South Africa’s Film And Publication Board Guns For Netflix -Reports

South Africa’s Film and Publication Board (FPB) has announced that the newly passed Films and Publications Amendment Bill will allow it to take action against distributors who don’t comply with its regulations.

While it doesn’t name Netflix directly, the international streaming giant has been a very vocal opponent of the FPB’s attempts at charging content distributors in South Africa who operate online an annual “licence fee”.

The FPB released a statement on Friday saying that it welcomed President Cyril Ramaphosa’s signing of the controversial Films and Publications Amendment Bill.

Otherwise known as the “Internet censorship bill”, the President of South Africa signed the controversial bill into law on the 2nd of October along with three other bills.

Many have criticised the Films and Publications Amendment Bill for being poorly written and have said that the bill creates the potential for the law to be abused to ultimately stifle freedom of speech in South Africa.

FPB said that the bill gave it the power to go after content distributors who fail to comply with its regulations.

While Netflix is not the only online streaming video provider operating in South Africa that refuses to pay the FPB’s licensing fee for distributing online, it is definitely the most prominent.

At current estimates, the streaming giant would have to pay approximately $85 000 in licence fees for 2019 if the suggested tariffs are approved.

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