A little over a year after coming on board, Times Television has split from the One Alliance, a distribution joint venture between Sony Multi Screen Media Pvt. Ltd. and Discovery Communications, reports Indiantelevision.com. Times Television operates TV channels from the Times of India group, including Times Now, ET Now, Movies Now, Zoom, Romedy Now and Romedy Now+.
This is the second major split since the TRAI’s guidelines virtually put an end to the business of channel (and content) distribution aggregators for TV. The state of TV aggregators prior to this regulation:
Since then, Media Pro has split, with Zee Turner Limited and Star Den Media Services Pvt. Ltd. choosing to distribute channels separately. MSM Discovery, as per its website, still appears to have channels from TV Today, apart from those from Sony/MSM and Discovery. Its channels include SONY Entertainment Television, MAX, MAX 2, SAB, MIX, PIX, SIX, AXN, Animax, Aath, Discovery Channel, Discovery Channel Tamil, Animal Planet, TLC, Discovery Science, Discovery Turbo, Discovery Kids, Discovery HD World, SONY HD, SIX HD, PIX HD and Headlines Today, Aaj Tak and Tez. It distributes content via cable (analogue and digital), and digital carriage platforms such as DTH, IPTV and HITS. Another alliance, Indiacast, also distributes to YouTube.
What the disbanding of these distribution aggregators is doing is, that it is giving inordinate power to some carriage platforms, which charge significant carriage fees from channels for distribution of content (which, incidentally, consumer pay to view). The carriage platforms, in that sense, are hardly neutral.
More in our overview of the TRAI guidelines here.