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EU regulatory framework and the political economy of terrestrial digitalisation in Slovakia
(Bratislava School of Law, Slovakia)
ABSTRACT: This research essay offers analysis of the digitalisation switchover in Slovakia. It specifically focuses on the political economy of the process, how the state regulators were able to protect and more importantly to strengthen the free competition and lessen the barriers for the entrance of new players because of the pressure of the current media players. It states how the public service broadcaster Slovak Televison was lagging behind in the process (even as it started the first digital channel already in the summer of 2008) and how the current players are trying to cement the position of Fellner’s “competition among the few.” This paper is foremost a case study of Slovakia and how its regulatory framework is influenced by the European Union’s regulatory activities in the area of terrestrial digital video broadcasting. It particularly focuses on the political-economic aspects of media ownership and mentions the situation in the Czech Republic as well.