Kompas Gramedia Group (KKG), the country’s largest media conglomerate,
launched Kompas TV on Friday amid a warning from the Indonesian
Broadcasting Commission (KPI) that its broadcasts might be illegal.
The new station, the second attempt by Kompas to enter the broadcasting industry after TV7, was inaugurated with great fanfare involving a three-hour-long live telecast titled “Simfoni Semesta Raya” (Symphony of the Universe) featuring some of the country’s biggest names in entertainment such as the Erwin Gutawa Orchestra, Addie MS, Ungu, Nidji, Rossa and Afgan.
Billing itself as a station that will inspire Indonesia, the Kompas line-up will feature documentaries and news as well as entertainment and will steer clear of soap operas, reality television and celebrity gossip shows that have become a staple for most national television stations in the country.
But hours before Kompas TV aired its maiden broadcast on Friday evening, the KPI issued a statement calling on the new channel to rectify some issues before it could go on air.
“There are still some problems with the broadcasting of Kompas TV. They don’t have a broadcasting license and there is a possibility that they could override the identities of local television stations that will carry their programs in the regions,” he told The Jakarta Post.
An official statement from KPI said “the prominent display of
Kompas TV’s logo in [local television] broadcasts, which could obscure the identity of local stations, is not fair to the regional stations, which have taken a long time to get their licenses”.
KPI also said that the cooperation between Kompas TV and local TV stations — a majority of which had not acquired broadcasting licenses yet — cannot serve as a legal basis for the local stations to change their broadcasting format to the current one, which is largely dominated by Kompas TV programs, the statement said.
Kompas TV has been previewing its broadcasts since Aug. 30 in cooperation with regional private-owned television stations in numerous cities across Indonesia.
Kompas TV chief editor Taufik Hidayat Mihardja said that his institution didn’t need a broadcasting license as it was only acting as a content provider and not as a broadcaster.
“Kompas TV is a content provider, so it doesn’t need a broadcast license because its content can be aired on regional and international television,” he said.
Taufik said that only local TV broadcasters required licenses.
He said that he didn’t understand why the KPI issued the press release because Kompas TV had already reached an agreement with the KPI on Thursday before the release came out.
Kompas Gramedia CEO Agung Adiprasetyo earlier said that “rather than a broadcasting firm, Kompas TV is a content provider, providing TV shows produced by Kompas Gramedia Production and cooperating with regional TV stations to air them.”
Danang, however, insisted that such cooperation was only possible between broadcasting firms.
“If Kompas TV wants to cooperate with regional TV stations in the broadcasting network, then it must have a broadcasting license,” he said, adding that the cooperation should be approved by KPI and the Communications and Information Ministry. (mim)