|İctimai Televiziya ("Public Television")|
|Launched||29 August 2005|
|Owned by||Public Television and Radio Broadcasting Company (statutory corporation)|
İctimai Television (Azerbaijani: İctimai Televiziya, "Public Television") Azerbaijani pronunciation: [itʃtimɑˈi teleˈvizijɑ] or İTV is a public television channel in Azerbaijan. It began broadcasting on 29 August 2005 after being created by law in 2004 as the first independent public broadcaster in Azerbaijan. The channel is based in Baku.
İTV is primarily funded through advertising and government payments. The 2004 law creating the channel called for funding to come from a television licence fee beginning in 2010, but this portion of the law has yet to be implemented.
The channel is operated by the Public Television and Radio Broadcasting Company (Azerbaijani: İctimai Televiziya və Radio Yayımları Şirkəti), which consists of a nine-member council, whose members are approved by the President of Azerbaijan, and a director general elected by the council and also approved by the president. This arrangement, as well as the continued state financing, has been subject to criticism by non-governmental organizations on the grounds that the channel may be too closely connected to the government to be fully independent and unbiased.
İTV became a member of the European Broadcasting Union on 5 July 2007, allowing it to take part in events such as the Eurovision Song Contest, which it entered for the first time in 2008. Following Azerbaijan's win in the Eurovision Song Contest 2011, İTV hosted the 2012 competition in Baku. The broadcaster was also supposed to host the Third Eurovision Dance Contest in Baku, but this event was postponed indefinitely due to a lack of participants.
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- Official website (Azerbaijani)
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