Canadian Net Says ‘No’ to HD

Nov 30, 2006  •  Post A Comment

While U.S. producers and broadcasters steadily convert their programming to high definition, the president of a top Canadian broadcast company denounced industry pressure to embrace the format.
CBC President Robert Rabinovich told a Canadian regulatory committee Monday that there’s no business incentive to convert programming to HDTV because advertisers will not pay more to advertise on HD shows, according to The Globe and Mail in Toronto.
“There’s no evidence either in Canada or the United States that we have found for advertisers willing to pay a premium for a program that’s in HD,” Mr. Rabinovich told the Canadian Radio-Television and Communications Commission. “So basically they’re saying if you want to shoot in HD, that’s your business, we’re not going to pay you more.”
Like their U.S. counterparts, Canadian broadcasters have seen ad sales erosion due to competition with the Internet, video games and other mediums.
Mr. Rabinovich argued that because HD adds cost without advertiser gain, the committee should allow broadcasters to start charging cable and satellite companies to carry their signal.
Upon hearing the news, HDNet co-founder Mark Cuban told TelevisionWeek: “I hope he keeps this attitude for a long, long time. We will be looking to expand HDNet in Canada, along with our Canadian-produced programming, and that will make it a little simpler for us.”
This article is part of TVWeek.com’s High Definition newsletter, a weekly source of breaking HD news, articles and interviews written by Senior Reporter James Hibberd.

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