Dutch parliament has given Sander Dekker, secretary for media, six months to negotiate with distribution platforms the undisrupted carriage of TV signals.
If the parties do not reach agreement, parliament will change the current Medialaw to take care of the matter. The changes will enforce the undisrupted distribution of all channels including any additional data such as HbbTV.
At the moment, the country’s two largest cable operators, UPC and Ziggo, are filtering the HbbTV signals from all broadcasters, both Dutch and foreign. Other platforms, including the DTT provider KPN Digitenne, the CAIWay cable network and satellite DTH service Canal Digitaal carry the HbbTV signals.
At the moment, Dutch public channels have a number of HbbTV applications running and private broadcaster SBS is starting to test the first apps. A number of other broadcasters that are distributed on the cable nets also carry HbbTV, including the German broadcasters RTL, ProSieben, ARD and ZDF and Spanish TVE.
Although Ziggo and UPC have never given a reason for filtering the signals, it looks like they want to prevent their customers from using over-the-top services such as the on-demand functions in the HbbTV platform.