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TopTV: Porn could kick-start recovery

2013-03-15 10:06
 
TopTV
Cape Town – TopTV told South Africa's broadcasting regulator on Thursday that a porn bouquet of sex channels "could kick-start TopTV's recovery".

On Digital Media (ODM) which runs the struggling TopTV pay-TV service in South Africa, told the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) that broadcasting porn channels is lucrative and that adding a porn bouquet of sex channels "could kick-start the recovery".

TopTV is currently appearing and arguing its case to start a separate porn bouquet of three channels at its public hearing at Icasa's head office in Sandton.

"ODM is in business rescue. Adult content is by no means the panacea to solving ODM's financial difficulties. Plans to launch these channels were in fact started long before the company filed for business rescue.

"But it is a potentially lucrative segment that could kick-start ODM's recovery," the pay-TV operator said in its presentation.

TopTV told Icasa that "two of the key drivers of subscriber uptake in the pay-TV business are sport and adult content. ODM's competitors currently have the rights to the majority of premium sport content; ODM therefore sees adult content as a key competitive driver which will boost its subscriber base and grow revenues."

Watershed period

TopTV in its presentation did an about-turn on its original application and now only wants to broadcast the three Playboy channels during what the TV industry calls the "watershed period" – from 20:00 to 05:00 when more mature and riskier visual content and language content can usually be shown and heard on television.

Originally, in its written application when TopTV applied for the second time to Icasa, it said that to only restrict the sex channels to the watershed period would "not be viable".

TopTV said that it "would not be commercially savvy to run a channel from 20:00 to 05:00 only, as that will not be suitable and/or appealing to the majority of the audience interested in the channel/content".

Now TopTV says it only wants to broadcast the separate bouquet of channels during the watershed period.

"ODM's new submission offers to restrict the broadcast of the three adult entertainment channels to the so-called 'watershed period' which falls between 20:00 and 05:00".

"We acknowledge that there is genuine public concern about the protection of children from viewing adult TV content," said Eddie Mbalo, the acting CEO of TopTV.

"Even though we have strict mechanisms in place to give parents full control over the access to these channels, as an extra precaution we have made the decision not to broadcast adult material outside the watershed period, when children are likely to be awake," said Mbalo.

- Channel24

Read more on:    icasa  |  toptv  |  pornography  |  tv
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