CC image courtesy of Matti Mattila
Mungai told the ongoing East African Communications Organisation (EACO) Congress in Nairobi that public service broadcasters will have little capacity to generate funds for their public service mandate under the liberalised digital environment.
The assembly of broadcasters meeting at the ongoing event discussed the problem and came up with recommendations to help public service broadcasters in the digital environment.
The broadcasters agreed that: “Public broadcasters must ensure consistent funding by central governments, either directly or through licensing levies, in order to ensure that they continue to discharge their unique public broadcasting service mandate.”
Additionally, the broadcasters must diversify to new business models and enhance their points of presence by putting their content on other delivery platforms.
This according to the broadcasters will help cater for the growing young population who mainly access broadcast content using the internet or mobile phones.
Finally, regulators in member countries should ensure that the licences for the signal distributors and pay-television providers include the ‘must carry’ condition that also ensures that public service channels remain unconditionally free-to-air and are transmitted at each transmission site.