Swiss sports channel wins must-carry status

February 25, 2009 | 11:41 UK

The Swiss Federal Office for Communications (BAKOM) has awarded must carry status to Schweizer Sportfernsehen (SSF) over the Cablecom network. The ruling forces Cablecom to carry the channel in its analogue basic package for a period of three years from July 1, 2009 in German-speaking parts of the country.

Bakom accepted SSF’s arguments that its focus on marginal and grassroots sports differentiated the channel from other offerings. In a statement Bakom said it had concluded that sport was essential to education, cultural development and entertainment.

“The particular social and cultural significance of sport lies in its diversity and complexity,” the regulator said.
The move comes at a time when Cablecom is looking to move channels out of the analogue package in order to further develop its digital offer. The Swiss Radio and Television act allows for up to 25 channels to be offered must carry status.