The Institute for Development of Freedom of Information(IDFI) is going to hold 21 May the presentation of a strategy of the switchover to digital broadcasting. The research provides in-depth review of all the processes that, according to the organization, are supposed to be carried out in order to secure the country’s safe, unimpeded switchover from the analogous to digital broadcasting and establish terrestrial broadcasting as competitor platform.
Technical and Technological Options
IDFI believes that a universal broadcasting service should be provided to the 85% of the population in order to satisfy public interest, and that it is just as much important to secure the formation of protected and stable network by the maximal utilization of resources.
According to the project, the DVB-T2 transmission standard, MPEG-4 compression standard and SDTV television format must established in parallel with the issuing of international broadcasting network license in the transitional period. After the disconnection of the analogous broadcasting, the HDTV signal must as well be used along with SDTV.
The Autonomous Republic of Abkhazia is supposed to stay on the analogous broadcasting until 2012, while the region of Gali is meant to be covered by the digital signal, from the nearby territories of the actual border, on general terms. The authors of the research believe that the wide area network of Georgia is well developed on the main level, and that it’s necessary to use it in order to secure the reliability and high conductivity.
Single- frequency network(SFN) must be established in the highly dense digital zones with complex relief.
According to the project prepared by IDFI, content is going to be spread for free via the first two multiplexers, and that paid services are supposed to be introduced with the activation of the third multiplexer which must at the same time provide a mixed-model service to a customer. The content of the Public Broadcaster must be circulated, via multiplexers and transmission network, under the management of a commercial legal person that must have the liability of circulating the GPB content as the must carry content.
The authors of the research believe that during the transitional period 15 standard Definition TV service (SDTV) must be transmitted by both the National commercial and non-commercial multiplexers in MPEG 4 compression standard. After the termination of the transitional period, multiplex operators must be allowed to provide paid services in the HDTV standard with the consent of the GNCC.
As suggested by the project, during the transitional period the content of the regional channels must be transmitted via general network of free active frequencies, in accordance with the expanded digital zones. The channels will then cover one another (internal platform competition).
The research further reads that a multiplex operator must have the right to preliminary, indiscriminately and transparently pick up a broadcaster based on the contest terms or the priority of an applicant.
During the course of the transitional period the issuing of license must be carried out based on the contest terms. During that time, the type of network must be selected and terms of its building defined. The efficiency of the utilization of the frequency spectrum must be discussed also, as well as the issues regarding the terms of admittance, tariffs and other important issues defined by GNCC.
According to the project, those below the established level of poverty, as well as the low-income citizens must be given opportunity of buying a receiver, or be given funding in order to purchase television of the appropriate category and other devices. And the norms that define funding must be simple and transparent. The government must in turn define the rules of handing over of devices. All terminals must have appropriate marking and multilingual guides.
A funding voucher must be individual and passing it to another person unacceptable. According to the opininion of the research’s authors, the funding for broadcasters must be introduced in order to compensate for the additional expenses during the course of the digital switchover. The aid must be provided in order to settle the issues that occur during the switchover. Beneficiaries must be selected in advance, according to the precisely determined criteria, while beneficiaries must in turn provide evidence of the need for co-funding.
The research as well touches upon the issue of information campaign. The researchers believe that every customer must be provided the information regarding the advantage of the digital broadcasting. That should be done in a simple form, understandable for different ethnical groups and people distinguished by other indicators.
You can download the document developed by IDFI from Media.Ge