TELETIME News — put out by some of the journalists who helped found CartaCapital magazine — can generally be relied upon for fine, independent coverage of the Brazilian telecoms sector. I would subscribe if I could afford to.
The Teletimers recently provided a sneak peek at a forthcoming telecoms and media bill, in the context of past attempts at creating something like a Brazilian FCC.
I will translate some excerpts.
In the last 12 years,the various proposals for amending the regulatory framework for the media have had two things in common: they all died young and they were all heavily criticized by media groups .So it was for the minutes of the Mass Media Law proposed by Fernando Henrique Cardoso in 1998 and 2001, for the Ancinav proposal elaborated by former cabinet minister Pedro Parente in 2001 (which led to MP 2.228/2001, creativing Ancine), and for the Ancinav proposal put forth by Culture Minister Gilberto Gil em 2004.
Ancince is the National Film Agency.
Ancinav would have been a broader independent agency overseeing the development of the industry and market for all audiovisual content.
In the next few days, yet another proposed bill will be issued by the Social Communications Secretariate of the Presidency (Secom), headed by Franklin Martins, for consideration by president-elect Dilma Rousseff and future Communications Minister Paulo Bernardo.
Martins has complained lately that his remarks have been transcribed inaccurately by the Folha de S. Paulo. He is a former Globo journalist fired by the network and invited to head Secom — a sort of beefed-up presidential spokesman who also controls the federal advertising budget.
Bernardo was Minister of Planning under Silva, and unlike his predecessor — a former Globo exec — does not have a professional background in the media industry.
The minutes of the proposed bill are confidential and not yet in circulation. Only a few members of the working group assigned to the bill have read it, in strict privacy. This secrecy does not necessarily indicate, however, that the bill will be stricter or more interventionist than previous proposals discussed above. On the contrary. As Teletime was able to learn, the difference is that the Secom bill is more comprehensive, covering both the electronic spectrum and mass communications, and is based on previous discussions.
The draft bill deals with subjects already defined in previous bills. One of these is the recuperate the power of the Ministry of Communications to grant concessions. This was a notion introduced in Bill 3,337/04 in 2004 and would once again make the Minicom a significant actor in spectrum concessions, enabling it to delegate Anatel as its agent in minor cases, such as licenses for private services. In this new structure,the Minicom’s current role as the agency in charge of spectrum concessions, with congressional approval, would be solidified. Mas o rito técnico poderia ser feito pela agência.
Another topic is the amendment of the rules governing Fust, a topic broached in Bill 1481/07 of 2007, to allow the Universalization of Telecommunications Fund — FUST –to assign resources to private service providers such as broadband connectivity providers.
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