CRTC Sets $10 Million Revenue Rule for Streaming Services in Canada

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) says it has taken steps to modernize Canada’s broadcasting framework, focusing on the contributions of online streaming services to Canadian and Indigenous content.

Back in May, the CRTC launched its first round of public consultations. After reviewing over 200 interventions, the commission has issued its initial two decisions.

First, online streaming services operating in Canada, offering broadcasting content, and generating annual revenues of $10 million or more are required to register by November 28, 2023. The registration process requires basic information and a one-time completion.

Second, the CRTC has established conditions for these streaming services to operate within the country. Effective immediately, these platforms must provide the CRTC with details about their content and subscriber numbers. Additionally, the services must offer content that is not restricted to specific mobile or internet services.

A third consultation is currently underway, focusing on the contributions that both traditional broadcasters and online streaming services will need to make to support Canadian and Indigenous content. A three-week public proceeding will kick off on November 20, 2023, featuring 129 intervenors from various sectors.

“We are developing a modern broadcasting framework that can adapt to changing circumstances. To do that, we need broad engagement and robust public records. We appreciate the significant participation during this first phase and look forward to hearing a diversity of perspectives at our contributions proceeding in November,” said Vicky Eatrides, Chairperson and Chief Executive Officer of the CRTC, in a statement on Friday.

The CRTC has clarified that social media services must register, but individual users do not have to. Similarly, online services offering podcasts must register, but individual podcasters using social media platforms are exempt. Services focused solely on video games or audiobooks are also not required to register. A list of registered services will be made publicly available on the CRTC’s website.

What do you think? Is this move by the CRTC necessary for streaming services and social media networks in Canada?

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