No to ad-free public TV: poll
14 April 2006
AMSTERDAM — Dutch people don’t want to pay the bill for advert-free public broadcast services, a new opinion poll suggests.
A survey carried out by TNS NIPO on behalf of television advertisement body ‘Ster’ found that 61 percent of the public feels it is acceptable to have product commercials on the three public channels (NED 1, NED 2 and NED 3).
If accurate, this is totally contrary to the views in parliament where a majority of MPs wants a gradual halt to adverts on public stations because they also receive State funding. MPs of the Liberal Party (VVD) are particularly keen to restrict adverts to commercial television channels. But according to the opinion poll, a majority of VVD voters don’t share this conviction.
There is a similar division between the Christian Democrat Party (CDA) and its supporters.
Arian Buurman, the director of ‘Ster’, said the survey indicates commercials are inextricably linked to daily life. “Commercials, aside from soliciting, also serve an informational purpose for the public.”
Buurman claimed that public station would go bankrupt if they were deprived of the income from commercials. “Even the compensation from the State purse would, as a result of the enormous market forces, not be sufficient to maintain a broad and vibrant public broadcasting system,” he said.
Media Minister Medy van der Laan believes the days of blocks of commercials between programmes are over and she has ordered a study of other forms of sponsorship.
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2006]
Subject: Dutch news