CSA comes out in opposition to content quotas for VOD

French media regulator the CSA has come out in opposition to plans of the country’s culture and communication minister Frédéric Mitterrand to impose French and European content quota obligations on video-on-demand service providers, according to local reports.

CSA president Michel Boyon said that the proposals failed to reflect the economic reality of VOD services and risked crippling the development of the industry in the face of competition from major international players including Apple’s iTunes, Google and Hulu. The CSA said that VOD platforms were currently at an early stage of development and only those of Orange, SFR and the CanalPlay service of Canal Plus had revenues greater than €10m. 

Boyon said that the current government proposals should be amended to make them more favourable to VOD publishers. The government has also proposed to oblige VOD service providers to invest a reported 15% of their revenues in European-originated works and 12% in French-originated works from 2011 if their revenues passed €10m. The CSA said that these obligations should be phased in over five years, while proposals for further obligations on operators earning over €50m in revenues should be revisited. Boyon also said that the proposed quota of 60% European works – including 40% French works – should be reduced to 50% and 35% respectively.