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Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

Motorsports_Fan
I Plan to Stick Around

For several months now I have been asking Rogers, SpeedTV, and others what we in Canada will see after August 17th on the channel that has been known as Speed or Speedvision since we started receiving it in 1997, and failed to receive an answer. TV listings for August 17 and later have now made it apparent that we will be receiving an even more watered-down version of what we have been getting in recent years.

 

Fox in the U.S. bought this channel several years ago, and has been intentionally working to kill it off by removing more and more of the motorsports programming from this formerly motorsports oriented channel, replacing it with car collector, game and 'reality' show programming. Now even that will be continuously repeated loops of old shows, with very little or nothing that is new. Their intention has been to start their own general sports channel to compete with ESPN in the U.S., and now to attempt to force the American cable and satellite carriers to replace Speed with the new Fox general sports channel. The U.S. carriers who have not yet signed on for that new channel will continue to receive the pointless and almost entirely non-motorsports Speed channel as a punishment for failing to agree to pay for the new Fox Sports 1 channel.

 

Yet this punishment channel appears to be what we will continue receiving in Canada. Surely there must be something about this that fails to conform to their contracts with Canadian carriers, if not CRTC regulations regarding permitted non-Canadian channels, and could lead to it being removed and hopefully replaced as soon as possible?

 

Note that the Fox-owned Speed channel in Australia has remained very much a motorsports channel.

 

www.foxsports.com.au/motor-sports/whats-on/

 

And most of Europe including Britain has a motorsports channel (not owned by Fox) called Motors TV.

 

www.motorstv.com

 

Please, as soon as possible, replace the Speed channel we presently receive with one of these or another motorsports channel if others exist.

 

 

 

***Edited labels***

282 REPLIES 282

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

Motorsports_Fan
I Plan to Stick Around

Good points. I also think it's apparent they were not seeking feedback and had no intention of acknowledging it. Now they even seem intent on eliminating any comments that point out their factually incorrect assertions.


Since they list no e-mail address to contact them but they do list a mailing address, I actually mailed (only time I've done that in the last 18 years) a letter I printed out to Rogers on this subject, about two or three months before I started this thread. Needless to say, I did not receive a response or any acknowledgement they received it.

Requesting feedback would have involved asking questions along the lines of:
Which motorsports/automotive oriented channel would you prefer to eventually replace Speed in our channel line up?
Would you be willing to pay $__ a month for such a channel if it was not available in the same package(s) as Speed Channel has been?
What racing events or series would you like to see aired on Rogers Sportsnet channels?

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

OLDYELLR
I'm a Senior Advisor

Mikedem, I'm not so sure about your other assertions, but agree 100% with the last one. WRC is also gone and Wind Tunnel was axed after Fox took over Speed. But then Speed started to go down hill years ago when they discontinued hydroplane and air racing. It seems that the down-hill slide of TV programming began with the advent of reality shows.

 

But the main reason we can't have Fox Sports 1 is because it encroaches on Canadian sports channels. The CRTC won't allow it.

 


Rogers PayGo. Location: S-W Ontario

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

The thing about SPEED not being allowed becase of the Canadian regs is WRONG. Cogeco and Shaw cable as well as Shaw dish all list Speed in Canada. I hate using a dish and Rogers is only cable in my area

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

Lurker
I'm a Senior Advisor

@jcoll120 wrote:

The thing about SPEED not being allowed becase of the Canadian regs is WRONG. Cogeco and Shaw cable as well as Shaw dish all list Speed in Canada. I hate using a dish and Rogers is only cable in my area


Nobody has said SPEED isn't allowed due to regulations. SPEED is very much allowed in Canada.  In fact, Fox broadcasts a special Canadian version of SPEED because it no longer broadcasts in the US.

 

In the US, SPEED converted to Fox Sports 1.  Its FS1 that has no Canadian broadcast rights.

 

The issue witn SPEED is money.....Fox wants to charge more than Bell and Rogers want to pay.  My guess is that when Speed's contract is up with Shaw and Cogeco, it'll disappear from their lineups as well.  Fox doesn't want to spend the money for a Canadian only SPEED, and the Canadian distributors don't want to pay enough to make it worth Fox's time to do it.

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

OLDYELLR
I'm a Senior Advisor

Let's keep this thread alive.

 

I only get a Rogers bill in the mail when there's a change, or an announcement. This month's bill had this at the end:

 

Information about your Rogers services


AUTO RACING PROGRAMMING WITH ROGERS
Rogers is committed to offering great value and a wide variety of programming, and we
continue to add new services to your channel lineup all the time. As a reminder, Speed
Channel is no longer available effective March 1, 2014. If you are interested in motorsports
and/or auto racing series, please note that other networks, including Sportsnet and TSN,
offer a terrific selection of exciting racing programming.If you wish to respond to this notice
or, if you have any questions, please contact us in any of the ways listed on page 2 of this
invoice or visit rogers.com/serviceupdate. We appreciate your business and thank you for
choosing Rogers.

 

So, it looks like Rogers has noticed our complaints about dropping Speed. However, their remedy is pretty lame.

 

"please note that other networks, including Sportsnet and TSN,
offer a terrific selection of exciting racing programming"

 

Really? All the other sports channels offered by Rogers do not come close to showing what Speed did. We have been short-changed.


Rogers PayGo. Location: S-W Ontario

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

Mikedem
I Plan to Stick Around

I just saw that. They keep telling us to leave them feedback but seem to block anything after you mention it once. The people on the phone have no info, @rogershelp will not respond and I can no longer post on facebook. The explanation I got was I posted 3x in 2 weeks on their page regarding Speed back in January and they consider that spam so I have been blocked from posting. 

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

OLDYELLR
I'm a Senior Advisor

I don't twitter, but perhaps that would be a better place to voice your dissatisfaction with Rogers' non-replacement of Speed. As far as I know, Twitter posts are not censored. 


Rogers PayGo. Location: S-W Ontario

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

ckyriazis2006
I'm Here A Lot

Hi Guys

 

Read on another forum yesterday someone spoke to Bell. According to Bell they are trying to get Fox Sports 1 starting in August.

 

Chris

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

Kiwi7
I Plan to Stick Around

I could be wrong, but I think that Fox Sports 1 must first apply for a broadcast license in Canada which then must be approved through the CRTC which is a failrly long and drawn out process. Until that happens Bell and any other provider will not be carrying FS1!

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

Mikedem
I Plan to Stick Around

Yeah I doubt that will happen anytime soon. What they should go after is Motors TV. I have an HD stream now on my android based media player and it is 10x the channel Speed ever was. Pretty much everything I am missing from Speed is there plus more. Most programs stream with 3-6 languages also. Was able to watch 6hrs of Silverstone 2 weeks ago and all of the United Sportscar series race this past weekend. They even air Sprint Cup qualifying. This stream runs @ 4GB per hour though so make sure you have unlimited bandwidth. 

 

also the Blancpain GT series - (FIAGT series) now does live HD streams of all there races on youtube with John Watson doing commentary. Great coverage.

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

dougjp
I Plan to Stick Around

Agreed, Motors TV is fantastic! There's nothing like it out of the US

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

Fox Sports 1 and 2 are in the same category as ESPN and NBC Sports Network. They're not allowed to be directly distributed in Canada, and it is extremely unlikely that they will be any time soon.

 

They can sell some of their programming to Canadian channels. They can own a minority percentage of a Canadian channel, as ESPN does with TSN -- I think it was 20% last I heard.

I suppose they could conceivably apply for a licence for a channel to be named Fox Sports 1 in Canada, but only if they owned a similar small percentage while the rest was Canadian owned, and it would have to meet other licensing requirements that would presumably include a minimum amount of Canadian content. It could not just be distributing the U.S. channel's signal directly to Canadians 100% of the time.

The purpose of the rules is to ensure that Canada has its own channels that don't just get run out of business in our own country by foreign competition.

 

As I understand it, the U.S. (and other "non-Canadian") cable channels that are allowed to be distributed in Canada do not need to apply for a licence, but must apply and be approved, along with a Canadian distributer wanting to carry them, to be added to the list of approved non-Canadian channels.

http://www.crtc.gc.ca/eng/publications/satlist.htm

 

This means they must demonstrate that they are not in direct competition with any Canadian channel. Speed was approved in 1997 because there was no Canadian motorsports channel. If the channel changes its programming format and becomes direct competition to a Canadian channel, it can be deleted. As far as I know, Fox has made no effort to get FS1 distributed in Canada, likely understanding it's just not allowed.

 

The closest channel on the list to be something like that would probably be the CBS Sports channel. But that was approved when it was CBS College Sports, and I believe it still largely maintains that format despite dropping the word "college" from its name. If it changes to become more of a mainstream general sports channel like FS1, NBCSN, and ESPN, I assume the Canadian channels like TSN and Sportsnet would likely ask that it be deleted.

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

dougjp
I Plan to Stick Around

Well described, thanks. My understanding is that Specialty channels are much easier to get approval for, as Speed did. With those, after satisfying the fact that the specialty being carried doesn't conflict with a Canadian channel, then the key is to have carriers on board to show the channel once it gets approved. This is where I take issue with the lack of communication by the major carriers to their customers about the specifics of their future plans and attempted plans.

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

Mikedem
I Plan to Stick Around

I was hoping with yesterdays anouncement by TSN that they are going to 5 channels that there would be some mention of motorsports programming being added. they mentioned every sport known to man yesterday except motorsports being added to their line up. figures.

 

Also , coworker says he has Shaw Direct and they still have Speed and he hasnt been told anything about lossing it anytime soon.

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

Alot of it, likely comes with when the lisence expires for them getting the channel.

Each company (rogers, bell, etc), when they pay for the rights for a  channel, they pay get it for 1, 2, 5 whatever years.
When these contracts run out.. they need to go and re negotiate and pay for them again.

(this is where you can get big hoohaa happen like with AMC, where when the contract was up, amc was aking for ALOT more $$ the next time).

Likely then, the station chooses to then NOT renew.

Could be, that SHAWs contract is still not up yet..



Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

Motorsports_Fan
I Plan to Stick Around

To be fair, I can understand them not wanting to tell us about their private business negotiations. They only have to tell us a month ahead of time if a channel is going to be dropped. For all we know, perhaps they actually did talk to Motors TV and/or the Speed Channel from Australia and were unable to work out a deal satisfactory to both sides. Or maybe there were technical problems about providing a separate feed for Canada. Maybe they considered starting their own new motorsports channel and came to the conclusion that it was not financially feasible. We don't know and they don't have to tell us.

 

But I agree that what Bell and particularly Rogers did and said (or saying nothing for many months last year, even when we asked) does not look good, like they weren't paying attention and just don't care. In January of this year, when Rogers announced they were dropping Speed and not replacing it with another motorsports channel, Norris McDonald wrote, "I’ll tell you here and now that it’s for no other reason than the guy (or woman) in charge doesn’t like auto racing." If that's true, then the person in charge should be fired for letting their own strange attitude get in the way of business decisions.

 

I assume the potential number of subscribers for a motorsports channel is not in the same league as TSN, but since Speedvision/Speed was here (and still is, I suppose) since 1997 means there must be enough to justify such a channel, particularly if there is a fishing channel and other presumably narrowly focused niche channels. Look at the price people pay for Sportsnet World and that new beIN Sports channel. I have no way of knowing for sure, but I think there must be enough of us who would be willing to pay that much for a worthwhile motorsports channel like the two I mentioned. It doesn't make any sense that the attitude of someone in charge at Rogers or Bell would be "I don't want your money because I don't like racing".
I don't watch fishing, golf, or most of the hundreds of other channels offered, but if I was in charge of making the decisions at Rogers I don't think it would cause me get rid of those channels if they made money. 

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

You have to consider that before its final demise on Rogers, Speed was a watered-down version of what it was just a year before. Wind Tunnel was gone. WRC nowhere to be found. Most of the meat had been replaced by a collection of reality shows. Let's hope that this is not what Rogers thinks would serve as a replacement motorsports channel.


Rogers PayGo. Location: S-W Ontario

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

Motorsports_Fan
I Plan to Stick Around

I would also agree that there is no American motorsports channel that is any where near being as good as Motors TV.

The Speed channel Fox is still sending to Canada is not worthwhile, and Discovery Velocity and MavTV have very little actual racing from what I can see from the schedules on their websites and what is mentioned on their wikipedia pages.

The Speed channel from Australia would appear to be largely similar to Motors TV in its programming, and if Motors TV is now available in HD, I think there would be little to choose between the two of them. I think sometimes there may be some events that are seen on EuroSport in Europe and thus not on Motors TV, while they may be seen on the Australian Speed channel. But then if one of these channels would become available here in Canada, presumably it would be a separate feed that would occasionally be showing different programming here. I think Motors TV already does that for some different countries in Europe.

 

My fear is that the people in charge at Rogers, Bell, etc., don't care and don't pay attention enough to understand any of this, and just automatically follow whatever happens in the U.S. thinking that any U.S. channel must be more suitable for Canadian viewers (assuming they were even aware of the other non-American channels). I have nothing against any of those American channels I mentioned and maybe there are some who would be interested in their car-collector and automotive type of shows, but they are not motorsports channels. 

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

ckyriazis2006
I'm Here A Lot

Hi Guys

 

I have been keeping my eye what has going on. Over on the Telus forum there is a man claiming that Global and Fox are working together to bring a Canadianized version of Fox Sports 1/2 to us called Fox Sports Canada. He even gave a launch date of Sept.17th I have contacted Global and the CRTC to find out if this true. If it is and I hope so since I haven't seen a truck race or qualfying/practice since Martinsville this should solve all of our current problems with NASCAR coverage and help out our 2 wheel Canadian fans. Fingers Crossed

 

Chris a Canadian NASCAR fan

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

OLDYELLR
I'm a Senior Advisor

That sounds encouraging, provided it is free to customers who previously received Speed, and not an extra cost item. I would not appreciate Rogers taking Speed away from me and then trying to sell an equivalent channel back to me.


Rogers PayGo. Location: S-W Ontario

Re: Please replace Speed with a motorsports channel

dougjp
I Plan to Stick Around

Keep in mind that this isn't strictly a replacement for Speed. Its a Sports channel. IF it keeps the live racing of FS1 AND FS2 which the existing Speed channel did on ocassion, fine. But count on it being FS1 only with kick boxing and 'stuff'. THAT I would never pay for, especially now that I have been exposed to the alternatives.

 

Repeating myself, what Canada needs is Motors TV.