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Armenia’s Ombudsman criticizes commission on television and radio

16:10, 26.03.2012 Region: Armenia Theme: Society

YEREVAN.- Armenia’s Ombudsman Karen Andreasyan presented a report on activities of the RA National Commission on Television and Radio (NCTR) in 2011. He pointed out shortcomings and positive developments.

 Shortcomings and problems identified

• Especially in case of various infringement of the law in television broadcasting, including lack of pluralism, violations of advertising law, not fulfilling the requirements of the legislation on Armenian Language and ignoring the ethical rules the results of the monitoring of TV and Radio companies activities carried out by the NCTR were extremely insufficient.  

• As a result of spatial interpretation of appropriate provisions of RA Law “On Advertisement” and “On TV and Radio” in the respect to advertising restrictions on Public TV airtime the NCTR did not ensured the rights of private TV channels and  Armenian taxpayers, who fund and observe the Public Television.  

• Declaring that the digitalisation process is not within its jurisdiction, the NCTR not only does not accept the responsibility for the most essential processes of its area, but even is not aware of the information of utmost importance. Realization of its own functions in such a way testifies to their insufficient and inadequate implementation.

• In the respect to assurance of antimonopoly guarantees prescribed by the law, the NCTR displayed inactivity during 2011 and did not carry out its oversight functions for prevention of over-concentration and monopoly of broadcasting market.

Positive Developments

• Due to May 26, 2011 amendments to the Article 9 of the RA Law “On Advertisment” advertisement volume abuse possibilities in Public TV airtime were eliminated which derived from spatial and non-legal interpretations of the law. 

• The NCTV revealed two cases of law violation in the result of monitoring of TV and Radio companies activities and legitimately reacted to it. 

• An addition was made to the RA Law “On TV and Radio”, according to which the Public TV and other  private TV channels of Armenia are obliged to broadcast at least one TV program for children and one news program with sign language translation or Armenian subtitles in their programs for children and (or ) news programs  during the day airtime. 



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