Commission on Licensing and Supervision (ZAK)

The Commission on Licensing and Supervision is die Medienanstalten’s central organ. It deals with its core issues of licences and monitoring of nationwide private broadcasters, regulation of platforms, as well as development of digital broadcasting.

The ZAK makes decisions on licence applications by private television and radio broadcasters that want to air their programme in the entire country. This includes licences for completely new broadcasting organisations but also the renewal of existing licences.

Changes in leadership positions as well as changes in ownership and ownership structures of the companies which already have a broadcasting licence are also matters decided on by the ZAK. The Interstate Broadcasting Agreement states the legal requirements for these decisions. The Agreement also determines how to deal with programme violations by broadcasters. Therefore, the ZAK evaluates potential breaches of programme principles or advertising and sponsorship provisions.

The ZAK procedures are prepared in the specialist committees. The responsible state media authorities prepare the content of and implement the ZAK’s resolutions, and the joint office in Berlin coordinates these.

Advertising and programme

An example of a breach of programme principles is a violation of journalistic due diligence. This occurs when the research involved in reporting was not carried out thoroughly and consequently makes untrue claims that do not correspond to the reality of the situation, or inaccurate image sections are broadcast.

The ZAK becomes involved in advertising violations if, for example, the programme content cannot clearly be separated from advertising elements. This may be the case if a product is suddenly advertised in a running editorial programme without fading in a commercial bumper beforehand. Excessive highlighting of a product in an editorial programme can also lead to a supervisory decision by the ZAK. Finally, the ZAK is also authorised to impose a fine in case of certain violations of the requirements of the Interstate Broadcasting Agreement.

Platforms

Aside from these tasks, the commission is also responsible for platform regulation. It is provided with tools to do so, allowing it to ensure open access of contents (programmes) on platforms and make sure that no providers are discriminated within this platform, for example in matters of remuneration.
But the ZAK also protects the user, for example by making decisions on transparent discoverability of programmes (comprehensible listing of programmes). Finally, the ZAK takes on claims against platform operators and ensures that the digital development is progressing. It does this by calling for tenders, for example, which leads to the allocation of capacities for digital radio or television programmes via antenna.

Structure

The directors and presidents of the 14 state media authorities work together in the ZAK. The director of the managing authority is also chairperson of the ZAK.

Chairwoman: Cornelia Holsten (brema)

Deputies: Joachim Becker (LPR Hessen), Jochen Fasco (TLM), Thomas Fuchs (MA HSH)

Chairwoman

Cornelia Holsten

Cornelia Holsten

Director of the Media Authority of Bremen

Contact

Joint Management Office Franziska Riedel

Spokeswoman

Friedrichstraße 60 10117 Berlin

Phone:
+49 30 2064690-22
Fax:
+49 30 2064690-99
E-Mail:
presse@die-medienanstalten.de

Members

  • Wolfgang Kreißig

    Dr. Wolfgang Kreißig

    Director of the Media Authority of Baden-Württemberg

  • Siegfried Schneider

    Siegfried Schneider

    Director of the Media Authority of Bavaria

  • Dr. Anja Zimmer

    Dr. Anja Zimmer

    Director of the Media Authority of Berlin and Brandenburg

  • Cornelia Holsten

    Cornelia Holsten

    Director of the Media Authority of Bremen

  • Thomas Fuchs

    Thomas Fuchs

    Director of the Media Authority of Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein

  • Joachim Becker

    Joachim Becker

    Director of the Media Authority of Hesse

  • Bert Lingnau

    Bert Lingnau

    Director of the Media Authority of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania

  • Andreas Fischer

    Andreas Fischer

    Director of the Media Authority of Lower Saxony

  • Tobias Schmid

    Dr. Tobias Schmid

    Director of the Media Authority of North-Rhine Westphalia

  • Dr. Marc Jan Eumann, Direktor der Landesmedienanstalt Rheinland-Pfalz

    Dr. Marc Jan Eumann

    Director of the Media Authority of Rhineland-Palatinate

  • N. N.

    Director of the Media Authority of the Saarland

  • Grit Wißkirchen

    Prof. Dr. Markus Heinker

    Director, Media Authority of Saxony

  • Martin Heine

    Martin Heine

    Director of the Media Authority of Saxony-Anhalt

  • Jochen Fasco

    Jochen Fasco

    Director of the Media Authority of Thuringia