In recent times the streets of Lagos have been inundated with billboards and banners of GOTV, a pay television platform that had been launched in Ibadan, Oyo State and Port Hacourt, Rivers State.
The emergence of the pay Tv and the deployment of various platforms for both the marketing and marketing communications efforts, observers said, appear to be a battle of the pay tv market share or in other words, digital pay tv market.
According to findings, GOTV is a sister brand of DSTV operating under a different brand name. Multichoice Nigeria, is the owner of DSTV in the country.
Pay-TV service is enjoyed world over, but for a long time the ordinary Nigerians, were deprived of its access, which translates to limited access to information, education, entertainment and by extension crippled national growth and development.
After many years of DSTV monopoly of the market and which many Nigerians paid through their noses, other pay televisions operating through Digital Video Broadcasting Terrestrial, (DVB-T) technology, entered the market.
They came into the market with prices that are affordable by most people, who are hitherto denied the opportunity of watching pay Tv.
However, the question on the lips of many observers in the industry is: What makes GOTV different from DSTV, since it is said that they are partly and fully owned respectively by Multi-Choice? “However, if one assumes that it is the DVB-T technology, then answers need to be provided by relevant authorities to questions of concerned subscribers, if GOTV does have a legal license to operate in Nigeria?” an observer said.
Another observer, who craved for anonymity also said, “The consumers on their part need to keep a close watch on GOTV who appear to be operating without a legal license. Since those who have already invested in the GOTV decoders, either as dealers or subscribers stand the risk of losing out since there will be no obligation for an illegal operator to compensate. The Nigeria government also needs to arise to its own obligation of ensuring that illegal operation is not encourage in any sector, especially in the broadcasting Industry which is a very senstive sector . The earlier they investigate and stop all forms of illegal operation, they better for the Nigerians and subscribers to such service providers.”
“One hopes that the possible illegal operation by GOTV is not Multi –Choice’s response to challenge the monopoly it has enjoyed over the years and to to kill off the new affordable pay-TV service. After which it will continue to keep the digital TV from the ordinary Nigerian. Therefore no particular business concern is allowed to continuously kill competitors in order to enjoy an unhealthy and exploitative monopoly,” the observer added.
Efforts to speak with the spokesperson for Multichoice Nigeria, Segun Fayose, on the issue did not yield result.
He promised to respond but did not as at press time.
But, the Acting Head, Public Affairs, National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Mrs. Maimuna Jimada, in a similar message to her on the issue replied, “Details Nigeria Limited is licensed to operate GoTv in Nigeria. And they are the one doing it.”