TF1 contrives plan to restore FTA satellite

French broadcaster TF1 has launched a new service on Astra in a bid to offer its family of channels to the 1.8 million subscribers cut off in a dispute with Canal Plus.

The two broadcast giants have been in dispute since September 2, when following the failure to reach a new distribution contract, Canal ceased the retransmission of TF1 from its TNT Sat platform.

Last week, the Paris Court of Appeal ruled in favour of Canal, declaring that the Vivendi unit was within its rights to throw the off switch.

TF1 is now hoping to take advantage of the Astra neighbourhood at 19 degrees East to launch its own package. The process is not as straightforward as might be hoped for, rather than an automatic update, interested viewers will have to kick the process off themselves.

But TF1 hopes the mere presence of its bouquet will put pressure on Canal to get back around the table.

from Broadband TV News