Communicorp Media has hit out at RTÉ for refusing to broadcast a TV ad promoting The Pat Kenny Show on Newstalk, despite allowing the same ad to run on the RTE Player.
The ad was submitted to RTÉ last Friday, July 3rd and confirmation of its refusal was received by Newstalk today, July 7th. The ad is also running on Virgin Media and TG4.
According to Communicorp, the ad was refused under nine-year-old guidelines which it says are designed to suppress competing broadcast services. The advertisement was declined “for including the 9am start time of The Pat Kenny Show and the expression ‘Join Me’. This is despite the same advertisement being previously accepted by RTÉ and currently running on the RTÉ Player with no restrictions,” according to Communicorp.
“This is not the first time RTÉ has refused to run advertising for Newstalk,” said Patricia Monahan, Managing Editor of Newstalk. “Only last week, RTÉ stated their revenue would be down 35% this year, yet they are in a position to turn down commercial revenue for purely competitive reasons.
“The fact the Newstalk advertisement was accepted to run on the RTÉ Player, but not on RTÉ television channels smacks of double standards and inconsistency in how RTÉ implements its guidelines,” said Ms Monahan.
According to Lucy Gaffney, Chair of Communicorp Media: “to have a situation where the state broadcaster can stifle competitors, while refusing commercial money at such a critical time, is totally unacceptable. For it to happen while surviving on the licence fee and state handouts is beyond belief.”