Swedish court backs TV license fees for computers, mobile devices
ca.reuters.com reports that a Swedish court on Monday ruled that the state broadcaster could charge a fee for accessing television via the Internet on laptops, tablets, smartphones and other devices.
Sweden has for decades had a mandatory television license fee, now 173 crowns ($25.90) a month, to pay for public service broadcasting in a similar system to that of the Britain’s BBC.
But with more viewers watching Internet-streamed television content, supplied by the likes of Netflix and Sweden’s own public service broadcaster, the agency collecting fees earlier this year began charging them as well.
The move sparked a backlash on social networks such as Twitter as well as a debate in local media about the viability of the entire license system.
An administrative court in Lulea, in the far north of Sweden, has been processing hundreds of appeals against the fees and in its first rulings published it dismissed about 20 of them filed by computer owners.