The DAB fiasco is becoming a major political issue in Norway, with MPs protesting the issue.
Experience so far leaves no doubt that the closure of the FM network and the introduction of DAB is a tragedy for the Norwegian people.
The Storting parliamentarian and media spokesperson for the Center Party, Åslaug Sem-Jacobsen, writes this in response to Frp (Progress Party) Thorleif Fluer Vikre, in a debate article published in several regional newspapers in Norway. Before joining Stortinget Sem-Jacobsen was employed by the public broadcaster NRK.
Vikre, vice president of Frp Vestfold and Telemark district, regards the closing of FM networks as a big mistake, which is confirmed by the fact that radio listening is down. Frp was the only party against national FM switch-off. Vikre therefore believes it is positive that Sem-Jacobsen and the Center Party now is critical about this digitization.
It is true that a broad majority voted for digitizing the radio medium in connection with the processing of Report. 8 (2010-2011), including the Center Party. Let me remind Vikre and Frp that when the Storting adopted the introduction of DAB technology, it was under certain conditions. One of these was that DAB should have equivalent coverage as the FM network before FM was phased out. Furthermore, it was emphasized that a number of political and social considerations had to be taken care of in connection with the digitization. Freedom of expression, ownership, emergency preparedness, access to information, population coverage, as well as ensuring users access reasonable and good services, she writes in her reply to Vikre.
She believes that the experience so far has shown that the closure of the FM network and the introduction of DAB is a tragedy for the Norwegian people. She points out that the Center Party 2016 made proposals in the Storting to postpone the closure of FM. The proposal was subsequently rejected, also by Frp.