RT launches long-awaited German TV broadcast
RT is launching its new, round-the-clock German-language TV channel on Thursday. This comes as interest for its existing online content among German speakers is on the rise, the outlet says.
Among other programs, the channel will broadcast news, talk shows, and documentaries, including ‘Fasbenders Woche’, featuring a prominent German journalist, Thomas Fasbender. “We will do our best to live up to the expectations of our German-speaking TV audiences,” RT Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan said.
The audience for RT’s German language online platform, RT DE, has been steadily growing ever since its launch back in 2014. According to CrowdTangle data, it is currently the top German-language news media on Facebook, based on total interactions over the past 12 months, surpassing such German media heavyweights as the tabloid Bild or Der Spiegel magazine, as well as the public broadcaster ZDF.
Its videos, according to Tubular Labs, are also among the top-five most viewed on Facebook, beating those of such German grandees as Spiegel TV, Zeit Online, and Focus Online. RT’s multilingual family of websites has also turned out to be more popular than that of Germany’s state-owned international broadcaster, Deutsche Welle, when it comes to visits from Germany.
“We have found that audiences in Germany are growing ever more interested in RT, and we are happy that now, instead of just reading our content online, they can watch it on TV,” the head of RT DE Productions, Dinara Toktosunova, said.
That popularity has come at a cost, however, as RT DE has faced several major setbacks over the past several months. Earlier this year, reports in the German media alleged that Berlin had pressed neighboring Luxembourg into denying RT a license. Germany has denied it had anything to do with the refusal.
In September, YouTube removed two German-language channels, RT DE and Der Fehlende Part, over what it claimed was a violation of community guidelines. Following the decision, RT’s editor-in-chief branded it a “declaration of media war against Russia by Germany,” and called on Moscow to respond. Before its removal, RT DE was the fourth-most influential German-language news source on the platform, surpassing Deutsche Welle and a number of other news broadcasters.
“The way Germany has fought and continues to fight against RT has been unmatched by any other country in the world,” Simonyan said, adding that this fact would not affect the channel’s determination to present quality content to its audience.
RT DE’s news and current affairs programs are carried by some of the most powerful satellites covering Europe such as Eutelsat 16A (Position: 16.0°E, Frequency (MHz):12552, Polarization: V, Symbol Rate (SR): 2070, FEC: 2/3) and Eutelsat 9B (Position: 9.0°E, Frequency (MHz): 11727, Polarization: V, Symbol Rate (SR): 30000, FEC: 3/4). You can also watch RT DE on SmartTV, mobile app (iOS or Android), its website, YouTube or PayTV.