EC plots TV biz database

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BRUSSELS -- More than 4,500 European broadcasters will be surveyed for a major study on the television industry, the European Commission announced Wednesday. The EC said it wants to create a comprehensive database of European TV companies and channels.

Dubbed "MAVISE," the database will be compiled by the European Audiovisual Observatory, based in the French city of Strasbourg.

"It will be the biggest data collection operation ever carried out concerning the European television sector," the EAO said. "It aims to provide the TV industry, institutional decisionmakers and the general public with all the information they need about developments affecting the European market for television even more regularly and efficiently than before."

Commission officials say that EU audiovisual regulations are complicated by a poor understanding of the sector. The MAVISE database -- which will cover the EU's 27 countries as well as applicant nations Croatia and Turkey -- aims to shed light on the industry and eventually ensure that the laws governing it remain relevant.

A freely accessible part of the database will cover key data about the channels themselves including their technical means of broadcast, audience shares and management structures. Commercial subscribers will be able to access more detailed information about company finances.
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