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For a complete list of European public broadcasters:
The provider of this radio and television public service in Austria is regulated by the recent Law No.83/2001 which brought about considerable changes through the modification of the previous Law No.379/1984. In particular, it transformed ORF (Oesterreichischer Rundfunk), The Austrian Radio and Television Company, into a "sui generis" foundation equipped with judicial personalities and which is non profit. The aim of the foundation is to guarantee that the ORF, in parallel with company objectives, fulfils the public service mission assigned to it. The law came into full effect on 1 January 2002.
The new institutional bodies of the law are the The Foundation Council, the Director General and The Audience Council.
The Foundation Council (Board of Management) is the most important political body. It is composed of 35 members as follows:
The Foundation Council is appointed for four years. One of its main privileges is its capacity to appoint or to revoke the Director General. The Council decides, among other things, the cost of the subscription fee.
The Director General manages the Council, and is appointed by the Foundation Council by a simple majority for a period of 5 years. A 2/3 majority of Council members must occur to revoke the Director General. The director determines, in accordance with the Foundation Council, the guidelines for programming and defines strategies and medium to long term plans.
The Audience Council is a body proposed to safeguard audience interests. It is composed of representatives from the most important social groups. It performs its function mainly by giving recommendations on the creation of programmes.
Other ORF bodies are already in existence such as The Control Court, which performs financial controls and The Control Commission, included in Art. 40 of the new law, which supervises good financial conduct and the significance of business undertaken.
The ORF produces and distributes two television channels, three national radio channels and nine regional channels. With reference to programming, the services that the ORF must provide are established in section 4 of part 1 of the Law. In particular, programming must give importance to disabled people's problems (sect.4 clause 10); to family and youth problems and to equal treatment (equal opportunities) between men and women (sect.4 clause 11); to churches and the legally recognised religious communities (sect.4 clause 12); it must provide information on themes relating to the protection of the environment, the audience and health (sect.4 clause 14).
High quality programmes must be broadcast during prime time (8.00 p.m. - 10.00 p.m.).
The ORF must draw up an annual report on the activities performed.
Site for the Austrian Media Authority (English version):
ORF federal law (in English):
Austrian broadcasting laws (in English):
The public radio and television system reflects the political divisions on which the Belgian federal system is based. Each community in the country has different laws on broadcasting and a relevant regulatory authority. There are three public service broadcasters:
Each community has their own specific set of rules to manage radio and television services, while remaining under the presence of a general outline which is common to each community. Main responsibilities are in fact attributed to the Community Government and the competent Minister, with the executive then assisted in regulation and control functions by the Media Authority.
The RTBF is currently regulated by a Management Contract which was stipulated with the Government for the period 2002-2005. The Management Contract is the equivalent of the Service Contract between Rai and the Italian State, however in RTBF's case it lasts for four years. The law states in point form the obligations of the broadcaster, the programming quota for the various genre, advertising limits and regulations for the protection of minors and disadvantaged groups, etc... The contract is renewed every four years. The control authority, the Belgian Audiovisual High Council, was established on the French model. It is also possible to consult the previous management contract (1997/2001) on line.
Concerning the broadcasts on VRT, these are also disciplined by a Service Contract which lasts for five years. The current contract was approved on 7 June 2001 and includes the period from 2002 to 2006. The Fiamminga Media Authority is composed of a chairman and two commissions and controls the application of broadcasting laws. It is possible to consult the contract for 1997/2001 on line.
Site for the Belgian Audiovisual High Council:
Current contract (2002-2005) in French:
1998-2001 contract in French:
1997/2001 contract (in English):
2002/2006 contract in Dutch (English not available):
The Cypriot public radio and television broadcaster is the Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation (CyBC), which broadcasts two television channels 24 hours a day (CyBC1 and CyBC2) over the entire island and four radio channels. The broadcaster has a further satellite television channel.
CyBC1 is an information channel which distinguishes itself for its news offerings, in Turkish and English, as well as Greek. Its proposal is centred on current affairs, politics, finance, society, culture and sport. CyBC2 is an entertainment channel, broadcasting films and serial programmes, including those from abroad, musical programmes and children's programmes. It further re-broadcasts some Euronews programmes for about eighty hours a week. The broadcaster is regulated by a specific Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation Act.
CyBC is a non profit organisation which invests all its profits into the promotion of its mission, which is that of classic public services, inspired by a theoretical model by the first director of the BBC: to inform, educate, entertain. Its proceeds derive from state contributions and commercial advertising. The major governing body of the CyBC is the Board of Management, composed of nine members appointed for a three year term by the Council of Ministers who, among other things, hold the task of appointing the Director General (who holds the post for five years).
The monopoly system in CyBC radio and television has been open to competition from private companies since 1992. The fundamental act that currently regulates private Cypriot radio and television broadcasts is the Radio and Television Act from 1998. The act established the Cypriot Radio and Television Authority, who obviously do not have powers over the CyBC, which has its own separate statute founded by the State.
Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation
Press and Information Office of the Republic of Cyprus (in
Broadcasting in Croatia is regulated by the Law on Telecommunications which aims to regulate telecommunications, radio, television (including cable), relations between the provider and the telecommunication services audience, as well as the construction, maintenance and use of telecommunication structures and the radio stations.
The law has a very vast application field, excluding only the equipment used by the armed forces and the police forces, as well as the structure and the terminals used by the Croatian Telecommunications Institute.
The radio television activities are disciplined by Chapter XII of the law. In particular, the HRT (Croatian radio and television) public concessionary broadcasts are included in Art. 86 of the law.
Broadcasting by the public broadcaster is therefore regulated in detail by the Croatian radio and television law (Law on HRT) as well as advertising in the Official Government Journal No.43 from 1992, No.24 from 1996, No.145 from 1998 and lastly modified by the Croatian radio and television law declared on the 26/2/2001. Finally, in 2002 a new law draft on HRT was presented which is still under discussion in Croatian parliament.
The HRT (Hrvatska radiotelevizija, Croatian Radio and Television), is a public company controlled by the Croatian Republic. Its role is to support significant public events and to satisfy public interest through information. HRT operates as a public service only in cases of natural disasters, diseases, emergencies or war. As a public broadcaster, it is regulated by the afore mentioned HRT Law and by its internal statute. HRT is liable to draft a code of conduct for its operators.
The managerial bodies are the Radio and Television Council and the Executive Board, with the control body being the Supervisory Council.
The Radio and Television Council was established to guarantee public influence in radio and television programmes. It is composed on 23 members appointed and dismissed by the Chamber of Deputies in Croatian parliament.
The Director General of HRT, the Directors of programming, the members of the Executive Board and members of the Supervisory Council participate in the work of the Radio and Television Council, despite not having decision-making powers. They, excluding the Supervisory Council, are responsible for the implementation of decisions taken by the Council.
The Executive Board is composed of five members who have the duty of managing HRT. The chairman is the Director General who is appointed by parliament. Decisions are taken by a majority. The members of the Council are appointed and dismissed from the Supervisory Council on the instructions of the Director General.
The Supervisory Council supervises operations and the legal correctness of HRT actions. It drafts reports to submit to parliament.
The regulations which discipline the production and realisation of programmes are contained in Chapter II of the Croatian Radio and Television Law (Art.4,5,6,7,8). The regulations are very basic and don't contain references to quotas or percentages.
Croatian Radio Television (HRT):
Croatian radio and television law (in English):
Danish public broadcasting is currently regulated by the Minister for Culture through the Law on Broadcasting No.1052 dated the 17 December 2002 , in force since 1 January 2003.
The radio and television broadcasters are DR (Radio Denmark, an independent public institution which broadcasts two television channels and four radio channels, entirely financed by fees and TV2 (composed of TV2/Denmark - which broadcasts programs at national level - and from eight regional structures. TV2 finances itself by means of fees and advertising income). Both are governed by their own Board of Management who supervise the activities of the broadcaster. These bodies are assisted by the Programming Councils.
The respective boards of management are the main governing bodies of DR and TV2 and are responsible for broadcasting activities, appointed by the Director General and broadcaster management.
The Programming Councils are instead advisory bodies. They discuss general issues regarding the provision of service programmes, assess DR and TV2 programming and discuss strategies for the provision of programmes which are suited to the service mission assigned to the broadcasters. The Councils are invited to express their opinions by the board of management.
The Board of Management for DR include ten members that hold their posts for four years. Three of whom, including the chairperson, are appointed by the Minister for Culture, six by parliament and one by permanent DR staff.
The TV2 Council is composed of nine members, eight of whom, including the chairperson and the vice-chairperson, are appointed by the Minister for Culture and one by the broadcaster's permanent staff.
The Programming Council of DR includes 30 members, that of TV2, 20. They also have a four year term and are appointed by the Minister for Culture. They are chosen among the relevant social groups. A third of the members are chosen from audience organisations.
The provision of programming is disciplined in detail in chapters 3,4,5,6 of the Law on Broadcasting (Law No.1052) which is available on line in English:
Law on broadcasting (in English):
Site of the Minister for Culture (English version):
Site of the Danish Media Authority:
News in English on the Authority:
The '90s saw a period of profound transformation for radio and television broadcasting in Estonia. As happened in all the countries released from a Communist regime, the local broadcasting system had in fact known a long period of deregulation and private competitors. The major innovation was introduced in 1993 when Estonia ceased to show three television channels broadcast from Moscow and St. Petersburg.
A public television channel is currently broadcast in Estonia, operated by the broadcaster Eesti Televisioon (ETV) and three private television channels.
Public radio broadcasts are instead ensured by another public broadcaster: Eesti Raadio (ER), which broadcast five national channels: an information channel (Vikerraadio), a youth channel (Raadio2), one for classical music (Klassikaraadio), one in Russian (Raadio4) and lastly, Raadio Tallinn, for listeners in the Tallin and Harju regions.
The Estonian radio and television broadcasts are currently regulated by the Broadcasting Law approved in 1994 and by the subsequent, numerous amendments (five amendments were made in 1997 alone). The law has, among other things, established the Broadcasting Council, the highest authority that supervises the actions of Eesti Raadio and Eesti Televisioon. The Council is composed of nine members appointed by the government on the recommendation of the Parliamentary Commission for Cultural Affairs. Of the nine members, who hold a five year term, five are chosen among the members of the Chamber of Deputies, while four are chosen among the recognised sector personalities.
Site of the Minister for Culture (English version):
Broadcasting law (in English):
From the first of January 1999, the Finnish public radio and television system of broadcasting has been regulated by the Law on Yleisradio Oy or rather, the State radio and television company. The law disciplines the duties of the public broadcaster in an organic manner, yet it does not contain precise references to the programming quota for the various genre. It is composed of and was modified by different regulations, available on line, such as:
- Law No.1380/1993 passed on the 22 December 1993 and further modifications;
- Law No.340/1995 passed on the 17 March 1995;
- Law No.746/1998 passed on the 9 October 1998;
- Law No.492/2002 passed on the 14 June 2002.
Among these, Law 746/1998 on State radio and television funding (Act on the State Television and Radio Fund) which disciplines the management and raising of funds by the broadcaster and replaces title 4 of the Law on Yleisradio Oy.
YLE, the public broadcaster in Finland, is a limited responsibility company which operates in the management sector of the Ministry for Transport and for Communications. The broadcaster has 5 television channels and 13 radio channels. In 2002, the daily share of television reached 45%, while that of the radio was 51%. The broadcaster fulfils a central role in the production and presentation of programmes relating to national arts, to educational programmes and children. Public services also include those of "special and minority" groups. YLE's activities are mainly financed by subscription fees and programmes are not interrupted by advertising slots.
Over the last few years, YLE has specialised in entertainment and information programmes which are easily followed. It is liable for the drafting of an annual report addressed to the Minister for Transport and for Communications, who supervises the actual accomplishment of services assigned to the company. The reports for the last two years are available on line. In line with the law, two thirds of programmes broadcast in 2002 by the first television channel, YLETV1, and half of those on the second channel, YLETV2, are of an informative nature.
The managerial bodies of the company (99.9% owned by the State) are the Board of Management, the Executive Board and the Director General. The main body is the Board of Management which is composed of 21 members chosen by parliament on taking up office. The composition of the board must include representatives from the world of science, arts, education, economy, as well as representatives from different social and linguistic groups. The Board of Management appoints the Executive Board and the Director General. The duties of the broadcaster regarding public service are defined by section 7 of chapter 3 of the law.
Link on the Law on Yleisradio Oy:
There are two distinguished broadcasters in France that respectively manage the radio and television public service. The public radio channels are broadcast by Radio France, the three public television channels being (France2, France3, France5) from the audiovisual group France Télévisions.
The fundamental law that currently regulates the provision of French radio and television services is the recent Law from 1 August 2000 on audiovisual communication (which completed and amended Law No.86/1067 from 1986).
Law No.86/1067, last modified in September 2003, foresaw for the first time that public radio and television channels would be regulated by a Cahier des missions et de charges, or rather, a law ordered by the government which defines their mission and duties (programming quotas, qualitative standards, code of conduct regulations, measures concerning minors, the protection of pluralism, etc..) that the radio and each of the three channels of France Télévisions must achieve as a public service concessionary.
From their introduction in 1986, the cahier have been modified by decree laws in 1987, 1994, 1996, 1998, 1999, 2001 and lastly, with decree 751/2002 from 2 May 2002.
To complete the legislative outline of public television, a new judicial figure was recently passed in the regulation of relations between the French State and the concessionary France Télévisions. It is defined as the Contrat d'objectifs et de moyens, a law which in part shows similarities to the Service Contract between the Italian State and Rai. The Cahier de missions et de charges, do not have contract features but are unilaterally arranged by the government.
The preface of each cahier for the television channels, or rather for France2, France3 and France5 have similar characteristics, in virtue of the public status of each public channel. The specific obligations for each channel are defined in the following chapters, in line with different missions. The public television system is in fact thought of in a complementary optic among the various channels, in which the offering from each network develops and does not superimpose on that of the others. In this optic, France2 programming is a generalist vocation, while that of France3 is nearer to a regional and national reality. Lastly, France5 programming is inspired by conviviality and with the purpose of evoking and encouraging interactivity by viewers through broadcasting educational and information programmes. France5 forms part of the France Télévisions group since 2 August 2000, or since the day after the new audiovisual law. The broadcaster, founded on 13 December 1994 under the name La Cinquième has seen a strong increase in viewers over the last year of operation (cf. www.france5.fr).
Concerning the Contrat d'objectifs et de moyens, other than the goal of making media legislation more effective, it was also created in relation to instructions contained in the Amsterdam protocol to safeguard public radio and television services in Europe. As in the preface of the Contract d'objectifs: pursuant to Art.53 of the Law from 30 September 1986 no.1067, completed and modified by the Law 1 August 2000 on Audiovisual communication, concluding in a Contrat d'objectifs et de moyens between France Télévision and the State for the period 2001-2005.
This contract rests on the willingness to establish, on a principle of mutual responsibility, relations between the State and France Télévision with the goal of putting an authentic strategy into operation in the medium term, making greater economical and budgetary visibility available.
Essential support of renewed relations between the State-Shareholder and France Télévision is an annual control on the execution of the contract, for which the concessionary must be subjected to examinations by parliament and the government.
The project based on the France Télévisions's Contrat d'objectifs et de moyens is to reaffirm the mission of public television (audience universality, diversity of offerings, support creativity and innovation, development strategies for terrestrial digital programming etc..). The 2001-2005 contract, currently under revision, is divided into six areas: programmes; the public; digital terrestrial television; diversification; human resources; financial resources.
Concerning the public broadcaster, France Télévisions, is a holding which, other than controlling the three television networks, manages different companies: France Télévisions Publicité, France2 Cinéma and France3 Cinéma; France Télévisions Interactive, France Télévisions Service, France Télévisions Distribution, which mainly operates in the distribution of foreign programming.
The public radio broadcaster, Radio France, with over 4,000 employees and 1,500 collaborators, is one of the biggest and most important radio companies in Europe. It broadcasts five channels nationally and over forty regional and local channels; it has also produced and broadcast programmes for Radio France Internationale (RFI) since 1931, currently in 19 languages. Also for Radio France, as for the television channels, the government planned a Cahier de mission et de charges, on which regard the public concessionary is based and renewed.
The regulatory authority of the French radio and television system is Audiovisual High Council (CSA), established by Law no.26 from 1989. It supervises, among other things, the execution of the Cahier by the public broadcasters. The CSA, which is an independent managerial authority, is composed of nine members elected for six years: three are appointed by the Chairperson of the National Assembly, three from the Senate and three from the President of the Republic, who also chooses the chairperson of the CSA.
Each year the radio and television broadcasters are liable for the drafting of a report on the execution of the Cahier addressed to the Audiovisual High Council, the Minister for Communications, experts on radio and television issues. The two bodies ensure the accomplishment of public service missions assigned to various channels.
Link to internet sites and documents in French:
Cahier de missions et de charges de Radio France:
France Televisions Contract of Objectives
Cahier de charges of France2:
Cahier de charges of France3:
Cahier de charges of France5:
CSA site (from which it is possible to find all legislative
texts regulating broadcasting in France:
Law 1067 from 1986 in its consolidated and modified version
Decree for the implementation of law 1067 from 1986 with
most recent amendments:
The liberty of broadcasting is Germany is mainly based on ART.5 clause 1 and 2 of the Federal Constitution, in line with ART.10 of the European Convention for the protection of human rights and fundamental freedom. Development of the current system was strongly influenced by the decisions of the Federal Constitutional Court, which has always expressed itself ,declaring that the principles of the media should firstly be free of any interference. The status of public radio and television broadcasters was determined in detail by the court, not only for the initial State monopoly, but also for their task of meeting the public's basic requirements. The court recently strengthened the need for public radio and television To ensure pluralism, the court established the principles parliament must observe when deciding the legislative outline for radio and television broadcasts.
In 1961, the court released the first judgement on broadcasting, which was then assigned to the jurisdiction of the States (Lander). Radio and television broadcasts in Germany are therefore regulated by State laws (Bundeslander). The Lander (States) have greatly used this faculty, often adding to the interstate agreements on broadcasting. Agreements can be reached by two or more states, the ZDF (second public channel) was founded in 1961 by an agreement between all the German Lander, while other channels involve a smaller number of Lander.
All the states had a mixed system of broadcasting during the early '80s, in which private broadcasters were allowed alongside public broadcasters
The Lander Treaty on broadcasting (Rundfunkstaatsvertrag) from 1991, amended in 1996, which includes all the Lander in united Germany, is currently the basis for the mixed system of broadcasting and broadcasting in general in Germany and contains the fundamental regulations for the discipline of radio and television.
The functions of the public service, disciplined by chapter II of the Treaty, have not been modified since the introduction of the mixed system. Therefore, the previous laws of the Lander remain valid for the production and broadcast of radio and television programmes in each state or in the corporations of more that one State.
There are twelve (Public Corporation System, PBC) corporations at present. They are public law regional bodies:
Since 1950 these corporations have formed a national association known as the Association of Public Service Radio and Television Corporations (ARD) which is responsible for the programmes on the Ist public channel. These programmes are broadcast by the corporations both via terrestrial (analogical) programming and via cable. The state corporations also offer a regional TV programme (terrestrial) generally known as the "3rd" channel (the 2nd channel is ZDF). ARD broadcasts a further five radio channels.
Furthermore, since broadcasting via cable is possible nowadays, many channels of the individual corporations are received in the other Lander. The 1st, 2nd and 3rd channels can also be received via satellite.
ZDF broadcasts one national channel ("2nd" Channel) which is also responsible for Deutschlandradio.
Since 1 April 1997, ARD and ZDF have been collaborating to produce programmes for the Children's Channel and since 7 April 1997 for the Phoenix Channel (documentaries).
The corporations are established under public laws or are established under state laws or inter-state agreements which determine their function and structure. They are not to be considered as state property stock companies.
The PBC have more or less the same structure: they are managed by a Director General who is responsible for programming; the DG operates alongside two controlling bodies: the Management Commission, generally called the Board of Management perform managerial and financial controls and the Commission for Programme Monitoring, generally called the Broadcasting Board, who ensure plurality of opinions and are therefore composed of important social groups.
Deutsche welle (voice of Germany) is the only corporation governed by federal law and is largely financed by federal government funding.
The most important private groups are SAT1 since 1985, and RTL Plus since 1986. Today, many operators offer TV and radio channels. None of the largest private groups offer nationwide radio. The private radio stations are regional and/or local.
For the specific regulations concerning the production and airing of programmes, there are no clear definitions, specific content and obligations on programmes for the public broadcasters in German legislative custom. A fundamental principle is the autonomy to produce programmes. Another basic criterion that must direct the production of public broadcasters is the concept of Grundversorgung or the necessity that the PBC provide a comprehensible "basic" service which caters for the needs of the entire population. Neither the Contract, nor the other laws contain specific indications on quotas, percentages etc..
In 1996, one of the ARD corporations (WRD-Fernsehen) developed a programme for quality control. The system considers different variables, based on qualitative and quantitative measures.
The RUNDFUNKRAT of ARD and the FERNSEHRAT of ZDF are intermediary supervisory bodies who control programmes and the decisions on programmes taken by the directors. Every two year, among other things, they have to draft a report for the KEF, the commission for the assessment of financial requirements of radio and television bodies.
Each German Lander has their own media control authority. They are however exclusively responsible for the regulation of the private sector. The public broadcasters are in fact regulated by their own statutes and regulations. The control authority for each Lander founded an association, the ALM (Arbeitsgemeinschaft der Landesmedienanstalten), the Association of Broadcasting Control Authorities.
ALM site, Association of Broadcasting Control Authorities in
German law on broadcasting (in English):
Lander Treaty on broadcasting (Rundfunkstaatsvertrag):
The English radio and television broadcaster, the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) broadcasts two national television channels, BBC1 and BBC2, which include national and regional sub-divisions; different television channels via cable and digital; five national radio stations and more than forty local radio stations. It also broadcasts the most visited web site in Europe. The BBC television channels have, in an external framework characterised by strong competition, more than 40% of the audience, radio about 50%.
The BBC is constitutionally established by a Royal Charter; an Agreement (between the Secretary of State of National Heritage and the BBC - similar to our Service Contract) which accompanies the Royal Charter, acknowledging its editorial independence and detailing the obligations of the BBC to the public, which it must respect. The first agreement was formulated in 1926. It is a decennial document which has been renewed on more than one occasion. The current agreement has been in force since 25 January 1996 with its expiry in 2006. The BBC is outside a commercial optic, in fact, with the exception of specific activities above all aimed at other countries. It is mainly financed by subscription fees.
A Council of 12 Governors, appointed by
the Queen on the advice of her ministers, safeguards the
independence and monitors the performance of the broadcaster.
The assessment is carried out through an annual report to
their audience and parliament which must
be drafted by the BBC (reports for the last six years are
on line). The Council of Governors is assisted by six advisory
bodies (National Broadcasting Council) who collaborate
to ensure that the interests of the audience is appropriately
represented and guaranteed. The National Council discusses
programmes and strategic issues concerning the BBC. They
set the annual objectives and offer opinions on current activities.
Of the 16 divisions that make up the company, nine manage the networks and programmes, five manage professional support services, two are responsible for commercial services, mainly destined for other countries, ensuring the BBC have other means of revenue.
For the production of programmes, the operators of the BBC follow a code known at the Producers' Guidelines, in use since 1989 and which contains, among other things, regulations favouring maximum possible openness towards pluralism and the protection of minorities. It includes indications on the standards which concern the completeness and impartiality of information, political issues, elections, transparency and respect and protection of minors.
Recently (2002/2003) the BBC created a new centre known as Corporate Social Responsibility to coordinate the many BBC initiatives on social action. The first report from this new structure will be published in 2004.
In 1996, the country passed a new Broadcasting Act to discipline terrestrial digital radio and television broadcasts. Chapter VI of the act contains the expectations for the BBC.
The Greek public radio and television broadcaster is Radiotelevisione Ellenica S.A. (EPT). It broadcasts two national television channels: ETI and NET, a regional channel with a vast geographical coverage (ET3), four national radio stations, 19 local radio stations.
EPT operated as a monopoly until the end of the '80s, when the radio and television system opened to competition from private competitors. Deregulation brought a strong reaction from the public, even if it had a mixed financial system based on the income made from advertising, as well as from public funding (there is no radio or television subscription fee in Greece; it is financed using an amount taken from the electricity bill).
Only in 1995, the country passed a law disciplining private broadcasters (Law. no.2328/1995).
The controlling body of the radio and television system is the National Council for Radio and Television established in 1989 to control both public and private broadcasters. The recent Law no.2863/2000 strengthened the powers of the Council regarding frequency allocation and endorsements. The new law also ensures greater powers to the competent minister on radio and television issues, the Minister for the Press and Mass Media. The Council is composed of seven members that hold their posts for four years. The Chairperson and vice-Chairperson are chosen by a Board of Chairpersons in Greek parliament on the recommendation of the President of the parliament.
Unfortunately, a translation is not available on line of the Greek laws on broadcasting, nor is it possible to consult the site of the National Council for Radio and Television in English.
Broadcasting in Ireland is covered and regulated by constitutional indications and by the Broadcasting Act which was passed in 1960. The changes which have occurred in the system of broadcasting over the years have been dealt with through numerous amendments to the Broadcasting Act. In 2001, a new law was finally reformulated in a more organic text which brought about substantial modifications to Irish audiovisual panorama. The role and mission of the public service is defined in Section 28 of the Broadcasting Act. The act was subjected to some amendments in 2003.
The Irish public broadcaster is RTE (Radio Telifis Eireann, Irish Radio and Television). It broadcasts three national channels and five radio channels. The two main television channels are RTE1, a public service channel based on information and current affairs, and Network 2 in which programmes try to attract a younger public with its style of presenting and by broadcasting music programmes, successful films etc.. A third channel was created in Irish in 1996: Telefis na Gaeilge (TG4), which is managed by RTE and which must respect all the obligations of the public broadcaster, but which, based on the Broadcasting Act from 2001, operates under a separate communication authority: the Broadcasting Authority Teilifis na Gaeilge.
RTE's only Irish competitor is the commercial private channel TV3.
The production and realisation of RTE programmes is disciplined, other than by legislation, by a detailed guide, the (Programme Makers Guidelines) used by all public service operators. The guide contains all the references to regulations and code of conduct standards which the public service operators must respect while performing their work.
The guide includes two specific paragraphs on the respect of diversity and the acknowledgement of minority groups, as outlined in section 19, clause 11 of the Broadcasting Act.
RTE is subject to nine members of the RTÉ Authority, the managerial control authority appointed by the Governor. Among their other competencies, the Authority approves the three year strategic plan for RTE. The 2002-2005 plan included important cuts to the organisation of the broadcaster and the creation of six divisions (Integrated Business Divisions): Television, Radio, News, Publishing, Network and Performing groups.
The RTÉ Executive Board, the executive body of the broadcaster, is chaired by the Director General who reports to the Authority. The broadcaster must draft an annual report on the progress of their activities. This report is published on line.
The last few years have seen the introduction of different innovations which have transformed the public concessionary. A new structure was in fact created in 2001, The Forum on Broadcasting, to receive requests coming from the audience and civil society and to address these requests to the management of the broadcaster and the legislator.
During 2002, the responsibility for RTE was transferred from the Department of Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and the Islands to the Department of Communications, Marine and Natural Resources. With the aim of safeguarding and strengthening the service mission assigned to RTÉ (came into effect in 2002 and included an increase of 43 Euro in the subscription fee), the new minister received a Report from the Forum on Broadcasting.
The immediate aim of the minister and the forum is to draft a new Fundamental Charter through which RTE could respond better to the requests and needs of the public (see http://www.marine.gov.ie/display.asp/pg=818).
The new act, other than the precise regulations on the duties and obligations of the public broadcaster, includes the following for RTE:
a) the establishment of an Audience Council;
b) that it operates under a Code of Fair Trading Practice which establishes the obligations of the broadcaster in relation to fours areas of activity:
c) that it publishes an annual Statements of Commitments aiming to:
A statement on the execution and operations of these activities will be published in an annual report which will have a different nature from those licensed up to now. Some of the expected innovations have already been implemented in 2003, with the establishment of the Audience Council and the definition of the Code of Fair Trading Practice. The new "charter" is not yet ready.
The 2003 report in which the results will be assessed, for the first time taking into account the correspondence of the statements of intent, are not yet available.
amendments in 2003 (Broadcasting Act 2003):
Guide for RTE programmes:
RTE Report 2002:
The general principles for the radio and television broadcasts in Latvia are currently disciplined by the Law on Radio and Television from 1995 and by subsequent amendments. The law disciplines the public sector and private company broadcasts who have entered the audiovisual market since independence in 1991.
Granting of broadcasting licences is guaranteed by the National Council for Radio and Television which is also the control body for the system.
The provision of the radio and television public service is guaranteed by two distinguished broadcasters, Latvijas Radio (Radio Latvia) and by Latvijas Television. Latvijas Radio offers four national channels and is the most followed radio broadcaster in the country; Latvijas Television broadcasts two national channels whose offerings are above all distinguished by the second channel which dedicates 20% of its programmes to minority languages.
All the innovations and laws concerning the radio and television system in Latvia are consultable in English on the internet site of the National Council for Radio and Television.
Law on Radio and Television (in English):
The Lithuanian public radio and television broadcaster is LRT (Lietuvos Nacionalinis Radijas ir Televizija, Lithuanian National Radio and Television), a public non profit authority owned by the State and operating on the basis of a Law on Lithuanian National Radioand Television (Law No.I-1571) approved on 8 October 1996 and last amended on 25 January 2001 with Act No.IX-155. Another fundamental law which regulates the service offered by LRT is the Law on the provision of information to the public approved on 2 June 1996 (Act No.I-1418) and amended on the 18 October 2001 (No.IX-561).
LTR broadcasts a television channel and two national radio channels.
Based on Law 1571, the governing bodies of LRT are the Board of Management and the Administration Commission. The Board of Management is more important since it represents the public interest. It is composed of twelve members chosen for a period of six years from individuals who have distinguished themselves in the social, scientific or cultural field. Four of these are chosen by the President of the Republic, four by parliament and one person from the Lithuanian Science Council, from the Lithuanian Educational Council, from the Artist's Association of Lithuania and finally, one from the Lithuanian Episcopal Convention. The ample powers of the Council are established under Art.10 of Law 1571.
The Council, as well as determining broadcaster programming, approves strategic plans and annual reports on LRT activities and applies regulations and also has the task of appointing the Director General (whose post lasts for five years and who cannot be chosen from the members of this Council) and the five members of the Executive Commission (cf. Art.11).
LRT employs about 700 operators and is financed almost entirely (circa 90%) from state funding.
The Law on the provision of information to the public (Law 1418) established the Lithuanian Radio and Television Commission to discipline and supervise the activities of the private radio and television broadcasters who forcefully entered the sector following the fall of the Soviet Communist system.
Lithuanian radio and television:
English version (legislation and news only): http://www.lrt.lt/eng/
Law on National Lithuanian Radio and Television and Law on the provision of
information to the public (in English)
Site of the Commission for Lithuanian radio and television (in English)
Site of the regulation authority for telecommunications (in English) http://www.rrt.lt/english/english.htm
The Government in Luxembourg is continuously committed to the provision of an open framework which favours the initiatives of private companies in the radio and television field. By doing so, radio and television activities have always been exclusively dominated by private companies.
The public sector has never held an important role and it is present only through services such as teletext and some satellite services provided by SES, a company based in Luxembourg that operates on the ASTRA system.
Until 1991, when the new Media Law was approved with the intent of favouring the foundation of new operators, this country had a radio and television monopoly managed by CLT (Compagnie Luxembourgeoise de Télédiffusion). The company, created in 1931 and known as CTR (Luxembourg Radio Company), was based on a concession from the government of Luxembourg. CTR was immediately characterised for its European vocation, broadcasting channels in French, German and English. During the '50s, the company entered onto the television market, changing its name to CLT and started radio and television broadcasts on RTL (Luxembourg Radio and Television), currently 100% controlled by RTL Group. The deregulation which has characterised the world of media in Europe during the '80s allowed CLT to acquire nine new channels in different countries (Germany, France, Belgium, Holland, The United Kingdom, Sweden, Poland, Hungary and Austria). Thanks to its importance it merged with UFA, an important German multimedia group, in 1997 and today this merger allows the presence of this new group in all sectors of audiovisual production and distribution. In 2000, the CLT-UFA group merged with British Pearson TV and changed its name to RTL Group. Present in 9 countries and controlling 23 television networks and 17 radio networks, with the production of more than 160 million internet pages per month, RTL group is today the first European audiovisual group.
Legislation on the media (in French):
Independent commission on broadcasting:
National Programming Council:
Media advisory commission:
With a ground surface of 316km squared and 381,000 inhabitants, from 1 May 2004 Malta will become the smallest country in the European Union.
Its public radio and television broadcaster is PBS Ltd (Public Broadcasting Services) which reports to the Minister for Education. The radio and television services in Malta are subject to supervision and control by the Broadcasting Authority, created in 1961 as an independent body appointed by the President of the Republic.
The radio broadcasts by the Maltese public broadcaster (Radju Malta) started in 1935, while those of television started in 1962. Until the beginning of the '90s private ventures were forbidden in the radio and television field with the public broadcaster operating a monopoly system. In 1991, the year in which the Broadcasting Act (Law No.XII/1991) was approved and in the years that followed was subjected to numerous amendments, the first radio station started broadcasting. The mass entrance of private companies in the system brought about an inevitable crisis in the public department, which in 2000 was subjected to a restructuring process, following which PBS broadcast two television channels, TVM (Maltese Television), and CC Canale12 (The Community Channel) and three radio channels: Radju Malta, Radju FM Bronia and Ten606.
Maltese media authority (English version):
Maltese legislation on broadcasting:
NRK (Norsk Rikskringkasting), the Norwegian public radio and television concessionary was founded in 1933 and operated as a monopoly until the beginning of the '80s. At present it broadcasts a national television channel (NRK-1), two television channels are broadcast in part via terrestrial TV and in part via satellite TV (NRK-to and tvNorge) and three radio channels (P1, P2 and Petre).
NRK was defined as the public service broadcaster in 1988, the year in which the company was transformed into a foundation and the phrase “to serve the public" was inserted in its statute. The vagueness and vastness of the concept “public service” caused the government in 1995 to establish a “Public Service Broadcasting Council” (Allmennkringkastingrad) that helps to identify the criteria NRK must respect and which takes steps for the analysis and verification of the annual reports produced by the broadcaster.
NRK activities are regulated by the Broadcasting Act from 4 December 1992 and its subsequent amendments, the most recent of which are contained in Law No.6 from 14 January 2000. The competent minister in relation to radio and television activities is the Minister for Culture.
NRK is a limited company, subject to Norwegian law on commercial companies. The only exceptions are specified in the Broadcasting Act.
The management bodies of NRK are the Executive Board which can participate in discussions with the Broadcasting Council, but it does not hold powers over programming; the Director General of the broadcaster which, as the head of management, is responsible for the production and airing of programmes; the DG participates in discussions with the Broadcasting Council and participates in discussions with the Regional Programming Council.
NRK activities are mainly financed by subscription fees. The public service channels broadcast advertisements.
The Broadcasting Council is composed of 14 members. Six of whom, including the Chairperson and vice-Chairperson are appointed by the king. They hold their positions for four years and can be re-elected once only. The Chairperson of the Council can take part in Board of Management activities and participate in their decision-making.
The Broadcasting Council voices opinions on NRK programming and on issues submitted by the Director General or any other issues considered worthy of attention. The Council can invite the Board of Directors or the Director General to voice their opinions on managerial or financial issues.
To ensure that NRK meets the needs and requests of the public as much as possible, the Regional Programming Councils were established as advisory bodies which express opinions on the programming of the broadcasters regional offices.
Norwegian Ministry for Culture (in English):
Broadcasting Act (in English):
The broadcasting system is mainly regulated by the Commissariaat voor de Media (Dutch Media Authority), an independent organisation which has been operating since 1988, or rather since the approval of the Media Act. This act, together with the Media Decree is one of two fundamental acts that regulate radio and television broadcasting in Holland. The authority operates so that the public and private broadcasters respect Dutch media laws.
The most recent version of the Media Act (which was subjected to many amendments over the years) is from February 2001. The most recent version of the Media Decree is from June 2001.
Holland developed a very articulate public broadcasting system in which different citizen Broadcasting Associations obtain programming slots. The Media Act established two public broadcasters: NOS and NPS which are complementary organisations to the Broadcasting Associations. The broadcasters air three national television channels, as well as different radio channels.
The broadcasting associations are as follows: AVRO, BNN, EO, KRO, NCRV, TROS, VARA, VPRO. The three public channels are composed of the union of different associations. For example, Nederland1, the first public channel, includes AVRO, KRO, EO and NCRV; the second public channel, TV2, includes TROS, EO, BNN and NOS Sport. The task of the two broadcasters is to coordinate the broadcasting activates and needs of the broadcasting associations.
The act declares the criteria to form an association, which can obviously be founded on political, religious or cultural needs. All three public television channels are liable to respect regulations to perform the public service mission to which they are assigned.
The prerogatives of the NOS and NPS are not limited to the coordination of the association activities. In fact, the broadcasters provide those programmes that the associations are incapable of realising (news, parliamentary services, national interest events, sports events of particular importance,â) and for which they allocate 40% of antenna time.
Media Act (in English):
Media Decree (in English):
English version of the Dutch Media Authority site:
The most important companies in the audiovisual field in Poland are Polskie Radio S.A. public radio and TVP S.A. public television (Polish Television).
Polskie Radio broadcasts four national channels: PR1 and PR3 (generalist), PR2 (which mainly offers classical musical and literature) and the education channel Radio Bis. It further incorporates the PR5 foreign channel on short wave and 17 regional radio stations, which are independent broadcasters. Polskie Radio is subject to the control of the National Broadcasting Council.
TVP public television broadcasts two national channels(TVP1 and TVP2) and controls 12 regional channels that manage local programmes and programmes devoted to minority languages. The regional channels make up what is known as TVP3. TVP also broadcasts the satellite channel TV Polonia.
Polish public radio and television is regulated by Chapter IV of the Polish Broadcasting Act approved by parliament in December 1992 (in force since March 1993) and which has been amended many times over the years. The particular duties of the public broadcasters are stated in Art.21 of the Act.
The managerial bodies of TVP are the Executive Board, the Supervisory Council and the General Assembly.
The Executive Board is composed of two members nominated by the Supervisory Council, who hold their posts for four years and who are responsible for daily management and the strategic plans for the company. The Supervisory Council controls company operations. As well as the Executive Board, it nominates the heads of the regional centres following Executive Board indications. The Supervisory Council is composed of nine members. Eight of whom are nominated by the National Broadcasting Council and one by the Treasury. The hold their posts for three years. The General Assembly is the most important company body. It assesses and approves the annual report submitted by the Executive Board and it controls Executive Board and Supervisory Council operations. The representative for the Treasury protects national interest and the Polish parliament.
The other important company bodies are the Programming Council, an advisory body renewed every four years and composed of 15 members who are appointed by the National Broadcasting Council and who are chosen among the members of parliament and representatives for the arts and culture.
To ensure absolute respect for ethical and conduct principles, which must characterise the production and airing of the news and programmes, TVP drew up a code of conduct in 1996, with the TVP Ethical Commission being created to ensure respect by assessing compliance with ethical standards by journalists and producers.
Concerning company organisation, TVP is a company of the Treasury. Its activities are mainly financed by the sales of advertising slots, subscription fees, sponsorship and by other sources such as the sale of its programmes and services. The company currently employs about 600 staff, a third of whom work in the regional offices.
Concerning the regulatory bodies, the Polish Broadcasting Act established the National Broadcasting Council which has been in operation since 28 April 1993. It is a state body specialising in radio and television issues. Immediately after its establishment, a government bill was presented for the Council's insertion into the Polish Constitution. It "entered" the Constitution on 2 April 1997 in articles 213, 214, 215. Article 213, clause 1, establishes that: “the Council will safeguard freedom of expression, the right to information as well as public interest on issues regarding radio and television broadcasts”. The Council is composed of nine members who represent different social and political groups within the country. They are appointed by the highest Polish authorities and hold their positions for six years.
Site of the National Broadcasting Council (English version):
Polish radio and television (RTP):
Guide to TVP in 2002 (in English)
The public broadcaster in Portugal is RTP (Portuguese Radio and Television).
RTP broadcasts two national radio channels; numerous local and international radio channels; two national television channels (RTP1, RTP2); two regional television channels: RTP Madeira and RTP Azzorre; two international TV channels (RTP Internacional, RTP Africa) and a TV news channel (NTV).
The opportuness of the radio and television public service is stated in Art.38, clause 5 of the Portuguese Constitution, which is followed by the internal and public legislative specifications listed in a hierarchic manner, an act of concession and a three year Service Contract. The last contract (in accordance with rescission no.1 from 7/12/94 on the future of the radio and television public service; in accordance with rescission A4-0140/96 from the European parliament on the 14/6/95; in consideration of Law 58/90 through which RTP is granted a 15 year concession; in consideration of Law 21/92) was stipulated in December 1996 between the State (represented by the Minister for the Treasury and Finance and by the Minister for Social Communications) and RTP. The institution site hosts a very detailed legislative section. The 1997/2000 contract is available, but has obviously expired by now. The new contract, foreseen and endorsed by Law no. 31 from 1998 has not yet been approved.
On 14 July 1998 the new Television Act (LEI N°31-A/98 was approved in which Chapter 4 ensures and regulates the public service.
RTP is currently going through a period of a financial and identity crisis. This crisis is mainly due to the radio and television system opening up to competition from private competitors since the beginning of the '90s. Also in virtue of this crisis, on the 22 August 2003 a new reorganisation Law (no.°33/2003) was passed for State companies in the audiovisual sector, through which RTP (Radiotelevisão Portuguesa S.A., limited public financed company) was transformed into a joint-stock company, changing its name to Rádio e Televisão de Portugal, SGPS, S.A. (Cf. site of the communications controlling authority: High Authority for Social Communications: http://www.aacs.pt/index.htm and Law no.33/2003 http://www.aacs.pt/legislacao/lei_33_2003.htm ).
The institutional site of Portuguese radio and television has not yet changed name and is available on the address www.rtp.pt
The fundamental law that regulates broadcasting in the Czech Republic is Law No. 483/1991, approved following the constitution of the Republic and which has been amended many times, or rather the amendments were made to Broadcasting Law No.231/2001 from the 17 May 2001. This established the Radio and Television Council, a managerial control authority composed of 13 members appointed by the Prime Minister on the indications of the Chamber of Deputies whose term of office lasts six years. The Council must submit an annual report to the Chamber of Deputies discussing its activities and the status of the radio and television broadcasters. The duties of the pubic television broadcaster (Ceska Televize, which does not include the public broadcaster Cesky Rozhlas or Radio Ceca) are established by Art.2 and 3 of Law 483 and subsequent modifications. In particular, the law orders that the duty of Czech television is to create and broadcast programmes for all groups of inhabitants, with particular attention given to the rights of religious freedom, culture, Czech ethnic or national origins, Czech national identity, social origins, age and gender, so that these programmes can reflect the broadest spectrum of public, religious, philosophical and artistic opinions, therefore favouring mutual comprehension and tolerance and providing support for the union of a pluralistic society. . The broadcaster is further assigned the duty of favouring the development of a cultural identity for the residents of the Czech Republic, including national and ethnic minorities.
The public broadcasters further operate on the basis of the laws of the Republic and from statutes and internal regulations.
On the 27 August 2003, the new Czech Television Statute was approved which defines the broadcaster as a public service institution.
Governance of Czech Television is assigned to the Director General who is further responsible for the Czech Television Council, in accordance with the law.
The organisational structure of the broadcaster includes 11 divisions: The Department of Executive Directors; The Office of the Director General; Programmes; Production; News; Finance; Commercial Activities; Legal Department; Communications; Brno Television Studio; Ostrava Television Studio. There are obviously further divisions and substructures.
The directors of the 11 divisions form the Executive Council which is a permanent advisory body to the Director General. The directors are chosen among other managers to be decided by the Director General.
The system of funding is mixed, resources coming from subscription fees are used along with commercial activity revenue.
Czech Radio and Television Council (English version):
Czech Television Statute 2003 (in English):
Broadcasting Act 2001 (in English):
Freedom of expression in Romania is based on Art.30 of the Constitution from 1991. The first law on broadcasting in post-Communist Romania was Law No. 48 on 21 May 1992 which over the years has been amended many times, until the approval of a new law on radio and television broadcasting, Law No.504 from 11 July 2002 published in the "Monitorul Oficial" (Official Romanian Government Publication) No.534 from 22 July 2002. The authority that controls the broadcasting system in Romania is the National Audiovisual Council (CNA), established under the 1992 law and currently disciplined by chapter II of Law 504. The CNA is an independent public authority controlled by the parliament and is responsible for public interest. Its purpose is to ensure pluralism in all its forms, favouring open competition, balancing out national and local programming, defending human rights and the rights of minors, the Romanian language and culture, as well as the rights of minority groups and ensuring transparency in the audiovisual sector.
The Council is composed of 11 members appointed by parliament. They are chosen as so: three by the Senate, three by the Chamber of Deputies, two by the President of the Republic and three by the Government. The hold their positions for four years and represent public interest and not their political party. This term is incompatible with other public or private terms of office, with the exception of teaching. The CSA is managed by a Chairperson chosen by the parliament from members of the CSA itself. The position of chairperson lasts 2 years and the term of office is renewal once. The CSA drafts an annual report of its activities which is then submitted to parliament.
There are two distinguished companies in Romania that manage television and radio public services.
The public broadcaster, Societcii Române de Radiodifuziune which broadcasts four radio channels: news, culture, youth and music; an international channel (Radio Romania International RRI) and ten regional and local channels that broadcast their own programmes.
The Romanian public broadcaster, Societatea Român de Televiziune (TVR) broadcasts four television channels: two national channels and two international channels via satellite. The national channels are Romania1, generalist and TVR2 that focuses on cultural and educational programmes; the satellite channels are TVR International and TVR Cultural.
There is a mixed system of funding: a tax is paid on radios and televisions and this is added to funding from advertising.
Public TV has a lot of private competition. Furthermore, cable TV is well developed in Romania: about 3 million subscribers, making it the fifth most cable diffused country in Europe.
The broadcasts on “Televisione rumena” and “Radio rumena” are regulated by Law 41 from 1994 (LEGE privind organizarea _i funccionarea Societcii Române de Radiodifuziune _i Societcii Române de Televiziune) which defines the mission and duties of the broadcaster. In line with the law, TVR has a three year programming strategy (the current strategy covers the three year period 2002-2004) with which its objectives are defined and which details the programming quotas in a precise manner that each channel must dedicate to the various genre. This document is comparable, with due caution, to our Service Contract.
In 2002, a new Internal Regulation (Regulamentul de Ordine Interioar) was approved for use by all TVR operators who work with the directives and laws that discipline the programme production and broadcasting.
Links to Law 504 from 2002 follow (Audiovisual Law, English version):
CHAPTER I - General Provisions
Since Law no. 41/1991 is not available in English, we refer you to the original
version in Romanian:
The public television broadcaster in Slovakia, STV (Slovenská televízia, Slovakia Television ), broadcasts two national channels, STV1 and STV2. STV is going through a period of immense change. In fact, its new management, in office since January 2003, has decided to carry out a radical transformation of the organisation and strategy of the company with the aim of overcoming the advanced decline which has hit the public company over the last few years. The change includes staff cuts, with the company going from 2,000 employees to 800.
The purpose of this company reorganisation is to allow STV to have a leaner and more dynamic structure which permits them to produce better programmes, starting as early as 2004.
The public radio broadcaster in Slovakia is Slovakradio which broadcasts 5 radio channels, the most popular being Rádio Slovensko that focuses on the news and on current affairs programmes. Slovakradio also broadcasts an international channel and streaming channel on the web.
Government bills have been presented in parliament to increase both the public television and radio channels. A new act is also under discussion on public service media.
Since 1992, the Republic of Slovakia, through Act No.294, has provided a dedicated body for the regulation and control of the radio and television sector, the Radio and Television Council of the Slovak Republic. A new Broadcasting Act, No.308/2000 from 4 October 2000, has reorganised the Council and has changed the name of the council to the Broadcasting and Retransmission Council.
The laws on radio and television in Slovakia, available on the Council site,
were approved following the constitution of the Republic. The Slovakian Television Act is No.254/1991 from
24 May 1991, while that of the Radio, approved on the same
day, is Act No.255/1991.
Site on the Broadcasting and Retransmission Council (English version)
including radio and television acts:
Link to the English version of the site for the Office of Telecommunications
in the Slovak Republic
The public radio and television broadcaster in Slovenia is Radio and Television Slovenia (RTV), which, from the “RTV Slovenia Act” (special act from 8 April 1994) defines the "public institution that performs a public service role in the radio and television fieldâ”. With about 2,300 employees, RTV is one of the biggest communication companies in Slovenia.
From 1990 onwards, or rather following the fall of Communism, the private companies started operating in the radio and television sector, even if private radio and television today is mostly of local dimensions with their offerings mainly based on soaps and imported American TV fiction films.
The public service of RTV was established by the Slovenian parliament. In accordance with the act, RTV broadcasts 2 national television channels, 3 national radio channels, one radio and one television channel respectively for the minority groups in Italian and Hungarian and lastly, programmes for the Slovenian minorities in neighbouring countries.
RTV complies with the European standards established by the European Convention on cross-border television for the European Council and from the Directive on Electronic Media in the European Union.
The governing body of RTV is the “Council of TRV Slovenia” composed of 25 members. Five of whom are chosen by the parliament in a number which strictly reflects the political force in government. A member is chosen from the Italian minority and one from the Hungarian minority, three from RTV operators and the remaining 15 from categorised associations, arts, university, the religious community, from the organisation Council for the disabled, etc. The term of office lasts four years and can be renewed. The Council passes statutes, appoints the Director General and the other managers, it decides the subscription fee, defines standards, strategic plans and other important issues.
Financial operations are supervised by the Control Commission composed of seven members, five of whom are appointed by the parliament and two by the RTV operators for a period of four years.
The management of economical activities and operations in RTV is assigned to the Director General who holds the post for four years and who is appointed by the Council on the basis of public consultation.
The fundamental acts that regulate RTV are the “RTV Slovenia
Act” (special act from 8 April 1994), the
act on public media (current Media Act from 2001),
the RTV Slovenia Statute, the operators of RTV are liable
to respect a code of conduct called the “Professional Standards
and Ethical Principles of Journalism on RTV Slovenia". Respect
for the code is assessed by monitoring programmes.
The 2001 Media Act created a new independent body, the Broadcasting Council, or rather the governing and controlling authority in the Slovenian communications sector. The Council is composed of seven members chosen by parliament. The term of office of the Council is five years.
Radio and Television Slovenia:
Special act from 8 April 1994 on RTV Slovenia (summary)
and link to the English version of the RTV site
Broadcasting Council (in English)
Media Act, 25 April 2001 (in English):
RadioTelevision Espanola (RTVE) is an administratively inscribed public company of the State Industrial Companies since 1 January 2001. Its other governing and management bodies are the Board of Management and General Management.
The Board of Management is composed of 12 members, half of whom are appointed by Congress and the other half by the Senate. The duration of their term of office coincides with legislation in force at the time of their appointment. The Director General attends sessions.
The Director General, the executive body of the RTVE group is appointed by the Government, following their consultation with the Board of Management and he/she holds the position for a period of four years, with the exception of the break up of parliament.
Direct and permanent control of RTVE actions and of its State companies is carried out through a Parliamentary Commission of the Deputies Congress. This commission, formed by a large number of parliamentarians who represent all constitutional parties, meets once a year.
Starting from the first of January 2002, modified legislation came into force which results as vitally important for the future of the Radio Television Espanola group. Under this modification, RTVE has been assigned a public service function which includes all programmes and channels of Radio Nacional de Espana and Television Espanola. This measure requires RTVE to become a strong radio and television power, a reference point in the sector, being modelled on other public radio and television broadcasters in Europe.
Each year, in accordance with the legal mandate, the company is liable to present a report on the execution of its service to the Parliamentary Commission of the Chamber of Deputies who perform controls on the RTVE public body and on its companies and pays particular attention to the supervision of the legally assigned execution of its public service function.
RTVE is currently Spain's main audiovisual group. At the same time, it competes with the most important radio and television operators worldwide, favoured by an increase in Spanish worldwide. Diversification is one of the broadcaster's strong points: in 2002 it broadcast more than 80,000 hours on TVE and RNE (Radio) inclusive of all genre and formats to fulfil different social and cultural needs.
The first public television channel, TVE1, consolidated its leadership in Spain in 2002. The course of 2002 saw the completion of the digitalisation of international broadcasts, as well as satellite broadcasting. Broadcasting of two generalist networks will also become digital from April 2002. Today, RTVE must develop and broadcast terrestrial digital television.
The standard outline that regulates RTVE broadcasts is as follows:
The function of RTVE public service:
The service offered by RTVE must reach a series of global public service objectives which are detailed in 10 points:
In accordance with the legal mandate, RTVE must promote development, knowledge, the promotion of different cultures, languages and social groups in communities and cities.
Lastly, RTVE must actively promote the development of the information society in four ways:
Law on the status of radio and television from 10 January no.4/1980 (in Spanish):
Additional plan 16 which modifies Spanish law on public radio and television
Sveriges television AB (Svt), the public television broadcaster in Sweden (radio is broadcast by other broadcasters) since 1 January 1997 has been governed by a foundation, the Forvaltningsstiftelsen for Sveriges Television AB. The purpose of the foundation is to ensure the independence of public service companies, or rather the television broadcasters Sveriges television AB, Sveriges Utbildningsradion (“Swedish broadcaster for educational programmes”) and the radio broadcaster Sveriges radio.
Svt is a free television broadcaster, therefore independent and non-governmental. It currently produces nine television channels, teletext services and internet. STV1 and STV2, the two national television channels, are broadcast both on digital and analogue.
The activities of Swedish television are regulated by three fundamental acts: the Fundamental Act on Freedom of Expression, the Radio and Television Act(844/1996), the Broadcast Chart (similar to our service contract) introduced by the government to ensure a good level of freedom of expression and of information. The contract (chart), in force since 1 January 1997 for a period of four years, replaces the agreement between the State and STV. In accordance with Article 3, Section 7, Paragraph 2 of the Radio and Television Act, the charter is automatically renewed for a period of four years without amendments if the broadcaster and the government, two years before the contract expires, show no desire to make amendments. In virtue of this, the contract from 1997 was automatically renewed.
The contract can be annulled.
Art. 18 of the contract contains regulations dedicated to the protection of disadvantaged groups and the enhancement of accessibility devices.
In 2000, STV underwent a company reorganisation process to assist the company in dealing with the rapid changes in the world of contemporary media.
The main government body is the Board of Management who are under the authority of the Director of Management and the Director of Programming. The second managerial body is the Executive Commission with eight company departments under its authority.
Charter (in English):
Site of the radio and television authority (English version):
Radio and Television Act (in English):
Italian broadcasts on Swiss Radio and Television (RTSI) are authorised by a concession, issued by a single company, SSR, which is composed of four regional companies - CORSI (Cooperative for Swiss Radio and Television in Italian) with RTSI being one of these. The organisation of the public radio and television broadcaster reflects the confederative, multilingual nature of the country.
SRG SSR Ideé Suisse is an non profit company offering a community service. It does not make any profit: most of its funding is ensured by radio and television revenue, combined with its commercial income.
SRG SSR programmes range from national, multimedia to multilingual. It includes 7 television broadcasters and 18 radio networks in four national languages with complementary sites - a total of ten languages - and Teletext services in Italian, German and French.
From an institutional point of view, the Swiss SRG SSR idée suisse radio and television company is a union of associations which any Swiss citizen can join. This organisation represents the company structure of SRG SSR and acts as an intermediary between public opinion and SRG SSR: its partners can have an input into SRG SSR, exactly as shareholders in an independent company. It includes four regional companies:
The company bodies at national level are:
The Central Council and the Central Council Committee correspond to the Regional Council and their respective committees on a regional level. These are assisted by the Public Council which in turn appoints the mediator bodies.
Since 1 October 2002, Jean-Bernard Münch has been the chairperson of the Central Council, the supreme body of the SRG SSR.
Swiss legislation on radio and television broadcasts is based on Art.93 of the Federal Constitution. The Radio and Television Act (LRTV) from 1991 followed and it is currently under revision, then came a Radio and Television Decree(ORTV) from 1997 which has partly modified LRTV; the concession; the Internal Statute of the company.
The "king" of all laws on radio and television broadcasts is the Federal Constitution in which Art.93 establishes that radio and television legislation is the responsibility of the Confederation; that radio and television must contribute to education and cultural development, to forming open opinions and entertainment; that it must also consider the specificity of the country and the needs of the Canton Swiss minority, by presenting events in a precise manner and by appropriately reflecting plurality in opinions expressed. Art.93 guarantees independence of radio and television channels (from the State), as well as the autonomy of ideas in programmes.
The basis for all radio and television broadcasters is the Federal Radio and Television Act (LRTV), which represents a judicial outline on which the electronic media operate in Switzerland. The act, with an entire chapter (third chapter) dedicated to SRG SSR, was initiated by the federal parliament and was subject to a referendum. LRTV from 21 June 1991, currently in force, is today under revision. The new act will not enter into force before 2004. The main objectives set by the new act are a more powerful public service, based on Switzerland, and greater liberty for commercial radio and television broadcasters. The 6 October 1997, in relation to Art.74 of the Act from 21 June 1991 on radio and television, saw the issuing by the Swiss Federal Council of a Radio and Television Decree(ORTV) (which is the State law from 23 December 1997) and which was modified on 23 June 1999 and is available on line.
The basis for SRG SSR is a concession. This establishes the number of radio and television channels that SRG SSR can have in each linguistic region (Art.2); it defines the programme mandate that SRG SSR must accomplish with its programmes (Art.3); it expresses the judicial outline of SRG SSR organisation.
The concession establishes the method of use for subscription fees by SRG SSR; it forbids advertising on SRG SSR radio networks (Art.11) (with the exception of self-promotion of networks and broadcasts)
The main structure for the functioning of each of the 4 companies are the Statutes. The current statute was approved by the authorised assembly on 22 November 1991 and the Federal Council on 12 February 1992. The SRG SSR Statute details the sanctions of the concession and defines the organisation details of SRG SSR. There is ample documentation on the SRG SSR site; in particular, there are documents on the LRTV debate which will come into force in 2004 and which must reinforce the public service mission. At present there is no contract similar to our Service Contract.
This address hosts references to standards in Italian which regulate the Swiss
public service broadcaster:
Three fundamental laws in Turkey regulate radio and television broadcasts: the main one being the Constitution, which guarantees freedom of expression to all, followed by Law No.3984 from 20 April 1994, or the “law on the establishment and broadcasting of radio and television channels”, which also establishes the governing authority of the system; lastly, Law No.2954 on TRT, which defines the particular obligations of the public radio and television broadcaster.
TRT, Turkiye Radyo Televizyon Kukumu (Turkish Radio and Television Company), was created in 1964, a period in which the first television signal broadcasts started in Turkey. Deregulation of the system occurred in the '90s due to increasing pressure from private companies. In 1993, an amendment to Art.133 of the Constitution removed any broadcasting obstacles for private companies.
Law No.2954 clarifies the status of public broadcasting. TRT is defined as an institution for the provision of a public service with constitutional autonomy. The management of the broadcaster is chosen by the government, who appoints the Board of Management and its chairperson.
TRT broadcasts seven television channels: TRT1; general channel; TRT2, cultural channel; TRT3 "youth" channel (mainly shows music and sports programmes); TRT4 educational channel that even broadcasts university lessons; TRT-INT and TRT-AVRASYA international channels that function as bridges between Europe and Asia; the regional channel GAP-TV. An outline similar to that of the television channels, characterised by themed channels is used by as many radio channels.
The governing body of the Turkish broadcasting system, established by law in 1994, is the Supreme Council for the Radio and Television (Radio vet Televizyon Ust Kurulu, RTÜK), who supervise conformity to the law by the broadcasters and in particular the observance of fundamental values of the Republic of Turkey. RTÜK is composed of nine members, chosen from the parliamentary political parties: five of whom are appointed by a government majority, four from the opposition.
Link to law No.3984 from 20 April 1994:
Link to English version of the RTÜK site:
Radio and television broadcasting regulations in Hungary are found in the Hungarian Constitution, the revised directive dated the 23 October 1989 (the anniversary of the 1956 revolution). The new Constitution contains a chapter entirely dedicated to fundamental rights of its people, many of whom were not recognised in the Soviet inspired Constitution. Art.61 acknowledges freedom of expression, the right to access and broadcast information in the public interest and freedom of the press. The article also contains regulations to ensure pluralism.
Radio and television broadcasting is regulated in detail in the Radio and Television Act, or Media Act, greatly discussed and approved in 1996 to govern the entrance of private companies into the system in a pluralist optic. The law distinguishes and governs the public service broadcasters, the public broadcasters, non profit broadcasters and commercial broadcasters. The act has also established the National Radio and Television Commission which is the supervisory body for radio and television activities.
Another fundamental act in the system of Hungarian broadcasting, LXXII Telecommunications Act from 1992, provides a legislative outline for frequency concessions. This act established the Communications Authority, which assesses, among other things, the requirements process for the assignment of frequencies to the applicant companies.
No separate law exists in Hungary for public radio and television broadcasts. In fact, the Media Act lists the regulations exclusively dedicated to this and specific regulations for commercial and non profit broadcasters.
Art. 34 of the act defines non profit broadcasters: broadcasters who contribute to providing services for the aspiration of national, ethnical and other minorities and who serve disadvantaged groups, or who intend to serve as a forum for public issues within a community. The act includes that the revenue of these broadcasters is exclusively used to continue and to develop the goal of the company. The time dedicated to advertising by the non profit broadcasters cannot exceed three minutes for each hour of broadcasting.
The Media Act brought about the transformation of national public broadcasters. Hungarian national radio and television was in fact withdrawn from the control and management of the state and transformed into a national public service broadcaster: Magyar Televiziò (MTV).
In accordance with law, only some broadcasters are considered public service broadcasters. Art.53 establishes that Hungary has national public service television, MTV, that broadcasts two national channels, M1 and M2, and a satellite channel, Duna Tv, mainly created for Hungarians abroad. The act foresees that the public broadcaster in general can broadcast a maximum of six minutes advertising for each hour of programming, five minutes maximum during the day. All the obligations that the public server broadcasters and public broadcasters must respect are established in Art. 2 of the Media Act. The difference between the status of the public service broadcaster and the service broadcaster is linked to its ownership. In fact, MTV is controlled by the State but the obligations are the same for both broadcasters.
Parliament has the power to directly or indirectly control the activities of the broadcasters. One of their prerogatives is to appoint the National Radio and Television Commission which has the task of verifying the radio and television broadcasters respect the law and to report to parliament.
Media Act (public service excerpts). The act was amended in 2002 but is not
available on line
National Commission on Radio and Television