Canadians will soon be able to file complaints about television service providers with the ombudsman for communications services. As of Sept. 1, the mandatory Television Service Provider Code will come into effect. Administered by the Commission for Complaints for Telecom-television Services (CCTS), anyone unable to resolve a dispute directly with their television service provider can file a complaint, but only about issues that take place after the Sept. 1 effective date. The move is in response to consumer frustration expressed during the Let’s Talk TV proceedings that TV service providers don’t always provide adequate information about service packages and pricing. The CCTS can resolve complaints about billing disputes, service delivery, contract compliance and credit management. Complaints about broadcast content will continue to go through the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council.
Videotron is following the lead of Shaw and Rogers, announcing it has struck a strategic partnership with Comcast, aimed at developing and delivering an IPTV service based on its Xfinity X1 platform. There are no details on when a rollout could happen.
The CRTC has granted Shaw a temporary exception to the way it distributes television channels. The company requested the exception around the quota of how many independent channels it has to distribute related to the number of Shaw or Corus-owned channels. Shaw submitted the situation is unique due to the significant number of Category A programming services owned by Corus and that it would be placed at a competitive disadvantage if the exception were not granted.
Richard Crouse is set to host a new weekly talk show on CTV News Channel. Pop Life premieres Sept. 16. Crouse will moderate weekly panel discussions featuring actors, musicians, authors, and journalists breaking down hot button topics from the worlds of show business, pop culture, and media. In addition to being CTV News Channel and CP24’s resident film critic, Crouse hosts syndicated Saturday afternoon radio show The Richard Crouse Show, originating from NEWSTALK 1010 (CFRB-AM) Toronto. He also writes a weekly column for Metro newspaper.
CTV has confirmed the network’s fall premiere dates, with the 69th Primetime Emmy Awards kicking off the 2017/2018 television season on Sept. 17. As previously announced, CTV’s premiere week begins with the highly-anticipated premiere of Star Trek: Discovery on Sept. 24, to be simulcast on CTV and Space. New debuts include Bobby Moynihan and John Larroquette comedy Me, Myself, & I; Marvel’s Inhumans, starring Canadian Serinda Swan (Ballers); and family adventure series The Gifted, based on Marvel Comics’ X-Men properties and starring Stephen Moyer (True Blood). Read more here.
CTV’s new original mystery series The Disappearance debuts this fall, airing Sundays starting Oct. 1 on CTV and CTV GO. Shot in Montreal, the six-part, hour-long series stars Peter Coyote (E.T.) and Aden Young (Rectify). A special sneak peek of the series premiere will be available Sept. 17 on CTV.ca and on demand. The Disappearance will also be available as a CraveTV FIRST LOOK every Saturday, beginning Sept. 30. The French language version of the series airs Sundays on Super Écran, beginning Oct. 1.
CTV will broadcast the Invictus Games Toronto 2017 Opening Ceremony on Sept. 23 and the closing ceremony on Sept. 30, featuring rock n’ roll icon Bruce Springsteen, Bryan Adams and Kelly Clarkson, among others. Bell Media is the exclusive Canadian broadcaster of the Games, with TSN and RDS airing competition coverage throughout the week. Established by Prince Harry in 2014, the games are the only international adaptive sporting event for injured active duty and veteran service members.
Production is underway on Season 4 of CBC original comedy The Amazing Gayl Pile. Production will continue in Toronto and the Kawartha Lakes until Sept. 10 with the new season set to begin streaming at cbc.ca/watch in winter 2018. The winner of two Canadian Screen Awards for Best Original Scripted Series and Best Direction for a Program Produced for Digital Media, the third season featured guest performances from Jon Hamm (Mad Men) and Jack McBrayer (30 Rock). The series is distributed by LaRue Entertainment.
Amazon Prime Video has picked up Saint John, NB comedian James Mullinger’s stand-up special Anything Is Possible. Recorded live at Saint John’s Harbour Station Arena, Mullinger riffs on moving from his homeland of London, England to the small East Coast city. Mullinger was previously the subject of CBC documentary City On Fire, also produced by Hemmings House Pictures, which aired nationally last September.