Friday , March 24 2023

Accessibility of programmes of the Dutch Public TV-stations, NPO

The Daily Herald writes that the Dutch public TV broadcasting company NPO has agreed to place Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba on the so-called white list, enabling people on the three islands to have access to its website and to see the TV programmes of this broadcasting company. Dutch Minister of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Ronald Plasterk stated this in a letter to the Second Chamber of the Dutch Parliament on Tuesday.

The Second Chamber, through an adopted motion of Member of Parliament (MP) Wassila Hachchi of the Democratic Party D66, had asked Plasterk to find a solution to secure access to Dutch websites for residents of the Caribbean Netherlands. The current IP addresses in the Caribbean Netherlands deviate from the IP addresses in the Netherlands. As a result, the IP addresses of users on the islands are being considered as foreign. Consequently, people from the islands have no or very limited access to some Dutch media programmes on the Internet.

Plasterk sent a letter to NPO and the Association of Commercial Broadcasting Companies VCO with the request to place the IP addresses used in the Caribbean Netherlands on the white list, which would give island residents the same access to the websites as residents in the Netherlands. The content providers were informed that Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba were part of the Netherlands and that as such; they should have the same access to programmes as residents of the Netherlands. NPO has subsequently put the IP number of the Caribbean Netherlands on the white list.

However, VCO indicated in its response to Plasterk that it couldn’t comply with the request, because it was legally not possible. VCO explained that this has to do with the fact that the concerned commercial broadcasting companies don’t have the content rights to the geographical area that includes the Caribbean Netherlands. This holds that the present blocking of some programs, e.g. often sports programs and films, will continue.

Note Editor: When checking last night, the restricted programmes were blocked indeed. However there is a relatively simple, legal solution to circumnavigate this. If you are interested, you can contact me through the link at the bottom of each page of this site.

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