New public broadcasters queue up

The Telegraaf newspaper group has attracted enough supporters for its two television initiatives to qualify for public broadcasting status.

The Telegraaf newspaper’s Wakker Nederland and shock blog GeenStijl’s PowNed both have gathered the 50,000 signatures necessary to join the public tv system.
Culture minister Ronald Plasterk has the final say on whether Wakker Nederland and PowNed should be entitled to taxpayer funding and airtime.
But an initiative to set up a Muslim-based broadcaster Zenit has failed, as has a project to set up a broadcaster which focused on diversity issues, Nos tv said on Tuesday.
Taxpayer funding
The Dutch Publieke Omroep (OP), or public broadcasting system, is funded partly by advertising and partly by the treasury.
The numerous public broadcasting companies (including AVRO, BNN, KRO, NCRV, TROS, VARA and VPRO) provide programming for three national television and five radio stations as well as digital channels.
The broadcasters all have a specific religious, political or social slant and their airtime is allocated according to how many members they have.
It is not yet clear if any other new public broadcasting initiatives have reached the required membership level.

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