South Africa: Public Hearing For Audio-visual Content Services Policy Framework Set For April
According to industry sources, the Department of Communications and Digital Technologies has scheduled public hearings for April and May 2021 to solicit input for the draft on the Audio-visual Content Services Policy Framework white paper. The department intends to ensure that all sectors and all affected stakeholders have an opportunity to provide input onto the draft by that, bring a broader aspect of the audio-visual content space in preparation for the final white paper. Last year, the department had published the draft white paper for public comment.
The department is looking for review input on the following areas:
- The licensing of streaming service/ OTTs
- Pay-Tv and Free-To-Air competition issues
- Acceleration of digital transformation in the sector and the skills development that is needed for this transformation
A statement by Stelle Ndabeni-Abrahams, the Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies read, there exist a great demand to expand the field between traditional broadcasting, video-on-demand services, catch-up TV services, news portals, as well as video-sharing platforms. She further said that getting to this stage of the draft white paper has been a long journey. Ndabeni highlighted that the department has received over formal submission to date from a wide range of stakeholders and individuals.
Additionally, it has been reported that the Communications Department is currently analysing the industry submissions in order to incorporate the inputs into the white paper.