1 entertainment industry has built up about First Nations 2 peoples. 3 3628 A film called "Smoke Signals", which 4 I did with a friend of mine, Gary Farmer, broke down a 5 lot of stereotypes. It was the first full-length 6 motion picture co-produced, written, directed and acted 7 by North American First Nations. It was a landmark and 8 something I was very proud to be a part of. 9 3629 I would also like to think that 10 "Smoke Signals" held meaning for people. I hope it 11 taught people something, maybe about relationships and 12 forgiveness. Native peoples have a lot to teach other 13 nations. 14 3630 One of the lines of Ian Ross' play 15 "Farewell", which is playing here in Ottawa, says that 16 as more people in Canada become dependent on welfare 17 they can learn from natives who have been on welfare 18 for a long time now. I think that we have more to 19 teach than that. This is what my vision of the 20 Aboriginal Peoples Television Network holds. 21 3631 Thank you. 22 1815 23 3632 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. 24 Beach. We're certainly glad you didn't run away at 25 4:00. StenoTran 711 1 3633 Mr. Dreaver. 2 3634 MR. DREAVER: Madam Chair, Members of 3 the Commission, I'd like to say thank you for welcoming 4 me here. It feels good to be seated on Algonquin 5 territory. I say that as I begin my presentation on 6 the application by TVNC for APTN. 7 3635 I will begin by saying that I am 8 approaching directly as a descendant from the Nehiyaw 9 or Cree Spirit of Chief Mistawasis and, therefore, with 10 much pride and integrity that I do not represent an 11 imposed systems of governance of the Indian Act of any 12 form and/or organization funded or otherwise by the 13 Government of Canada. 14 3636 Given the brief amount of time and 15 resources allocated and available for this 16 presentation, with this in mind the presentation will 17 be presented and brought forth in an informative and 18 positive manner. 19 3637 I'd like to begin by expressing my 20 gratitude for this honour of being here today. As a 21 young person, I've grown accustomed to listening at 22 length to the elders, the women, the youth and the 23 leadership. 24 3638 On being invited to participate in 25 this public hearing, I feel it is important for me to StenoTran 712 1 stress how uniquely important this opportunity is to 2 appear and present an intervention to the CRTC. As the 3 results of this hearing could very well signal the 4 future of the country of Canada and its relationship 5 with aboriginal people. 6 3639 All of my relations have suffered a 7 long, long time. For strength and responsibility of my 8 own emotional survival today, I choose not to dwell on 9 this. For myself personally, having been raised as a 10 foster child of aboriginal heritage, I faced many 11 challenges. The earliest memories I remember, 12 therefore, are not of my family but, rather, are of the 13 medium of television. The vision of aboriginal people 14 portrayed in this medium in many ways stunted my own 15 growth and identity as an aboriginal. 16 3640 Today, the future of this vision and 17 many more visions could be enhanced with the 18 implementation of increased aboriginal broadcasting 19 opportunities. For this vision to become a reality 20 rests in the hands of the people assembled at this 21 hearing. I don't just mean the Commission; I mean 22 everybody that's here. And with anything that involves 23 the future, it directly affects the wellbeing of all 24 Canadian youth. If one was to question their own 25 understanding and interpretation of aboriginal people, StenoTran 713 1 how much of that history would be projected from the 2 medium of broadcasting and how much from fact and 3 understanding? 4 3641 With the release of Statistics 5 Canada's population data, it shows clearly that there 6 is a growing disproportionate population of aboriginal 7 youth. It reported in the January 13th release of The 8 Daily, which is on page 2 and page 6: 9 "The Aboriginal population in 10 1996 was 10 years younger on 11 average than the general 12 population. Over the next two 13 decades, this will be reflected 14 in large increases within the 15 Aboriginal working-age 16 population. Almost one-third of 17 all Aboriginal children under 18 the age of 15 in Census families 19 lived in a lone-parent family, 20 twice the rate within the 21 general population. The rate 22 was even higher in urban areas. 23 About 46% of Aboriginal children 24 under 15 in Census families who 25 lived in a census metropolitan StenoTran 714 1 area were in a lone-parent 2 family." 3 3642 Aboriginal population much younger 4 than the general population. 5 "The average age of the 6 aboriginal population in 1996 7 was 25.5 years, ten years 8 younger than the average of 35.4 9 years in the general population. 10 Children under 15 accounted for 11 35% of all aboriginal people, 12 compared with only 20% of 13 Canada's total population. 14 Children in this age group 15 accounted for 38% of all 16 aboriginal people on rural 17 reserves, the highest share for 18 any geographical area, compared 19 with 32% in census metropolitan 20 areas. 21 The proportion of young people 22 aged 15 to 24 was also greater 23 among the aboriginal population 24 than in the total population. 25 These young people represented StenoTran 715 1 almost one-fifth (18%) of all 2 age groups within the aboriginal 3 population, compared with 13% in 4 the general population. 5 With such concentrations in the 6 younger age groups, there were 7 relatively fewer aboriginal 8 people in older age groups. For 9 example, only 4% of the 10 aboriginal population was 65 and 11 over, compared with 12% of the 12 general population." 13 3643 For myself, I do not view these 14 statistics as detrimental, more I view them as an 15 opportunity to work within a booming demographic, with 16 the rewards coming from building capacity and creating 17 opportunities for the next and future generations to 18 come. Having worked, volunteered and participated in 19 workshops at the Dreamspeaker's International 20 Aboriginal Film Festival for a number of years, I know 21 firsthand that there is ample resources and capacity 22 available for aboriginal content to fill the broadcast 23 requirements for a national network. All we need is a 24 network, the Aboriginal People's Television Network. 25 3644 As aboriginal youth today discover StenoTran 716 1 that they need not fight for their rights, more they 2 should know them and even more importantly, they should 3 live them. Education of these rights and privileges 4 through the Aboriginal People's Television Network 5 presents an opportunity of great importance and 6 fulfilment of obligation and vision, even within this 7 room today. As I have mentioned earlier, this vision 8 for aboriginal people rests in the hands of the people 9 assembled at this hearing. 10 3645 With this it reminds me of a story I 11 heard and adapted and will close with from a prominent 12 U.S. attorney I've been in contact with in regards to 13 residential schools and aboriginal adoptees regarding 14 class action lawsuits. He is prominent in that he 15 never underestimates or insults anyone's intelligence. 16 With this winning attitude, he has won restitution in 17 various suits totalling billions of dollars. I will 18 state this with a big heart and good spirited 19 intentions. 20 3646 A young warrior, a youth, once upon a 21 great time ago wanted to be respected and heard. For 22 this he decided to stage a coup upon the wise old 23 chief, an elder. He figured if he embarrassed the old 24 man in front of everyone he would look good and not 25 have to listen to him. For this he approached the old StenoTran 717 1 man with a baby eagle in his hands. He asked the old 2 man a question: Is the baby eagle alive or dead? The 3 young warrior laughed to himself, for in his thoughts 4 he knew if the old man said the baby eagle was alive, 5 he would squish his hands together and drop the baby 6 eagle to the ground. If the old man said it was dead, 7 he would open his hands and raise them to the sky as 8 the baby eagle flew away. The wise old chief, he 9 thought for a moment and remembered when he too was a 10 young warrior, a youth, and with the moistness of a 11 tear licking at the corner of his eyes, a warm smile, 12 pronounced to the young warrior, "The eagle is in your 13 hands, brave, strong man." 14 3647 Now, I look to everyone that is here 15 today, and I can say the future of renewing and 16 strengthening positive and mutually-beneficially 17 relationships with aboriginal people and Canada is in 18 your hands. All my relations. 19 3648 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. 20 Dreaver. 21 3649 Mr. Michon, Commissioner Pennefather 22 has questions for you. 23 3650 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you, 24 Madam Chair. 25 3651 Thank you for being here this StenoTran 718 1 evening. Time goes by but it grows more enriching 2 every moment. 3 3652 You've taken quite a bit of time to 4 review this application and elaborate on the principal 5 reasons for your support, and you've done so very 6 eloquently and have repeated those again today. So, I 7 would rather ask you a more personal question. As an 8 independent producer, what will APTN mean for you? 9 3653 MR. MICHON: Certainly. 10 3654 As an independent producer, so far I 11 suppose I've been fortunate as a senior producer with 12 Wawatay Television for the past four years. I did not 13 have to go out and look for that funding. That funding 14 was available for me. I've realized now that that 15 funding may not always be there. I will have to look 16 for those funds myself. I don't see this as APTN 17 evolves that it will be a panacea for me to look for 18 funding. 19 3655 It certainly will attribute to me in 20 my endeavours, as I approach other funders, it would 21 probably provide me with the leverage to do so. So I 22 can approach these funders, the various granting 23 commissions for funding for television and film, and I 24 certainly would see this as a positive means to do 25 that. StenoTran 719 1 3656 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you 2 very much. 3 3657 MR. MICHON: Thank you. 4 3658 THE CHAIRPERSON: And Mr. Beach, 5 Commissioner Cardozo has questions for you. 6 3659 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thanks very 7 much. Thanks for coming here, Mr. Beach, and making 8 your presentation, which was full of humour and yet 9 very serious. 10 3660 One of the joys of this type of 11 hearing is that one gets to meet actors like yourself 12 and Tina Keeper and Gary Farmer who one sees on the 13 screen and now for us we get to meet you in person. I 14 have actually one unusual request for a CRTC 15 Commissioner, a wish that was expressed by somebody 16 earlier to me, whose identity I won't reveal, but she 17 would like your home phone number. I'll be glad to 18 take that and pass it on, and hopefully I'll get a free 19 lunch out of that. 20 3661 But let me ask you a serious 21 question. You talk about the example at the Disney 22 studio and I look at APTN and say, if we have APTN, 23 will some other kid down the road still be asked to run 24 like an Indian, jump off a cliff and all that or does 25 having APTN change something at Disney or something StenoTran 720 1 with other producers? 2 3662 MR. BEACH: I'd like to say that 3 definitely it would change that image that a lot of 4 people have of us. I can't say that the way they 5 romanticize about us running in the woods and stuff 6 won't ever disappear, but I think it will create a more 7 positive image to ourselves and to our people. 8 3663 I grew up in the City of Winnipeg, 9 where there's a problem with the gangs and our image 10 growing up on the streets. If it wasn't for acting, 11 the entertainment industry, I probably wouldn't be here 12 right now because of my upbringing in the same 13 situation, and I was able to hide who I was in these 14 characters. It's because of a film, "Smoke Signals," 15 that I was able to share the exact same upbringing as 16 my character and to reveal who I am in my fears and 17 strengths and weaknesses. 18 3664 I believe with the network, it will 19 provide a source for us to represent ourselves as who 20 we are, but also give a strong voice to a lot of the 21 children and the youth who I speak for across Canada 22 and North America, and to give them a message that 23 there is something out there for us, that we can become 24 something, we can live up to our dreams. I believe the 25 media, the entertainment is the fastest way to reach StenoTran 721 1 out to these young, not delinquents, but a lot of 2 youths that have a problem revealing or becoming a 3 positive influence to themselves. 4 3665 That's what I'm hoping for the 5 network. I wish when I started that I was able to see 6 more of our people on the screen. Jim Compton lived 7 three doors from when I was a little kid, and me and my 8 brothers would sit around and kind of spot him, "Hey, 9 there he is. He's on TV. He's a good little guy." 10 And with his presence around, it really showed that we 11 can overcome our difficulties that we tend to fall 12 into. 13 3666 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So you think 14 this has a potential influence on those kids in 15 Winnipeg where there is a serious situation? 16 3667 MR. BEACH: Most definitely, I 17 believe so. 18 3668 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: One of the 19 observations I was making at a previous hearing was -- 20 heck, I'll name the show. It was DaVince's Inquest, 21 which has just been launched on CBC. In the first show 22 there was a reference to an aboriginal person. I don't 23 know if you saw the show. But out of an entirely white 24 cast there was one reference to an aboriginal person, 25 and the person happened to be a prostitute who had just StenoTran 722 1 died of an overdose. 2 3669 So, you sort of look at that and you 3 wonder if that will change. 4 1830 5 3670 I look at that and I think: Will the 6 producers of that kind of show change that image there? 7 Because they will say: You are doing the positive 8 stuff, we have to balance it out to show the negative 9 stuff, or something like that. 10 3671 MR. BEACH: From where I grew up, I 11 see that right from the corner of my dad's house. And 12 we still live in -- I call it south central of 13 Winnipeg. And it is like how has a person like myself 14 come out of a dive like that? And it seems to be 15 overcrowding with the cause of the gangs and all the 16 other sorts taking over the neighbourhood. 17 3672 And, for me, the entertainment, the 18 media, television has been able to save me from falling 19 over the edge and has provided me enough courage and 20 strength to use what I have gained to give back and to 21 hopefully grab a number of those kids out of there and 22 just to be able to make them see themselves as 23 something else, as opposed to a gang kid next door or 24 -- I got like a ten-year old, nine-year old, 25 eleven-year old brother and sister. And I still cannot StenoTran 723 1 believe they just walk down the street and there is a 2 prostitute, there is a gang house. And to them I am 3 such a positive influence on them that they do not even 4 acknowledge that. Because I am constantly reminding 5 them and telling people across Canada and North America 6 to follow your dreams, to follow your goals. And I 7 think with the network we can provide that image for 8 them. And I believe it is so important and it could 9 save a lot of lives for a lot of the youths which look 10 to television as a source of their anger, their 11 confusion to hide into. 12 3673 And if we could provide one show that 13 can give a positive influence, I believe it could just 14 change the direction of a 12-year old to a 13-year old 15 in which way they want to go in education, a family 16 show and just teaching them, just giving them positive 17 influences. 18 3674 COMMISSIONER CARDOZA: Thank you very 19 much. That is very powerful and I appreciate that. 20 3675 MR. BATSTONE: Thank you for asking. 21 3676 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. 22 3677 Mr. Drever, I gather that your 23 opinion of this application is it is an eagle with 24 sufficient feathers and we should just let it fly? 25 3678 MR. DREVER: Correct, very correct. StenoTran 724 1 I think that is the only way it can go. You know, and 2 I really like the fairness that has been expressed over 3 the last two days. 4 3679 In regards to the earlier 5 presentation by the CCTA, it reminds me of another 6 story -- a very quick one -- by the late John Tatusas, 7 who was very good friends with my grandfather, the late 8 Joe Drever. 9 3680 What he had stated is that a long 10 time ago a tree had fallen in the forest, like Mr. 11 Cardoza had mentioned earlier. And this Aboriginal 12 person went and sat on that tree, on that log. And a 13 non-Aboriginal person came up. And he said: I notice 14 you are sitting on a really beautiful tree there, do 15 you mind if I sit down, too? And this Aboriginal 16 person looked at this non-Aboriginal person and said: 17 Sure, have a seat. And as time went by, the 18 non-Aboriginal person invited his friends, he invited 19 his friends, he even invited strangers and welcomed 20 them on to this tree until eventually the Aboriginal 21 person sat up to make room until eventually that log 22 was filled and the Aboriginal person was asking to sit 23 back on that log. 24 3681 When I heard the CCTA present today, 25 that is how I felt, like we were asking to get a little StenoTran 725 1 part of that log, again. That is what I would like to 2 close with. Thanks. 3 3682 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. 4 Drever and Mr. Michon and Mr. Beach. And thank you, 5 again, for staying so late and accommodating us. But 6 we are grateful for your participation as no doubt is 7 the applicant. Thank you. 8 3683 MS SANTERRE: The next intervention 9 will be by CanWest Global Communications Corporation. 10 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 11 3684 MR. MAAVARA: Good evening, Madam 12 Chair and Members of the Commission. Thank you for the 13 opportunity to appear tonight. My name is Gary 14 Maavara, and I am director of special projects with 15 CanWest Global Communications Corporation. With me 16 today is Charlotte Bell, who is the director of 17 regulatory affairs of the Global Television Network, 18 CanWest's Canadian subsidiary. 19 3685 We are pleased to appear here today, 20 before the Commission in support of this application by 21 Television Northern Canada for a licence to operate the 22 Aboriginal People's Television Network. This support 23 reflects a long record of corporate support for the 24 Aboriginal community as well as a belief that the APTN 25 service would be good for the broadcasting system. StenoTran 726 1 3686 Our support for the Aboriginal 2 community includes a variety of efforts both inside and 3 outside of broadcasting. For example, outside of 4 broadcasting we have helped to fund the Aboriginal 5 Business Education Program at the University of 6 Manitoba with a five-year financial commitment. 7 3687 In 1993, we established the 8 Aboriginal People's Internship Award. It provides a 9 fully paid four-month internship with Global operations 10 at Toronto or Regina. Recipients are also provided 11 with reimbursement for transportation and some 12 accommodation expenses. 13 3688 A jury of two Global employees and 14 one member of the Aboriginal community select the 15 interns. This year, Burt Crowfoot participated on the 16 jury. He is the president of the Aboriginal Multimedia 17 Society of Alberta. 18 3689 We are happy to report that over the 19 term of this program, two interns have gone on from the 20 program to full-time employment with Global, one in 21 Winnipeg and one in Toronto. 22 3690 MS BELL: We support this application 23 on its merits because we believe that it reflects a 24 vision for the Canadian system that we share. 25 3691 The Broadcasting Act directs "that StenoTran 727 1 pregramming that reflects the Aboriginal cultures of 2 Canada should be provided within the Canadian system as 3 resources become available for the purpose." 4 3692 The act also prescribed a broader, 5 more important purpose, to "reflect the circumstances 6 and aspirations of Canadian men, women and children, 7 including equal rights, the linguistic duality and 8 multicultural and multiracial nature of Canadian 9 society and the special place of Aboriginal peoples 10 within that society." 11 3693 The importance of this mandate, we 12 believe, is not only the reflection of the diversity of 13 Canada's peoples. The reflection of what makes us all 14 fundamentally the same is also important. 15 3694 As we pointed out at the Canadian 16 content hearing, we need to reflect on the aspirations, 17 hopes and dreams that we all share, rather than what 18 makes us different. We believe that APTN will not only 19 help the Aboriginal community see itself, but it will 20 also foster a broader understanding by other Canadians 21 about Aboriginal issues. Canadians will have the 22 opportunity firsthand to see what the community is all 23 about. 24 3695 We realize that programs on other 25 services such as CBC have value in reflecting that StenoTran 728 1 community. However, a branded service, providing a 2 complete range of programs, will be much more effective 3 in generating audiences. It will also provide the 4 community with an important institution to support 5 program development and training in technical, creative 6 and management areas. 7 3696 We understand that the headquarters 8 of the new service might be in Winnipeg. We applaud 9 this and observe that this location and the nature of 10 the programming would also provide the Canadian 11 broadcasting system with programming that reflects the 12 geographical diversity of Canadians. 13 3697 As you consider this application, the 14 commission is also assessing the policy framework for 15 the world of new media. We all know that the new 16 frontier of borderless, interactive media is on the 17 horizon. No one can predict when it will arrive. 18 However, we all know that when it does, things will 19 change dramatically. We understand that we need to 20 start getting ready now so that Canadian stories will 21 continue to be heard in the future. The expansion of 22 the Canadian system through licensing of new channels 23 is part of that preparation. 24 3698 Access to additional shelf space will 25 now help us to develop the content infrastructures so StenoTran 729 1 the system is ready when the new media becomes 2 ubiquitous. 3 3699 APTN can be a fundamental part of 4 that process. It can serve to establish a core of 5 activity to preserve the culture that we know and to 6 help it find a place in the world of new media when 7 that time comes. 8 3700 MR. MAAVARA: CanWest notes both the 9 favourable interventions and those against this 10 application. We recognize that many problems and 11 obstacles stand before the applicants and the 12 commission. Nevertheless, we ask everyone involved to 13 ask himself or herself when a visionary move has been 14 easy. CanWest struggled for legitimacy over its first 15 decade, but we prevailed. In the decade following, we 16 built a broadcasting system on three continents. 17 Similarly, APTN will succeed, but only if we embrace 18 their vision and look for solutions rather than 19 obstacles. 20 3701 In sum, CanWest has a long history of 21 support for the Aboriginal community. Our support for 22 this application is part of that corporate commitment. 23 However, we also support this application because we 24 believe that it can greatly assist in the depiction of 25 Canadian stories to foster our collective understanding StenoTran 730 1 of who we are as a nation of diverse peoples. 2 3702 Thank you for your attention to this 3 submission and we welcome your questions. 4 3703 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Ms Bell 5 and Mr. Maavara. 6 3704 With your experience in broadcasting, 7 is it your belief that, or can you tell us what your 8 sense is of whether the licensing of this network would 9 also generate more opportunities for co-production, 10 cooperation, more cross-pollination between the 11 Aboriginal program producers and mainstream 12 broadcasters. 13 3705 So there is an overlap or an effect 14 that would lead to some -- to an improvement of the 15 depiction of Aboriginal people in mainstream 16 programming? 17 3706 I mean by that, English language like 18 yours or CTV, to increase and improve the reflection. 19 Do you see ways in which that would become a seed bed 20 for this type of cooperation? 21 3707 MR. MAAVARA: I guess the short 22 answer is "yes". And I think your question goes a 23 little bit to Commissioner Cardoza's question to a 24 number of the participants here today and that is do 25 you think that this will have an impact on the system StenoTran 731 1 as a whole. 2 3708 THE CHAIRPERSON: Well, it goes 3 beyond an impact on the system on the whole. If it is 4 there as a channel, it is there in the system as a 5 whole. My question was more pointed. It was -- well, 6 I think you understand what I mean. It is not that -- 7 it would go beyond simply the addition of an empowering 8 channel for Aboriginal people, but it would have a 9 ripple effect in the other parts of the system. 10 3709 MR. MAAVARA: Again, yes. It would 11 have an effect because it would create a core of 12 production for that channel. But it would also have 13 the effect of those people eventually, some of them 14 would move out into the broader community. The thing 15 -- 16 3710 THE CHAIRPERSON: Meaning the broader 17 broadcasting community? 18 3711 MR. MAAVARA: Broader -- 19 3712 THE CHAIRPERSON: After being 20 nurtured within the Aboriginal. 21 3713 MR. MAAVARA: Within the channel and 22 also, you know, at the end of the day what our business 23 is all about is storytelling. And what this channel is 24 going to add to is the development of our storytelling 25 ability in Canada. StenoTran 732 1 3714 And as you heard during the Canadian 2 content hearing, it all starts with someone sitting 3 down at a typewriter, writing a script. And this 4 channel is going to create a lot of those scripts both 5 for the channel itself, and it is inevitable that a lot 6 of those scripts are going to find their into other 7 channels both here in Canada and also abroad and into 8 other media as well. 9 1845 10 3715 We have had some good examples today 11 and yesterday of some of the stories that should be 12 told. 13 3716 THE CHAIRPERSON: You haven't been 14 involved, I guess, with CanWest all that long, but on 15 this internship program, do you have any comments about 16 your experience as a broadcaster? To a certain extent 17 it could be one of the roles of the aboriginal channel, 18 which is to be, for the unproved, an internship of some 19 sort, and it could go beyond producing on that channel 20 alone. 21 3717 MR. MAAVARA: I think it is going to 22 serve as a catalyst for that, but it is also going 23 to -- you know, there are a lot of very terrifically 24 talented people who are going to produce for that 25 channel and for other channels. It is really just StenoTran 733 1 another opportunity to develop programming, but 2 fundamentally it is also an opportunity for the 3 community to develop programming for itself, the 4 aboriginal community. 5 3718 THE CHAIRPERSON: What we have heard, 6 some of it today and some of it during the Canadian 7 Content hearing, is that, although there are many 8 talented aboriginal producers or Chinese producers, 9 there would probably be a lot more if there were more 10 channels that would allow them to develop rather than 11 face the presumed glass walls that one faces as a 12 member of not the mainstream community. In other 13 words, you say there are a lot of talented producers, 14 directors, and my question is, could there be more if 15 there had been an APTN, and will there be more as a 16 result of being able to nurture and tap all the talent 17 that will then presumably diffuse itself in various 18 parts of the system? Some will stay, some will go 19 somewhere else. You may end up with some at CanWest in 20 higher positions than maybe they can reach now. 21 3719 MR. MAAVARA: Again, I think there 22 certainly will be a lot of talented people who are 23 added to the system who might not, in other 24 circumstances, have had that opportunity. 25 3720 I look at the system from the StenoTran 734 1 standpoint of, as the Commission has been rolling out 2 the system, we seem to have been licensing -- there was 3 expansion of service; the name of Rhéal Therrien was 4 mentioned earlier, and he had a terrific role in that. 5 But we built a system and we built a system of English 6 and French, and then we started moving into the 7 categories 7, 8 and 9, with a lot of the discussion 8 through the last hearing, but we have kind of built 9 every one of those categories 1 through 12 with 10 specific channels, and then when you look at the Act 11 the only thing that's left that really needs to be 12 built according to the mandate of the Act is the 13 aboriginal. 14 3721 So it is time. We have kind of 15 filled in 1 to 12; we have sports channels, we have 16 news channels, we have drama channels, we have comedy 17 channels, we have lifestyle channels, but it is time 18 now for a general interest channel to serve this 19 community. It is the only area of the Broadcasting Act 20 that hasn't really been met yet. 21 3722 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. 22 3723 MR. MAAVARA: I am not saying that 23 there shouldn't be any new channels, of course. 24 There's lots of room -- 25 3724 THE CHAIRPERSON: No, of course not. StenoTran 735 1 I noticed that in your presentation. I am still awake. 2 3725 Thank you, Ms Bell. Thank you, 3 Mr. Maavara. 4 3726 We also thank you for staying so late 5 and not abandoning us or the applicant and making your 6 presentation. 7 3727 Thank you very much, and have a nice 8 weekend. 9 3728 MR. MAAVARA: Thank you. 10 3729 MS BELL: Thank you. 11 3730 THE CHAIRPERSON: Madam Secretary. 12 3731 MS SANTERRE: Thank you, Madam Chair. 13 3732 The next presentation will be by 14 Rosemarie Kuptana & Company. 15 3733 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good evening, 16 Ms Kuptana. 17 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 18 3734 MS KUPTANA: Good evening, 19 Commissioners. Thank you, Madam Chair. 20 3735 I apologize for not having a written 21 statement, but I am nevertheless very pleased to meet 22 with you today. 23 3736 I guess I should begin by introducing 24 myself. My name is Rosemarie Kuptana. The reason that 25 I have an interest in these hearings is because I am StenoTran 736 1 the former president of the Inuit Broadcasting 2 Corporation, the former president of the Inuit 3 Tapirisat of Canada and I participated very extensively 4 in the development of native broadcasting in Canada, in 5 the development of Television Northern Canada and the 6 Inuvialuit Communication Society, and in general 7 broadcasting policy in Canada. So, by way of 8 background, that's who I am. 9 3737 I feel like the ghost of Christmas 10 past. 11 3738 These hearings on the licence 12 application for APTN by TVNC sends a powerful and 13 timely message at this critical period in Canada's 14 history. The TVNC licence application for APTN 15 presents a balanced service in Canada. It would 16 present a balanced service in Canada. 17 3739 The licence must be mandatory, 18 mandatory, mandatory, on basic carriage. Let me 19 explain why. 20 3740 There are over one million First 21 Nations, Métis and Inuit in Canada. As aboriginal 22 peoples, we are the First Peoples of this country. We 23 are the distinct peoples in this country. We have 53 24 distinct aboriginal languages, we have distinct 25 cultures, we have distinct traditions, values, laws, StenoTran 737 1 geography and history. 2 3741 These are some of the fundamental 3 characteristics that define who we are as a people, and 4 yet there is little to reflect aboriginal peoples in 5 mainstream society and in particular in mainstream 6 media. 7 3742 The past 30 years have been a 8 watershed for the development and increasing 9 recognition of aboriginal and treaty rights in Canada. 10 Unfortunately, that recognition has most often been the 11 result of confrontation. For instance, aboriginal 12 peoples were recognized in the highest law of the 13 country, the Canadian Constitution Act, 1982, in 1982. 14 As aboriginal peoples, we have continued to seek that 15 recognition in the area of broadcasting and 16 telecommunications. 17 3743 Our aboriginal communications 18 societies are still young compared to this country and 19 considering our history with Canada, but they proved to 20 our elders that their ideas work; the technology may be 21 new but the message is still very old, spoken down to 22 us from our elders. We have produced programs that 23 strengthen and revitalize our cultures, our languages, 24 our history. They tell us who we are and to be proud 25 of where we are going as a people. StenoTran 738 1 3744 But it has not always been a happy 2 journey. The generational breakdown between young and 3 old was made worse by the arrival of television and 4 radio. I find it ironic that those same technologies 5 are pulling us back together. Just let me give you a 6 few examples of that. 7 3745 When I was involved with the Inuit 8 Broadcasting Corporation, for instance, we created 9 Inuit children's television programming, and one of the 10 characters that we had, his name was Super Shamou. 11 This character was a shaman, he was potbellied, 12 balding, middle-aged Inuk superhero who would talk 13 about issues that are of concern to young people and he 14 would portray and convey Inuit values and traditions, 15 and he was very popular. He wore red underwears and 16 gumboots. 17 3746 Another example that brought the 18 young people and the old people together was at the 19 height of the Ethiopian famine. For the very first 20 time Inuit saw images of people that were starving in a 21 far away country, and they remembered the difficult 22 times that they experienced when an IBC crew went over 23 to Ethiopia and brought back images and told the 24 stories of how famine and war were ravaging that 25 country. As a result of that, the Inuit sponsored and StenoTran 739 1 gave more than any other Canadian per capita because it 2 was us telling those stories, using our own people in 3 the context of our own languages. 4 3747 Another great memory that I have of 5 my days at the Inuit Broadcasting Corporation was when 6 Paul Apak and a crew travelled from Igloolik up to 7 Northern Greenland on what was called the Qitdlarssuaq 8 Expedition. Now, Qitdlarssuaq was a shaman who had a 9 shady past; he travelled from Baffin Island up to 10 Greenland in 1853 and he took a group of 20 followers 11 with him. There he found a people who had forgotten 12 their culture, who were sick, and he imparted knowledge 13 and tradition and the Inuit ways to Greenland again. 14 One of them was the use of the kayak, and the kayak is 15 now one of the great symbols of North Greenland. 16 3748 Those are some of the stories that we 17 told on the Inuit Broadcasting Corporation. 18 3749 So, as you can well see, I am very 19 supportive of APTN's application, or TVNC's application 20 for APTN to be licensed. 21 3750 APTN is not a specialty service for 22 Indians and Eskimos. What APTN would represent is a 23 basic, first level of service for the First Peoples of 24 this country, so that aboriginal peoples in this 25 country can learn and hear what other Canadians enjoy StenoTran 740 1 in French and English. 2 3751 You see, as far as I am concerned, 3 Canada is made up of three founding nations: first, 4 the aboriginal peoples of this country, and the English 5 and French. And, as such, it should be afforded -- 6 APTN should be granted a licence. 7 1900 8 3752 Some not so pleasant memories from my 9 days at the Inuit Broadcasting Corporation: I remember 10 when we had to go before the CBC and beg, borrow, and 11 plead with the CBC super bosses for fair access to 12 distribute our programming. 13 3753 Well, in the beginning it didn't do 14 so good. That pleading and begging and what not didn't 15 really help us. I remember being bumped or pre-empted 16 for programming like Hockey Night in Canada. 17 3754 You see, nature made us the land of 18 the midnight sun; CBC made us the land of midnight 19 television. 20 3755 I have also noticed that CBC has sent 21 a written submission stating that the approval of APTN 22 would set a precedent, and the CRTC would have an 23 influx of applications; and that the CRTC has not 24 explored this whole area well enough and that they 25 should maybe hold off on granting APTN's licence StenoTran 741 1 application. 2 3756 As far as I am concerned, that is not 3 a valid argument. 4 3757 What is it based on? Is it based 5 upon fear? Is it scaremongering? And why aren't they 6 here to represent their views if they were so concerned 7 about APTN? 8 3758 I also find it very disconcerting 9 that the cable companies are so adversely and adamantly 10 opposed to APTN's application as it stands. They say 11 they are not, but they are. 12 3759 They are saying that they have no 13 room on their network. Well, I could do without the 14 Shopping Network. I could do without some of the 15 American programming. I could even do without the TV 16 Listing as part of the basic service. 17 3760 When the cable companies were here 18 today, they were talking about giving the viewers a 19 choice. I guess aboriginal peoples are not considered 20 a part of that viewership as far as the cable companies 21 are concerned. 22 3761 As a Canadian, I could easily go 23 without one or more of those services. 24 3762 Again, I say: So what's the barrier 25 here to making room for aboriginal peoples? Is it StenoTran 742 1 institutionalized racism? Is it a loss of profit that 2 they are worried about? 3 3763 Madam Chair, as aboriginal peoples, 4 we have shared our country. We have given, we have 5 given and we have given. All we are seeking is 6 equality and a reflection of aboriginal peoples as part 7 of Canadian society. 8 3764 I am not saying that English and 9 French programming is not good. What I am saying is we 10 wish to co-exist with other Canadians, not to be 11 relegated to the fringes of society. 12 3765 As a result of those comments, I 13 would see APTN as being a very positive force in 14 Canada. It is needed to serve aboriginal peoples, to 15 promote and encourage the development of aboriginal 16 languages and cultures, so that they have news, 17 information, entertainment, and other types of 18 programming in the context of their own languages. 19 3766 I would see APTN as a service that 20 would reflect and enhance the social, political, 21 economic and cultural life of aboriginal peoples in 22 this country. I think that APTN would do a lot to 23 create greater understanding and tolerance for all 24 Canadians. 25 3767 Madam Chair and Commissioners, I StenoTran 743 1 would urge you to do the right thing by providing 2 aboriginal peoples with a choice to reflect ourselves 3 in mainstream media. 4 3768 Thank you very much. 5 3769 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Ms 6 Kuptana. 7 3770 Commissioner Cardozo. 8 3771 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you, 9 Madam Chair. And thank you, Ms Kuptana. 10 3772 Having watched you for a number of 11 years in the various roles you have described, I 12 appreciate particularly you bringing us the benefit of 13 your experience. 14 3773 You talked about aboriginal peoples 15 being the first peoples here and being the first of the 16 founding peoples. I thought it was ironic, as another 17 intervenor was noting, that if you were to become APTN, 18 APTN would be the new kid on the block in the 19 broadcasting scene rather than being the first kid on 20 the block. 21 3774 Another point I thought was 22 interesting was the matter of choice that you 23 mentioned. The cable companies have argued that they 24 want to give consumers the choice whether they would 25 have this or not. StenoTran 744 1 3775 The fact is, as we look at this 2 application, if we don't license it in the manner that 3 it is put forward -- i.e., with mandatory carriage -- 4 it won't be. In which case, consumers will never have 5 that choice as to whether they would want to receive 6 APTN or not. 7 3776 Do you agree with that? 8 3777 MS KUPTANA: I don't think that 9 consumers of broadcasting have a choice anyway. I know 10 that from my own experience. I subscribe to a cable 11 company for television services, and I never ask for 12 the Sports Network or the Shopping Network, or for the 13 TV Listings. But I still get them. 14 3778 I think that if given half the 15 chance, consumers would welcome the APTN programming -- 16 and I will tell you why. 17 3779 The way we are depicted in mainstream 18 media -- and I am talking about aboriginal peoples, the 19 first peoples of Canada -- it is only negative stories 20 that you see: whether it is some kind of crisis that 21 we have created, or that has been created by the Crown 22 and aboriginal peoples; whether it is the drunk 23 aboriginal person in the gutter; drugs; and so on. 24 3780 As societies, we are much more than 25 that. StenoTran 745 1 3781 How many people in this country would 2 know that from my own area we have a chief pilot, the 3 head of an Australian airline company? He is the 4 captain of a 747. 5 3782 How many people in this country know 6 that one of the first aboriginal doctors came from my 7 home community, and he is one of the top surgeons in 8 this country? 9 3783 We don't hear about those people in 10 mainstream society. What we hear are the negative 11 stories. 12 3784 I think that as aboriginal peoples, 13 we no longer wish to be used as negative examples as 14 part of Canadian society any more, because we are much 15 more than that. 16 3785 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I would like 17 to ask you about the population of Inuit. My 18 understanding is that the number is around 40,000. 19 3786 MS KUPTANA: It is between 40,000 and 20 50,000. 21 3787 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: With about 22 half in the north and half in the rest of the country? 23 3788 MS KUPTANA: I would say it is 24 probably more than half in the north. 25 3789 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: So the people StenoTran 746 1 in the north would have access to TVNC. 2 3790 MS KUPTANA: They would have access 3 to TVNC. But if APTN was not given a mandatory 4 licence, I don't think that aboriginal peoples in 5 Canada would have access to viewing their own 6 programming. 7 3791 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: There is a 8 question of whether it could survive, given the 9 cutbacks it has had. 10 3792 I am thinking of people in the south, 11 of Inuit in the south who don't currently have access 12 to TVNC. Their only hope of seeing the kind of 13 programming you are talking about is to have APTN 14 licensed. 15 3793 MS KUPTANA: Yes. 16 3794 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: That covers my 17 questions. Thank you very much. 18 3795 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very 19 much, Ms Kuptana. We wish to thank you, like we did 20 the other intervenors, for staying with us so late. 21 3796 And we thank you for your 22 participation. 23 3797 MS KUPTANA: Thank you. 24 3798 THE CHAIRPERSON: Madam Secretary, 25 please. StenoTran 747 1 3799 MS SANTERRE: Thank you, Madam Chair. 2 3800 I would like now to invite Alexander 3 Crawley on behalf of the Canadian Conference of the 4 Arts/Conférence canadienne des Arts, and also on behalf 5 of the Canadian Screen Training Centre/Réseau 6 d'ateliers cinématographiques canadiens. 7 3801 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good evening, Mr. 8 Crawley. You are wearing two hats. 9 3802 MR. CRAWLEY: A "two for one" deal 10 here. And probably you won't have to ask me any 11 questions and we can move right along. 12 3803 THE CHAIRPERSON: Be careful. I will 13 assign two Commissioners. 14 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 15 3804 MR. CRAWLEY: My notes optimistically 16 said "Good afternoon". But good evening, and thank you 17 for this opportunity to enter the record of this 18 proceeding in support of the application before you. 19 3805 I will speak on behalf of the 20 Canadian Conference of the Arts in broad terms, and 21 will add some short remarks in the context of training 22 and professional development on behalf of the Canadian 23 Screen Training Centre. 24 3806 The CCA, Canadian Conference of the 25 Arts, has a long and honourable history for advocacy StenoTran 748 1 for cultural development in Canada, beginning over 50 2 years ago when a group of Canadian artists formed the 3 organization in order to propel the successive 4 governments to instigate appropriate policies for the 5 development of Canadian culture and the arts in the 6 public interest. 7 3807 We have consistently identified 8 opportunities for the Federal Government and its 9 various agencies to act in support of the production 10 and dissemination of Canadian cultural materials. The 11 application before you is a case in point. 12 3808 As the applicant has revealed, the 13 level of accomplishment by First Nations individuals in 14 the field of broadcasting is truly remarkable. The 15 list of successful writers, performers, composers, 16 designers, producers of aboriginal origin is long, and 17 many of the most talented have registered their support 18 for this initiative. 19 3809 We are confident that the Commission 20 will take this into account in considering the human 21 resources available to the new network as it sets out 22 to communicate to a wider sphere of Canadians in their 23 homes. 24 3810 Indeed, the list of creators and 25 producers of native origin that would stand on its own StenoTran 749 1 without any reference to their ethnicity is an 2 impressive group to be supporting any initiative to 3 come before the Commission. The strength of the 4 creative community from amongst aboriginal peoples is, 5 in a positive sense, disproportionate to the overall 6 demographic -- a fact which speaks well for the 7 potential of the APTN. 8 3811 We do understand that the prospect of 9 mandatory carriage at a set price is controversial. 10 However, we also remember that even at the beginning of 11 TVNC, and before that, there was a recognition on the 12 part of the Federal Government that the provision of 13 broadcast technology was only a first step, and that 14 adequate resources for the production of content 15 remained as a future objective. 16 3812 With this application for the 17 establishment of the APTN, we believe, as others have 18 said in here today, the future is here and the time to 19 act is now. 20 3813 With the brave and appropriate 21 invocation of the principle of mandatory carriage in 22 your recent decision with regard to the French language 23 service, we dare to hope that the Commission has 24 recognized that the ensuing controversy is bearable and 25 secondary to the positive effects on the broadcasting StenoTran 750 1 system of granting the APTN licence as requested. 2 3814 We believe that Canadian subscribers 3 to broadcast distribution undertakings will benefit 4 significantly from access to the artistic expression 5 and the journalistic point of view of First Nations 6 professionals as broadcast over the new network. 7 3815 Such access will also have a salutary 8 effect on social cohesion in Canada -- an issue which 9 has been raised by the Federal Government as we look 10 toward the millennium, amidst relentless pressure to 11 adapt to economic globalization with its attendant 12 potential for dislocation of both jobs and social 13 values. 14 1915 15 3816 The confidence and professionalism 16 of this application speaks for itself and we urge the 17 Commission to grant the licence. 18 3817 Speaking for the Canadian Screen 19 Training Centre, we note the significant allocation of 20 resources toward training and professional development 21 in the business plan of the APTN. While the Canadian 22 Screen Training Centre enjoys the support of many of 23 your well-established licensees, we must congratulate 24 and single out the applicant for their forward looking 25 policies in regard to human resource development -- an StenoTran 751 1 annual allocation of a quarter of a million dollars 2 toward the training and professional development of the 3 myriad individuals involved in the production, 4 marketing and distribution of quality programming -- 5 which reflects the culture and values of the aboriginal 6 community. It represents a wise and valuable 7 investment in the future of the network. 8 3818 At the same time, recognizing the 9 dynamic growth of the sector at large and the 10 meaningful contribution of First Nations artists and 11 producers to this point, this policy will serve to 12 strengthen the system as a whole. 13 3819 The Canadian Conference of the Arts 14 and the Canadian Screen Training Centre each support 15 the application by TVNC for the licensing of the 16 Aboriginal Peoples Television Network on the terms 17 requested in the application. Thank you. 18 3820 THE CHAIRPERSON: Two commissioners 19 will ask you questions. First, Commissioner 20 Pennefather ... 21 3821 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you. 22 I am speaking to Alexander Crawley, member of the Board 23 of Directors of the CCA at the moment. 24 3822 Thank you for your comments and for 25 being with us this evening. StenoTran 752 1 3823 On your written submission I had one 2 question, just for clarification, recognizing of course 3 the formal endorsement of the application. 4 3824 You refer to the partnerships that 5 TVNC has formed beyond the aboriginal community, which 6 you say also speak volumes about the readiness of TVNC 7 to support Canada's cultural objectives by expanding 8 into the south. That is an interesting comment and I 9 wonder if you could elaborate on it. 10 3825 MR. CRAWLEY: I would not presume to 11 outline any specifics of any partnerships, but I know 12 from speaking to the applicant and some of the 13 representatives that certainly there is a sophisticated 14 understanding of how the system works. 15 3826 Some previous intervenors today 16 talked about second windows. You have some major 17 broadcasting interests here who are in support, and I 18 am sure it is not strictly from altruism. There is a 19 natural feeding that happens, a sort of symbiosis 20 develops when someone has a successful licence and 21 makes it work. 22 3827 I know this is part of their plan. 23 We were speaking in general terms in the written brief, 24 but I know that it is the intention of the applicant to 25 form those kinds of partnerships. First window might StenoTran 753 1 be on APTN and it would show up somewhere else, or vice 2 versa. In all of those things there is a kind of 3 coming together of resources. 4 3828 We were just really referring in 5 general terms to the need for partnerships, but I think 6 there is a recognition, again, from this applicant that 7 they are prepared to form those partnerships, and that 8 there are others in the system who are prepared to 9 partner with them. It is a positive indication. 10 3829 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you. 11 That is clear. That brings me to get your comments. 12 3830 This is one way in which the presence 13 of aboriginal programming on the current Canadian 14 system would hopefully improve. 15 3831 I was going to ask for your comments 16 on whether you felt, in fact, that there was any risk 17 that an approval of an aboriginal television service 18 would change the responsibility of other television 19 services in terms of their reflecting the aboriginal 20 peoples and aboriginal concerns of this country. 21 3832 MR. CRAWLEY: I would think that, to 22 be fair, there is in fact an improvement. I know that 23 things move slowly and, when you have been waiting a 24 long time, it doesn't seem like there is. But I would 25 say, from my experience as a non-aboriginal Canadian, StenoTran 754 1 having experienced some travel in the north and having 2 some aboriginal friends, that I have seen an 3 improvement in my lifetime in the depiction of those 4 communities and those cultural values. 5 3833 I think it is clear that it would 6 take a great leap forward if there were a mainstream 7 full-time service. I suppose there might be some 8 tendency on the part of some broadcasters to say: 9 "Okay, we don't need to do that any more", as I think 10 the Friends of Canadian Broadcasting suggested, or 11 somebody suggested to you this afternoon. The 12 Commission wouldn't let them back away from their 13 responsibilities in that sense, we would expect. 14 3834 But as with any creative endeavour, 15 when there is a critical mass the quality goes up. 16 When there is a critical mass of programming that is 17 being called for and created, as CanWest Global's Mr. 18 Maavara said, every project that is pitched by an 19 individual producer doesn't always land where it is 20 originally pitched to, but there is a knowledge that 21 has increased and a competence that has increased from 22 one project to the next, through the partnerships and 23 also through just simply the fact that if you have one 24 signal and so many resources that you can fill your 25 signal with, if there is a good property that is StenoTran 755 1 developed and you don't have a place for it, someone 2 else is going to pick it up. 3 3835 So I think there would be a positive 4 reflection on the productivity of the First Nations 5 communities. As more people get better at making 6 programs, their programs are going to show up elsewhere 7 in the Canadian system and elsewhere in the world. 8 3836 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you. 9 I hear you actually getting into the whole area of 10 development and training, so I will stop here. 11 3837 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. 12 Commissioner Cardozo ... 13 3838 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: I am the 14 second Commissioner assigned to you. 15 3839 I will be speaking to Sandy Crawley 16 of the Canadian Screen Training Centre. We knew you 17 were one and the same. 18 3840 I appreciate hearing from different 19 organizations and different perspectives. I do want to 20 note, though, that when you say we made a brave 21 decision with TVA and we should be similarly brave 22 here, I am reminded of the British program "Yes, 23 Minister", where the deputy minister was explaining to 24 one of his colleagues that the best way to talk the 25 minister out of a project was to say that would be a StenoTran 756 1 very brave and courageous thing to do. But I take it 2 that is not what you are trying to do. 3 3841 It's late. 4 3842 Let me ask you about training. Do 5 you see your centre assisting in the training of the 6 larger number of aboriginal technical people, actors as 7 well as technicians, that would be needed for APTN? 8 3843 MR. CRAWLEY: We are sort of a 9 virtual organization. I am not sure that the word 10 "centre" really belongs in the organization. I am new 11 there, but -- 12 3844 We try to assist the entire system in 13 meeting its human resource needs. We like to train 14 where we perceive there is a need, and we develop 15 proposals. We are a not-for-profit organization, so we 16 always make partners. Certainly we would be happy to 17 make partners with APTN or TVNC to help them meet their 18 training needs. But they may very well be able to 19 manage that on their own. So there is no guarantee 20 that we would be taking a direct part in that training. 21 3845 However, we have already benefited. 22 Some of the people who are working with TVNC have 23 worked with the centre over the years, at the Institute 24 of Film and Television here in Ottawa. 25 3846 Similarly to the way we were talking StenoTran 757 1 about the way the system feeding itself, the training 2 and professional development of the community that is 3 engaged in those activities in this country tends to 4 cross-pollinate. People go from one organization to 5 another. If they have a talent for training in a 6 particular skill, then they make themselves available 7 wherever that is needed. That is the way we operate. 8 Those are the principles. 9 3847 So certainly we would be happy to 10 partner with the applicant -- 11 3848 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: But that is 12 not the reason you are here. 13 3849 MR. CRAWLEY: No. 14 3850 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: With regard to 15 the mandatory coverage, you have said that the moment 16 is now and be brave, and so forth. Are you suggesting 17 that we do give APTN mandatory coverage? 18 3851 MR. CRAWLEY: Yes. Both of the 19 organizations that I am representing here today are 20 suggesting that the terms that are being put forward to 21 you are the appropriate ones and that you don't need to 22 adjust them. 23 3852 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: All right. 24 Thank you very much. 25 3853 THE CHAIRPERSON: I will give you 15 StenoTran 758 1 seconds to change hats. Commissioner Pennefather has 2 another question. 3 3854 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you. 4 3855 Commissioner Cardozo did ask you to 5 respond for both organizations and I just wanted, for 6 the record, to ask you: Does the Canadian Conference 7 of the Arts also agree to mandatory carriage? 8 3856 MR. CRAWLEY: We do. 9 3857 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you. 10 3858 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Mr. 11 Crawley. We are grateful that you were able to keep 12 your two selves together until such a late hour. 13 3859 Madam Secretary ... 14 3860 MS SANTERRE: Thank you, Madam Chair. 15 3861 The next intervention will be by WETV 16 Development Corporation. 17 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 18 3862 THE CHAIRPERSON: Good evening, Ms 19 Rankin and Mr. Nostbakken. 20 3863 MR. NOSTBAKKEN: Thank you very much, 21 Commissioners. I am David Nostbakken, President and 22 CEO of WETV. This is Linda Rankin, as you know, who is 23 our Executive Vice-President and General Manager. 24 3864 WETV is a Canadian-based global 25 access television service currently distributing StenoTran 759 1 programming to 30 countries through 38 broadcast 2 partners around the world. 3 3865 WETV carries programming provided to 4 it by a number of international partners on themes, 5 mostly, of sustainable development, and from the 6 international independent producer community we acquire 7 programming which gives voice to the great numbers of 8 cultures not heard or seen in positive ways on 9 television generally. 10 3866 TVNC is one of our broadcast 11 partners. 12 3867 Some of you also might know that I 13 was one of the founders and the founding chairman of 14 Vision Television, and was the applicant before the 15 CRTC for the licensing of Vision Television. Linda 16 Rankin was the principal behind the licensing and was 17 founding president of Women's Television Network, WTN. 18 3868 I am hoping that we can add, if only 19 a small slice, something that has not already been said 20 at this late date. 21 3869 We would like to touch on two basic 22 questions. Should APTN be licensed? Should it be a 23 mandatory service? 24 3870 I will say a few words about the 25 first question and Linda will talk about the second. StenoTran 760 1 3871 We would like to expect that it is a 2 given that this service should be licensed, and that 3 the only determination is whether or not it is a 4 mandatory carriage service. Recognizing that nothing 5 can be taken for granted, and before addressing the 6 issue of mandatory carriage, the following are some of 7 the reasons why we see it essential that APTN be 8 licensed. 9 3872 First, while others elsewhere review 10 supportive clauses to the applicant in the Broadcasting 11 Act, we will focus on one clause. Our Broadcasting Act 12 requires that we "provide a reasonable opportunity for 13 the public to be exposed to the expression and 14 different viewpoints on matters of public concern". 15 3873 It is fair to say that aboriginal 16 viewpoints, particularly those expressed by our native 17 people themselves, are not adequately represented in 18 existing broadcast or specialty service undertakings. 19 This I say even though I am proud of the work that 20 Vision has done in carrying a lot of programming. 21 3874 Aboriginal programming should not 22 need an appointment for viewing. When we were seeking 23 Vision's licence it was clear that occasional religious 24 programming, sprinkled throughout other more general 25 broadcast services, was not as strong a message as a StenoTran 761 1 network licensed and dedicated to reflect the diversity 2 of Canadian religious viewpoints. 3 3875 To put it another way, as Marshall 4 McLuhan has, "the medium is the message". In other 5 words, a full Canadian aboriginal service, always there 6 as a full choice -- as we seek programs on our remote 7 controls -- is a statement in itself. It is a 8 statement that the aboriginal voice is significant, 9 varied and diverse in its own right, unlike the often 10 stereotyped representation of native concerns through 11 other broadcast undertakings. 12 1930 13 3876 Secondly, although the notion of 14 "public concern" seems to beg for definition, there are 15 certain aspects of our cultural makeup which common 16 sense would dictate are in the public interest. Again, 17 in seeking a licence for Vision, our position was that 18 religion or faith is evidently a matter of public 19 concern. The service was licensed as a basic carriage 20 service, and although the applicant did not ask for 21 mandatory carriage, the Commission stated that cable 22 systems would have to have a good reason not to carry 23 it. 24 3877 Aboriginal peoples, their concerns, 25 celebrations, progress, breakthroughs, cultural StenoTran 762 1 celebration, if this is not a matter of public concern, 2 then the expression "public concern" has little or no 3 meaning. The applicant itself states: 4 "Aboriginal people deserve more 5 than token appearance on 6 postcards and travel posters. 7 As people, we can no longer be 8 marginalized as a caricature of 9 a bygone romantic era." 10 3878 The Canadian track record with 11 respect to its own aboriginal peoples has been spotty 12 at best. One of the issues that continues to visit us 13 is one of territoriality and land rights. In our 14 electronic age, we should provide the necessary 15 mechanism for ownership in a full, national space to 16 express aboriginal viewpoints in a full, fair and 17 balanced fashion. 18 3879 "Our home and native land" we sing in 19 our national anthem. Our broadcast presence needs to 20 include the whole of our cultural selves. It is a 21 matter of public concern. 22 3880 Third, this will be a truly Canadian 23 service, with at least 90 per cent of its programming 24 of Canadian origin, from those who are the original 25 Canadians. StenoTran 763 1 3881 Fourth, the not-for-profit status of 2 the network is in its favour, indicating the purpose is 3 social and cultural self-expression and a voice. This 4 allows it to allocate more revenues to programming and 5 to focus on other key factors besides strictly 6 commercial interests. 7 3882 Fifth and finally, there is an 8 increased interest internationally on the importance of 9 cultural self-expression. This is a matter of 10 particular interest to WETV. An important 11 international intergovernmental conference was held in 12 Stockholm, Sweden in March of this year hosted by 13 UNESCO and well attended by a Canadian delegation, 14 including the Minister of Canadian Heritage. This same 15 Minister hosted a meeting of 20 cultural ministers from 16 around the world in the interest of exploring on a 17 global scale how we can ensure better sharing of the 18 diverse cultural perspectives that is now being shared 19 through a dominated universe. Even the World Bank in 20 October of this year hosted an international conference 21 on how it should get behind ensuring that cultural 22 voices are heard and empowered. 23 3883 As Canadians, through our regulatory 24 history and our Broadcasting Act, we have a kind of 25 wired-in philosophy on the importance of a reflection StenoTran 764 1 of our own diversity. This Canadian viewpoint and 2 history is well respected around the world. A new 3 badge of commitment to reflecting our own domestic 4 diversity would include an aboriginal service. Its 5 absence is in fact noticeable. 6 3884 As we build WETV, it is evident in 7 all the world that television is our most powerful 8 cultural vehicle. Its power is to legitimize what it 9 carries and de-legitimize what it does not. If you're 10 not on television, you don't matter. Domestically and 11 globally it makes sense in Canada to have an operating 12 and legitimized aboriginal service, APTN. 13 3885 MS RANKIN: On the question of 14 mandatory carriage, the TVA decision identified the 15 importance of French language programming as a 16 mandatory part of the Canadian broadcasting universe. 17 Canada's two official languages are evidently in the 18 public interest in broadcasting terms. 19 3886 Native voices pre-date both French 20 and English. As deeply rooted as our dual language 21 status as a nation, a commitment to our aboriginal base 22 and the preservation of its cultural distinctiveness 23 and variety is a part of who we are. An aboriginal 24 network of high quality programming to entertain and to 25 educate, as outlined in their application, can be seen StenoTran 765 1 as a special case for historical reasons alone, aside 2 from current social and cultural reasons, and out of a 3 respect for the need to empower and preserve this 4 systemic cultural heritage. 5 3887 When an immigrant to this country 6 applies for Canadian citizenship, one of the questions 7 posed in the exam on Canadian heritage information is: 8 Who are the three founding aboriginal nations? The 9 answer is, in case you didn't know, the First Nations, 10 the Inuit and the Métis. If these are considered as 11 founding nations of Canada, then it is a given that 12 they should have their place on Canadian television 13 screens, as do the other founding nations with the same 14 mandatory carriage arrangements. 15 3888 What is in the public interest cannot 16 be defined or driven by market alone, as important as 17 this is. Else, why a CRTC? An aboriginal network that 18 serves our public interest and meets 21st century 19 dynamic audience and market demands is ideal. WETV 20 intends to provide a window on the world for APTN 21 programming, ensuring that it reaches the broadest 22 audiences possible beyond the borders of Canada. 23 3889 A criticism of the service is that 24 the only reason the applicant is seeking mandatory 25 carriage is to support the financing requirements of StenoTran 766 1 its business plan. However, from experience, we would 2 suggest it should be seen as an argument in favour of 3 the applicant's request. 4 3890 APTN has created a good business 5 plan. They seek only 15 cents per subscriber per month 6 over the seven-year plan. They have a commitment to 90 7 per cent of programming being distinctly Canadian, 8 accept being carried "North of 60", along with Vision 9 TV and WETV, need to develop new talent, new 10 programming and new cultural excitement in the public 11 interest and to garner audiences. Mandatory carriage 12 serves the dual purpose of ensuring the public interest 13 on the one hand, and on the other that the network does 14 not fail for lack of resources in start-up; that young 15 aboriginal talent is indeed empowered; and that 16 Canadian viewers are touched by quality programming 17 reflecting this important part of our heritage. 18 3891 On the verge of the 21st century, 19 television is the most powerful medium of communicating 20 to local, regional, national and global audiences -- 21 messages of how to live in harmony within diverse 22 societies. Canada, once again, will be leaders in 23 managing this resource for the good of its entire 24 social mosaic, as well as making an important 25 contribution to the world. We urge you to give it all StenoTran 767 1 the support possible in getting starting. The market 2 will follow, embrace it and sustain it. 3 3892 Thank you. 4 3893 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Miss 5 Rankin, Mr. Nostbakken. 6 3894 Commissioner Pennefather. 7 3895 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you, 8 Madam Chair. 9 3896 Good evening to both of you. 10 3897 MS RANKIN: Good evening. 11 3898 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: And thank 12 you for being with us. And thank you for bringing, 13 too, the comments of WETV and the international 14 component to this discussion. 15 3899 First a clarification. In your 16 written intervention you refer to, in your second 17 paragraph: 18 "It is long overdue that there 19 be a specialty service dedicated 20 to our northern and aboriginal 21 perspectives." 22 3900 I assume from this presentation, when 23 you refer to this proposal as a network, that you 24 understand that it wasn't an application for a 25 specialty service? StenoTran 768 1 3901 MS RANKIN: Yes, we do. Perhaps a 2 special service. 3 3902 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: All right, 4 fine. I assume you don't mean in the sense that the 5 CCTA was presenting it in terms of special and relative 6 to others? 7 3903 MS RANKIN: Never in the sense of 8 what the CCTA was presenting. 9 3904 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you. 10 It's getting late. 11 3905 In fact, with your international 12 experience, how would you situate this application? If 13 I may, you have commented on Canada's leadership in 14 that regard. You've also said in your written remarks: 15 "We believe that aboriginal 16 programming should be seen not 17 only within Canada but outside 18 our own borders." 19 3906 Thirdly, you mentioned today that you 20 will facilitate that by providing a window on the world 21 for APTN programming. 22 3907 On the latter point, I'd like some 23 specifics on how that will happen. So, to go back, why 24 is this important in terms of, as you say in your last 25 paragraph: StenoTran 769 1 "Canada once again will be 2 leaders in managing this 3 resource for the good of its 4 entire social mosaic as well as 5 making an important contribution 6 to the world." 7 3908 Can you elaborate on that and then 8 tell us about your arrangement for international 9 exposure of APTN programming? 10 3909 MR. NOSTBAKKEN: First of all, our 11 assumption is that the programming is going to be very 12 good programming, and edifying, entertaining as can be 13 expected and, therefore, worthy of watching, 14 interesting to be watched and garnering audiences, not 15 just in this country but in other countries. 16 3910 If it's in Canada's interests to be 17 seen in the rest of the world as part of our sense of 18 who we are as Canadians, it surely should include a 19 full menu of aboriginal programming. 20 3911 We have found through our work in 21 many other countries, including Third World countries, 22 southern hemisphere countries, that there's a real 23 appetite for this kind of programming and that, indeed, 24 many of the cultures of these countries feel 25 marginalized and underrepresented because of a western StenoTran 770 1 dominance or an American dominance, and the propensity 2 of their broadcasters to carry cheap programming that 3 are easily acquired of a fairly lowest common 4 denominator entertainment value. So, there is an 5 appetite out there for this kind of programming. 6 3912 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: That's an 7 interesting comment because some intervenors have 8 referred, for various reasons, to aboriginal 9 programming and to this proposal specifically as 10 fulfilling a niche requirement or a particular 11 component of our society and, therefore, as we know and 12 you know from your experience, defining that in terms 13 of a very limited audience. 14 3913 This would appear to be just the 15 opposite from what you're saying. 16 3914 MR. NOSTBAKKEN: I think it's the 17 height of arrogance to suggest that only certain white 18 anglosaxon Canadian or American programming has 19 universal appeal. There's no reason to not expect that 20 talented people can produce high-quality programming 21 that has universal appeal. 22 3915 That's not just true of the Canadian 23 aboriginal community. It's true of other cultures of 24 the world as well. 25 3916 WETV's interest is broader than the StenoTran 771 1 Canadian interest. It is out of a sense that if we go 2 into the next century and our culture is dominated by a 3 few city blocks square of activity in some corner of 4 Los Angeles and that we don't see the diverse cultures 5 of the world, this is an unhealthy state of affairs. 6 3917 So, simply from a human development 7 standpoint, it's important that we find ways of better 8 reflecting who we are. It's unhealthy not to. Lack of 9 peace and security often relates to underrepresentation 10 of people. When they feel their identity is not being 11 well represented, anger and distemper emerges. I'm now 12 not speaking about Canada, I'm talking about the world. 13 3918 So, there are real important reasons 14 not to allow ourselves to become univocal in how we 15 represent culture. Canada has an advantage over most 16 countries because it has, from its beginning, concerned 17 itself with a reflection of our own diversity in 18 matters of public concern. Many other countries 19 haven't. They're looking to Canada for leadership in 20 this. WETV is one initiative to provide that 21 leadership, and the programming that we reflect from 22 Canada, we want to reflect its diversity, and that 23 absolutely includes programming that might come from an 24 aboriginal service. 25 3919 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you. StenoTran 772 1 If we bring this discussion back now to Canada and your 2 very clear position on mandatory carriage as an 3 essential part of the business plan, but more than that 4 in terms of the importance of this proposal, can I have 5 your reaction to comments that would say from some 6 parties and some who have supported the application but 7 been hesitant and opposed mandatory carriage, how you 8 feel that cable subscribers will react? What is your 9 reaction to the comment that this is counter to the 10 notion of customer choice? It's not the first time 11 that that comment has been raised. In fact, it has 12 been raised recently in terms of other decisions we've 13 made. 14 3920 MR. NOSTBAKKEN: I'll comment and 15 then Linda can comment. 16 3921 I think it was Ms Kuptana that 17 pointed out you can hardly talk about choice when 18 certain elements of choice aren't there. There is a 19 lack of choice in the Canadian cable universe by virtue 20 of not having as much diversity as we would like to 21 see, including an aboriginal channel. 22 3922 You're talking about the mandatory 23 question. Our arguments are if you can have mandatory, 24 if you can have basic, if you can have notions of 25 public concern as our Broadcasting Act calls for, does StenoTran 773 1 this application fit into those concepts, and it 2 squarely fits into those concepts. So, if you're going 3 to provide any mandatory services, it seems to me there 4 are very good reasons, as we have laid out, to include 5 aboriginal service as a mandatory service. 6 1945 7 3923 And it is not eliminating choice if 8 you are in a multichannel universe and it is one of the 9 viable choices. 10 3924 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: I think 11 the elimination of choice is often angled on the fact 12 that this is -- the pattern is to add services without 13 one having said: I want that particular service. So 14 that we are told there will be adverse reaction. And 15 you have had experiences. 16 3925 MS RANKIN: It is the third or fourth 17 time that that position has been put forward by the 18 CCTA. And, in fact, every time they are confronted 19 with a licensing scenario, that is what they put 20 forward. 21 3926 So I, from my position, it has worn 22 thin. Because when the Commission has given due 23 consideration in an open forum to the presentations of 24 licensees on why the service fits in certain criteria 25 and they have been licensed and they have then fought StenoTran 774 1 their way into some kind of carriage arrangement, 2 indeed within months they are part of the landscape and 3 they have an audience. And they survive and prosper in 4 a very short period of time. 5 3927 I have no doubt that this one will, 6 in fact, follow that same route. And there is no 7 reason at all to presuppose that someone will not watch 8 it. Someone earlier made a comment that you cannot do 9 market research to a market that hasn't -- that does 10 not have the product. They do not know what they do 11 not know and that is absolutely the case. 12 3928 But when given the product to try, 13 certainly in the case of television, it is quite clear 14 that each product finds its audience. And I think that 15 -- no, I do not think, I know that this one will find 16 its audience as well. And we will be surprised at the 17 degree to which the audience, in fact, is 18 non-Aboriginal. 19 3929 When we started WTN, 60 per cent of 20 our audience were men because they really wanted to 21 find out what women were all about. And that has 22 dropped back to -- it is the case, though. That has 23 dropped back to an audience of 40 per cent men and 60 24 per cent women for WTN. 25 3930 Another thing that they said, when we StenoTran 775 1 started a women's channel was that we were ghettoizing 2 women. And, in fact, that was not the case at all. 3 Women found their place. And another thing they told 4 us was that if all the programming was done on the 5 women's channel then the others would no longer carry 6 programming for women. That is not the case. The fact 7 is that women's programming has become quite popular 8 and found its place on all of the other channels as 9 well. 10 3931 So every argument that I have heard 11 here today about APTN and what it will or will not do, 12 what it will or will not find or whether it will or 13 will not create a negative situation is absolutely the 14 cases they put forward for or against the women's 15 channel. And none of it -- none of it has borne out. 16 And all of the positive things about having a women's 17 channel have been borne out. 18 3932 So I take that example as exactly, I 19 believe, what will happen with APTN. 20 3933 MR. NOSTBAKKEN: If I could just add 21 a couple of other things. I think the statement that 22 the notion that viewers will not choose, it is not a 23 question of is there viewer choice, but the CCTA notion 24 seems to be that if there is a licensed service it will 25 not be chosen, reflects a view -- a stereotypical view StenoTran 776 1 of what an Aboriginal service might be, rather than a 2 vibrant, entertaining, engaging service. 3 3934 Secondly, just another experience was 4 that when Vision was first struggling to get on the 5 air, it had to find programming wherever it could at 6 the lowest cost. And one of its sources of early 7 programming was National Film Board product that the 8 conventional services were not carrying. They were not 9 carrying it for a number of reasons, political and 10 otherwise. But basically the notion was that those 11 National Film Board products would never garner an 12 audience interest. 13 3935 When Vision and some others started 14 carrying a National Film Board product, it was soon 15 evident that there were audiences for it. So soon 16 almost all services were carrying National Film Board 17 product. 18 3936 So to some extent you have to 19 legitimize your program offering. You have to create 20 interest and you have to develop critical mass. 21 3937 No one is assuming that every new 22 licence service is going to have full audiences right 23 away. They have to learn, they have to grow, they have 24 to build. And one of the reasons we think it should be 25 mandatory is to grow and to build. First of all, to be StenoTran 777 1 as widely seen as possible and, secondly, to have the 2 financial resource in order to, in fact, produce high 3 quality programming. 4 3938 COMMISSIONER PENNEFATHER: Thank you 5 very much, that concludes my questions. Interesting 6 how National Film Board seems to find itself. 7 3939 THE CHAIRPERSON: I see that your 8 passion does not wane with the lateness of the hour. 9 Commissioner Cardoza's either. 10 3940 COMMISSIONER CARDOZA: I do not have 11 a question, I just have a comment to make. As I was 12 saying earlier, these hearings are very interesting for 13 us because we get to meet a lot of the people who have 14 had a real impact. Although, unlike Adam Beach, I am 15 sorry to tell you that nobody asked me to get your home 16 phone numbers. 17 3941 I just wanted to I say that I really 18 appreciated your discussion with Commissioner 19 Pennefather in terms of your observations about 20 starting channels that had a dream behind them. And I 21 encourage you to keep active and continue talking about 22 these things because it is very helpful for us to 23 understand some of the things you have just talked 24 about, thank you. 25 3942 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you. Thank StenoTran 778 1 you, Ms Rankin. It is nice to see you again. Thank 2 you, Mr. Nostbakken. And thank you for staying so late 3 and still remaining quite excited about the subject. 4 We need this. 5 3943 Madam Secretary. 6 3944 MS SANTERRE: Thank you, Madam Chair. 7 The next intervention will be by Communications & 8 Diversity Network. 9 PRESENTATION / PRÉSENTATION 10 3945 MR. LUMB: Well, as you can see, 11 Madam Chair, commissioners, I wrote "good morning". 12 3946 THE CHAIRPERSON: You are an 13 optimistic man. 14 3947 MR. LUMB: I was not optimistic. If 15 we just waited a few more hours, good morning would be 16 true. I also noticed that the air conditioning was 17 turned off at seven. Can you promise the lights will 18 not be turned off for another three minutes or so? 19 3948 THE CHAIRPERSON: It is very 20 difficult here because it is very hot and dry. But we 21 are anxious to hear you anyway. 22 3949 MR. LUMB: Okay. Well, with me 23 today, Maria Shin, who has worked in the areas of race 24 relations and multi-culturalism and who, perhaps 25 realizing the power of television is now a producer. StenoTran 779 1 And on this side, another Maria, Maria Belisario, an 2 associate producer working with Ms Shin, who came here 3 from Venezuela six years ago. She will offer some 4 additional thoughts on how important this is not only 5 for Aboriginal people in Canada, but perhaps 6 everywhere. 7 3950 The Communications and Diversity 8 Network is absolutely delighted to have this 9 opportunity to speak on behalf of TVNC's licence 10 application for an Aboriginal Peoples Television 11 Network. 12 3951 This is surely one of the most 13 exciting and timely applications to come before the 14 CRTC. Exciting because it offers, at last, the 15 prospect for a rich and complete schedule of 16 programming from an aboriginal perspective. And timely 17 because, as Canada grows ever more diverse, the culture 18 and history of its First Nations need a channel of 19 their own to offer a clear and accurate image not only 20 to Aboriginal communities across Canada but to all 21 Canadians. 22 3952 In a very real sense, Madam Chair, 23 the inspiration for this challenging venture came from 24 the CRTC itself, which announced earlier this year that 25 it would consider any TVNC application for a service StenoTran 780 1 widely available throughout Canada "to serve the 2 diverse needs of the various Aboriginal communities, as 3 well as other Canadians." 4 3953 The Commission might be said to have 5 bet on a sure thing for two reasons: First, since its 6 birth in 1988, TVNC has ably demonstrated its ability 7 to distribute relevant programming in the north; and, 8 secondly, TVNC would naturally want to grasp this 9 opportunity to expand from a distribution agency 10 focused on the north, to a network providing a wide 11 range of programming capable of being seen across 12 Canada. 13 3954 Naturally, too, such an expansion 14 requires funding. The suggested cable fee of 15 cents 15 per viewer per month and potential advertising revenue 16 would enable TVNC to become self-supporting and to 17 phase out federal funding. I note that is in five 18 years. 19 3955 APTN would then have the same kind of 20 chance to realize its place in the Canadian television 21 spectrum as, say, CBC Newsworld. 22 3956 The latter built on the base provided 23 by CBC main channel regional and national news services 24 to become the important contributor to information for 25 viewers it is today. So also, APTN can build on TVNC's StenoTran 781 1 existing outlets and exchange capacity and indeed on 2 its pool of talent to become a vital provider of 3 original and diverse programming. 4 3957 APTN has emphasized that it is not a 5 specialty channel but a core service for Aboriginal 6 peoples, a voice for them and a window on Aboriginal 7 life for all Canadians. A core service suggests -- 8 that is the wrong word -- a core service demands that 9 this voice be placed to the greatest advantage, in this 10 case, mandatory carriage on the basic tier of cable 11 channels. 12 3958 This request undoubtedly faces 13 opposition. We have seen that and heard that today. 14 Arguments against range from a shortage of channel 15 space to APTN's likely lack of wide appeal compared to, 16 say, popular programming on American networks enshrined 17 in some of the best seats in the house. 18 3959 Well, if this argument had true 19 validity, then the CBC should never have been founded. 20 There are those who would deny the CBC's important 21 contribution to Canadian culture over the decades, but 22 the record shows otherwise. Given time and a good seat 23 in the Canadian television house, APTN will also prove 24 itself. 25 3960 Its proposed programming schedule is StenoTran 782 1 impressive: Drama, music, news, current affairs, 2 sports, traditional skills and, of course, a range of 3 Aboriginal languages. Of particular interest is an 4 emphasis on live and interactive programming aimed at 5 community connections, a social issue documentary, for 6 instance, followed by phone-in debate, a catalyst for 7 healing, reconciliation and interaction and community 8 expression, as APTN says. Now, north can be connected 9 to south and east to west, a reaching out never dreamed 10 of by communities often inward-looking and steeped in 11 isolation and silence. Perhaps I should have said 12 enforced isolation and silence. 13 3961 And there is a remarkable potential 14 for reaching out to other Canadians who will be given a 15 better chance than ever before to see and grasp the 16 essence of a different culture at work and at play; to 17 see firsthand the creativity of peoples of whom they 18 might well have other, less rosy images because of 19 day-to-day conscious or unwitting stereotyping, perhaps 20 even to advance towards a greater understanding and 21 acceptance of the Aboriginal approach to life. APTN 22 offers all Canadians the chance to peel away the labels 23 and discover the true Aboriginal voices. 24 3962 We all know the power of television, 25 its almost scary ability to fix an image on an StenoTran 783 1 individual or a community. We have seen actors soar 2 and then fall from grace. We have seen politicians 3 anointed one year and hounded from office another. 4 3963 And in the case of Aboriginal 5 peoples, we have seen a block of communities made up of 6 hundreds of thousands of individuals corralled into a 7 single enclosure of censure and disapproval. 8 3964 The CRTC opened the gate of the 9 corral; now it should take the next logical step by 10 mandating APTN as a core channel on basic cable. 11 3965 Thank you, Madam Chair. 12 3966 I was going to say, I don't know 13 whether at this point you would like to hear from our 14 two other presenters. 15 3967 THE CHAIRPERSON: Yes. 16 3968 MS SHIN: Good evening, Madam Chair, 17 Commissioners. Thank you for the opportunity to speak 18 to you. I am sorry, I apologize I have not prepared a 19 written commission. 20 3969 I am also very honoured to speak to 21 an audience of Aboriginal peoples this evening. Thank 22 you. My name is Maria Shin and I am an independent 23 producer working out of Ottawa. 24 3970 As Lionel Lumb has just indicated, I 25 was also involved in race relations and StenoTran 784 1 multi-culturalism policy areas for a long time. 2 2000 3 3971 I was a former executive director of 4 the Canadian Ethnocultural Council and the National 5 Capital Alliance on Race Relations. I have also served 6 as communications officer at the Canadian Labour 7 Congress. As well, I am on the board of trustees of 8 Sawb (ph.) Video Co-op, which is a production and 9 postproduction facility in Ottawa for videomakers, 10 artists and community organizations. 11 3972 Let me first say that I am absolutely 12 thrilled at the prospect of the creation of the first 13 national aboriginal network in Canada and in the world, 14 and I think the kind of leadership that Canada took 50 15 years ago to help create the UN Declaration of Human 16 Rights, you as the Commission have a similar 17 opportunity here to set historical and international 18 precedents. 19 3973 On that note, I hate to sound a 20 little negative, but I would like to lodge a personal 21 complaint. 22 3974 Twenty-five years ago I arrived to 23 Canada with my family as a 10-year-old from South 24 Korea. It was a whole generation ago. So my question 25 is, why was there not a national aboriginal network 25 StenoTran 785 1 years ago when I arrived? 2 3975 I feel I have been cheated a lifetime 3 of experience and learning that I could have had to be 4 aware of who we were, who we are today and who we are 5 about to become as peoples. I feel quite angry about 6 that missed opportunity, but at the same time I am 7 absolutely joyed and ecstatic and honoured that future 8 children of mine will have opportunities that I have 9 missed out. 10 3976 So I will tell you a little bit about 11 why I feel excited about this landmark opportunity. 12 3977 This is a monumental step towards a 13 more democratic industry, viewership and nation 14 building and development of a society. This will have 15 a profound impact on this industry and culture at every 16 level. I don't think we will realize for a while what 17 kind of impact this will have. 18 3978 Aside from the economic arguments put 19 forward to you, the artistic and cultural merit of this 20 application to me is very profound. I will point to 21 you some examples that I can think of and relate to an 22 example of my own experience having to produce a 23 current documentary that I am working on. 24 3979 I think it will help to increase 25 awareness and understanding for key decision makers of StenoTran 786 1 this industry -- broadcasters, programmers, 2 distributors, et cetera. 3 3980 I am currently working on a 4 documentary in association with Vision TV and the 5 National Film Board. It is called "Journey to Little 6 Rock". It is about a human rights activist in Canada. 7 Her name is Minnijean Brown Trickey. She was one of 8 nine black students who went to all-white school for 9 the first time in Little Rock 40 years ago, and she is 10 about to receive the Congressional Gold Medal. 11 3981 When she came to Canada 30 years ago 12 and began befriending native peoples, working with 13 native youth on non-violence issues, she came to 14 realize how painfully similar the treatment of native 15 peoples in Canada was to the treatment of African 16 Americans in the United States. 17 3982 When I began pitching this program to 18 broadcasters, key industry personnel, the light bulbs 19 went on when they realized those similarities existed 20 and do exist. It struck me, as a learning experience 21 for me but a learning experience for the people in the 22 industry, but I think that a profound sense of 23 consciousness doesn't exist still. 24 3983 Anyone who has ever tried to finance 25 a television program in Canada knows that, in order to StenoTran 787 1 finance a program, you have to convince a handful of 2 commissioning editors and executive producers. Viewers 3 have very little choice from the beginning on what kind 4 of programs will end up on television. 5 3984 In my viewpoint, the more diverse 6 that community of commissioning editors and executive 7 producers in our country, as this application will 8 surely add to that diversity, the more opportunities 9 there will be for viewers to have more programming 10 choice. 11 3985 I would also like to support I 12 believe it was the representatives from CanWest Global 13 who pointed out earlier that storytelling itself and 14 the whole creative and imaginative ways in which we can 15 begin to retell not only aboriginal stories but all 16 sorts of stories from right across this country is 17 going to be profoundly impacted by this application. 18 3986 When women start to join men-only 19 organizations, you profoundly change that culture, you 20 profoundly change the kind of stories you tell and the 21 ways in which you tell those stories. So this is going 22 to have a profound impact on every level of the 23 industry in Canada in the television and filmmaking and 24 home medium that is expanding and becoming globalized. 25 3987 I just want to end on that note and StenoTran 788 1 to thank you, the Commission and the applicant, and 2 congratulate both of you for this historical and 3 universal opportunity that you are affording for all of 4 us. 5 3988 I would just like to close -- because 6 I was telling my friend this morning that I would be 7 appearing, on a last minute's notice, before the 8 Commission. My friend, Pierrette Barry-Morris (ph.) in 9 Ottawa, who is a singer-songwriter -- "Oh Susana" -- 10 when she heard that this would be the first time ever 11 in the world that there would be a national aboriginal 12 network, she said, "Yeah Canada!" 13 3989 Thank you. 14 3990 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Ms Shin. 15 3991 Ms Belisario. 16 3992 MS BELISARIO: First of all, I 17 apologize, I don't have anything in writing and I 18 didn't prepare enough for this, but I am glad I am the 19 last one. 20 3993 I don't think I can add something new 21 to what all these marvellous people have said already. 22 As I learned that there was a possibility to have a 23 First Nations national broadcaster, I was surprised and 24 thrilled. First of all, I remembered where I come 25 from, and definitely it will be a universal achievement StenoTran 789 1 if this happens. I am sure, from all the efforts that 2 I see, it will be a reality. I don't see any reasons 3 not to have this happening and I don't quite understand 4 why it should be so complicated to have a First Nations 5 national broadcaster happening here in Canada. 6 3994 I applaud all the efforts, but it has 7 been a long day, and I don't understand so many 8 reasons -- there is no reason to say "no". That's the 9 way I see it. 10 3995 To me, this is going to be an 11 international event, it is going to be historic, as 12 Maria said. I feel honoured to be here and to have 13 been asked by Maria and Lionel and for you to permit me 14 to speak my mind here. 15 3996 I am a newcomer to this land; I just 16 came six years ago. When I first came, I had to really 17 do research to learn about the First Peoples in Canada 18 because there was no place, there was nobody in the 19 media and nobody on TV. I thought, well, where are 20 they? 21 3997 Now I have a baby who is a Canadian 22 and I am very happy that he is going to have the chance 23 to see the First Peoples in Canada speak up by 24 themselves. I am very proud to be here. 25 3998 Thank you. StenoTran 790 1 3999 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, 2 Ms Belisario. We thank all three of you. 3 4000 I hope you are not suggesting, 4 Ms Belisario, that the trick is to wear us down. 5 4001 MS BELISARIO: I was going to end on 6 a lighter note and bring the Juan Valdez from the 7 coffee shop and say, "Look, this is what the media 8 does", but they didn't let me take it, so I couldn't do 9 it. 10 4002 THE CHAIRPERSON: It just goes to 11 show that some positive stereotypes can work too. 12 4003 MS BELISARIO: Yes, exactly. 13 4004 THE CHAIRPERSON: I don't have any 14 questions. I don't know if my colleagues have some. 15 No? 16 4005 We thank you for your eloquence. 17 4006 I think we saw you, Mr. Lumb, during 18 the TV Network -- 19 4007 MR. LUMB: Yes. Like Sandy Crawley, 20 I can wear more than one hat, Madam Chair. 21 4008 THE CHAIRPERSON: I don't remember 22 you being accompanied by two ladies that time. 23 4009 MR. LUMB: Just one. I thought I 24 needed all the help I could possibly get and I felt a 25 really deep need to have people who can speak of their StenoTran 791 1 own experience, rather than that of an official 2 grouping of people, come before you and put their side 3 of things in words that come from the heart. 4 4010 THE CHAIRPERSON: We agree, and, as 5 Commissioner Cardozo said earlier, it is always very 6 helpful for us to hear from people who are really in 7 the trenches, so to speak, and can speak of their 8 experiences from having experienced them. So we 9 appreciate your choice of company for the evening -- or 10 the beginning of the evening at least. We hope you 11 have a nice weekend. 12 4011 MR. LUMB: I just wanted to say one 13 thing. Please, will you allow me to say just one 14 thing? 15 4012 THE CHAIRPERSON: Absolutely. 16 4013 MR. LUMB: I do have a bone to pick 17 with the APTN people, what I hope will become the APTN 18 folks here. There is going to be a program, a humorous 19 program called "Grannies". I am now a grandfather and 20 I absolutely demand that we have a programmed called 21 "Granddads". 22 4014 THE CHAIRPERSON: I am a grannie. I 23 will be well served. 24 4015 MR. LUMB: Thank you very much. 25 4016 THE CHAIRPERSON: But you wouldn't StenoTran 792 1 want to know what my grandchildren think of this 2 program. 3 4017 Thank you very much, and have a nice 4 weekend. 5 4018 MS SHIN: Thank you. 6 4019 THE CHAIRPERSON: I believe, Madam 7 Secretary, this is the last intervention? 8 4020 MS SANTERRE: Yes. 9 4021 THE CHAIRPERSON: We will take a 10- 10 minute break, or is the -- you are ready? I was going 11 to call my husband and tell him I am still alive. We 12 will hear you, then. 13 4022 Madam Secretary. 14 4023 MS SANTERRE: Therefore, we will 15 invite Television Northern Canada Incorporated to 16 comment on interventions filed to its application. 17 4024 THE CHAIRPERSON: Welcome back. 18 4025 Go ahead when you are ready. 19 REPLY / RÉPLIQUE 20 4026 MR. TAGALIK: (Opening comment in 21 native language / Commentaire introductif en langue 22 autochtone) 23 4027 I would like to thank all the 24 interveners, both positive and negative. I think a lot 25 of that came from the heart today, and it is really StenoTran 793 1 gratifying to know that we have a lot of support. We 2 wanted to sit here until you said "yes", but we ran out 3 of interveners. 4 4028 Just on the power of television, I 5 remember watching television for the very first time as 6 a nine-year-old when we went to Churchill. I was quite 7 awed, having heard about it. Today we are talking 8 about the same medium but we want to see a mirror where 9 we can see ourselves. That is part of the draw of 10 television; it is really amazing. Another one comes to 11 mind where two drunks are in the alley, there is a pile 12 of garbage and a broken-down television. The other 13 drunk says, "Even when it is dead, that thing demands 14 attention." 15 4029 So I think it really shows that it is 16 a powerful medium and that we really care that we want 17 to show our stories on here. I think that really got 18 brought out today. 19 4030 I would like to thank our board, and 20 on behalf of our board, part of our team, I am really 21 thankful for all the patience shown today, not only 22 from them but also from you guys and your staff. 23 2015 24 4031 APTN would like to note that it filed 25 its reply on October 30th to all the written StenoTran 794 1 interventions. 2 4032 During your examination of our 3 application and in your questions to intervenors, you 4 asked how the Commission should inform Canadians that a 5 new aboriginal peoples television network is being 6 introduced to the Canadian distribution system. 7 4033 We would suggest that you may use the 8 wording contained in your recent TVA decision. APTN 9 believes that it can make an invaluable contribution to 10 the Canadian broadcasting system since it will offer a 11 large proportion of higher quality and distinct 12 Canadian programming in all categories. 13 4034 This will achieve many objectives of 14 the Broadcasting Act as set out in our application. 15 Moreover, we believe that it would be anachronistic 16 that, on the eve of the year 2000, that an aboriginal 17 television network is not available to aboriginals and 18 non-aboriginal Canadians. 19 4035 MR. TOURIGNY: To the more specific 20 points raised during your examination-in-chief, we 21 would like to provide the following additional 22 information. 23 4036 On the issue of the licensing 24 framework: APTN would agree to have a satellite to 25 cable (including DTH and MDS) programming undertaking StenoTran 795 1 licence. We understand that such a licence would be 2 governed by the Television Broadcasting Regulations, 3 which is the framework we relied on in developing the 4 APTN application. 5 4037 We have reviewed the TVA 9(1)(h) 6 order and believe that a similar order should be issued 7 to APTN with the following elements: 8 4038 APTN notes that your proposed order 9 for TVA captures all Class 1 and Class 2 and DTH 10 systems immediately; and following our discussion with 11 Commissioner Wylie this morning, we believe that it may 12 no longer be reasonable to assume that 50 percent of 13 the Class 2 cable systems will voluntarily agree to 14 distribute our service in year 1 of the licence term. 15 4039 Accordingly, consistent with 16 paragraph a) of your TVA order, we would request that 17 APTN be mandatory for Class 1 and Class 2 and DTH 18 distributors upon the launch of APTN scheduled for the 19 1st of September 1999. 20 4040 We would require a revised paragraph 21 d) in the order and we suggest the following language 22 be included in an APTN distribution order: 23 "Distribution licensees shall be 24 authorized to increase the basic 25 service fees to be paid by their StenoTran 796 1 subscribers to recover the 2 subscriber fee paid to APTN and 3 authorized under the terms of 4 APTN's licence, with respect to 5 the distribution of APTN's 6 programming service pursuant to 7 this order." 8 4041 On the issue of the split fee or the 9 reduced fee for francophone markets: On your question 10 of what sort of rate structure could be established for 11 the French and English language markets, we have 12 reviewed our business plan and believe that we could 13 achieve similar revenues as projected in our 14 application if the subscriber fee in English-language 15 markets was 17 cents per subscriber per month and 10 16 cents per sub per month in French-language markets. 17 4042 On the Cancom breakdown of satellite 18 feed costs: In our application there is a letter from 19 Cancom which refers to quotes made by Cancom in May of 20 1998 in relation to the carriage of APTN in the manner 21 set out in its application. APTN will make the May 22 letter, with its quotes, available to the Commission by 23 the end of next week if Cancom agrees to its public 24 release. 25 4043 On closed captioning: APTN StenoTran 797 1 understands that need to provide its service to all 2 Canadians, including those that have hearing 3 disabilities. Accordingly, APTN is prepared to commit 4 by the end of its first licence term to close caption 5 100 percent of its in-house productions. 6 4044 At this point, it just includes our 7 news programming and noon-talk hour as our only in- 8 house productions that are in our proposed scheduled. 9 4045 For our English-language 10 independently produced programming, we would commit to 11 close caption 90 percent of this programming by the end 12 of the first licence term. 13 4046 For our aboriginal-language 14 programming, we have budgeted $500,000 per year to do 15 versioning in various languages. 16 4047 For the French-language programming, 17 we would be prepared to provide the Commission with a 18 report a year after launch that would set out what type 19 of closed captioning that APTN could possibly effect in 20 relation to this programming. 21 4048 Earlier today, you requested that we 22 file the Contribution Agreement. I think it was termed 23 a Memorandum of Understanding. It is in fact a 24 Contribution Agreement between the Department of 25 Canadian Heritage and TVNC. StenoTran 798 1 4049 We will undertake to provide it to 2 the CRTC by the end of next week. 3 4050 In response to the CCTA's 4 intervention today, we would like to make the following 5 comments. 6 4051 On the copyright fee: We would waive 7 this fee and, in any event, have not included it in our 8 financial. Moreover, we may be considered a non- 9 broadcast service, in terms of the copyright provision, 10 like Access Alberta since our point of origination will 11 be in the southern region and would be outside of the 12 market where the over-the-air transmission will occur. 13 4052 In other words, if we are going to be 14 uplinking the prime signal out of Winnipeg, we will not 15 have an over-the-air transmitter in Winnipeg. 16 4053 On customer choice: The CCTA's 17 opposition is not about consumer choice but rather 18 about cable not having a choice. Cable wants to 19 substitute itself on deciding what gets on the system. 20 They seem to be consumer advocates in this regard, and 21 yet we had no interventions from consumer groups 22 opposing the fee. CCTA seems to have taken that on as 23 another hat that they wear because they claim that they 24 are closest to the subscriber. 25 4054 We believe the Broadcasting Act has StenoTran 799 1 mandated the CRTC to decide what should be carried on 2 the system and that it would be inappropriate to 3 delegate this obligation to the cable systems. If 4 increasing choice through digital is the best option, 5 then why wasn't SportsNet included on a digital tier as 6 they wanted a driver for that tier? 7 4055 APTN has specifically addressed the 8 issue of customer demand in its marketing research. We 9 believe our research demonstrates that Canadians want 10 the service and are willing to pay for it. In fact, 11 our research demonstrates that 22 percent of the people 12 surveyed do not currently purchase cable; of these, 13 one-third said that they would be more likely to 14 subscribe if APTN were offered. All it would take for 15 BDUs to recover 15 cents would be a less than 1 percent 16 increase in the overall penetration of basic cable. 17 4056 On capacity: Looking at the 18 Kitchener line-up, there are three alphanumeric 19 services, one duplicate Canadian station, and the Home 20 Shopping Channel -- which is an exempt service. 21 4057 For Ottawa, we have one alphanumeric 22 and one exempt service that could be made available. 23 But we believe Ottawa will be a prime location for 24 system upgrade in order to compete with Look TV -- and 25 they are probably going to go to 750 megs. StenoTran 800 1 4058 Digital carriage is not an option: 2 APTN could never be offered at a reasonable cost on 3 digital and still meet its business plan. The CRTC 4 asked that APTN come up with a plan that would ensure 5 wide distribution, in your February notice that we 6 responded to. 7 4059 Digital carriage does not fulfil the 8 mandate of having a core service widely available. 9 There is no business case based on the fictional 10 digital distribution advocated by cable. Cable still 11 only hopes for digital distribution. Today, cable 12 cannot give the CRTC any specific forecasts with 13 respect to the digital roll-out. 14 4060 We accept that APTN negotiated a good 15 bank rate loan. We are a very efficient organization. 16 We would expect nothing less of us. 17 4061 We note that the bank loan requires 18 mandatory distribution at 15 cents. The bank didn't 19 just say not digital; they said it must be mandatory, 20 it must be at 15 cents. Banks would not approve 21 financing based on what amounts to hopeful digital 22 distribution. 23 4062 We note that the 16 cents a channel 24 cost referred to by the CCTA is a sunk cost. It is 25 already embedded in the basic rate. It is not an StenoTran 801 1 additional cost to cable or a new cost to cable. 2 4063 With respect to the 5 cent downlink 3 cost, Cancom charges 5 to 20 cents, or more, for cable 4 operators who purchase their package. APTN will not be 5 part of the Cancom package. We are simply leasing 6 space segment time from them. Essentially, we will be 7 a stand-alone service on the satellite. 8 4064 Therefore, the incremental cost will 9 be the decoder at the headend. We also note that the 10 actual decoders cost only $2,000. They had referred to 11 $3,500. Maybe that includes wiring, but they have 12 technicians on staff that can wire them in place. It 13 is a fairly simple operation. It takes about five 14 minutes. 15 4065 The sticker cost is already 16 anticipated by the cable industry, because they have to 17 launch other services in September 1999. It is 18 precisely because we knew that APTN would be launching 19 with other service that the September 1999 launch was 20 anticipated. 21 4066 On our capacity estimates, APTN used 22 Mediastats cable guide for Class 1 and Class 2 cable 23 systems. According to this information that was 24 updated in May of 1998, 89 percent of these systems had 25 at least one channel. StenoTran 802 1 4067 MR. TAGALIK: Thanks, Pat. 2 4068 In closing, we believe that APTN will 3 offer a truly distinct, unique public interest service 4 that Canadians truly want and deserve. Not only will 5 APTN be a tremendous addition to the Canadian 6 broadcasting system, it is being offered at what we 7 consider to be a true bargain rate. 8 4069 And if you wish to raises that rate, 9 we would certainly go for that too. 10 4070 THE CHAIRPERSON: I am listening. 11 4071 MR. TAGALIK: Thank you for your 12 attention. We feel truly privileged to be here today, 13 and look forward with tremendous anticipation to your 14 decision. 15 4072 THE CHAIRPERSON: You didn't think I 16 was asleep, did you? 17 4073 Commissioner Cardozo. 18 4074 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thanks, Madam 19 Chair. And thank you for those comments. 20 4075 I noted that the CCTA thought your 21 negotiations with banks was very efficient, and I 22 thought maybe you should lend your services to the CCTA 23 to help negotiate their loans, and maybe they will have 24 something for you in exchange. 25 4076 My question is to do with French StenoTran 803 1 language broadcasting. We talked about it earlier -- 2 yesterday or this morning; I have lost sense of time -- 3 during this proceeding. 4 4077 One of the intervenors, the Centre 5 for Research Action and Race Relations raised the issue 6 in their presentation, and their suggestion was that 7 you undertake some kind of consultation to find out 8 what the needs are of French-speaking aboriginal 9 peoples. 10 4078 I am wondering if we can get an idea 11 from you as to your thoughts at this stage on increased 12 French-language broadcasting and whether you could make 13 any commitments in that regard. 14 4079 MR. TOURIGNY: We have also had 15 feedback from two of our members of our Southern 16 Advisory Group saying that we have to do more in that 17 regard. I think it will be a function of the Board, 18 when it is drawing out the mandate of the service, to 19 ensure that that is more adequately addressed. Seven 20 and a half hours a week is inadequate. 21 4080 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: If you were 22 raising it in a significant manner, it might change 23 one's perspective on the issue of a differential fee in 24 French-language markets and elsewhere. Perhaps the 25 small amount of French-language programming that you StenoTran 804 1 have planned currently would suggest that the split fee 2 or the differential fee is -- 3 4081 MR. TOURIGNY: We would prefer not to 4 have a differential. We would prefer to have a common 5 fee across the country. 6 4082 I don't know how to pursue this. But 7 we can't fix a number and say it should be at 20 hours. 8 4083 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And I don't 9 want you to be making policy on the fly. 10 4084 What could you tell us as to how you 11 would go about addressing it? 12 4085 MR. TOURIGNY: I think as the current 13 board and the advisory group, which is like a separate 14 -- it is not a board of directors, but it works closely 15 with our board. 16 4086 We are having a busy weekend. We 17 have a board meeting tomorrow and an AGM on Sunday, and 18 then we have to file stuff with the CRTC next week. 19 4087 It will be discussed this weekend. 20 4088 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: And in 21 addition to which we have kept you until 8:30 -- in a 22 room that has no air. 23 4089 MR. TOURIGNY: If we have anything to 24 report as a result of the board meeting, then we will 25 report next week on that question -- or maybe the StenoTran 805 1 following week. I am planning to be in Thunder Bay 2 next week. 3 4090 COMMISSIONER CARDOZO: Thank you very 4 much. 5 4091 THE CHAIRPERSON: Counsel? 6 4092 MR. BATSTONE: Just one quick 7 question. 8 4093 When you talk about closed captioning 9 in your reply, you use the word "commit". Are we 10 talking expectation, conditional licence? 11 4094 MR. TOURIGNY: I don't know that you 12 use our condition of licence for other conventional 13 broadcasters -- 14 4095 MR. BATSTONE: It is usually just 15 stated as a requirement. 16 4096 MR. TOURIGNY: As a requirement or a 17 commitment, expectation. We want to be consistent with 18 other broadcasters. We are growing and we are going to 19 grow fast. We will be there. 20 4097 MR. BATSTONE: Thank you. 21 4098 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very 22 much. 23 4099 Thank you for your participation and 24 for everybody retaining their good humour, despite the 25 late hour. StenoTran 806 1 4100 I believe this ends this part of the 2 process -- unless you have something else. You seem 3 puzzled. 4 2030 5 4101 MR. TOURIGNY: There are no 6 conditions of licence to run through? Are they all 7 covered? 8 4102 THE CHAIRPERSON: I believe that you 9 have made your commitments in the written -- 10 4103 MR. TOURIGNY: That's fine. Yes, and 11 in the promise of performance we made all of those 12 commitments. 13 4104 MR. BATSTONE: Are you thinking of 14 one that we haven't covered? 15 4105 We have enough. 16 4106 THE CHAIRPERSON: I assume, counsel, 17 that all of the conditions that we would usually ask 18 for are covered -- 19 4107 MR. TOURIGNY: In the application 20 itself. 21 4108 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you very 22 much. 23 4109 MR. TOURIGNY: Thank you very much. 24 This has been a very historical two days. 25 4110 THE CHAIRPERSON: Madam Secretary ... StenoTran 807 1 4111 MS SANTERRE: Thank you, Madam Chair. 2 There is one more thing that I have to say. 3 4112 During the course of this hearing we 4 also considered eight non-appearing items, including 5 the intervention during the course of the hearing. 6 Thank you. 7 4113 THE CHAIRPERSON: Thank you, Madam 8 Secretary. 9 4114 The oral part of this process has 10 come to an end, but our work has just begun on both the 11 appearing and non-appearing items scheduled at this 12 hearing. 13 4115 We wish to thank both applicants and 14 all intervenors for their participation. 15 4116 I wish, personally, to thank my 16 colleagues for their participation, and certainly I 17 speak for all three of us in thanking the staff for 18 their support and in retaining their good humour until 19 such a late hour. 20 4117 I also thank the court stenographers 21 and the interpreters for their usual competence, 22 although on reading the transcript I often wish they 23 would correct my grammar. I suspect that would not be 24 a sign of competence. We thank you. 25 4118 We hope everybody has a good weekend. StenoTran 808 1 4119 I would have hoped, Mr. Tagalik, that 2 by now I would have caught on to a few words, but I did 3 not. I hope, at least, that I pronounced your name 4 properly. 5 4120 Thank you very much to all and good 6 night. 7 --- Whereupon the hearing concluded at / L'audience 8 se termine à 2035 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 StenoTran
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