I've had this on my mind since September and since we are in the middle of the election campaign, what a great time to comment on this.
I bought an XM Satellite Radio in Phoenix in October. As Canada was not set up for satellite radio as of yet, I used my U.S. address to set up my account. I haven't looked back since.
Let me say that this is the neatest thing! I now have two radios in my account because after I shared it with my spouse, she likes it as well and it was too tough to share one radio. The radio is on our house almost all the time when we are home. It is on all the time in my vehicle. The sound quality is great, the selection and variety is awesome, and the U.S. service is a better value than the Canadian system.
So what's on my mind? The CRTC. Here we have a government agency that is once again dictating entertainment choices that we Canadians can have. It is any surprise that the Canadian Sirius network has all these CBC channels? Well, if I want to listen to CBC, I'll tune in with a standard radio.
For me the intent of satellite radio is to provide more options, more variety, different program than the mainstream. We get that to some extent with satellite radio, but I get the sense that the CRTC justifies their existence by sticking their nose into dictating what is good or bad entertainment for us.
Good quality Canadian programming will do well. The success of Corner Gas is a great example of this. However, to me it would be more important that Canadian programming succeed on its own as opposed to some unelected, unaccountable body implementing and creating artificial rules and standards.
I would like to see the CRTC's perceived role of "telling us what's best for us" reduced and a more common sense argument to the regulating of entertainment in this country. The people will decide; either through legal or grey market options, of what entertainment or programming they desire.