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Zim to repeal webcasting licensing

by Mandla Ndlovu
28 Nov 2018 at 15:42hrs | Views
Zimbabwe will soon be amending the Broadcasting Services Act (Chapter 12:06) to repeal clauses that relate to licencing for companies offering webcasting services, the Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ) has said.

This was announced at a roundtable discussion organised by the Ministry of Information, publicity and Broadcasting Services on Wednesday. The discussion centred on Licensing of community radio stations, funding of the industry and online content regulation among others matters.

BAZ announced that the clause had been overtaken by technological revolution hence it is impossible to enforce. The licencing of online content producers had generated problem for the Association  because independent social media users have been running content distribution through Facebook, Twitter and Youtube channels and yet there are players who have paid licences to exercise such rights.

BAZ also noted  that in terms of enforcing the regulation, it is problematic because a company can be based in Zimbabwe and do webcasting from other countries or vice versa. Hence the decision to repeal the clause.
An example that was cited was the electoral court challenge at the  constitutional court  where initially only those with webcasting and broadcasting licences where supposed to be allowed to purchase the stream from ZBC , but at the end many people with social media accounts were able to stream the court case.

BAZ said it will focus on remittances from the data selling companies who are the service providers for the online content distributors.
Econet Wireless and Trevor Ncube owned  Alpha Media Holdings are some of the current holders of Webcasting licenses.

The roundtable also discussed the issue of licencing of community radio stations which remains a sticking issue in the Zimbabwean media landscape.

Source - Byo24News