Hockey Theme
Saved by
CTV BellMedia, TSN

Open Letter
(which gets longer every day)
From John Ciccone
Copyright Music & Visuals
Publishing & Copyright Administrator:

Events - How it Happened

Although it seems to be crystallizing lately for most folks, 'inconsistencies' in CBC announcements have prompted this outline of events leading up to their dropping the song to run a contest.

First, the short form. Then more details below:
It has become necessary to provide more details in the way of direct quotes given the inconsistencies in CBC’s public announcements issued over the past week. The statements seem to be confusing some people. They’re confusing to me. And I was there.


Monday, June 2nd, 3:58 am
From Mr. Scott Moore of CBC in response to our offer of same $500/game license and settlement proposal:

“After the mediation, our team is even more convinced that the value of the song is in its association with Hockey Night. We made an offer which stood until 5pm Friday. We feel this is the only way forward…. I am prepared to extend that deadline until 5:00pm Tuesday, but no further as we have a fair bit of work to do to start our contest. We cannot delay implementation if we are to have something new in place by October.”
Wednesday, June 4th, 11:13 am
From Me (ending with request for confirmation of their position):

“I’m very sorry, but we cannot sell the song at the price offered by the CBC as it is much lower than fair value.

We would like to again offer that the CBC continue to license the song on essentially the same terms as licensed over the past several years, with the addition that there would be no license fee increase for the first two years as a gesture of goodwill.

We want to reiterate that a license to use the song in the future is separate from litigation issues of the past, and they are not tied together. For simple litigation resolution kindly refer to Kevin’s proposal yesterday to Mark.

You have set a new deadline of 12 noon today for acceptance of CBC’s offer to buy the theme. If the offer is not accepted it is the intention of CBC to drop the theme. We must decline your offer and let the deadline pass.  Although we remain prepared to enter into a new license agreement you have indicated this is of no interest to CBC. It is a sad day indeed, but we nevertheless wish the CBC the best in its future endeavours”

Wednesday, June 4th, 11:45 am:

CBC article. Mr. Moore states: “We’ve been reaching out to [Claman] and her representative, and haven’t heard back,” Moore said.

“It’s a great theme song. We’ve had it 39 years … we hope we can continue our relationship with it.”

It was Moore’s understanding the CBC had until 5 p.m. ET on Friday to respond to Copyright Music & Visuals’ latest proposal, but “clearly they ratcheted that [deadline] up.”

????? see above where CBC rejected our offer and replaced with their own which expired yesterday (Wednesday). Nevertheless, we let them have ’til Friday.
Thursday, June 5th
From Mr. Moore:

“Thank you for your note.

I am sorry that we seem unable to continue our relationship.

I am stuck in a meeting until after 1pm and will respond more formally this afternoon” (no response by next day)

Thursday, June 5th, 5:10 pm:

CBC Mr. Moore submits their own license offer with significantly different terms (much worse for us, much better for CBC) as outlined in this Open Letter. He later refers to it as “the price they asked for” implying that we turned down what we offered! Article below.
Thursday, June 5th, 10:45 pm
We issue an ‘announcement’:

In response to huge volume of inquiries, we fax announcement clarifying confusion caused by CBC’s reversal as per above.
Friday, June 6th, 4:06 pm
From me with request to meet:

"As you might imagine it’s difficult to reach Dolores and family to discuss offers and issues given our time zone difference and the stress of events, but I will be getting to you as soon as possible. Thank you for your understanding.”


“Hello again… In fact I suggest that we meet Monday afternoon with Freiman and Kemp. Are you able to do that?"

Friday, June 6th, 4:50 pm
From Mr. Moore:

"In order to agree to meet, we need to know that our proposal is generally acceptable to you and that we can reach Delores [sic] during the afternoon to get her signoff. We are checking on Frieman’s availability."

Friday, June 6th, ** 4:59 pm!!!!
From Mr. Moore (emphasis mine):

"We have a
5pm meeting to decide on whether to announce our contest tonight

If we have the basis for an agreement, we will hold off.

If not, we’ll go ahead with the announcement.

Please let met know by return email.."

(Ed: If the CBC had agreed to our same-as-before offer at any time until this point late Friday, the CBC would have the song today and for years to come. They instead chose to give us a 1 minute warning.)
Friday, June 6th, 6:00 pm
We issue an ‘announcement’:

In response to huge volume of inquiries, we fax News release that CBC has decided to announce their contest and is dropping the song as per above.
Friday, June 6th, 6:10 pm
From Mr. Moore:

"We have not heard back from you...and I understand that you have announced to the press that there is no deal, so we will are [sic] now sending out our release about the national contest

On behalf of CBC, I'd like to thank you and Delores [sic] for your contribution to Hockey night in Canada.

(Note this CBC release quotes Mr. Moore as saying "saddened that we were unable to reach a deal, especially when we presented an offer which we believe was not substantively different from what the rights".

Click here for THE REAL STORY of how CBC offer in fact differed significantly.

Oh yeah... and it would've been nice to spell Dolores' name right once in a while.
Friday, June 6th, 7:28 pm
From me:

"We did not announce there was "no deal".  We advised that you intended to proceed with the announcement of a national contest unless we had the basis for an agreement.  We sought a meeting for Monday in an effort to further discuss/negotiate an agreement.

We are disappointed that you were not prepared to negotiate further.
Friday, June 6th, 8:06 pm
From Mr. Moore:

"It's too bad we're at where we are.

We were prepared to meet Monday if you could give us any indication as to whether the offer on the table was acceptable.

Any response from you could have kept negotiations going.

Have a good weekend.
Friday, June 6th, 8:59 pm
From me:

"That was quite unreasonable, Scott. You gave us less then 24 hours and you know that my client is 5 time zones away. Not meeting unless we agreed to your offer sort of renders the meeting meaningless."
Friday, June 6th:

"CBC article. Mr. Moore is quoted as saying "We have no real idea why the deal fell apart," he said. "We're not sure why because the other side hasn't communicated with us.

"You have to ask the other side what happened."

??? you see all the emails in communications above! Darned invisible fonts, I guess.

"We really can't do business with a lawsuit hanging over our heads," Moore said. "We feel that we've done everything we possibly can."

(Then don't do anything that gets you sued.)
Monday, June 9th, 10:57am
From me:

"I am shocked by your email given your refusal on Friday to meet today for the purpose of further negotiations.

I would ask that you refrain from issuing a press release until I have an opportunity to speak with Dolores and Kevin.
Monday, June 9th, 11:00 am
From Mr. Moore:

"As you know, I did not refuse to meet on Monday, I simply asked whether you were "generally in agreement" with our offer so that we could understand whether there was a basis for discussion.

The press release went out at 10:30.
Monday, June 9th:

CTV steps in, acquires all rights in the Hockey Theme, and rescues it from oblivion.
Monday, June 9th:

CBC article. Mr. Moore and Mr. Mike Myers are quoted:

"Moore said he didn't think "Hockey Night in Canada" would lose viewers along with the song.

"Hockey's a game, not a song," he said.

Even celebrity hockey fans like Mike Myers of Austin Powers fame weighed in on the controversy, describing the song as part of the "fabric" of his life.

"It feels like the second anthem, 'Hockey Night in Canada," Myers told a news
Monday, June 17th:

Globe & Mail article:

"Scott Moore, the head of CBC Sports, charged that CTV deliberately interfered with the CBC's negotiations for the famous song, suggesting it was a publicity stunt to embarrass the network.

"CTV management characterized their actions as 'saving the song,'"
Moore wrote on a CBC blog. "But they knew the negotiation hadn't run its course. I firmly believe that if they hadn't inserted themselves into the negotiation, the result would have been different."

(Ed: How distasteful and desperate. Simply glance through the above chronology and decide for yourselves. Hide the cat lest she be the next one blamed.)

But CTV president Rick Brace sharply disputed Moore's allegation, calling it "accusatory."

Brace said CTV, which reportedly paid in seven figures for the song, did not
contact the representative of songwriter Dolores Claman until after the CBC issued a news release on June 6, stating that negotiations had failed and that network would launch a contest for a new Hockey Night song.

"To try to lay this at our feet or suggest we somehow interfered with their negotiation is just ludicrous,"
Brace said. "They made a decision. They announced it to the world. And they walked away."

Well, there you have it. You asked and you have received. This has been the past couple of weeks. Imagine what the last six years have been like.

It has been difficult posting this, but as mentioned, the CBC's 'inconsistencies' have created such confusion that this is the only way to clarify.

As such, it is up to the CBC to determine what is issued to the taxpaying public, and what isn't.

John Ciccone
Copyright Music & Visuals


Joint Press Release CTV - Copyright Music & Visuals