Number of TV product placements decrease during pandemic by thirteen percent

Published: 6 April 2021

Due to the coronavirus pandemic the number of product placements in television decreased by thirteen percent in the second half of 2020 compared to the same period in 2019, as is also revealed by a new study approved by the Media Council of the National Media and Infocommunications Authority (NMHH) at its meeting on 30 March. The council announced the winner of the Budapest 89.5 MHz frequency tender, and published invitations to tender for two rural local frequencies as well as approved another three drafts.

Decisions related to radio frequencies and decisions of the Media Council

At the request of the operator the body decided on the conclusion of a temporary commercial contract with the Közösségi Rádiózásért Egyesület for the period of 2 May and 29 October, which will broadcast its service with the name Spirit FM at the Budapest 92.9 MHz frequency. In accordance with the effective rules the media service provider relinquished its community use of the Budapest 87.6 MHz frequency.

The council established that the winner of the tender published for the commercial use of the Budapest 89.5 MHz district radio frequency is the sole bidder Radio Plus Kft.

The Media Council approved the request of the operators to connect VLNC FM Rádió Kft.’s frequency right for Székesfehérvár 101.8 MHz and Best Rádió Kft.’s frequency rights for Eger 100.7 MHz, Zalaegerszeg 88.9 MHz and Szolnok 102.4 MHz with Best FM in Budapest from 1 April. At the same time, from this day the service in Szolnok will be broadcast with the name 102.4 Best FM instead of Amadeus Rádió.

The Media Council finalised the invitations to tender for the local frequencies of Szekszárd 104.5 MHz and Salgótarján 99.3 MHz for community use, and approved the drafts for Szekszárd 102.5 MHz, Komló 91.4 MHz and the commercial Pápa 95.7 MHz frequencies. The documents are available on the authority’s website.

The operator of Gyula Televízió was warned by the Media Council for surreptitious advertising as in one episode of Híradó [The News] broadcast four times it showed details of a local meat product brand whereby it may have encouraged viewers to buy the products. This is only permitted by law in an advertising block. The body issued a warning for the operator of the Városi Televízió Szeged because in a reviewed episode of its programme called ÉPI-TECH it provided promotional information about the sponsor construction industry company and its products, which may have promoted the use of the services of the business entity. 

Fewer own programmes, fewer product placements

The Media Council approved the latest study examining product placements, which analysed the own programmes of commercial television channels broadcast in the second half of 2020. In the six-month period 2427 brands were advertised this way. A total of 17 675 such advertisements were shown on RTL Klub and TV2 which is a 13% decrease compared to adverts registered in the same period in 2019 (20 412). The main reason for this are changes in programme structure due to the coronavirus pandemic: it became difficult to produce own programmes, and owing to the economic shifts the number of advertisers decreased too. The greatest number of advertisements – 3415 – were connected to Reggeli, which was followed by Fókusz (1428) and Az év hotele (1085), all programmes of RTL Klub. Mokka, the programme featuring the most product placements on TV2 (575) acquired the eighth place.

Women are still underrepresented in television news programmes

The Media Council approved the latest study of the authority examining social diversity – the representation of certain social, economic and ethnic groups – in news programmes in 2020. In the analysed categories, and similar to previous years, representatives of the service sector appeared most often among all economic operators, accounting for 75.5% in total. The gender ratio of appearances on television showed a two-thirds majority for men against women: women received publicity most often (29.4%) in commercial news programmes. The study analysed the following public service and commercial news programmes: M1 Híradó in the evening; Duna TV Híradó; Kossuth radio 180 perc, Déli Krónika, Esti Krónika, TV2 Tények, RTL Klub Híradó, Magyar ATV Híradó, Hír TV Híradó.

Both studies are available on the NMHH website.

The full agenda of the weekly meetings of the Media Council is available on the council’s website together with the minutes of the sessions and all the resolutions – the latest documents are published after the necessary certification and administration processes.