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Belize Cable Television Operations Association Comes Out Swinging at Concord Media Group

Turning now to other news: The Belize Cable Television Operations Association came out swinging at Concord Media Group in a five-paragraph, one-page press statement on Wednesday evening. At the center of the issue is the cable broadcast rights for the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games. The Association says it has made tireless efforts, particularly over the past five years, to negotiate with programmers for copyright-compliant content at affordable costs to allow for equal access to each of its member cable operators, large and small. However, in the case of the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games, Concord Media Group (CMG) first acquired the rights to broadcast the games. The release says that the Association made every effort on its own to properly acquire the rights to broadcast the content via cable television from International Media Content Limited (IMC), but it was faced with prohibitive licensing costs. In the release, the Association points out that the Broadcasting and Television Act clearly designates the Association as the sole entity to engage in the purchase of rights to broadcast content for its members. In fact, according to the law, (quote) “it is unlawful for a person who holds a television licence under Section Five and who offers a cable programme service, or for any other person, other than the Association, to be a licensee or assignee of a cinematograph film, cable programme, or broadcast, and in that capacity to offer it to the Association or, to any other person for distribution to members of the Association” (unquote). And as such, the Association says it will not support what it perceives to be contravention of the law on which it relies by engaging licensees other than IMC. It says that such action could undermine its members’ economic interests and even the interest of the public when accessing and negotiating future content rights. While Concord is making internet streams of the Olympics available for free, you still cannot watch it on your on your local television stations or cable providers at this time.