CMPA raises concerns about sale of Shaw Media

Consolidation will reduce diversity of programming: Union

The Canadian Media Producers Association (CMPA) raised concerns about the sale of Shaw Media to Corus Entertainment.

The deal — which was approved by the CRTC on March 23 — will see Corus dominating women’s, lifestyle and children’s programming in Canada, the union said.

“Today’s CRTC decision sends a shiver down the spine of Canada’s independent producers, who now face the hard realities of a hyper-consolidated broadcasting sector,” said Reynolds Mastin, president and CEO of CMPA.

According to the union, Corus can now use its greater negotiating power to extract further rights and revenues from independent producers. CMPA warns producers’ roles will be reduced to that of service providers while simultaneously tying them to the enormous financial risks involved in making television shows.

Ultimately, CMPA said, the sale could shrink the entire production sector and put thousands of jobs at risk.

In a recent submission to the CRTC, the union requested the regulator require Corus to implement safeguards to ensure the expanded company provides a level playing field when negotiating with independent producers.

“A healthy, vibrant broadcasting system must strike a balance between the need for strong and successful broadcasters and the need to foster competition for creative ideas, talent and programs,” said Mastin.  

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