25 October, 2013

Angers Télé in the middle of an electoral controversy

Angers Télé, the local tv channel launched last February, is unintentionally at the core of a controversy led by Angers Info, a website contents aggregator. According to that website, the ads about Angers Télé, visible on electronic billboards JCDecaux, whose presence has been challenged by ecologist supporters, would be illegal. The advertisements, "Find the essentials news of Angers and its urban area [on] Angers Télé", with, at the bottom of the boards, the logo of Angers city, would break the law, suggests Angers Info. According to the French electoral code "On the first day of the sixth month before the month in which general elections must be carried out, no advertising campaign about achievements or the management of an authority may be organized on the territory of the authority concerned by the ballot", refers the website.

Given the first run of the municipal elections is due to take place on March 23rd, according to Angers Info, Frédéric Béatse's administration would contravene with law. Moreover, the advertisements would not be paid by Angers city, neither by Angers Télé to JCDecaux. According to the website, the company would offer to the city uncharged advertisements in exchange of its authorization to set up about 40 electronic billboards in town (but that one has just said it will transfer some of them in downtown). "Here we ask the question of whether or not the angevin channel is an action of the city and its mayor and, if so, can the authority promote [Angers Télé] on billboards during the electoral campaign?", writes Angers Info.

Another local information website, Angers Mag, recently disclosed that Angers Télé would be the target of "false informations about [its] financial situation" because of the electoral campaign. "Angers Télé is not the mayor's channel", points out Jean-Claude Bachelot, chairman of the company which runs the local television whose most of stock capital is owned by Angers city and Angers Loire Métropole. That one hopes that the elections will boost its audience which, currently, is unknown.

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