Canada's Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium

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CTV's signage on 299 Queen Street West accompanied by the Olympic rings, signifying the network's role as flagship broadcaster

Established in 2007,[1] Canada's Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium (legal name 7048467 Canada Inc., also sometimes referred to informally in branding as CTV Olympics and RDS Olympiques) was a joint venture set up by Canadian media companies Bell Media (formerly CTVglobemedia) and Rogers Media to produce the Canadian broadcasts of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, and the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, England, as well as the two corresponding Paralympic Games. Bell owned 80% of the joint venture, and Rogers owned 20%.[2]

The consortium encompassed many of the properties owned by both companies, including Bell Media's CTV Television Network, TSN, RDS and RDS Info, and Rogers Media's Omni Television, Sportsnet, OLN, and the Rogers radio stations group. Several other broadcasters will carried consortium coverage, including V (formerly TQS), and several channels owned by Asian Television Network. Finally, dedicated websites in English and French ( and were set up to stream live coverage over the Internet to Canadian viewers. The consortium replaced CBC Sports, which had held the Canadian rights to all Olympics beginning with the 1996 games, although some cable rights had been sub-licensed to TSN / RDS beginning in 1998.

Rogers announced in September 2011 that it would withdraw from the consortium following London 2012, and therefore not participate in its bid for rights to the 2014 Winter Olympics and 2016 Summer Olympics. The company cited scheduling conflicts and financial considerations for the decision.[3] Bell Media then announced a new partnership with the CBC to bid for Canadian broadcasting rights of Sochi 2014 and Rio 2016. Broadcast details for the joint bid were never released.[4] The joint Bell/CBC bid was considered the prohibitive favourite to win the rights when the International Olympic Committee accepted bids.[5] However, the Bell/CBC bids were rejected by the IOC.

On August 1, 2012, CBC Sports announced that it had made a deal to broadcast the 2014 and 2016 Summer and Winter Olympics, replacing the Bell/Rogers group.[6] However, in February 2013, CBC announced that both Sportsnet and TSN would sub-license broadcast rights to the 2014 Winter Olympics.[7][8]

Participating media outlets[edit]



  • English-language radio coverage aired over Rogers's Sportsnet Radio Network. Ten Rogers stations, namely "Sportsnet Radio" (CJCL Toronto and CFAC Calgary), all-news or news/talk stations (CKWX Vancouver, CFTR Toronto, CFFR Calgary, CKGL Kitchener, CHNI-FM Saint John, CJNI-FM Halifax, and CKNI-FM Moncton), as well as CISQ-FM Whistler, were listed as "official" Consortium stations and typically air most if not all coverage. Portions of the coverage aired on other Rogers Media radio stations, as well as several other stations in non-competing markets (such as CTV-owned CKGM Montreal).
  • French-language radio coverage of the 2010 games was aired on Cogeco radio stations, primarily airing on CKAC Montreal (then an all-sports station). No similar coverage plans were announced for the 2012 games.

Other affiliated outlets[edit]

  • Several other Bell Media-owned channels, such as CTV News Channel and Discovery Channel) provided ancillary (non-event) coverage related to the games. CTV-owned music channel MuchMusic broadcast programming live from the Vancouver area throughout the 2010 games, including special editions of MuchOnDemand broadcast from Whistler.
  • The Globe and Mail, a national newspaper which was owned by CTVglobemedia at the time of the Vancouver games (and is currently 15% owned by Bell Media's parent company), was listed as part of the consortium and supplied content for its websites, however its sponsorship/coverage of the games is independent of the broadcast rights.


Early coverage[edit]

CTV has previously broadcast the Summer Games in 1976 (along with CBC) and 1992, and the Winter Games in 1964, 1968, 1972, 1976, 1980, 1988 and 1994.

The 1980 "Miracle on Ice" game was aired live on CTV in Canada, but not ABC in the United States. Thus, American viewers who resided in or near the Canada–US border and received the CTV signal could watch the game live, but the rest of the United States had to wait for a delayed rebroadcast.

Rights fees[edit]

In 1974, Johnny Esaw (who anchored CTV's prime time Olympic coverage from 1964–1980) became vice-president of CTV Sports, a position he would hold until his retirement in 1990. He negotiated the host broadcasting rights to the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary, Alberta. As the main host broadcaster for the 1988 Winter Olympics, the CTV television network paid $45 million for domestic rights to the 1988 Winter Olympics. Esaw also brought the 1964 Winter Olympics to CTV.

Production of the broadcasting for the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, which costs NOK 462 million,[11] was the responsibility of the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK), with assistance from CTV and the European Broadcasting Union (EBU).[12] NRK had 1,424 people working at the Olympics, while international broadcasters sent an additional 4,050 accredited broadcasting personnel. The transmission rights for the games were held by EBU in Europe, CBS in the United States, NHK in Japan, CTV in Canada, the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union, Nine Network in Australia, as well as other broadcasters in other countries. The total transmission rights price was 350 million United States dollars.[13]


2010 Winter Olympics[edit]

CTV's logo for coverage of the 2010 Winter Olympics; on other channels, the appropriate channel logo replaces the CTV mark.

For the 2010 Winter Olympics, coverage was as follows:[9]


The Consortium's studio panel for men's hockey, at Canada Hockey Place (from left: James Duthie, Darren Pang, Nick Kypreos, and Bob McKenzie)

Consortium coverage originated primarily from the Vancouver Convention Centre (the International Broadcast Centre for the 2010 games) as well as Mountain Square in Whistler.

The only breaks in coverage were for 30-minute local newscasts daily at 2:30 pm PT (5:30 pm ET), as well as a one-hour newscast produced by CTV British Columbia at 11:00pm PT (2:00 am ET). Two CTV National News summaries, anchored by Lloyd Robertson at CTV's main Vancouver studios, were aired nightly during Olympic Prime Time; the regular CTV National News broadcast aired solely on CTV News Channel for the duration of the games.[16] From 3:00 – 6:00am PT (6:00 – 9:00am ET) CTV News Channel also aired a simulcast of CTV's Olympic Morning.
  • V: Major events and highlights in French, averaging 16.5 hours per day, including a morning show simulcast from RDS
  • TSN and Rogers Sportsnet: Full-event coverage, averaging 18 hours per day on each channel
  • OLN: Full-event coverage of outdoor events, averaging 4.5 hours per day
  • RDS: Full-event coverage in French, averaging 21 hours per day
  • RIS: Full-event coverage in French, averaging 6 hours per day
  • Omni: Multilingual coverage, averaging up to 6 hours per day (depending on location; not all coverage carried on all stations)
  • ATN: Multilingual coverage, averaging 6.5 hours a day across seven channels
  • APTN: Coverage in English, French, and Aboriginal languages, averaging 13 hours a day

The television broadcast was filmed with 39 new Hitachi SK-HD1000 studio/field cameras from Hitachi Kokusai Electric including on-site technical support. The cameras were also used to broadcast the 2012 Summer Olympics.[17] Following the games, portions of CTV's set were re-purposed by its Vancouver affiliate CIVT for its newscasts.[18]


English-language coverage was provided by the Sportsnet Radio Network, and included coverage of the opening and closing ceremonies, selected hockey games, special editions of Prime Time Sports, and various updates / programs on the games. French-language coverage, which was similar in scope, was carried by Corus Québec.

Broadcast team[edit]

Sport Play-by-play announcer Analyst Reporter
Alpine skiing Gerry Dobson Brian Stemmle
Cary Mullen
Karen Percy
Perry Solkowski
Biathon RJ Broadhead Daniel Lefebvre Paul Hollingsworth


Rob Faulds Chris Wightman (Luge)
Chris Lori (Bobsled)
Christina Smith (Bobsled)
Duff Gibson (Skeleton)
Farhan Lalji
Cross country skiing RJ Broadhead Beckie Scott
Jack Sasseville
Paul Hollingsworth
Curling Vic Rauter
Bryan Mudryk
Linda Moore
Ray Turnbull
Russ Howard
Cathy Gauthier
Dan Murphy
Figure skating Rod Black David Pelletier (Pairs, Men's Singles)
Jamie Sale (Pairs)
Elizabeth Manley (Ice Dance, Ladie's Singles)
Jennifer Robinson (Ice Dance, Ladie's Singles)
Sara Orlesky
Freestyle skiing Jamie Campbell Veronica Brenner (Aerials, Moguls)
Jeff Bean (Aerials)
Katherine Dolan
Men's ice hockey Chris Cuthbert
Gord Miller
Peter Loubardias
Pierre McGuire
Ray Ferraro
John Garrett
Ryan Rishaug
Darren Dreger
Gene Principe
Women's ice hockey Kevin Quinn Cassie Campbell Lisa Bowes
Short track Rod Black Susan Auch Louis Jean
Ski jumping RJ Broadhead Rob Keith Craig MacEwen
Snowboarding Jamie Campbell Tara Teigen Mark Torlay
Speed skating Rod Smith Catriona Le May Doan James Cybulski
Hockey studio[edit]

2012 Summer Olympics[edit]

CTV version of the Consortium logo slated to be used for the 2012 games.

The consortium also held rights to the 2012 Summer Olympics. Coverage plans for those games were follows (see above).

Broadcast team[edit]

English broadcasters, as of July 30, 2012

Network Show Host
CTV Olympic Prime Time Brian Williams
CTV Olympic Daytime James Duthie
Jennifer Hedger
CTV Olympic Morning Dave Randorf
Catriona Le May Doan
Sportsnet Olympic Prime Time Brad Fay
Sportsnet Olympic Daytime Daren Millard
Sportsnet Olympic Morning Don Taylor
TSN Olympic Prime Time Darren Dutchyshen
TSN Olympic Daytime Michael Landsberg
TSN Olympic Morning Kate Beirness
Sport Play-by-play announcer Colour commentator Reporter
Athletics Gord Miller
Vic Rauter (marathon and race walk)
Dave Moorcroft
Michael Smith
Donovan Bailey
Roger Burrows (race walk)
Lisa Bentley (marathon)
Farhan Lalji
Badminton Jim Van Horne
Basketball Paul Jones Chantal Valee
Beach Volleyball RJ Broadhead Mark Heese
Boxing Eric Smith
Jim Van Horne
Russ Anber
Kara Ro
James Brydon
Canoe/Kayak/Rowing Rob Faulds (flatwater)
Vic Rauter (whitewater)
Larry Cain
Barney Williams
Marnie McBean (Rowing)
David Ford (whitewater)
Geneviève Beauchemin
Cycling Jamie Campbell Curt Harnett (track)
Brendan Arnold (BMX)
Lesley Tomlinson (road, mountain bike)
Gene Principe
Equestrian Bryan Mudryk Nancy Wetmore
Field Hockey David Christison Rechelle Hawkes
Gymnastics Rod Black Kyle Shewfelt (artistic)
Erika Leigh-Howard (rhythmic)
Katherine Dolan
Judo Bryan Mudryk Will Frazer James Brydon
Soccer Gerry Dobson
Luke Wileman
Jason de Vos
Craig Forrest
Kara Lang
Sheri Forde
Swimming/Diving Rod Smith Joanne Malar
Blythe Hartley (diving)
Lisa Bentley
Perry Solkowski
Synchronized Swimming Rod Smith Carolyn Waldo Perry Solkowski
Taekwondo Bryan Mudryk James Brydon
Tennis Jim Van Horne Stephen Warboys
Triathlon Paul Romanuk Barrie Shepley Dave Naylor
Volleyball Kevin Quinn Emily Cordonier
Water Polo Gerry Dobson George Gross Jr.
Weightlifting Paul Romanuk
Wrestling Vic Rauter Christine Nordhagen James Brydon

French broadcasters, as of July 26, 2011

Network Show Host
RDS Olympic Prime Time Chantal Machabée
RDS Olympic Daytime Alain Crête
RDS Olympic Morning Claude Mailhot
RDS Opening Ceremonies, Collaborator Alexandre Bilodeau
RDS Special Reporter Nathalie Lambert
V Olympic Prime Time Jean Pagé
V Olympic Daytime Frédéric Plante
V Olympic Morning Yanick Bouchard
Sport Play-by-play announcer Analyst
Athletics Pierre Houde Richard Garneau
Jean-Paul Baert
Bruny Surin
Canoe/Kayak/Rowing David Arsenault Maxime Boilard (Canoe/Kayak)
Daniel Aucoin (Rowing)
Diving Félix Séguin Annie Pelletier
Gymnastics Claudine Douville Bernard Petiot
Soccer Jean Gounelle Patrick Leduc
Swimming Denis Casavant Yannick Lupien
Synchronized Swimming Claudine Douville Marie-Pierre Gagné
Tennis Yvan Ponton Hélène Pelletier
Water Polo Michel Y. Lacroix Ann Dow
Women's Soccer Claudine Douville Patrick Leduc

Other rights[edit]

Paralympic Games[edit]

The consortium also owned rights to the corresponding Paralympic Games, namely the 2010 Winter Paralympics and the 2012 Summer Paralympics.

Coverage for the 2010 games consisted primarily of coverage of the opening ceremonies (live on CTV British Columbia, and on tape delay on the rest of the CTV network and RIS); daily highlights packages split among CTV, TSN and Sportsnet in English (and RDS / RIS in French); and live coverage of all sledge hockey games featuring the Canadian team.[19] Although not originally scheduled, CTV and RDS later added live coverage of the closing ceremonies.[20]

Coverage for the 2012 games offered no live television coverage and consisted primarily of 10 late night highlight shows carried on TSN2, Sportsnet One, and RDS2, though rebroadcasts of the opening ceremony were carried on both CTV and Rogers-owned broadcast network Citytv.[21][22][23]

Criticism of Paralympic Games coverage[edit]

2010 Winter Paralympics opening and closing ceremonies[edit]

Originally, CTV did not plan to air the opening ceremony live. After receiving criticism on the decision, CTV changed its mind and decided to air the ceremony live in Vancouver region.[24] CTV originally continued to stick to its initial plan of not airing the closing ceremony live. This decision led to more complaints and CTV relented by airing the closing ceremony live across Canada.[25]

2012 Summer Paralympics[edit]

Despite the 2012 Summer Paralympics being a breakthrough games for international media coverage, giving a significant boost to the overall audience shares of British broadcaster Channel 4 and Australia's ABC,[26][27] no Paralympics sports events were shown live on television in Canada or the United States. "Based on the level of overall coverage, it's clear that Canadian broadcasters do not deem disability to be important. They are not supporters of inclusion", SCI BC (BC Paraplegic Association) Executive Director Chris McBride said, contrasting Canada's coverage with Britain's.[28] More than 1,000 people signed a petition calling for Canadian broadcasters to provide full Paralympics coverage at future Games. International Paralympic Committee President Philip Craven criticised North American broadcasters for having fallen behind[29] and said in future the International Paralympic Committee would scrutinize broadcast partners more carefully. "If the values fit, we've got a chance. If they don't we'll go somewhere else", he said.[30]

Youth Olympics[edit]

Finally, the consortium owned broadcast rights to the first Youth Olympic Games, the 2010 Summer Youth Olympics in Singapore. Coverage of those games was limited to a one-hour daily highlights package on Sportsnet and TSN2 (rebroadcast several weeks later on TSN).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ Canada's Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium (2010-11-03). "Canada's Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium Wins Seven Gemini Awards for Esteemed Coverage of Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games". Archived from the original on 2011-07-27. Retrieved 2011-04-19. 
  3. ^ Rogers Media (2011-09-08). "Rogers Media Withdraws from Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium in Bid for 2014/16 Olympic Games". Retrieved 2011-09-09. 
  4. ^ Bell Media and Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (2011-09-09). "Bell Media and CBC/Radio-Canada to Jointly Bid for Sochi 2014 and Rio 2016 Olympic Games". Retrieved 2011-09-09. 
  5. ^ Krashinsky, Susan (2011-09-09). "Bell Media, CBC partner for Olympic bid". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2011-09-09. 
  6. ^ "CBC wins rights to 2014, 2016 Olympic Games". CBC Sports. Retrieved 1 August 2012. 
  7. ^ "Sportsnet to air 200 hours of Sochi Games". Sportsnet. Retrieved 8 February 2013. 
  8. ^ "CBC/Radio Canada welcomes partners in 2014 Sochi Olympics coverage". CBC. Retrieved 8 February 2013. 
  9. ^ a b "Vancouver 2010 Coverage by Network", COBMC press release, 2010-01-12
  10. ^ CPAC and CTV Team Up to Deliver French Olympic Coverage, CPAC / COBMC press release, 2010-02-11
  11. ^ LOOC (I): 30
  12. ^ LOOC (II): 206
  13. ^ LOOC (II): 205
  14. ^ "The Legends – Media Honourees: Foster Hewitt Memorial Award Winners". Hockey Hall of Fame. Archived from the original on 2010-07-05. Retrieved 2010-07-15. 
  15. ^ "Fifteen years after Lillehammer, CTV set to tackle Vancouver Winter Games". Cape Breton Post. 8 February 2010. Archived from the original on 17 July 2012. 
  16. ^ "CTV Delivers Canada's #1 News Coverage of Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games", CTV press release, 2010-01-12
  17. ^ "SK-HD1000". Hitachi Kokusai Electric America, Ltd. Retrieved 2010-03-04. 
  18. ^ "CTV British Columbia unveils Olympic legacy set". CTV News. Retrieved 2 May 2013. 
  19. ^ Canada's Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium Reveals Broadcast Plans for Vancouver 2010 Paralympic Winter Games, March 12-21, COBMC press release, 2010-03-08
  20. ^ "Closing Ceremony of 2010 Paralympic Winter Games To Air Live on CTV and RDS, This Sunday". Canada's Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium (press release). 2010-03-16. Archived from the original on 2011-07-19. Retrieved 2010-09-18. 
  22. ^ "Citytv Toronto Program Schedule – August 31, 2012". Retrieved 2012-08-31. 
  23. ^ "Tweet from the Canadian Paralympic Committee". Twitter. 2012-08-31. Retrieved 2012-08-31. 
  24. ^ "CTV Vancouver To Air Paralympic Opening Ceremonies". The Sports Broadcasting Magazine. March 12, 2010. 
  25. ^ "CTV decides to broadcast Paralympic closing ceremony live". The Georgia Straight. March 16, 2010. 
  26. ^ Media Week (2012-09-10). "Paralympics coverage changed disability perceptions, says C4". Retrieved 2012-09-13. 
  27. ^ The Australian (2012-09-12). "Paralympics a ratings winner for ABC". Retrieved 2012-09-13. 
  28. ^ SCI BC (2012-09-18). "Put the Paralympics on TV!". Retrieved 2012-09-20. 
  29. ^ The Daily Telegraph (2012-08-30). "NBC criticised Paralympics after opening ceremony blackout". Retrieved 2012-09-13. 
  30. ^ "Extra scrutiny for Paralympic TV deals". BBC News. 2012-09-10. Retrieved 2012-09-13. 

External links[edit]