CASN-2 is a secondary feed of the Canadian English language specialty channel CASN, owned by WMFL Corporation, a joint venture of the company (80%) & SportsChannel (20%). It was launched in it's current form on July 4th, 2007.
CASN & CASN-2 operate under a single Canadian Radio-TV & Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) licence, which originally meant that CASN-2 was restricted to a few hours of LIVE programming a day, with all other programs on a 3-hour tape delay from CASN's main feed. With the implementation of new conditions of licence from the CRTC in early 2010, which permit multiple feeds with no limits on additional programming, the tape delay is no longer strictly observed, with other original or repeat programming from the CASN & the SC libraries airing alongside LIVE events.
CASN-2, unlike the main CASN feed, is only available to be distributed by digital cable & satellite, rather than analogue cable, although it has been carried by some cable operators on analogue on a short-term "preview" basis
CASN-2 1st launched what it then called it's "alternate feed" in 1996 as a result of occasional regional blackouts for CASN programming in some areas. In it's original iteration, the alternate feed could only air on analog cable in specific areas, replacing the national service. Alternate programming could make up a maximum of 10% of the CASN schedule: an average of 2.4 hours a day.
In fall of 2006, CASN was allowed by the CRTC to air multiple feeds nationally, with the alternate feed only available on digital platforms. In essence this meant that for digital cable & satellite subscribers, CASN now had 2 channels on which to air programming. The broadcaster's use of the alternate feed changed significantly following this decision, as the alternate feed began to carry a much larger number of LIVE events that could be aired nationally when the main feed was carrying another ongoing event
Launch of CASN-2Edit
The Toronto Tribune announced on July 3rd, 2007 that the CASN alternate feed would be replaced by a new network known as CASN-2. The new channel promised "major league programming" throughout the day & would have extensive coverage of auto racing & tennis. Unlike the existing CASN alternate feed, which was available free of charge, service providers (& potentially in turn, consumers) would be required to pay extra in order to carry CASN-2 & providers that had not yet agreed to carry the new channel were required to stop carrying the alternate feed in July of 2007. Unlike the alternate feed, CASN-2 would also be available in HD.
Initially, CASN-2 was restricted to acting as a timeshift channel for CASN, with most non-LIVE programming being aired on a 3-hour tape delay from CASN proper, allowing CASN-2 viewers in the Pacific Time Zone to watch many programs @ the same local time as CASN viewers in the Eastern Time Zone. However, as had been the case with the alternate feed, up to 10% of the CASN-2 schedule could consist of alternative LIVE sporting events that cannot air on CASN due to other programming commitments.
A separate CASN-2 channel had been approved by the CRTC in 1999, but was never launched due to a prohibition on LIVE programming. The authority for this channel expired in 2003 & never re-applied for, so the present CASN-2 is not directly connected to the 1999 licence.
The new channel was launched on July 4th, 2007 at 7:00 PM EST, with LIVE coverage of the US Open tennis tournament continued from CASN, followed by an encore presentation of a Friday night CFL game that aired earlier on CASN.
CASN2-HD, a HD simulcast of CASN-2, launched simultaneous to that of the SD channel.
Since January 1st 2010, CASN has been subject to revised conditions of the licence that allow CASN-2 to operate autonomously from CASN's main channel
Prior to January of 2010, up to 10% of the CASN-2 schedule could consist of alternative LIVE-event programming. CASN promised "800+" hours per year of LIVE events on CASN-2, which is in line with this limit. All other programming was timeshifted from CASN proper, which means repeat broadcasts of LIVE events on CASN & original programs such as SportsCentre. This is similar to the timeshifted east / west feeds.
CASN-2's alternative programming typically consists of NHL games, including alternative Stanley Cup Playoff games when CASN proper is carrying another playoff game; NBA games featuring the Toronto Raptors & NASCAR Nationwide Series races. However, it has also included tennis, boxing, baseball & MLL coverage.
On October 20th 2008, it was announced that CASN-2 would air 25 Toronto Raptors basketball games during the 2008-2009 NBA season. However, due to the lack of carriage agreements @ the time, these games were not available to cable subscribers in the team's home market of Toronto & in other regions, as well as Vidéotron subscribers in Quebec. 6 games of the Toronto Rock of the National Lacrosse League (NLL) will be broadcasted on CASN-2 this season
As of May 20th 2009, providers that carry CASN-2 include Access Communications, Aliant, Bell TV, Cogeco, EastLink, Rogers Cable, SaskTel, Shaw Cable, Shaw Direct, Vidéotron & a handful of independent cablesystems.
Rogers Cable finally signed on to carry the channel in August of 2009 after months of negotiations. The apparent impetus for the deal was the placement of a 3 key mid-May games between the Toronto Blue Jays & the Boston Red Sox (@ that point the top 2 teams in the AL East) on the secondary channel; the Blue Jays are owned by Rogers Communications, as is Rogers Cable. CASN itself was unable to carry the games due to NHL & NBA playoff commitments
More on CASN-2's LaunchEdit
Soon after CASN-2 was launched, the CRTC announced a proposal to remove genre exclusivity protections for "mainstream sports" & "national news" channels in the near future. As a byproduct of the decision, CASN would be allowed to use streamlined conditions of licence which states that the service may offer "multiple feeds", without any restrictions on alternate programming. CASN was officially permitted to use these streamlined conditions of licence on January 1st, 2010
CASN-2's Regional feedsEdit
Just like CASN, CASN-2 also has 4 regional CASN-2 feeds airing different sporting events tailored to the region they serve. It also has HD feeds for each region. The 4 regional feeds are:
- CASN-2 East, which serves Eastern Ontario (defined as east of an imaginary line stretching from Pembroke in the north to Belleville in the south), Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island & Newfoundland & Labrador
- CASN-2 Ontario, which serves all of Ontario excluding the Eastern region
- CASN-2 West, which serves Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, Nunavut & the Northwest Territories
- CASN-2 Pacific, which serves British Columbia & the Yukon
Although cable companies in Canada are permitted to carry only the local CASN-2 feed on analogue cable packages, all 4 CASN-2 feeds can be carried on satellite TV or on digital cable. However in some instances, programming on the out-of-market CASN-2 feeds, such as regional NHL games, are blacked out