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Six TV is allegedly set to file a complaint to Ofcom about Project Canvas, a project which has ired Richard Branson's Virgin team since its inception. An Ofcom insider told cable.co.uk:
Six TV is reportedly planning to get in touch with the regulator "shortly" in order to lodge its own concerns about the proposed joint venture between the BBC, ITV, BT, Channel 4, TalkTalk and Arqiva, a spokeswoman from Ofcom told Dow Jones Newswires.
Appmarket TV recently reported that Virgin says Project Canvas is monopolistic and will stifle competition in the TV market. This would mean Six TV the third company to complain about Project Canvas, after Virgin Media and internet TV box retailer IP Vision.
Virgin has argued that the partners developing the service - the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, TalkTalk, BT and Arqiva - have failed to uphold their promise to create a TV platform which would work with all other internet TV services, such as Virgin Media’s own on-demand offering and feel it's closed and it's proprietary walled garden is too high.
“Collectively the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 account for around two-thirds of all television viewing in the UK while BT and TalkTalk control over half the national broadband market. Canvas will stifle future innovation as well as eliminate existing consumer choice for home entertainment.”
“They are establishing a single new TV platform of their own with a considerable incentive to favour this over other TV services. This could severely affect consumer options for watching public service programming in the future.”
Project Canvas was originally criticised by broadcasters Sky and Virgin Media as well as some TV manufacturers, which all claimed the service was a misuse of the BBC’s licence fee. They all submitted complaints to the Office of Fair Trading, but it ruled that it was not within its remit to investigate the venture and gave the project the green light.