French broadcast regulator the Conseil supérieur de l’audiovisuel (CSA) has rejected applications from three channels to migrate from pay-TV channels on France’s digital terrestrial TV platform to become free-to-air.
The three channels – LCI, Paris Première and Planète + had sought to change their funding status under provisions that allow the CSA to permit the migration of a pay regime to free or vice versa.
In taking the decision, the CSA assessed a number of factors: respect for the fundamental requirement of pluralism, the balance in the advertising market and the promotion of quality and diversity of programmes. In this respect, the Council must ensure sufficient diversity of operators.
The CSA examined these factors in terms of their competitive and editorial effects, as well as assessing their economic impact on all audiovisual sector players, especially in terms of advertising revenue share.
The CSA focused on the economic elements of the following assessment:
The state of the advertising market;
The financial position of existing free DTT channels;
The supply and consumer demand for television.