Two private networks have been slapped with identical fines for showing inappropriate content during time slots when children may be watching television.
The National Market and Competitiveness Commission began investigating Mediaset after rival company Atresmedia filed a complaint on June 19, 2013 accusing it of showing sexually explicit content during morning shows. Eight days later, Mediaset accused Atresmedia of exactly the same thing.
A year later, both companies will have to pay €150,000 for airing shows about prostitution during high-protection programming blocks, namely 8am to 9am and 5pm to 8pm on weekdays.
One of the programs aired on Antena 3’s morning show Espejo Público on May 16, 2013. The segment explored growing prostitution among female college students due to the economic crisis.
On June 12 of that year, Telecinco’s morning show Programa de Ana Rosa began with a story about prostitutes and the mafias who control them. Both shows included images of partial nudity; the second one also had explicit sex scenes and showed women offering their services and discussing their rates with prospective clients.
Both programs are rated as appropriate for all audiences, and have an estimated underage viewership of around 5,000 minors.
Both stations declined making any comments on the fines on Thursday.