Multichoice gets tough with ‘grey’ market subs

African pay-TV operator Multichoice is happy to sign up subscribers wherever they live, but it seems that there are many of its South African DStv viewers who don’t live in South Africa, but in neighbouring Zimbabwe, and yet pay for their sub in South Africa’s Rand.

Multichoice Zimbabwe’s head of publicity Liz Dziva, in an interview with Zimbabwe’s Herald newspaper, says that the broadcaster has to comply with international copyright law to ensure that correct and legal distribution of channels is adhered to.

“In line with international law and copyright conventions MultiChoice is obliged to ensure the correct and legal distribution of channels. To comply, an audit has been done on our accounts and subscribers with accounts outside of their country of residence and reception need to be corrected.

“As a result these subscribers have been advised to visit their local Multichoice offices to ensure they are activated within the correct schema,” she said.

Dziva confirmed that Multichoice have also hiked their subscription prices locally which might well be another incentive for ‘grey’ market – out of country – subscribers.

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