Netflix Applies to RTAK for License Under New Overseeing Regulation

The Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTAK) has officially begun to supervise the media organizations broadcasting on the internet.

The regulation, which has been on hold at the presidency since September 2018, was published in the Official Gazette on August 1, and the period given to online broadcasters to obtain licenses from RTAK in accordance with the regulation expired on September 1. Thus, it officially began to control online broadcasts from September 2.

RTAK Chair Ebubekir Sanin said on Twitter that on-demand platforms Netflix, BluTV and PuhuTV applied for a license. Around 600 organizations, including Turkcell, Vodafone, Digiturk and Tivibu, applied to RTAK, he added.

Under the regulation published in the Official Gazette on August 1, 2019, internet broadcasting platforms in Turkey are required to apply for licenses to the RTAK within one month after the regulation came in effect.

Although the application date for these licenses is behind, no official announcement has been made from RTAK.

Netflix: Our goal is to protect children

A spokesperson for the Netflix confirmed that the company has applied for a license.

"We have started our license application process as required by the new regulation for online broadcasting.

"We have 1.5 million members in Turkey and this is increasing. We believe our members value the rich variety of content we offer from around the world and the local stories we carry from Turkey to the world. Therefore, on the one hand, we continue to increase our investments in Turkey, and on the other hand, we continue to negotiate with the authorities to take steps to further strengthen the parental controls we offer.

"Our goal is to ensure that our members enjoy their preferred content while effectively protecting our children from content that is not appropriate for their age."

How does the new regulation work?

According to the regulation that came into force, broadcasters will no longer be able to provide these services without obtaining a license from the RTAK. The license fees will be 10 thousand liras (~1.7 US dollars) for radio broadcasting and 100 thousand liras for TV broadcasting and on-demand platforms.

Broadcasting organizations will also be charged 100 thousand liras a year. According to the regulation, the publishers who will give 5 per thousand of their annual revenues to RTAK every year will have to remove the content that RTAK does not find appropriate from their catalogs.

These broadcast platforms will also be responsible for informing viewers by voice or in writing about the content of program services using the protective symbol system.

Source: English Bianet