TV Outside the U.S.

By Shauna Soljour


Television-The Global Sensation

The television business is both a fast-paced and expansive field to monitor. Furthermore, television outside of the United States represents a voracious industry that cannot be explicitly explored within one article. This wiki is designed to give a general overview of recent developments within the international television business during the months of January-April 2012.



In Europe, the television business has been revolutionized by the popularization of digital terrestrial television (DTT). The explosion of companies such as Freeview offering 32 channels television channels has garnered almost five million subscribers in Britain alone. This advance of television viewing challenges the current stance of analog television which represents three-fifths of the European population. Furthermore, the success of Freeview has led other European countries such as Sweden, Germany, Italy and France to join the shift to digital broadcasting.[1] This shift entitled the “digital switchover,” is proposed to be completed by the conclusion of this year. [2]

The Freeview HD Corgi Advertisement (Apr. 2011)



'Strictly Keep Dancing' screenshot

BBC Worldwide and ABC Entertainment have collaborated to launch a free online game based upon the hit television show, “Dancing with the Stars.” Entitled “Strictly Keep Dancing” this game will allow U.K. participants to live out their dreams of dancing with the stars from their home computer screen. The BBC adaption of ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars,” was re-named “Strictly Come Dancing,” in 2004 and took the U.K. audience by storm. “Dancing with the Stars/Strictly Keep Dancing” is regarded as the world’s most successful television format and remains one of the most viewed television shows in the United Kingdom. The 3-D simulation game of this popular television show attests to the multimedia integration of technology, gaming, and television.[3]

YouGov statistics show demographic changes in television viewing among the UK audience. Statistics reveal that 53% of people aged 18-24 that own a Smart TV such as BBC’s iPlayer no longer tune into scheduled programming at all. [4]



On April 19th the lower house of the Italian Parliament passed a tax bill to auction off digital television frequency by a margin of 459 in favor and 71 against. The six auctioned digital frequencies have the ability to sustain six channels each. The government estimates that the revenue from these frequencies can total between 1.5-4 billion euros. [5]

MTV Italia signed with SeaChange Broadcast Media Library for the company’s digital server, media archival and storage services. After five years of existence, MTV Italia remains one of MTV’s International networks most successful stations focusing on local programming development and maintains a weekly audience base of over 12,000,000 viewers. Furthermore, SeaChange Broadcast Media Cluster’s increased Italian market share is evident in its service to the following television companies: Mediaset, RAI, RTV38, SAT2000, TELE+, TeleRadioPace, Teleserenissima and Video Italia. [6]



French Presidential candidates Nicolas Sarkozy & François Hollande

The presidential election campaign has reinforced the role of television in France. Continuing with a tradition begun in 1974, French presidential candidates, Nicolas Sarkozy and François Hollande will engage in a debate on privatized French television station TF1 on May 2, 2012. The competition between French private and public owned stations is stiff in terms of viewer market share. As a response to the future presidential debate on TF1 the French state-owned television rival France 2 aired a program on April 26, 2012 entitled “Des Paroles et des Acte” (Words and Deeds). This program served as a segue to the future debate and as a way for France 2 to remain competitively neck-to-neck with TF1 in regards to presidential airtime programming.[7]


North America


Canadian media corporations CBC/Radio-Canada, Rogers Media Inc., and Shaw Communications Inc. partnered to establish Canadian Premium Audience Exchange (CPAX) a privatized digital inventory assessment for advertisers. The collaboration between these media companies will affect the television business in regards to advertisers’ gaining the ability to match advertising spots with specific programming in order to reach its target market. The system will pool an information database of 15,000,000 Canadians, this audience exchange system accounts for both English and French domains. This standardization and consolidation of television company privatized information allows for increased advertising efficiency.[8]




Taiwanese media mogul Tsai Eng Meng is facing government regulatory barriers in his attempt to purchase another cable network station for an estimated $2.4 billion. Meng already owns the China Times media portfolio: China Times daily newspaper, China Television Co (CTV), and the CTiTV cable news station bought for $650 million in 2008. His newest endeavor to purchase Taiwan’s China Network Systems (CNS) warrants the concern of media monopolization of the market. China Network Systems services cable to 1.18 million houses accounting for a quarter of the nation’s total viewers.[9] Meng’s 18 month wait for acquisition approval raises key questions about international media ownership-more specifically between Taiwan and China, media market monopolies, censorship, economies of scale and scope within the television business but also the larger media industry.



Standing at 2,080 feet tall, the Tokyo Sky Tree has become the “world’s tallest freestanding broadcasting structure,” only 640 feet shorter than the world’s tallest building. The Sky Tree will permit its first visitors in the month of May. Furthermore, the structure will enhance the television and radio transmission for the surrounding area. [10]

Japan's Tokyo Sky Tree

NHK (Japan Broadcasting Corporation) functions as the only Japanese public broadcaster operating both the largest national and international television network.  Within Japan, NHK operates four high definition television channels. Of the four television channels, two are terrestrial channels and the other two are satellite channels. The international sectors of NHK’s television channels include an English channel, NHK WORLD TV and a Japanese channel, NHK WORLD PREMIUM. Both channels are being introduced to the New York television market. NHK WORLD TV is projected to be watched by an average of six million homes in the New York City area.[11]



Russian president, Dmitry Medvedev signed into existence the creation of the first ever Russian public television station on April 17, 2012. Medvedev proposed the television station bill as disjoint from state regulation. Projected to begin national broadcasting in January 2013, the station is supposed to advance beyond the constraints of Russian Defense Ministry television station, Zvezda.[12]



Aamir Khan’s Television Debut – “Satyamev Jayate” – Promo 2 ‘Entertainment Ka Matlab’

Indian Bollywood cinema star, Aamir Khan is poised to make national television history with the launch of his program Satyameva Jayate (Truth Alone Prevails). The television show will groundbreaking for several reasons: Khan is the first performer, anchor, and producer to use his stardom to launch a television program. Secondly, Khan’s program will be aired simultaneously on private television station, Star Plus and the national public television station, Doordarshan. Lastly, Satyameva Jayate is recognized as the most expensive television launch campaign in the history of Indian television in preparation for the pilot show airing on May 6, 2012.[13]


Central America

Crackle's Android Mobile App

Streaming video service, Crackle created by Sony Pictures Television is being launched in 17 different countries in Latin America. A free-service for viewers funded by commercial advertisers will air television shows as well as movies weekly.[14]


Namibia Broadcasting Corporation and Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation signed into existence an agreement of digital migration. This agreement will allow for the sharing of documentary, music and cultural programming televised programming.[15] The cooperative agreement between the two countries (Namibia and Zimbabwe) warrants technological advances and transnational communication decentralization.

Middle East

Extreme Makeover: Home EditionThe Bachelorette

Reality television has revolutionized television programming in Iraq. By adapting Iraqi versions of American television programming such as: “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” and “The Bachelorette,” reality television is challenging social norms in Iraq. The Iraqi format of “The Bachelorette,” entitled “Ala al-Hawa Sawa,” (Us on Air) challenges social cultural norms by allowing women to choose a mate. Furthermore, conservative viewers were astounded by the decision of one of the contestants to refuse to commit to the institution of marriage. The growth of reality-based marks a turning point in Iraqi televised shows and the introduction of an audience basis that supports its continuation.[16]