The National Communications Commission (NCC) aims to present draft regulations governing over-the-top (OTT) media providers before the end of July, NCC Chairman Chen Yaw-shyang (陳耀祥) said yesterday.
Chen made the announcement at a meeting of the legislature’s Transportation Committee in Taipei, at which he presented the budget plans for the Telecommunications Technology Center and Taiwan Network Information Center, which are supervised by the NCC.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Hung Mong-kai (洪孟楷) asked Chen about the commission’s progress on proposed regulations for OTT media, including Netflix, iQiyi and Line TV.
Photo: Chien Jung-fong, Taipei Times
Hong quoted Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) as saying that Chinese-backed streaming media would definitely be regulated, because the content would be available in every household and could “brainwash” people.
However, streaming media mostly offer entertainment content, not news programs, Hong said.
Hong asked why OTT content from China is a national security issue, when TV stations are allowed to broadcast Chinese TV series.
He asked if the regulations would handle Chinese streaming media differently from content from other countries.
If TV stations want to broadcast Chinese programs, the programs should be approved by the Ministry of Culture, Chen said.
However, such an obligation is not imposed on streaming media, he said.
Chen said that he has watched Iqiyi content, but he was not heavily influenced by it.
Cultural exchanges between Taiwan and China should be conducted on fair and equal terms, he said.
“Regulations should apply to OTT providers in Taiwan as well as those overseas,” he said.
“However, when cross-strait issues are involved, we would have to consult officials at the Mainland Affairs Council and the ministry,” he said, adding that other government agencies also handle cross-strait affairs under this principle.
While big online streaming media, such as iQiyi, would definitely be regulated, the commission has yet to determine how they would be managed, Chen said.
Hopefully, the draft OTT regulations would be unveiled before the NCC commissioners’ terms expire on July 31, Chen said, adding that the commission would hear the public’s comments on the draft.
One of the key principles in the regulations would focus on big streaming media that offer professionally produced content similar to those on broadcast media, Chen said.
Regulations would not be applicable to individuals who upload self-produced content to Facebook or Tiktok, he said.
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