Saying "no" by saying "yes" : the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunication Commission's precedent-setting decision on Al Jazeera, 15 July 2004

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Mercer, Marilyn




This is a case study of how the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) approved a proposal by cable and satellite service providers to distribute the Arabic-language TV news channel Al Jazeera. Pro-Israel lobbyists opposed it. Unprecedented restrictions in the CRTC's July 2004 decision required Canadian carriers to block any possible abusive comment found within Al Jazeera programming before distributing it. Despite demand for daily news from the Arab world, Canadian carriers have yet to offer the channel to any would-be subscriber. This thesis suggests that the Commission calculated such a result to avoid violation of Canada's hate laws and to protect the regulator against a Charter of Rights and Freedoms challenge based on freedom of expression by those wishing to receive Al Jazeera. Losing such a challenge could have weakened CRTC power when changing global technology and market development were leading many to question its role and relevance.


Mass media policy -- Canada.
Television broadcasting of news -- Law and legislation -- Canada.




Carleton University

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Theses and Dissertations

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