RTL seeks Euro wide relaxation on TV ad rules

European broadcaster RTL is seeking a relaxation of advertising rules to allow innovations such as sponsors' logos to be shown in the top right-hand corner of television screens, its chief executive Gerhard Zeiler said.

Zeiler explained that regulators in all the countries in which it operates are increasingly aware of the financial pain caused to free-to-air broadcasters by the recession in advertising. “Within the next five years, our industry will have to take steps… to offer to open up new forms of advertising,” he said.

With increased technological ability, this could include targeted advertising and product placement in popular programmes, but also the expansion of other sponsorship activities.

“We could go to the regulators – it is already happening in some countries – and say 'why not have the sponsor logos, let's say, in the right upper corner [of the TV screen], when the broadcaster's logo is in the left upper corner',” he said. “I am pretty much convinced regulators are more open to gradually allowing more liberalisation in terms of the advertising forms, which we will have in TV.”

He compared the growth of advertising on the internet which is not inhibited by any restrictions.

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