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Russia’s first Public TV Channel starts broadcasting

Russia’s first Public Television service, OTV, which is to be governed by the people rather than the state or channel owners, started broadcasting on Sunday May 19, offering TV viewers newscasts, films, entertainment and cognitive programs.

President Vladimir Putin issued a decree last Wednesday approving the makeup of the Public Television board, and the broadcaster.

The new TV channel, which will not run any commercials and will be accessible free of charge through all cable, satellite and IP-television networks in Russia. The TV channel can also be watched by accessing its website at, RIA Novosti reports.

The idea of setting up public television in Russia whose policy would be governed by the public rather than by the state or the channel owners was put forward by then-President Dmitry Medvedev in late December 2011 following street protests in Moscow which were not broadcast by the country’s state-run channels.

Medvedev said at the time the new television would employ all the latest information technologies and make the Russian media market more competitive and interesting.

Public TV, known in Russian as OTV, will be funded by the government and later with private donations and will be headed by Anatoly Lysenko, 76, a veteran Soviet/Russian TV journalist and manager.