Internet radio-TV broadcasts are now under the control of RTÜK
The Turkish Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK) has officially been given the authority to regulate and monitor sound and visual broadcasting shared on the internet on a regular basis.
According to a regulation on the “Presentation of Radio, Television and Optional Broadcasts on the Internet” published in the Official Gazette on Aug.1, inspections of the watchdog will include movies, series on digital TV platforms such as Netflix, and social media platforms that deliver news on a regular basis. The regulation covers news broadcasts on YouTube, but not individual YouTube feeds. Those who will be broadcasting online will need to get a license first from RTÜK.
“During the delivery of radio, television and on-demand services on the internet, measures will be taken to ensure parental control of media content that could harm the physical, mental and moral development of children and young people,” said the regulation.
Platforms for real and legal persons dedicated to transmitting individual broadcasting and communication services over the internet (excluding news, film and TV series) are excluded from the scope of the regulation.
The provisions of this regulation will also apply to the transmission of broadcasting services of media service providers or platform operators under the jurisdiction of another country which is determined to broadcast contrary to the provisions of the Turkish law, although the content or location provider is located abroad.
The law also applies to publishing services of broadcasting institutions even if their broadcast language is not Turkish but broadcasts commercial communications services to Turkey.
According to the legislation, overseas companies who want to broadcast in Turkey on the internet have to establish a company and obtain a license in Turkey.
So Netflix, even having corporate headquarters in the Netherlands, will have to establish a company in Turkey in order to take a license. RTÜK will identify the broadcasting platforms, which do not receive a license, and announce them on its website.
Local streaming TV platforms such as Blu TV and Puhu TV will also be under RTÜK’s inspection.
Social media platforms that deliver news on a regular basis will be subjected to the same regulations, such as Medyascope.tv, which delivers audiovisual journalistic content via Periscope.
The regulation stipulates removal of the entire broadcast or just the relevant part of the content that violates the law. The broadcasting license may be terminated due to a compelling reason deemed appropriate by RTÜK.
If the conditions for granting a license are lost, the publication may be suspended for a period of three months. Thirty days will be given to the broadcaster to re-establish the necessary conditions.
The internet-TV broadcast license fee and internet-İBYH (Optional) broadcast license fee will be 100,000 Turkish Liras. Thematic publication licensing fees on the internet teleshopping will be calculated as five times of this amount.
Media service providers that offer broadcast services to subscribers or users for a fee and through conditional access will pay RTUK five per thousand of their annual net sales.
There are gray areas and unclear provisions İn the legislation, Faruk Bildirici, a member of the board told daily Hürriyet. The legislation elaborates on unspecified platforms, but these platforms are undefined, he said.