CBC

Scalper Exposed in Paradise Papers

CBC’s Fifth Estate will be airing a report on Super Scalpers tonight at 9pm Eastern, one of which is listed on the Paradise Papers.

This Montreal based scalper managed to accumulate millions in sales via Stubhub, a site that sells event tickets throughout the world, by allegedly bypassing a four ticket per fan limit at a site that had sold tickets for Adele concerts through-out Europe last year.

Unfortunately, scalpers like these have been keeping tickets from the poorer fans for years by using ticket bot software that gives them unfair access to tickets and governments throughout the world, like that of the provincial government of Ontario are trying to control this unscrupulous behaviour through legislation. And now we know at least one of them is evading taxes…

Consult your local television listings for your local broadcast. And if you miss this program, you will likely be able to watch it via the Fifth Estate web site.

The Tragically Hip Live

The Tragically Hip‘s last performance will air live from Kingston, Ontario tomorrow at 8:30pm Eastern on CBC television and CBCmusic.ca.

Non-Canadians will also be able to watch the show on CBCMusic.ca and on the CBC Music app (click here for the android version/click here for the apple version).

This concert will also stream live on CBC Radio One, CBC Radio Two and channel 169 on SiriusXM (Canada/USA).

Enjoy.

Keep the CBC Alive

Canadian Musician Magazine has started a petition to “Save Canadian Music: Keep The CBC Alive“. Click here for details.

My Thoughts On The Throne Speech

There were quite a few music related  issues mentioned in the throne speech that I’d like to discuss, so here they are in the order presented in the speech :

Government assets

“Our Government will review federal assets; when it is in the best interest of Canadians, they will be sold.”

Unfortunately that may include the CBC/Radio Canada, which has been in the cross hairs for years.

The CBC/Radio Canada has remained a constant for the promotion of Canadian music so its loss to another major network would be felt through-out Canada. And I’m hoping that the support shown during the recent CRTC hearings will keep the CBC/Radio Canada going. But I suspect the current government will cut into this public broadcaster’s budget again soon.

Heather Conway will be the new executive vice-president of English-language services at the CBC in a few weeks so we should know CBC’s fate soon.

Cable/Wireless

“Our Government will take steps to reduce roaming costs on networks within Canada. Our Government believes Canadian families should be able to choose the combination of television channels they want. It will require channels to be unbundled, while protecting Canadian jobs.”

A deduction on wireless roaming fees would be great. But I have some doubt in regards to the reduction of cable fees through unbundling.

Yes, it would be more convenient to choose which channels you want. But will choosing individual channels result in lower monthly bills for the average consumer ?

The providers have been hiking their rates significantly higher than the rate of inflation, claiming the expansion of their services justified these rates. And I suspect they will fight any reduction tooth and nail until their industry is eventually decimated by online broadcasting.

The CRTC will be holding public hearings on the future of Cable and Satellite television, starting on the 24th of this month, and I’m sure Canadian consumers will make it abundantly clear that it’s time to move on.

I, for one, will probably only have an antenna and internet access in four to five years if they don’t get their hikes under control.

Rural Internet

“Our Government will continue enhancing high-speed broadband networks for rural Canadians.”

Good news but I just hope the rates will be more reasonable. There definitely needs to be a reduction in price to make these services more affordable to the average Canadian consumer.

I would hate having to download music and stream music videos using the very limited speeds found in some rural communities. And with cutbacks at Canada Post access will become essential.

At Par Purchasing ?

“And our Government will take additional action to protect Canadian consumers. Canadians are tired of hidden fees. They deserve to know the real cost of paying by debit or credit card. And they should not be charged more in Canada for identical goods that sell for less in the United States.”

When I purchase books I mostly purchase music biographies, industry books and sheet music. But I’ve pretty much given up on purchasing books in my local book stores because of the higher Canadian sticker prices.

I don’t think the industry can be helped now because of the e-Book, which is much more convenient. But it could help people who prefer paperbacks, like yours truly.

My most recent paperback purchase was Belinda Carlisle’s Lips Unsealed: A Memoir, whose regular price is $17 in Canadian book stores but $15 in American book stores.

The difference in price is usually attributed to higher labour and transportation costs but many consumers have been questioning whether this is a valid argument since our dollar got strong.

Seriously, if it weren’t for the shipping costs I’d probably buy more from the states and several Americans companies have already started offering free shipping to Canadians. The Canadian retailers definitely need to get their prices down.

The prices on compact discs and DVDs/Blu-rays are o.k but when it comes to imports I can still find better deals outside of Canada, even with shipping & handling.

For example, I just imported Belinda Carlisle’s “Heaven On Earth" and "Runaway Horses" CD/DVD boxed sets from England for $35, shipping and handling included. These British releases would have cost me at least $42 to purchase in Canada, with free shipping but taxes not included.

I don’t know what measures can be taken to help this situation on the federal level. But as a consumer I’d appreciate lower costs.

I’m sure rural Canadians would enjoy an elimination of the fees associated to paper billing proposed in this speech. But I’m guessing public consultations will probably be required for most of these changes.

I will of course post additional details on these issues as they come along.

CBC Television To Stop Analog Services

CBC Television will be ending their analogue services through-out Canada at the end of this month.

This means individuals that tune into their non-digital Over The Air broadcasts will loose access to CBC and Radio-Canada’s programming.

CBC estimates that this 620 transmitter service reached just 1.7 percent of the population and believes the $10 million expenditure should be diverted to programing.

CBC and Radio Canada will remain accessible on cable and satellite, and are currently broadcasting Over The Air in digital in Canada’s major metropolitan centers.

CBC Unveils Music Service

music.CBC.ca is online.

This CBC music service offers streaming stations in various genres and music on demand from a select number of artists.

Radio 2 and Radio 3 are also accessible from the site.