CRTC hearings: What’s next, flash mobs?

While the CRTC ponders cable fees, cable
providers and television broadcasters have been trying to out-hip each other
with social media campaigns.

If nothing else, the competing Face book pages  Don’t Tax
! and Save
Local TV
! – prove exclamation points have never been in greater demand by
the industry. What’s a campaign without YouTube? Loonies
roll toward the
U.S. border in Shaw’s video, while the broadcasters’ video features a cute
indy-rocker strumming and singing about cable’s “cash cows.”
 If that’s not enough, you can follow the ‘Cash Cow Tour’ on Twitter. Both
sides are using streeters for TV ads, although all the ‘regular people’ approached by ‘reporters’ appear to be struggling actors.

So far, the reviews haven’t been
flattering. “The local TV television ads play to a low level of intelligence
and are insulting to the consumer,” opines Gregg
Beever in the Edmontonian
. Meanwhile, a clearly frustrated CRTC chair has put a
pox on both houses
, suggesting that publicly eating each other alive is not
the best survival strategy. Amid the lame advertising, we need to be reminded
that complex issues deserve our close attention. Visit the CRTC website
for verbatim reports, watch it live
and, if you need a summary, seek out independent print commentators.
For starters, here’s a Canadian
Press article
that reviews recent developments.