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21/09/2015 : Press release - Online activities of public service media: remit and financing - European Audiovisual Observatory publishes new IRIS Special report

ITV recently announced that they will fight UK government’s plans to modernise the licence fee to cover public service broadcast catch-up TV. This means that UK citizens will need to buy a TV licence to watch catch-up services provided by ITV, Channel 4 or Channel Five even if viewers do not consume BBC content. And of course the BBC itself is financed by this licence fee… The difficulty in deciding which online services receive public funding due to a public service remit is one of the major issues currently being tackled by EU governments. The European Audiovisual Observatory has just published a major new report giving invaluable background reading on the subject of Online activities of public service media: remit and financing.

This latest IRIS Special report has been prepared by the Saarbrücken-based Institute of European Media Law and brings together contributions from various authors.

A must-read analysis of the challenges currently facing PSM in their development of new on-line services

This latest Observatory publication can be purchased in our on-line shop here.

14/09/2015 : Press release - Territoriality and its Impact on the Financing of Audiovisual Works

- European Audiovisual Observatory publishes new IRIS Plus legal report

Free to download here

This new Observatory report  focuses on territoriality and its effects on financing the production and distribution of films and TV programmes in Europe. Undoubtedly one of the hottest legal topics at the moment, territoriality of copyright is creating a major media buzz in Europe as the EU’s disputed Digital Single Market initiative aims at freeing up barriers to the consumption of content. In the same report, the Observatory examines the territoriality issues surrounding the revision of the Audiovisual Media Services Directive. The current EU legal structure which allows international majors to set up where they wish, respecting the national legislation of the country of establishment due to the country of origin principle, while distributing content on a pan-European basis, is being challenged. Authored by Observatory Experts and Analysts, Maja Cappello, Francisco Cabrera-Blázquez, Sophie Valais and Christian Grece, this brand new report is clearly an essential “back to school” read…

17/06/2015 : Focus on Animation Report now free on line

The European Audiovisual Observatory presented the first results of the Mapping of the Animation Industry in Europe study, funded by Creative Europe, during the MIFA workshop held on 17 June 2015 and co-organised by the Observatory and the European Commission. The Focus on Animation report which results from the first phase of this research is now available free on line on the site of the European Commission HERE.

Link to press release HERE.

10/06/2015 : Press release - “Honey, I scared the kids…” The Protection of minors in a converged media environment

European Audiovisual Observatory releases first ever free IRIS plus report.

A recent EU Kids Online survey found that children from 9 to 16 spend an average of 88 minutes surfing the internet every day. But given that the web has distinctly dubious qualities as a babysitter – one may ask “just who’s taking care of the kids?” Even the new YouTube Kids application, well intentioned though it may be, has been recently found guilty of serious bloopers as content including swear words and references to drugs, violence and suicide was made available to children through this channel. High time, then, that the European Audiovisual Observatory, part of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, brought out a major new free report, The protection of minors in a converged environment, to look at the protection mechanisms in place across the various content delivery channels. Get this free report HERE.

An extensive annotated bibliography complete with links to all reference texts which are all free to download accompanies this publication. Download it here.


From now on all new IRIS plus publications will be available free on line !

05/05/2015 : Press release - Box office up in the European Union in 2014 as European films break market share record

  • EU gross box office increased marginally by 0.6% to EUR 6.32 billion in 2014
  • Latest instalments of The Hobbit and The Hunger Games topped the EU charts
  • Market share for European films reached record high of 33.6% (highest recorded since 1996)
  • EU film production continued its rise to over 1 600 feature films
  • Digital screen penetration almost complete: 92% of EU screens converted to digital by end 2014


EU gross box office slightly up in 2014

Based on provisional data the European Audiovisual Observatory estimates that gross box office takings in the 28 EU Member States increased marginally to EUR 6.32 billion in 2014, up EUR 40 million on 2013. This is 0.6% higher than the previous year but still represents the second lowest level in the past five years. As in 2013 GBO growth was proportional to the change in underlying admissions which grew modestly by 0.7% to an estimated 911 million tickets sold, around 6.5 million more than in 2013. This indicates that the pan-European average ticket price – measured in Euros – has remained more or less stable at EUR 6.9 since 2012.

Link to full press release here.

Television in the regions: Spain and the United Kingdom

Author: Deirdre Kevin, European Audivosual Observatory

Published: 04/05/2015

The European Audiovisual Observatory recently completed two snapshot studies on regional and local TV in the United Kingdom and Spain. These countries represent two very different TV landscapes.

Spain has a long tradition of having a multitude of local television channels, while the UK has only recently started to develop a local TV system over digital terrestrial television. See the reports for more details on the regional channels and their programming, and for an overview of the impact of the economic crisis on the Spanish sector. Discover where regional TV channels are more popular than the national TV channels.

  • For the study on regional TV in Spain, click here.
  • For the study on regional TV in the United Kingdom, click here.

The development of the European market for on-demand audiovisual services

Author: Christian Grece, André Lange, Agnes Schneeberger and Sophie Valais - European Audiovisual Observatory

Published: 10/04/2015

The European Commission has just published a brand new report free to download on the VoD market in Europe. The European Audiovisual Observatory provided the content.

In addition to comprehensive statistics for the year 2014 covering on-demand services established and available in the EU, this report presents five sections covering important issues to understand the development of this dynamic sector and its impact on the wider audiovisual landscape:

  • Online advertising in the EU in 2013
  • Recent developments of the SVOD market in Europe in 2014
  • The proportion and the prominence of European works in VOD catalogues
  • The role of providers of VOD services and distribution platforms in the financing of film and audiovisual production
  • Measurement of fragmented audiovisual audiences

Download this free report from the European Commission’s website here

26/02/2015 : Press release - The European Audiovisual Observatory publishes a report on fiction broadcast by television channels in Europe (2006-2013)

The European Audiovisual Observatory has just published a summary report on the broadcasting of fiction by a sample of television channels in Europe between 2006 and 2013. By “fiction programmes” we understand five easily identifiable formats: films produced for television (TV films), series and soap operas, animation (excluding feature-length animated films), feature-length cinema films (including animated films) and short films.

Origin of fiction programmes

The analysis of the origin of fiction programmes shows that the situation varies considerably according to the type of channel and the channel’s country of reception.

Only two categories of channel have more than 50% of European fiction in their programme schedules. Cultural and educational channels (those that broadcast the least amount of fiction) mainly offer European works (78.3% of the programme schedule time in 2013, of which just under one-third consisted of national programmes and two-thirds were imported or were co-productions). The proportion of the programme schedule time devoted to European fiction broadcast by the public service general-interest channels was 57.6% in 2013 and a majority of these were non-national works.

Buy this publication in our online shop here.


26/03/2015 : Press release - Observatory announces new Head of Department for Market Information

The European Audiovisual Observatory has announced that Gilles Fontaine, currently Deputy Director of French media research institute IDATE, will take over from André Lange as Head of the Observatory’s Department for Information on Markets and Financing as of June this year. Fontaine can boast solid international experience in economic data collection and analysis, having also dealt with capital investment in the media industries for the SOFIRAD (French public company set up to manage state investment in the media) and the Caisse des dépôts et consignations. He has also held posts within the French Ministry of Culture and the French Embassy in Havana.

Fontaine said that he was looking forward to taking up a “European mission in the economic and financial analysis of the European audiovisual industries”. He paid tribute to the work of André Lange and stated his intention to carry on the Observatory’s work with “hopefully as much passion and dynamism.” (more)

18/12/2014 : Press release - The Influence of New Technologies on Copyright. European Audiovisual Observatory publishes new IRIS plus report

Our means of accessing copyrighted works have been transformed beyond recognition by the digital revolution. On line services, streaming, torrents and all other digital means offering content are challenging the current structures of current copyright legislation. Indeed, it seems that the rule makers are always chasing behind the latest technological developments in order to provide a suitable regulatory structure. The European Audiovisual Observatory has just published a brand new IRIS plus report:

The Influence of New Technologies on Copyright

Current copyright legislation was last overhauled 15 years ago. At the time, it was the InfoSoc Directive which stipulated the rules of communicating copyrighted content to the public. The SatCab Directive still lays down the rules for the retransmission of content and it remains unchanged since 1993. The Observatory sets out to explore the current legislative situation and raises the question of the need for a serious overhaul.

The Influence of New Technologies on Copyright – time for an overhaul of our legislation in Europe?

This new IRIS plus report can be purchased from our on line shop here.