Sky Italia drops Mediaset channel as row escalates
July 4, 2011
Sky Italia, the Italian pay-television unit of News Corp, has pulled a Mediaset channel from its offering in the latest row between the country’s two largest private broadcasters.
Sky Italia said it had pulled the Mediaset Plus channel because Mediaset was not providing the kind of content expected under its contract.
Mediaset Plus showed the most popular programmes on Mediaset’s three free-to-air channels, such as the Italian version of “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire”. Sky Italia paid Mediaset, owned by Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s family, for the right to broadcast the channel. Sky Italia has offered Mediaset Plus on its subscription-based satellite platform since 2008.
“The lack of respect for these commitments … unfortunately has made the decision necessary to interrupt distribution” of the channel, Sky Italia Chief Executive Tom Mockbridge said in the statement.