DAB+: A PROGRAMMED AND ORGANIZED TECHNICAL OBSOLESCENCE TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE

Le double discours délirant des médias

Even if he doesn’t want to buy a new radio, because his is still working fine, the Belgian will be forced to do so within a few years at the latest. To achieve this, our beloved media have brought out the artillery and to start with an impressive first media plan for the promotion of DAB+(1). This one started this November 4, 2019. Composed of television, radio and digital spots, for a recognized value of more than 1.200.000€, it is coordinated by maRadio.be, thanks to the contributions in advertising space of the 15 participating FM networks, RTL Belgium and RTBF with their 6 television channels, as well as RTBF Auvio and RTL Play. Not to mention that 17,000 copies of an « explanatory » folder will be distributed in stores, run by « DAB+ ambassadors », so that sales staff and their customers are « as well informed as possible about this new radio technology ».


We are simply dealing with heavy artillery with the declared objective of pushing Belgians to leave FM for DAB+ as soon as possible. « In the end, we are promised, — at the earliest in five years — DAB+ will become the standard and FM will disappear. (…) « In some countries, a timetable is being drawn up for the end of FM when digital (DAB+, Internet, television) reaches 50% of consumption(2) « . This plan obviously omits to talk about what is wrong, namely, the programmed technical obsolescence of millions of radios! At a time when everyone, hand on heart, declares its willingness to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases it produces to try to stop the disastrous effects of climate change(3)! Look for the error. However, it has been known for a long time that we can no longer ignore the calculation of grey energy, i.e. the energy required to manufacture and dismantle a product, when making investment decisions. This is far from being negligible since it frequently represents two thirds of our global energy consumption! A study of the ULB(4) specifies that, in the energy consumption of an average household, 37% concerns the direct consumption and 63% the energy « contained » in the products. This omission is totally unbearable and particularly inadmissible on the part of the media, including several so-called public service media, which declare their vocation to inform us. This is why we have decided to file a complaint with the CSA and the Jury of Advertising Ethics with these words:

- Believing, like the UN and other supranational and national organizations, that the protection of the environment must be a top priority to give humans a chance to live on a sustainable planet;
- Believing that all the information media have the responsibility to give correct and complete information to our fellow citizens and that in this respect we cannot be satisfied with a truncated advertising campaign;
- Observing that, according to the general principles that all commercial communication must respect, « In terms of content, whether broadcast on linear or non-linear services, commercial communication may not encourage behaviour that is seriously prejudicial to the protection of the environment(5) « ;
- Observing that the DAB+ campaign does not respect its obligation to make its commercial communication easily identifiable, since it uses the same words and slogans in the commercials and in the so-called news programs;

We demand that the DAB+ campaign be stopped immediately, that a press release be issued about the infringement and that the news media be obliged to provide correct information about the grey energy involved in the switch to DAB+.

Thank you for taking our complaints into consideration.


Signatories
André Sterckx, engineer; Michèle Gilkinet, former federal deputy; Jean Pierre Wilmotte, citizen and co-founder of mpOC (Mouvement politique des objecteurs de croissance); Françoise Meuleman, daily listener of La Première; Paul Lannoye, physicist and president of GRAPPE; Alain Adriaens, former regional deputy; Olivier De Schutter, professor at UCLouvain; Alexandre Penasse, editor of the newspaper Kairos; Ezio Gandin, physicist and ex-president of Friends of the Earth — Belgium; Bernard Legros, teacher and essayist; Francis Leboutte, civil engineer; Philippe Raway, Eco-advisor; Christian Savestre, journalist at POUR.press, member of Attac 2 Brussels, Fiscal Justice Network and Acid; Michel Dehon; Christine Decantere; Robert Goedertier, physicist; Christine Pagnoulle, ATTAC Liège; Corinne Michel, ATTAC Liège; Valéry Witsel, permanent education animator, ex-professor of French and history; With the support of Friends of the Earth, mpOC, Mouvement politique des Objecteurs de Croissance, and ATTAC Liège

Contact address : michele.gilkinet@gmail.com, 9, ruelle du Sablon, 1495
Villers-la-Ville, 071 876 779

Notes et références
  1. https://www.lalettre.pro/Lancement-officiel-du-DAB-en-Wallonie-et-a-Brux…
  2. https://www.lecho.be/entreprises/media-marketing/la-radio-numerique-enfi…
  3. Exemple avec l’engagement de la RTBF pour l’environnement (https://www.rtbf.be/entreprise/a‑propos/detail_nos-engagements?id=9303440): « Depuis le lancement de l’opération Planète Nature en 2007, la RTBF démontre toujours plus son souci de l’environnement. Dans ce but, elle intègre de manière systématique la dimension environnementale dans ses projets et développements majeurs. La RTBF a notamment développé des outils permettant d’évaluer précisément l’impact de ses activités. Un bilan carbone et le calcul de l’empreinteécologique de l’entreprise permettent de cibler les actions à prendre et d’intégrer la dimension environnementale à chaque projet. La mobilité douce figure également parmi les mesures prises par la RTBF pour réduire son empreinteécologique. Et pour transmettre cette dynamique à l’ensemble de l’organisation, des « éco-teams » rassemblent des membres du personnel qui se font les relais de la conscientisation en interne auprès de chaque collaborateur ».
  4. « Energies non conventionnelles », in Michel Huart, ULB, 2004
  5. http://www.csa.be/faqs/1#question_94
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