TV Programming: SABC's 7de Laan Fans Kick Against Programme's Editorial Calls
Following the decision by the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) that it will reduce the airing of the popular Afrikaans-language soapie on the SABC2 channel, 7de Laan from five to three weekly episodes, the fans of the show have been up-in-arms against the move, and have set-up an aggressive online petition to get the SABC to reverse this decision.
7de Laan fans say that reducing the days they can watch the long-standing show is not only an attack on them; they also see it as an "assault" on the South African's Afrikaans community too. According to reporting by TV with Thinus, the fans are saying that "This is the soap that taught thousands of us how to speak Afrikaans since a young age.
However, SABC's head of TV, Mr Merlin Naicker, said in a statement that cutting down on 7de Laan "is part of SABC's long-term plan to invest in quality local content" since SABC2 wants to bring viewers more shows. Serving a diverse South African audience, we must come with innovative and exciting content, which will not only draw the viewership but bring in the revenue required to keep the public service broadcaster financially sustainable".
SABC says that 7de Laan will be replaced by a new Afrikaans telenovela entitled Die Sentrum on Thursdays and Fridays from April in the 18:00 timeslot.