Public Service Media Online?
Regulating Public Broadcasters’ Internet Services—A Comparative Analysis

by Hallvard Moe (University of Bergen)
Facing a digital media system, European public service broadcasters have encountered
increasing scrutiny from both competitors and regulators. As these institutions have ven-
tured onto media platforms very unlike traditional broadcast radio and television, dis-
cussions about the scope of their activities have flourished. The case of the internet
clearly illustrates the emerging challenges. How have public service broadcasters
approached the internet? How do regulatory frameworks relate to the wider remits? Is it
public service media online? This article presents a comparative study of three Western
European mainly publicly funded broadcasters’ activities on the internet, their argu-
ments in support of them, the role of competitors, and actual regulatory frameworks they
relate to. It scrutinizes how different forms of regulations affect the developments.
Based on the findings, the article outlines remaining problematic issues for national reg-
ulation of public broadcasters’ online services and suggests how researches might get a
better grasp of public service media online. (download)