eTV in court to fight DStv over unencrypted digital TV system
eTV and several NGOs say DStv is wrong to try and force SA to use an unencrypted digital terrestrial television system.
JOHANNESBURG – eTV and several NGOs will on Tuesday morning tell the Constitutional Court that Communications Minister Faith Muthambi and DStv are wrong to try and force the country to use an unencrypted digital terrestrial television system.
They have already won a Supreme Court of Appeal ruling that Muthambi was wrong to try and force the system, despite evidence that encryption will allow government to provide more services.
The African National Congress has also said it wants an encrypted system.
Muthambi’s lawyers are expected to argue that an unencrypted digital terrestrial television system will be cheaper and easier to install and that if eTV wants to use an encrypted system it’s free to provide decoders to the entire population.
But eTV will argue that for around R20 more per decoder, it makes more sense to use an encrypted system, as that will allow for more services to be added later and will let government issue notices like storm warnings and other information.
DStv currently broadcasts an encrypted service through its M-Net decoders and satellite services.
It’s likely to argue that government should not have to pay more because eTV wants encryption.
(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)