Subsidized Advertising05 Aug 2003
A 'red herring' in English is a 'Ente' (duck) in German, at least as far a news stories go. Yesterday's ducks in the German news were a call to shorten school vacations and a call for anti-smoking regulations in public places. More interesting, as noted by Marstonalia, is the online partnership between ZDF and the perfume chain Douglas, which may well violate media laws regulating public broadcasting. Not because of the mixing of public and private content, which happens all the time on the air, but because the mix is on the Internet, where ARD/ZDF do not have a license to operate and thus are competing (which public funds?) with private broadcasters and other online media as well. The Internet activities of ARD/ZDF have always been in a grey area of media regulation, and in my opinion should be strictly non-commercial, given their public monopoly in broadcasting. Selling perfume for Douglas is anything but non-commercial.