Deutsche Welle (DW) will no longer distribute its TV channel via domestic German TV platforms.
This was confirmed by media regulators to German news agency dpa. Such TV platforms include MagentaTV, Joyn, Sky Q, Zuhause Kabel (Deutsche Telekom) and Zattoo.
The move does not mean that the programmes of Germany’s international service can no longer be received in Germany at all. “The distribution of Deutsche Welle’s programmes on the open internet and via its own websites do not fall under the direct responsibility of the media authorities,” the regulators said. YouTube is also not among the affected platforms.
The regulators consider the distribution of DW programmes on domestic TV platforms to be against the law and justify this with the broadcaster’s legal mandate to broadcast for German and international audiences abroad.
After long discussions, Deutsche Welle and the media authorities agreed to terminate the distribution via domestic German TV platforms. In this context, media regulators from German federal state Hesse had initiated a first procedure against MagentaTV, which has now been dropped.
The background of the move is likely to be the dispute over the non-licencing of RT DE (formerly Russia Today) by the German media authorities. The reason: state television is not permitted in Germany. RT DE claimed unequal treatment, arguing that Deutsche Welle, despite being a state-funded broadcaster, was being distributed on German TV platforms.