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Keywords:

  • Broadcasting finance;
  • media policy;
  • licence fee;
  • ARD;
  • ZDF;
  • BBC

In October 2010 the British and German broadcasting licence fees were settled. In the UK, the BBC's worst settlement in its history appears moderate compared with other cuts in public sector spending. However, whereas the near future of the Corporation and public service broadcasting (PSB) in the UK may lie in the provision of narrower services and competitive funding, in Germany the current change of the fee towards an excise duty make ARD and ZDF, the two key German PSB organisations, appear stronger than ever. The implementation of the new model will harm individual freedom, commercial broadcasting operators and the taxpayer.