List of events of major importance for society sent out for comments
The Ministry of Transport and Communications invites comments on the updated list of events of major importance for society that are to be broadcast on television. It is proposed that women's sports events corresponding to men's events already on the list be added to the list.
Provisions on the list are issued by government decree. The list comprises sports events that must be broadcast on TV in the area of Finland so that a substantial proportion of public can follow the coverage of the events free of charge via live coverage or deferred coverage.
It is proposed that the obligation to broadcast events live be clarified, for example by specifying that the most important events of the Olympic Games must be broadcast live in their entirety.
The updated list must also meet the requirements of EU legislation. The Commission’s criteria describing the importance of an event for society include a special general resonance of the sport, distinct cultural importance of the event, involvement of the national team in the event concerned, and the fact that the event has traditionally been broadcast on free-to-air television and commands large television audiences.
Updating the list of events of major importance for society will ensure that women’s sports events of major importance for society will be shown on free television channels. Specifying the obligation to broadcast certain events live will ensure that the events of major importance for society are available to all on equal terms.
It is proposed that the obligation to provide subtitles for live television broadcasts, laid down in the Decree, become fully applicable as of the beginning of 2021. The full application of the subtitling obligation means a 100% subtitling obligation for the Finnish Broadcasting Company, with the exception of programmes for which it is not technically possible to provide subtitles. Such programmes are, for example, regional news broadcasts.
The full application of the subtitling obligation for live television broadcasts improves the possibilities of special groups to follow live broadcast programmes.
Other amendments required under the Audiovisual Media Services Directive will also be made to the Decree.
What are the next steps?
The deadline for comments on the draft Decree is 12 November 2020. The request for comments has been published online at www.lausuntopalvelu.fi. Organisations and private individuals are invited to comment online or by email to email@example.com.
Following the consultation round, Ministry officials will continue the preparations for the Act.
Päivi-Maria Virta, Chief Specialist, tel. +358 50 362 7906
Elina Thorström, Director of Unit, tel. +358 40 507 4502