Canadian Television Benefits Monitor: Tracking Spending on English-Language Television Benefits Packages


The Canadian Television Benefits Monitor is an annual syndicated research study that tracks spending for all current English-language television benefits packages (15 in total, as of Aug. 31, 2010), using data contained in reports filed with the CRTC. The 2011 research study is approximately 50 pages in length.


The CRTC generally requires broadcasters to pay 10% of the value of television assets being acquired as “tangible public benefits”, in lieu of a competitive process for the transfer of broadcasting licences.


The Canadian Television Benefits Monitor is for the benefit of Canadian television industry stakeholders so they can closely track benefits spending. The Appendix of the research study contains a detailed list of specific TV and new media programming projects funded through the various benefits packages (for the largest packages only). The research study will be updated on an annual basis.


Excluded from the research study are transactions in which benefits were committed exclusively to CRTC-certified independent production funds or training/scholarships/awards (i.e., non-programming initiatives). Also, the research study does not track radio-related benefits spending.


Some highlights from the 2011 report (based on data for the year ended Aug. 31, 2010) include the following:


  1. The combined value of the 15 benefits packages tracked in the report totals $884.8 million, of which $266.5 million had been spent by August 31, 2010. That leaves $618.3 million to be spent by August 31, 2017;

  2. As of August 31, 2010, 30% of the total benefits funds detailed in the report had been spent, including 33% of benefits funds for on-screen and/or programming-related benefits and 13% of benefits funds for social/other benefits;

  3. The combined value of on-screen and/or programming-related benefits for the 15 benefits packages tracked in the report totals $747.6 million, of which $249.3 million had been spent by August 31, 2010. That leaves $498.2 million to be spent by August 31, 2017;

  4. As of August 31, 2010, 36% of benefits funds for incremental programs of national interest and priority programming and related initiatives had been spent, 18% of benefits funds for other programming other than programs of national interest or priority programming had been spent, and 31% of benefits funds for news/public affairs programming and local programming had been spent;

  5. In total, 84% of benefits funds detailed in the report have been committed to go to on-screen and/or programming-related benefit initiatives, which is consistent with the CRTC’s standard practice of requiring approximately 85% of benefits funds go to such initiatives;

  6. 60% of benefits funds detailed in the report have been committed to go to the development and production of incremental priority programming or new programs of national interest and related multi-platform content or related initiatives; and

  7. 71% of on-screen and/or programming-related benefits funds detailed in the report have been committed to go to the development and production of incremental priority programming or programs of national interest and related multi-platform content or related initiatives.


Similar statistical data is provided for each of the 15 benefits packages examined in the report.


Table of Contents, 2011 Report


Overview of All Television Benefits Detailed in this Report

BCE – CTVglobemedia Transaction (2010 Transaction)

Shaw – Canwest Transaction

ZoomerMedia – S-VOX / VisionTV Transaction

Corus Entertainment – SexTV (now W Movies) / Drive-In Classics (now Sundance) Transaction

Corus Entertainment – Canadian Learning Television (now OWN) Transaction

Rogers – Outdoor Life Network Transaction

Canwest – Alliance Atlantis Transaction

Astral – Standard Transaction

Rogers – Citytv Transaction

CTVgm – CHUM Transaction

Rogers – The Biography Channel Transaction

Rogers – Trinity Television (CHNU-TV Fraser Valley / CIIT-TV Winnipeg) (now Joy TV) Transaction

CHUM – Craig Media Transaction

TVA/Quebecor – Toronto One (later SUN TV) Transaction

BCE – CTV Transaction (2000 Transaction)

Appendix: List of Specific Development/Production Projects Receiving Benefits Funding in 2009-2010 Under Major Benefits Packages

 

Canadian Television Benefits Monitor