Is this the end of traditional Broadcasters?
This question could still sound very exaggerated at this side of the ocean. However, the trends worldwide towards an Internet TV are very sound. Where does the success of cable and Internet TV lie?
The consumers are getting more and more sophisticated and they do not resign themselves with the programs other decided to include in the TV channels. They want to decide what to watch and when!
Neelie Kroes, Vice-President of the European Commission, highlighted a relevant issue considering the pace of the times when addressing exhibitors and audience at the International Broadcasting Convention 2014 some days ago: “we need ensure open access to content”. Certainly, it perfectly fits with our Digital Manifesto Open Agenda, but what does she recommend?
Ensuring an open access to content, which has a twofold implication:
o Taking down geographical borders, so that users can pay to access their favorite TV show when travelling within Europe or watch the match of their favorite football team from back home.
o Safeguarding the open internet and new services from being blocked. This starts with Net Neutrality – which should leave room for services demanding a guaranteed high quality, like IPTV, as long as it doesn’t degrade the regular internet- and follows with Platform Neutrality, Search Neutrality and more, expanding the focus onto the whole value chain.
Reviewing the specific legal framework: the Directive for audiovisual and media service; which, after the open consultation on the Green Paper “Preparing for a Fully Converged Audiovisual World: Growth, Creation and Value” is set to be reviewed in 2015. The reviewed framework should avoid to be too detailed, prevailing clear principles and let some room for deregulation.
Pushing for fast and superfast broadband everywhere needed to channel all that quality content. And mobile capacity should also be considered: we need to manage spectrum resources better and to plan ahead, and repurpose the 700 MegaHertz band for wireless broadband by 2020.
Jean-Claude Juncker, Commission President-elect, for its part, has also put at the top of his agenda achieving the digital single market, placing audiovisual content as central for it (read our previous post “Open content for an open Internet”).