Bell is asking Canada’s telecom regulator to remove several requirements for its local broadcast coverage.
In its June 14th filing to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), Bell requested the removal of local news spending requirements and how much time it has to spend broadcasting local news. This includes the required five hours of local programming in Montreal and six hours in its metropolitan markets.
Bell says it’s suffering financial strain and isn’t making as much money as it once did. Revenue through advertising is one area the company says it’s suffering. Bell blamed “web giants” for their “drastic impact” on this, stating the internet houses 68 percent of Canada’s advertising market.
The company says granting it these changes will help it manage its obligations in a changing industry.
“The traditional broadcasting sector is in crisis while foreign [digital media broadcasting undertakings] and the Canadian production industry are thriving,” the application states.
Bell operates 35 local stations through CTV, CTV Two, and Noovo. The company filed the application on the same day it announced it would lay off 1,300 employees.