CRTC Rules Against Shaw For Hiding Gay Channel
The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission has ruled against Shaw Communications, a Calgary-based cable provider, for subjecting OUTtv, a GLBT channel, to “undue disadvantage.”
OUTtv filed a complaint with the CRTC last April over unfair treatment. As a Category 1 channel, Shaw was obligated to carry and promote OUTtv alongside other Category 1 stations, but somehow didn’t quite give it equal attention. It was excluded from every free preview week, had its station number changed twice without notification, was placed alongside Hustler, Playboy, and Red Light District even though there it had no adult content, and was excluded from Shaw’s “All In” package, making it the only Category 1 station to have a by-request-only subscription (and therefore requiring viewers to, essentially, out themselves to subscribe). As a result, viewership of OUTtv was a full 21 times lower on Shaw than other providers.
As punishment, Shaw will have to write an essay on what they did wrong and how they’ll fix it.