The history of television broadcasting in Canada in the period before 1968 Essay

OUTLINEThe broadcasting network on television in china began in 1952 with a single broadcasting station. In the late fifties and sixties, television broadcasting took another shape and the demand for more stations was on a rise. During this season, there were a lot of tensions between the government and broadcasting organization. Before the formation of an independent organization, the government was in full control of the stations and determined how programming was to be done.

During the first year after the introduction of private televisions, losses were experienced. As time went by management procedures had been put in place to ensure that the stations served the organizations and citizens well.THE HISTORY OF TELEVISION BROADCASTING IN CANADA IN THE PERIOD BEFORE 1968            Television broadcasting in china began in 1952 with the launch of a French-English broadcast by the Canadian broadcasting corporation (CBC). Within the same year of establishment, the CBC thought of establishing two more television networks. This was due to the rising demand among the people who started showing a preference for a visual form of receiving news and other updates. The need for a television network arose from the BBC model of broadcasting.

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation was dealing in a wide variety of radio stations that led to a lot of competition in advertisements, Stewart (pp 24, 1994). CBC being the first broadcasting corporation to establish television network enjoyed advertising monopoly up to 1960. Privatization of commercial television was done in 1960. Canadian Broadcasting Corporation was however faced with a number of challenges due to the political and economic power that was growing among the private broadcasting organizations.            Technology was growing at a higher rate during this period and the public demand for more coverage of the television network was on the increase.

There was also need to protect the Canadian culture in broadcasting programs from American invasion. There was a conflict on the number of Canadians that favored the accessibility of a single channel with those that needed a wide variety to choose from. These conflicts gave rise to the establishment of the board of broadcast governors. It was seen as a body that will look into the needs of the people and try to solve their problems.In the 1950’s, television broadcasting was still new in the country and several models were being established to give the network a unique tone.

English and French were chosen to be the main broadcasting languages as they were the official languages used in the country. Televisions mainly broadcasted news and current affairs and a French dramatic series refereed to as téléromans. The election of a conservative government that was concerned about the needs of private broadcasting industry led to the rewriting of the basic legislation in 1958. An independent regulatory authority was created to be responsible for all private broadcasting stations. The body which was known as the Board of Broadcast Governors (BBG) was responsible for licensing all private television stations.            When BBG took over the licensing authority of CBC, it faced a number of political challenges. The government attempted to interfere with the programming of the English Channel which saw a good number of the current affairs staff resigning. The French television services were also paralyzed in the same year of 1959 due to the strike by their radio broadcasters’ counterparts.

The strike went on for two months and led to the immergence of Quebec nationalist movement.            The friction between the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and the government continued to be experienced in the country concerning the way news and programs were to be broadcasted Zolf, (pp 28, 1986). The government felt that it had the rights to dictate the way programs should run and on the other hand, CBC thought that it had all the knowledge and experience on the same. The unusual program of ‘this hour has seven days’ formed a basis of crises in the CBC’s internal management. The program had attracted a wide variety of viewers that enjoyed the weekly series.

This led to the redefinition of journalism in Canadian television. French news programs gave attention to the Quebec separatist issues and politics, a move that annoyed the government.Board of Broadcast GovernorsThe broadcast act of 1958 required the establishment of the board of broadcast governors to take care of all broadcasting issues.

The board was to consist of a chairman, a vice chairman and a third member. These were to serve for a period of seven years after which others were to be elected. In addition, the government was to appoint twelve members who would work part time in the board for a period of five years.

In October 1958, Andrew Stewart received an unexpected proposal for him to be the chairman of BBG. This came at a time when the conservative government had brought broadcasting legislation. The government favored the separation of broadcasting regulations from the CBC. It wanted to have a full control of how programs were organized. Further more the proposal came to the then president of the University of Alberter as a surprise, he had no idea of the broadcasting issues. He was in fact mesmerized unto his death about the procedure that was used to select him as the chairman of the board.The board of governors came up with ideas that they shared with the then minister in charge about the positive impacts that would be experienced after the introduction of more television channels.

After much consultations and considerations, the minister made a public announcement in 1959 where he allowed applicants to apply for additional television stations where the services were already provided. The board later on supplied the minister with rules and regulations that were to be followed by all television broadcasting stations. The board proposed that the content in the Canadian television should not be less than fifty five percent. The standards applied were supposed to be like those used by the independent television channel. It was also suggested by the board that the content according to the common wealth regulations shall be fifty percent Canadian content.            The board released a statement to the public where it officially announced that there will be registration for television channels, Roth (pp 52, 2005). The applicant would take two months to prepare his applications that included obtaining a transmitter site, study of the engineering work, legal requirements and finances.

On completion of this procedures a further two months was needed to process the documents and advertised in the Canada gazette. The first centre that was considered for a second station was Winnipeg in 1960; others included Edmonton, Vancouver, Halifax, Calgary, Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto.            The immergence of the stations impacted negatively on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation that had for a long time enjoyed monopoly in advertisement. Viewers in eight major cities now enjoyed the services of a second station. Despite the high hopes among the founders of private television stations, things did not work out well for them during their first years of establishment. In 1961, a check was done on the revenues of the private television station and it was found that half of them had made losses. Several losses experienced by the various stations led to modification of programs being aired and reorganization in the management.CTV            There were a total number of eight independent stations that had not been connected.

There was therefore a need for the board to find a link that would quickly connect the English stations. The board felt that the government needed the support of the private sector in production and sharing of live events and news. During the launch for the application of the second station, applicants were asked if they were ready to engage in joint purchase and sharing of programs. This was a means that would see the reduction in costs of purchasing programs by a single station. The applicants gained interests and discussed among themselves concerning the same. The conversation led to the formation of Independent Television Organization (ITO) that would enhance the joint purchase of programs.

In 1961, CTV, which is a national network that linked private television stations, was established, causing a serious competition to CBC.The Grey Cup Game            The grey cup game is a name refereed to the Canadian football matches. The game had gained a lot of fame and interests from fans during the 1950’s and 60’s. With introduction of television network, there was a high demand for the matches to be aired live for the fans that could not access the stadium.

The game was mainly aired by the Canadian broadcasting corporation. With the emergence of the second station, there was a desire for the network to also have a chance of airing the program to have a share of on fans. Airing of the program on the television did a lot in terms of convicting more people to support the game. Even though the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation enjoyed the monopoly of airing this program, football clubs were not satisfied considering the little amount they received from the corporation. They felt that if other channels were also engaged in purchasing it, there would be increased demand and therefore generating substantial income for the club.The Setting of an Alternative Television Channel            The establishment of a second television station from the eight centers proposed for consideration was based on the population of the people. Quebec was the only city found to have a population higher than Halifax, which was the smallest of all the cities.

Six of the other selected cities had CBC stations and could therefore not be selected. There were also private stations in Calgary and Edmonton that had an affiliation with CBC. Even though the board supported the expansion of CTV stations, CBC and its private affiliates opposed such extensions. The applications done on the Quebec City were not helpful; this led to an announcement in 1962 where the board decided to support the establishment of at least one Canadian Broadcasting Corporation station in every province, Attallah (pp 3.

2000). By the time the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation applied for an additional station in St. Johns, a new liberal government was voted in and the government policy on extension was not yet in.            In 1963 during the reign of the liberal government, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation favored the licensing of a second television channel but opposed any application in centers that it had private affiliated stations.

A report from troika recommended to the government that alternative stations could be expanded by extending the transmission facilities owned by Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. The fowler committee in 1965 suggested that the CBC denied license for five years due to the maturity level it had reached. This decision was not supported by the government due to the policy that supported the launch of a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation station in each province especially the capital city. The BBG supported the move by licensing Canadian Broadcasting Corporation re-broadcasting stations.

Due unavailability of a strong government policy in 1967, the BBG, CBC and the troika committed to licensing CBC services to enhance the extension of services. The board dealt with the various licensing applications in Brandon, Moncton, Lethbridge and Saskatoon in accordance with the supportive policy.Television for Education            In 1962, educators expressed their interest in wanting the television to be used as a medium of education. Despite their effort to demand for an educative station by applying for licenses in Alberta and Ontario, the government was slow in implementing the decision. Later on it declared the availability of such a station in the white paper but made it open and thus vulnerable to attack. For the entire lifetime of BBG, the issue prevailed and a solution was never found.

In the early months of 1959, the board received various applications from universities that requested a reservation of channels. Among such requests were from Dr. Carleton Williams of the University of Toronto and Dr. John Friesen, university of British Colombia.

This led to the formation of The Metropoli­tan Educational Television Association of Toronto (META). This organization worked extra hard to promote education using the television.Technology in Television            Technology added a lot of excitement on television viewing, the introduction of the cable system and UHF channels eased the limitation of viewing on VHF channels.

Even though the cable system was introduced in the country in the 1950’s, its public use was limited until 1968. Satellite televisions were there but not commonly used. Color televisions also made their appearance on the scene way before 1968. The idea of launching a color television came before the licensing of the second television channel. In 1960 the board expressed its dissatisfaction on the way the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation was represented in private station and therefore denied the issue of licensing color television, Cavanagh (pp 4, 1992). Color television was officially introduced in Canada in 1966.Conclusion            The use of television in Canada has grown substantial from one single channel in 1952 to numerous ones.

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation was the main broadcasting channel in those years and took a lot of control in the broadcasting industry. It was mainly a government owned organization which made it to have limitations on the program it broadcasted. With the evolution of other stations, the BBG was considered to be the best alternative that could handle the issues that faced the television industry. The board was given the responsibility of verifying the various television applications for consideration. Even though the board did its best in bringing order in the industry, it was criticized on not taking stern measures to regulate the content on Canadian television. There has been a lot of political interference in the Canadian television. Most of the limitations that were placed concerning the kind of programs to be aired were selfish interests of certain politicians.

All in all television broadcasting in Canada has gone through development stages. Organizations have been formed to ensure that the broadcasting is beneficial to both the viewers and the companies involved.WORK CITEDAttallah P. Public Broadcasting in Canada: International Communication Gazette, 2000 pp3Cavanagh P. The Development of Canadian Sports Broadcasting 1920-78: Canadian Conference of the Arts, 1992 pp4Roth L.

Something new in the air: McGill-Queen’s Press 2005 pp52Stewart A. Canadian television policy and the Board of Broadcast Governors, 1958-1968: University of Alberta, 1994 pp24Zolf D. Educational Broadcasting: a Problem of Divided Jurisdiction, CJC, 1986 pp28;