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Media "sabotaging" digital migration

12 February 2014, 09:25

Nairobi - The Communications Commission of Kenya (CCK) has accused the three main media owners of sabotaging digital migration public awareness campaigns.

The commission argued that the media houses have raised regarding signal distribution, which have led to the suspension of the project, were not genuine.

In an exclusive interview, CCK Communications Manager, Christopher Wambua, said the media owners, who had gone to court, were “sabotaging” the digital migration by failing to publish campaign material meant to educate the public on digital migration.

Royal media services, Standard Group and Nation Media Group are the three media houses that have gone to court to demand that they be allowed to carry their own signals.

“The main set back to date has been the decision by the main broadcasters to refuse to air the awareness campaign materials meant to educate consumers on the benefits of digital broadcasting technology,” said Wambua.

The media owners’ case against the ministry of ICT over the distribution of digital signals is ongoing.

Despite the deadlock with the media houses, CCK believes enough has been done in consumer awareness campaigns.

“We intend to carry out more intensive campaigns as we progressively migrate the rest of the country. Our success can be witnessed by large number of queries we continue to receive and the increase in sales of digital TV Set Top Boxes,” said Wambua.

Meanwhile, CCK Wambua said traditional analogue TV broadcasting required broadcasters to have their own TV broadcasting frequencies, and distribution systems.

“Broadcasters produced their own content or even purchased rights to air programs, aggregated this content, and broadcasted it,” he said.
He added that in digital terrestrial broadcasting, the players in the TV broadcasting fell under three categories- Content Providers (for example Advertisers), Content Aggregators and Signal Distributors.

CCK maintains that in the digital environment these three categories are distinctive and distribution of signal will be left to signal distributors.

Wambua said the Digital Television Committee had done massive consumer awareness programs which started in December 2009.

CCK, he said is a member of this multi-stakeholder committee and has hosted its secretariat.

– CAJ News

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