A new policy assisting in the determination of whether services should be considered commercial media services on demand (VOD), which are subject to the supervision of the Dutch Media Authority (Commissariaat voor de Media), is to enter into force on 1 November 2011. This is to set out principles for the determination of whether VOD services are regulated by the Dutch Media Act 2008, which not only applies to “traditional” broadcasting services (through cable, air or satellite), but also to similar services and on demand services distributed via other means (the Internet, mobile devices).

The policy is aimed at ensuring a level playing field for all platforms and ensuring appropriate levels of consumer protection. It will be applicable to services through which video content is offered, but will also apply in relation to: services primarily aimed at offering video content; services where the selection of video content is the responsibility of the service provider; and services considered to be of an “economic” nature, which are aimed at the general public or a part of the general public. Both existing and new services providers are required to register, and noncompliance may result in a fine for the service provider.