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NBTC urged to educate consumers on broadcasting services

The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) of Thailand, must educate general consumers to understand their basic right to access broadcasting services from all free-to-air TV channels, reports The Nation.

The issue was addressed at a roundtable discussion organised to solve the problem of the non-availability of live Euro 2012 soccer matches on some cable and satellite TV networks.

Many local viewers have complained that they could not watch the live matches on free-to-air TV channels carried over cable and satellite since the tournament began early this month,

Somkiet Onwimon, a media academic, said the watchdog must take this opportunity to raise public awareness and understanding that the media industry is in a state of flux while waiting for the new broadcasting regulations. Old broadcast technology is also becoming outmoded with the boom in satellite TV among households, he said.

Pravit Maleenont, senior executive vice president and executive director for the television business at BEC World, said his company has a concession from MCOT to operate ThaiTV3 for terrestrial analog broadcasting, but not for satellite broadcasting.

Under this concession, the company has yet to be allowed to expand its broadcasting network or to invest in advanced technology.

However, Pravit, along with representatives from the Army’s TV5 and MCOT’s Modernine TV, insisted that because broadcasters must respect all copyrights, media rights holders are now concentrating more on the restrictions under the international copyright protection law.