Allegations against Spain's pay-DTT

Iñaki Ferreras

The draft on Spain’s future pay-DTT platform, presented by the Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce on June 17 goes against the law, alters the rules of the game and is not justified to be run with urgency or general interest, at least according to present Spanish pay-TV operators Ono and Digital+'s Sogecable.

These allegations have been presented to the Advising Council of Telecommunications and the Information Society of this Ministry.

Cable operator Ono considers that the future law changes the rules of the pay-TV game in Spain because "it modifies the conditions established when the DTT licences were given out". Licences distributed to broadcasters Vocento's Net TV, Unidad Editorial's Veo TV and Imagina's laSexta forecast their broadcasts would be in-the-clear.

Ono states in order to transform Spain’s DTT platform from the in-the-clear model to the payment model the "essential conditions must be modified".

On its side, Sogecable maintains the draft of the future pay-DTT law "is not legal, does not call for any social demand and highlights the bad politics of the current government". But Sogecable does not oppose pay-DTT although it says the chosen formula for its future regulation "goes against all odds".

Sogecable asks for the draft to be thrown away because it favours the terrestrial broadcasters and goes against the satellite, cable and DSL TV operators. This discrimination, according to Sogecable, not only alters the rules of a whole sector but it also goes against the European Union Treaty on establishing measures towards benefiting DTT and terrestrial broadcasters - something the company considers is "state funding".