Canada Cuts TV Czar Loose, Seeks Replacement

Ottawa is banking on a more pliant CRTC chair when Konrad von Finckenstein, the country's combative TV regulator, is replaced in January.

TORONTO - Canada’s TV czar will be gone by January.

Konrad von Finckenstein, chairman of the CRTC, the country’s TV regulator, has been told by the feds in Ottawa that his five-year term will not be renewed once it expires in four months.

“We thank Mr. von Finckenstein for his service as chair of the CRTC. The selection process of a new CRTC Chair will be announced soon,” federal heritage minister James Moore tweeted on Tuesday.

With that, Moore began to pull the curtains on a five-year term by the CRTC chair that left him consistently butting heads with the federal government, most notably over allowing foreign companies to acquire controlling stakes in domestic media assets and usage-based billing for Internet subscribers.

The TV watchdog last year was forced by a consumer-friendly Ottawa to retreat on plans to end unlimited online access packages offered by small Internet service providers.