What is the function of the Republic Broadcasting Agency?
The Republic Broadcasting Agency (hereinafter: the Agency) was established by the Broadcasting Law (Official Gazette of RS, nos. 42/02, 97/04, 76/05, 79/05, 62/06, 85/06, 86/06 and 41/09) as an independent organisation exercising public competences to secure conditions for the efficient implementation and improvement of the set broadcasting policy in the Republic of Serbia in a manner befitting a democratic society. The Agency is autonomous and functionally independent of any government body, as well as of all organisations and individuals involved in the production and broadcasting of radio and television programmes and/or related, secondary or derived activities.
In accordance with the Broadcasting Law, the Agency is competent for supervising the application of the Law, issuing broadcasting licences based on the Radio Frequency Assignment Plan, prescribing rules binding on broadcasters, supervising the work of broadcasters and performing activities in the broadcasting sector with the aim of protecting minors, implementing the regulations on copyright and related rights and prohibition of broadcasting programmes containing information inciting discrimination, hatred or violence against a person or group of persons due to their belonging or non-belonging to a certain race, religion, nation, ethnic group or gender.
In addition to all of the above mentioned, the Agency is competent to consider submissions filed by natural and legal persons and complaints of broadcasters concerning the operation of other broadcasters (Article 8 paragraph 1 item 7 of the Broadcasting Law).
Who may file a submission/complaint concerning programme content and conduct of broadcasters?
Natural and legal persons may file submissions to the Agency concerning broadcasters’ programme content if they believe that those programmes insult or threaten their personal interests or public interest (Article 14 paragraph 1 of the Broadcasting Law).
A broadcaster may submit a complaint to the Agency about the conduct of another broadcaster which has inflicted or may inflict damage upon it (Article 15 paragraph 1 of the Broadcasting Law).
How does the RBA Council proceed upon the filed submissions/complaints concerning programme content and conduct of broadcasters?
Upon the receipt of the submission/complaint, the Agency considers whether it is complete and comprehensible (in order). If the submission is not in order, the Agency instructs the party filing the submission/complaint to put it in order.
If the submission is in order, the Agency delivers forthwith the received submission or complaint to the broadcaster for explanation.
How must the broadcaster act upon the submissions/complaints concerning programme content and conduct of the broadcaster?
The broadcaster is obliged to provide an explanation concerning the delivered submission or complaint within 15 days.
If the broadcaster fails to provide an explanation or informs the Agency that the submission is groundless, but the Council still maintains that the submission is grounded, the Council is obliged to take adequate measures against the broadcaster and advise the petitioner on ways in which he/she may legally protect his/her interests (Article 14 paragraphs 3 and 4 of the Broadcasting Law).
What measures may the Council pronounce against a broadcaster based on the filed submission/complaint concerning programme content and conduct of the broadcaster?
The RBA Council may pronounce the measures stipulated by the Broadcasting Law, and these are a reprimand and a warning, as well as temporary or permanent revocation of broadcasting licence.
In addition, filing of misdemeanour or criminal charges or initiating appropriate proceedings with a competent government body is also considered adequate measure in this case.
How to write and file a submission/complaint concerning programme content and conduct of broadcasters?
Below you may download a model submission/complaint containing all necessary elements. Please write the submission/complaint legibly or type it. The original of the submission/complaint with a signature should be sent by mail to the Agency address.
Contact address of the Agency:
Phone: 011 / 2028700
Fax: 011 / 2028745
Model of submission/complain to download.