Australia's free-to-air TV networks have called on the federal government to impose tough new regulations on future Internet TV services to prevent them grabbing premium sport and other content.
Free TV Australia, representing the Seven, Nine, Ten, ABC and SBS networks, argued the anti-siphoning content rules for pay-TV should include IPTV.
In its submission on regulatory reform related to the National Broadband Network, Free TV also said it would be concerned if IPTV services “with significant market power were able to exclusively acquire the digital rights to premium content”.
“This would not only have a negative impact on the market for content but would also reduce competition and choice for consumers in other markets,” the networks argue.
The NBN will deliver super-fast Internet speeds that will make true IPTV possible for the first time. The government has said it intends to wait “until the NBN is more advanced before launching a full-scale review of convergence-related issues”. The anti-siphoning rules, which give free-to-air TV the first pick of major sports broadcast rights, are due to be reviewed this year.