For the past few days, NTV, QTV, KTN and Citizen TV have been running this advert cautioning Kenyans not to buy GOtv and StarTimes decoders.
As expected, the two pay tv companies are pissed, as shown in these separate statements they put out.
It has come to our attention that four (4) Free-To-Air stations namely Citizen, KTN, NTV and QTV are currently running an infomercial on their platforms specifically advising consumers against purchasing GOtv set top boxes for carrying their content without consent.
GOtv Kenya Limited would like to assure Kenyans that the company operates within the confines of the laws of Kenya. GOtv Kenya has been and continues to air the content of the above mentioned four stations, amongst others, pursuant to a ‘must carry’ obligation imposed by Regulation 14 (2) (b) of the Kenya Information and Communications (Broadcasting) Regulations 2009, whose objective is to ensure that the public has access to information.
The Supreme Court, in Supreme Court of Kenya at Nairobi Petition No.14 of 2014 Communications Commission of Kenya & 5 others v Royal Media Services Limited & 5 others by judgment delivered on 29 September 2014, affirmed that the ‘must carry’ rule does not infringe on the broadcasters’ copyright.
GOtv offers 11 local TV channels and more than 70 additional channels including pay TV and Free to Air Channels on DVB-T2 technology.
GOtv is authorized by the Communications Authority of Kenya, it was the first provider in Kenya to launch DVB-T2 technology over three years ago.
The latest infomercial is not only defamatory of GOtv, misleading to the public but also contemptuous of the court orders stated above.
GOtv shall move to court for contempt proceedings and damages.
We take this opportunity to thank you our valued subscribers for your continued support and to assure you that all content aired on the GOtv platform is legal and legitimate.
General Manager – GOtv
17th January 2015.
STARTIMES POSITION STATEMENT FOLLOWING PUBLIC CAUTION ON COMPANY’S SET TOP BOXES BY SECTIONS OF LOCAL BROADCAST STATIONS
StarTimes Media would like clarify that:
• StarTimes Pay TV and Free To Air set top boxes are type approved by Communication Authority of Kenya to carry all major local and international channels in digital quality.
• StarTimes makes local channels available in compliance with a “must-carry” rule as provided for by the industry regulator. According to the Supreme Court ruling delivered on 29th September 2014, “must-carry” rule is not “rebroadcasting” and therefore does not infringe on the intellectual property rights of the local broadcasters.
• We continue to operate UNINTERUPTED and both the Pay Television and the Free To Air set top boxes are available across the country to enable Kenyans transition from analogue to digital broadcasting through affordable and type approved devices.
• Our set top boxes are tailored to give Kenyans a choice as to opt for either the Pay TV or the Free To Air option based on their personal preference. Caution by the said media houses is meant to mislead and defame the brand that is StarTimes.
• StarTimes will be taking legal action against this blatant action aimed at maligning the company.
• StarTimes has rolled out an elaborate aftersales service that is aimed at providing relevant support to Kenyans including a 24 hour call centre and door to door technicians measures aimed at ensuring Kenyans have the best experience with the company’s set top boxes.
• We remain steadfast in making it possible and affordable for the majority of Kenyans to access digital television.