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TV licence fees still apply to computers: court

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15:56 CET+01:00
A Swedish court ruled on Tuesday that computers, surfing tablets, and mobile phones will still be counted as a television transmitter device, meaning Swedes will have to pay annual fees to Sweden's TV licensing authorities.

The ruling was passed down by the Sundsvall Court of Appeals after a resident in Lund, southern Sweden, complained that his computer didn't even have TV channel-receiving software and that he shouldn't have to pay the fee.

The court rejected the man's claims, as did an administrative court before.

The man was one of 558 people to have argued that they shouldn't be paying TV fees for their computers, but he was the only person who took it as far as the appeals court.

Currently, anyone with a television receiver is required by law to pay the 2,076 kronor ($320) annual fee, which is collected and enforced by Radiotjänst, a division of Swedish public service broadcasting.

Radiotjänst collects around 7 billion kronor ($1.09 billion) per annum which is used to part-finance Sveriges Television, Sveriges Radio and Utbildningsradio (UR).

The Sundsvall court, however, disagreed with the man, informing him that computers are designed to be able to access and receive television channels, Sveriges Radio reported.

A 2006 law stating that anyone who can access an entire TV channel on any device is required to pay the fee came into effect last year when TV4 made all of its content available online.

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TT/The Local/og

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