Owners of TV-capable cellphones must pay public channel fees, top court rules
Japan Times -- Mar 14
The Supreme Court has finalized high court rulings ordering owners of television-capable cellphones to pay a subscription fee to public broadcaster NHK, Kyodo News learned Wednesday.

The Japanese Broadcast Law obliges anyone who has a TV signal receiver to sign a contract with the Japan Broadcasting Corp., widely known as NHK.

Presiding Judge Toshimitsu Yamasaki ruled Tuesday in two cases that the broadcast law applies to individuals who own a cellphone with a TV function, rejecting appeals by the plaintiffs.

One of the lawsuits was filed by a member of the assembly for the city of Asaka near Tokyo who does not own a TV set, and the Saitama District Court decided in August 2016 he was not obliged to pay the subscription fee because possessing such a cellphone was not necessarily equivalent to installing a TV signal receiver.

News source: Japan Times
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