CRTC Declares: Netflix is Not an Online Broadcaster

Speculation was abound a few days ago that Netflix Canada would be slapped with broadcast fees. The argument was that TV broadcasters pay local content production fees and that it is unfair that Netflix doesn’t. Here is a very interesting follow up to this story.

CRTC Declares Netflix is Not a Broadcaster

CRTC chairman Konrad von Finckenstein declared the following just prior to an annual summit event on Friday:

“It’s not broadcasting, within the Broadcasting Act,”

The CRTC chairman referenced a 2010 Canadian appeals court decision to come to the consensus that Netflix only distributes content online, and is not actively involved in the content. Until laws are amended, online streaming services such as Netflix will not fall into the definition of a broadcaster.

So it looks like Netflix Canada will be exempt from broadcaster fees, as the words comes straight from the CRTC’s mouth. The Netflix model maintains its low price based on high membership and low margins.

Did you hear that? I did–Canadians coast to coast just let out a collective sigh of relief.

[Hollywood Reporter via @kenseto]

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