Bids for radio drama and historical documentaries
The Media Council has issued a call for applications for non-repayable grants for the production of radio drama series, sound clips and soundscape documentaries. The Council has earmarked a total of HUF 50 million for the three-phase bidding procedure named after Miklós Cserés; for the first time, applications from across the border are also welcome this year. The Council is announcing again its István Nemeskürty scheme, which sponsors the production of historical documentaries created by reusing archive content to present events, persons, locations and anniversaries from the 20th and 21st centuries. Grant winning films will share a total of HUF 105 million, and the three-phase bidding process is open to bidders with standalone documentaries of 50-52 minutes in length. The detailed calls for applications are available on the website mecenatura.mtva.hu.
Programming quota obligation proceedings closed
The Council has closed its administrative proceeding against local and regional community audiovisual media service providers regarding the programming quotas for 2016. The Council resorted to the legal consequence of notification in the case of nine local and regional media service providers and called on these operators to start immediately to adhere to the requirements of lawful conduct and to refrain from infringements in the future. It imposed on fourteen local and regional media service providers fines ranging between HUF 10,000 and HUF 48,600.
The media service provider of Kontakt Radio, broadcast in Budapest at 87.6 MHz, was fined HUF 80,000 because its broadcasts during the week of 20–26 July diverged from the programming structure committed to in the public contract of the provider, which breached its legal obligation on the amount of broadcasting time allocated to public service and Hungarian music.
Esztergom Channel 52 still broadcasting
The Council also decided to sign a provisional media services agreement with the operator of Esztergom Channel 52 effective from 1 January 2018. The current public contracts of terrestrial audiovisual media service providers will expire on 31 December, and the Media Act gives these media service providers the right to sign provisional media service provider agreements. Esztergom Channel 52 is the first of these.
In the administrative proceeding against Radio Q, the media service provider was given the permission to extend the deadline for making a declaration to 18 October. Proceedings were brought against the radio station because it breached its commitment in its public contract to provide the services without interruption throughout the entire term of the license.
The Media Council completed the formal examination of the bids submitted for the Budapest 101.6 MHz local radio frequency and called on the sole bidder, Fontana Média Kft., to supply some missing information.
Fewer well-known faces in adverts
The Council approved the document on new advertising spots broadcast on television channels in the first half of the year, between January and June. The survey report looked into the programming offer of 34 television channels, identifying 2,520 new direct advertising spots in them, which were repeated 1.3 million times, a figure matching the amount measured over the same period in 2016. The peak broadcast period was March, followed by a slow decrease until early summer. Of the advertising reviewed, 54 percent concerned services and 43 percent concerned products, while the most frequent advertisers were retailers (31 percent) and the leisure industry (13). The proportion of advertising specifically aimed at minors stood at 3.9 percent. Among advertising spots targeting either of the sexes, those aimed at women continued to be outstandingly high, at 83 percent. Compared to last year, there was a significant decline in the amount of advertising employing well-known persons, i.e. celebrities, as its proportion fell from 9.2 percent to 5.7 percent. The full document is available on the Media Council website (in Hungarian).