Friday, November 17, 2006

Slow and Steady

We are getting reports that the agreement that CBNsat is pursuing with Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation is making slow progress but is said to be steady.

The pace of the progress may be due to the fact they are dealing with a state institution and the intricate paper work and discussions that are required.

According to unconfirmed reports that we are getting, their staff is still upbeat and are anticipating the relaunch of CBNsat.

We hope that the authorities at the SLRC will genuinely speed up the work and allow CBNsat to operate soon.

Please keep us updated on the latest regarding CBNsat as the days progress.


yakuza said...

"President's Counsel Hemantha Warnakulasuriya appearing for Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation, Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation and Media Minister submitted that the Criminal Investigation Department had conducted investigations against those television channels."

Sandasen Marasinghe
posted by TV & Radio Sri Lanka at 11/10/2006 08:28:00 AM

do you think there will be a agreement between sri lanka rupavahini corporation and cbn this genaration.

sanju1975 said...

this story is a lie i suppose. because even the last month they said that they will come before the end of the month.

now also cbnsat is saying the same lie. can you all remember they have made up this story when there was a trend on this blog to get dish tv.

cbnsat have come up with this white lie to stop people going for dish tv. they know if someone gets dish tv they will never ever come back to cbnsat. (i'm just one of them)

cbnsat have given only given 28 channels for rs. 1500/=

for rs.1000/= dish tv gives a lot of channels with channels like ten sports and star movies and the disney channels and so many kids channels too.

so i don't think that a person who watched dish tv at least for a day will not come back to cbn.

this linking up with rupavahini is a damn lie. you could check yourselves by calling rupavahini.

cbnsat have started to fool it's subscribers. giving hopes one after another to drag them without buying dish tv.

either they have to do something to retain the subscribers without lying !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dude said...

You may be right Sanju!

But the reason that I am not going for Dish Tv is because there are some friends of mine who work there. Now I know these guys and they have been moving from job to job when they sense that something is wrong with the company.

I am surprised that they have not left CBNsat still since it is not in operation.

They told on a personal level that the deal with Rupavahini is being discussed with the higher up's. I do not think that the people we call will know anything or will divulge the information.

I am hopeful as long as these guys are there and confident that something will work out otherwise believe me these guys will not continue to work there.

They will be the first to leave.

cableguy said...


Can you please ask your friends if they can talk to CBNSat management and give us a brief update on whats going on. They dont need to elaborate the details. We just need some assurance that they are genuinely trying to work out a deal. And that they are not misleading us by delaying tactics(as has been accused by some bloggers).

Our patience is really running out. If they are not making much success with the negotiations, please let us know. We will actively look for other choices.
This whole hush..hush.. game is killing us.

yakuza said...

dude has there been any progress in the agreement between rupavahini and cbn. they were discussin about this agreement from september if im correct.

Dude said...

Guys I will try to ask them about talking to their management.

Will post here it I get more information

channa said...

There is no such agreement guys and no one knows of any discussion other than the CBNsat CEO.We called a Rupavahini engineer and he overhelmingly denied that a working agreement will be signed in near future.It is correct that they have submitted the proposals and as per his commebts it is almost unlikely that they will uplink for CBNsat.What he said was CBNsat will get the licence but not in the near future but say in 3,4,5 or 6 months >>>>>>

Guys better call ALF and get a DISHTV connection as they give a far better service even from INDIA.

don said...



Cable Guy said...

The way things are progressing, I also believe we might not see CBN again.
Wired thing is why they try to maintain the customer base while not providing any service. This is looking more and more like the Election Campaign, Lot of activity and every one is waiting for a change, but deep down we all know nothing is going to happen.

At the beginning CBN used to send news letters informing customers about the progress but I haven’t received anything in last 3 months.
If any of you (Including blog admin) really have contacts within CBN management, I suggest you tell them to send a letter to customers explaining the current situation and progress.
I’m not confident about the posts on the blog saying they are from “Dilani Nandasiri, Manageress Legal” as it could be from anyone.
Only way CBN can make me believe that they are truly working on getting back on air is send and letter by post and display the same message on their web site to make it official.

Cable Guy said...

Btw, I hope blog admin is not making up stories in the fear of loosing subscribers???


lil_birdy said...

well, firstly cable guy,
if u r cable guy, why dont u give cable service???? i believe CBN!! they did their best. There is soooo much Fuckin injustice that has been done to CBN!!! why are u guys blinded like this???

if the courts cant give justice, where the hell do u go?

if u guys are so selfish, guess its time for u to quit this blog and go fishing!

law and order is not for SL. its just money and power that talks here!

lil_birdy said...

Also sanju1975, if u r so content with your dish tv, why do u even bother visiting this site?

as for CBN, u have to agree they have been thrashed due to competitive unfairness! If comet and dish tv can operate, whats the big deal of CBN & LBN????

u ask urself if it makes any sense?

Also, u r very very patriotic i should say.... CBN came up to develop srilanka, and make it an information/It hub for the south asia! but all our politicians want is for this country to be the last to achieve anything if at all.

they can only promote marble games and hopscotch!!!(very soon national games, unser MR chinthanaya).

I personally will stand up for CBN. they had a great vision for this sad country, but have been cripled for no reason! LTTE bullshit was just brought up to tarnish their names, just becoz they r tamils.......

well CBN, i truly hope u came back!! we miss u dearly!!

Cable Guy said...

So, lil_birdy
Shall we have "Lipton Roundup" and make the world better???

FYI, I am the cable guy, and u know how annoying "The Cable Guy" can be.

Looser said...

Yes CBN has done a great job everybody knew it. But if our government doesn't allow it to operate what shall we do?

SLP said...

Guys.. i was watching the blog for # of days, but something in this accent may need to blog.......

1. CBNSat had a grate vision, and was in that vision through out their uptime, being the ultimate sat provider,...

i suppose they are, since not only with content, but with passionating customer care service, and after sales services,

therefore i don't blame for their behavior since v all know that the shutdown of CBNSat is unfair and based on false alert.

2. Government is trying to avoid information being passed into the dispersed areas of the country and therefore they do not like to BBC/CNN to operate on throughout the country since they(gosl) cannot control the content and also is controling the news of the local media (specially SLRC).

3. There is a risk for the hulla/balla group that their buissness being on loss of the middle-east countries since CBN is space-casting the local channels and there is no-wonder that every Sri lankan living outside of SL is like to view contents of Local TV Channels other that TVLanka (a real bullshit, as u all know)

4. Since with overall success, there is trend in this country to goto CBN, ignoring any local media and which the trend extends to the N-E-W-S of the country, as therefore most of educated, high earning families were trend to goto CBN platform as soon as possible.

Regarding these issues, there was a underline jealousy against CBNSat and which was revealed with LTTE connections.

Now these are the history,

What i feel after all (with SC scenarios &....) CBN is looks like to be dead. Whether v like it o not, GOSL is not going to allow it to operate with the present Government officials and which may extends to further 11 years,

As for this SLRC issue, v can still keep a hope on such, but it's most unlikely since they were the people who initially went dead on CBN, knowing this all issues and using the platform for their transmission up until they build their own sat link. So still I'm not negative, but it is a faded hope which cannot be trusted, As there ain't any other operators to follow the path, CBN is struck ed this time until further notice and which again v our selves is also,

From the beginning of this closure, I'm doubting that is there any trend to acquire CBNsat to Government as like ITN does on 198X.since they(cbn) has a massive customer base, which is great market, and these families are a well known bodies in each part of the country. And is waiting till the CBNSat is bankrupt and sell, transfer the ownership. Still i could not say it exactly but i have an idea about that from the beginning which may or may not be happen.

Finally as v subscribers, what v can do is

1. Wait for SC order to operate (unlikely)
2. wait for MOD/TRC clearence
2. wait for this acquire
(not in near future)
3. loose hope and goto DISHTv
(expensive but is the only option)
4. Forget all the matter.
5. shout to GOSL using open
campaign with maximum strength
6. allow CBN to operate from any other country
(We have to pay a price of equipment shifting, and other issues combined with...)
7. Refund
(Unlikely... since that meeting was not yet over)

Blogging here is giving us a reveal, but ultimately whatz happening is v r shouting, which is ultimately nothing. by this time CBN is packing their luggages,Honestly what i feel is they do not have any other options to go on.

Long live CBN, you have given us a great service, I'm taking my hat off, i cant blame to the things thats happened and how you face it,still you keeping tight as well,
but we subscribers, we needs to have something, either from you or any other, don't consider this as selfish, but v value our money since they were hard earned.

Fair well bloggers.

cbnsatcustomer said...

The Sri Lankan government's broadcast stranglehold

Nalaka Gunawardene debunks the globally persistent myth that community radio has been thriving in Sri Lanka

By Nalaka Gunawardene
AsiaMedia Contributing Writer

Friday, November 17, 2006

Colombo --- The Sri Lankan government's suspension of Raja FM on Nov. 9 has raised more concerns about the absence of transparency and due process in the government's dealings with stations that are not supported by the state. Similar government actions have come to characterise Sri Lanka's broadcast liberalisation process over the last 15 years.

It is also a firm reminder that the once-dreaded cultural police and moral guardians are back, wearing new robes of extreme nationalism and fundamentalism. The ban of the private radio channel is merely the latest in a series of assaults on freedom of expression.

Raja FM is owned by Colombo Communication Private Limited, one of nearly two dozen commercial channels that crowd the FM bandwidth. The government said it shut down the channel because it "broadcast anti social and extremely repulsive and vulgar material that could corrupt the society, specially [sic] the younger generation." The Ministry of Mass Media and Information claimed it "received a large number of complaints from the intellectuals, religious leaders, media personnel and society leaders," and thus banned the radio channel under a 40-year-old law, the Societal Good Conduct Act No. 37 of 1966.

Successive Sri Lankan governments have shared the dubious distinction of cracking down on independent newspapers that have been overly critical of government policies and actions. But this is the first time a privately owned radio or TV channel has been shutdown since broadcast liberalisation started in the early 1990s.

The Free Media Movement (FMM),the country's leading media rights group, expressed serious concerns over the banning of Raja FM: "If Raja FM broadcasts any such programmes, instead of banning the channel, the government should have followed the due process to determine the remedial steps," FMM's convenor Sunanda Deshapriya said.

Sri Lankan media are indeed sailing in rough seas. The Worldwide Press Freedom Index, compiled annually by Reporters Without Borders (RSF), recently ranked Sri Lanka at 141st of the 168 countries assessed for 2006 -- a dramatic drop from its 52nd rank in 2002, when a ceasefire was brokered between government troops and the Tamil Tigers that halted a protracted civil war between the two groups.

But the banning of Raja FM is much more than a media freedom issue. It brings into sharp focus a disturbing trend that now all too often seems to shape public policy and governmental action in Sri Lanka.

First, a handful of private individuals or a hitherto unknown group will protest against a media organisation or a cultural product (FMM says that "extreme nationalist forces" launched and e-mail campaign against Raja FM ahead of government intervention.). The individual or group will make the allegation that the media organization or cultural product is detrimental to cultural norms, insensitive to a particular ethnic or religious group or threatens national security. How vocally these viewpoints are promoted matters more than the logic or coherence of these assertions.

After allegations are made, a public official will begin to champion the agitators' cause, usually without any public debate. Then, the government will impose bans, suspensions or protectionist measures.

In 2006 alone, this cycle has led to the banning of the Hollywood movie The Da Vinci Code, the imposition of unreasonably high taxes on foreign TV programming imported by local broadcasters and the sealing of two local pay-TV channels for alleged threats to national security. This summer, the Cultural Ministry withdrew the initial censor board approval granted for public screening of Aksharaya (Letter of Fire), the latest feature film by internationally acclaimed film-maker Asoka Handagama. A sexually-charged art film exploring incest, it fell foul of Sinhala nationalists who called it a foreign-funded attempt to discredit Sri Lanka.

In each of these cases, bureaucratic action was preceded by a short-lived smear campaign by a small group of angry individuals or business rivals. There was no due process, and some affected individuals and companies were forced to turn to the courts -- which can take months or years to hear cases -- for legal redress. And bans, once imposed, are not easily withdrawn, unless ordered by courts.

When it comes to radio and TV broadcasting, private operators are completely at the government's mercy. The highly discretionary broadcast licensing system has always lacked transparency, accountability and consistency from the time private broadcasting was first permitted in 1992. Since then, several governments have been in office, and while election manifestos regularly promised the creation of a broadcasting authority, such a body has not yet materialised.

By default, broadcasting is still governed by the laws and regulations that were used to set up state-owned radio and TV stations decades ago. These laws allow state-owned stations to regulate their competitors in the private sector.

In practice, Sri Lanka's broadcast liberalisation has been partial and lop-sided. Both the main political parties have given out radio and TV licenses to family members or friends -- licenses that are valuable political IOUs during crises or elections. Some broadcast licenses have changed hands for millions of dollars. But whatever the price, all licenses can be revoked or cancelled by the government at any time without reason. It's the Sword of Damocles that hangs over all privately owned radio and TV stations. No wonder, then, that self censorship is widely practised.

Meanwhile, community groups are not being issued broadcast licenses. Senior officials have privately explained that they fear airwaves will be misused for anti-social or political purposes. They have not, strangely enough, voiced such concerns about profit-making companies, some of whose channels are openly-aligned with political parties.

A globally persistent myth holds that community radio has been thriving in Sri Lanka for two decades. In reality, these broadcasters are nothing more than rural transmissions of the fully state-owned and state-controlled Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC). Yes, these stations are located in remote areas, involve local people in programme production and broadcast to a predominantly rural audience. But the bureaucracy in Colombo tightly-controls content: nothing remotely critical of the government in office is permitted.

The rest of the world does not recognise this as community radio. The World Association of Community Broadcasters (AMARC), defines community radio as non-profit with the community having complete control over the content of broadcasts.

Ironically, only armed rebels have defied this stranglehold by successive governments. The Marxist People's Liberation Front ran Rana Handa (Sound of Victory) in the 1980s when it was spearheading a youth insurgency. The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) ran Voice of Tigers (VOT) for years, making a complete mockery of Colombo's broadcast regulations. In November 2002, as part of a Norwegian-brokered ceasefire arrangement, the government granted a license for the Tamil Tigers to continue its broadcasts legally. That was the first time -- and so far, the only time -- the state has ever conceded a license to a group that is neither part of the state nor a profit-making company. All governments since 1992 have refrained from granting any broadcast licenses to non-profit, non-governmental groups.

Organisations such as Sarvodaya -- the country's largest development NGO -- are keen to use the airwaves for the public good and have the capability to deliver relevant content. But, even as India is beginning to allow genuine community radio, Sri Lanka stubbornly refuses to democratise its the airwaves.

The privileged few companies that hold broadcast licenses should know better than to rock the boat. The banning of Raja FM should make them realise how perilous the situation is for every broadcaster who is unwilling to amplify the voice of government. It is in their interests -- and everybody else's -- to support the long-standing call for an independent broadcasting authority.

cbnsatcustomer said...

Longer wait for CBN Sat subscribers

The Defence Ministry is yet to clear CBN (Communiq Broadband Networks Ltd) – off the air since June 9 this year – for a media licensing facility and is unlikely to get one, Director General of the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC) of Sri Lanka, Kanchana Ratwatte, told The Sunday Times FT.

So unfortunately for CBN Sat customers who are eagerly awaiting for their transmission to resume, the wait might be extensive. However, a customer service representative for CBN Satellite said a Supreme Court hearing was held on Monday, 6 November in which the company was given an option by the Court to come to an agreement with a company having a media licence.

"We have submitted an agreement to the Rupavahini Corporation," the representative said. "They are the only people who have the licence at present so we hope to be transmitting through Rupavanihi." The next court date is scheduled for December 5 and according to the representative, there is a chance of resuming their satellite transmission through Rupavahini before this. CBN's transmission was halted by the Criminal Investigation Division (CID) in June after a 2-month long investigation, citing that CBN Sat didn’t have proper media licensing to carry on transmissions. The company had a valid vendor license but did not have the authority to broadcast, putting them in violation of section 17 of the Telecommunications Act No. 25 of 1991.

Lanka Broadband Networks (Pvt) Ltd, (LBN) is the other cable service provider whose transmission was severed in June 2006, also for improper licensing. A customer relations officer from LBN said the fees required by the TRC for a licence have been paid. "We will be resuming our services but we can only let our customers know after November 28 when the case will again be heard in the Court of Appeal. Transmission will probably resume from the beginning of December but we are not able to say for sure right now."

The LBN website says the company has received defence clearance and is waiting for licensing approval by the President. According to the officer, the TRC has to submit all relevant documents to the President for authorization and present it to the Courts on November 28. He added that customers won't be charged for the period that transmission was interrupted. "If they have paid in advance, their accounts will be credited."

Ratwatte said the documents have been sent to the President last week but have not been returned although he expects them to be signed and delivered any day now. However, LBN will still be required to ascertain a media licence in order to resume cable broadcasting. "The TRC is only giving a licence for a passive network so it's a vital requirement to get the media licence from the Ministry of Mass Media and Information," Ratwatte said.

cbnsatcustomer said...

So you see how things work in this "cuntry". I have many things to say about this rajapakse and inc. regime but I won't because I don't want get scolded with filth by the so called many "patriots"
and comrades who are inspired by this new extrimist "sinhala buddhist" culture.

But I know one thing this chintana gang is going to learn a good lesson before long.

don said...

We have to get ALF back as there seem to be no hope for CBNsat in this decade and DISHTV looks the only possible option as operators old or new may never be able to survive here.

So forget about what this Kaluperuma guy is talking about and please help them out ALF

sanju1975 said...

i told you guys to somehow get dish tv from india. don't get huluballas connection as it has only the crap channels and most of them are fta channels.

all the people who bought connections from huluballa can try creating web access through dish tv website because you have all the details. then you could be able to upgrade your package at a lower cost. why don't you guys check it out.

cbnsat will take a longer time than we anticipated. even if they come they will not have the content provided by dish tv like ten sports, zee sports, star movies and specially disney channels for kids.

we want our infotainment back somehow. we do not bother it's cbnsat or dish tv. if the gov of sl tries to screw us we are also prepared to counter attack. that's our strategy now. in this information age the gov can do very little to restrict the content flowing in to the country.

the best example is that gov made a big issue of ftv with cbnsat and eventually even comet cable have dropped ftv. but still it could be visible through all the fta receivers around the country. gov has no control at all.

sirinimal said...

Cbn is closed for 6 months now ! Anyone wondered how they pay there rentals to banks, showrooms and the salaries of the employees. Expenses to the court cases are also added to this.

We are sure that this is a collosal amount and in millions !!!

We know they are running without an income for 6 months. Who have paid this money for Cbnsat ?????

Anyone wonder ?????????