Dáil Éireann - Volume 372 - 27 May, 1987
Written Answers. - Satellite Television Services.
Mr. P. O'Malley Mr. P. O'Malley
15. Mr. P. O'Malley asked the Minister for Communications if television subscribers in the Dublin area presently receiving trial satellite transmissions on two additional channels will be required at the end of the trial period to either accept the additional channels at an extra cost or have their cable link terminated; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
Mr. Quinn Mr. Quinn
20. Mr. Quinn asked the Minister for Communications if he will ensure that subscribers to cable television are allowed to opt out of additional channels; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
Minister for Communications (Mr. R. Burke) Raphael P. Burke
Minister for Communications (Mr. R. Burke): I propose to take Questions Nos. 15 and 20 together. Satellite television services are being relayed on cable systems as an experiment and without charge to subscribers during the experimental period. One purpose of the experiment is to enable cable companies to assess the demand for these services and obtain their subscribers' views on the question of possible payment for them if they are to become a permanent feature. Therefore, during this experimental period it is important that subscribers make their views known on these issues to their cable operators.
Some satellite delivered services will be made available by the programme providers to cable operators without charge; others will not. At this stage cable operators are fully aware of my preference that any additional charge that might be proposed should be levied on the basis that only those who want to receive the  additional services will be required to pay.
The results of market research to be undertaken by Cablelink, the main provider of cable television services, and with which my Department intend to be closely involved, will assist in determining subscribers' preferences in this matter.
Dáil Éireann 372 Written Answers. Satellite Television Services.