Populist quizzes have no place on public broadcasters: minister

The Dutch public broadcasting system needs overhauling to ensure only programmes which are informative, cultural or educational get taxpayer funding, junior culture minister Sander Dekker told news website nu.nl.

Entertainment programmes such as Bananasplit and quizzes like Ranking the Stars have no place in the public system, Dekker said. ‘The public broadcasters do little to make themselves stand out and that damages their legitimacy.’

In addition, 50% of the funding currently allocated to the public broadcasters is to be reserved for private companies and organisations who should be allowed to compete for the cash, Dekker told nu.nl.

Arts council

The proposals are in line with plans presented by the Dutch arts council in March this year. It said the three Dutch public broadcasting channels should be open to programming from other sources.

There are currently 21 public broadcasting companies, but their number is being merged into eight in 2016 and then again to six.

Public broadcasting is funded by a combination of government money and advertising, but state funding is being slashed by €200m a year from 2015.

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