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Friday, March 21, 2014

Knesset bill would put Israel Hayom newspaper out of business

In what is clearly an effort to put the wildly successful Israel Hayom newspaper out of business, a group of six MK's has introduced a bill in the Knesset that would limit the free distribution of newspapers.
The bill, which was proposed by MKs Eitan Cabel (Labor), Robert Ilatov (Yisrael Beytenu), Ayelet Shaked (Jewish Home), Elazar Stern (Hatnua), Ariel Atias (Shas) and Yoel Razvozov (Yesh Atid), seeks to ensure "true and fair competition between newspapers."
Analysts predict the law is likely to cause a brouhaha in the government, and that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will act to prevent it from passing. The law's opponents argue that the bill, if passed, could drastically change the balance of representative power in the Israeli press. 
Under the bill, every newspaper which is defined as one of the four daily newspapers most widely circulated in Israel will be sold at a "nominal value" - about 70% of the price of the cheapest and most popular newspaper. 
In addition, the bill would ban distributing free newspapers for more than a six-month period - and require the price of each paper to be printed prominently on the front page. 
Media experts are expected to slam the bill for contributing to the ongoing decline in the newspaper industry, which has made headlines over the past several years as popular publications begin to disappear.
A report by the International Business Times in 2012 noted that the newspaper industry has shrunk by 40% worldwide since 2002, and that it continues to decline at a rate of 6.4% per year. Many attribute the decline to the ubiquitousness and ease of internet news sources.
Israel Hayom is distributed free at traffic intersections, and makes its money off advertising. It is the most widely circulated newspaper in Israel, displacing Yedioth Aharonoth within a couple of years of its founding. It is owned by Sheldon Adelson, and American Jew with a huge interest in Israel, who also owns casinos in the US. Adelson is also a big supporter of... Binyamin Netanyahu.

Pass the popcorn.... 

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At 1:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You do know Freedom of House, of all places, said Israel was less free because too many people read Israel Hayom, giving short shrift to other points of view. If you made this stuff up, people would call you a liar.

At 6:25 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Why are ANY right-wing MKs supporting this??? Are they trying to force a revitalization of the old leftist newspapers?

At 3:29 PM, Blogger Sunlight said...

The Progressive Left (and Right) can't win on the issues, so they are creating Dictatorships. And some very unexpected people are participating in that, in many places and fields. Only half of the situation is having light shined on it.


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