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  Edition # 102  
San Francisco, 07-14-2013

Figure [1]: The little Roku device (bottom left) fetches the German news show "Tagesschau" via the Internet onto our TV at the push of the remote control button.

Michael As you probably already know, we've gotten into the habit of watching the daily German news show "Tagesschau" by help of a small streaming device called Roku in our living room. It's really easy to do, since the sandwich-sized box supports not only Netflix, Amazon Instant Video, and about a dozen other content providers, but also this most famous German news show. Three clicks with the remote, and within 10 seconds, it starts running on our TV in San Francisco. Thanks to the time difference, on the weekends, we often watch the 8:00pm show already in the early afternoon.

Figure [2]: The German news show "Tagesschau" is prohibited from broadcasting the sports segment on the Internet.

I find that the "Tagesschau" with its 15 minutes of pure daily news really fits my needs. Their reporting is neutral, without much filler material, the only complaint I have is that they always announce some political figurehead visiting a disaster area with the phrase "to get an impression on the situation", on which the editor in chief should ring the alarm bells and cut it out of the manuscript immediately. It's really getting old, Tagesschau, have you realized that yet?

But the reason why I'm talking about this topic today is that towards the end of the show, on weekends, there's almost always a sports segment with some footage on the current league soccer games. Unfortunately, it is always blocked in its entirety by the ugly censor screen in Figure 2. I can imagine that it is greedy content peddlers strong-arming the public German TV station to suppress this information. The same annoyance occurs with Formula One car races. Only exotic sports like women's soccer or tennis are being broadcasted freely. And earlier today, I've witnessed a new low: At the end of the newscast, there was a report on a newly erected historical site to commemorate Nazi euthanasia crimes, and while airing some historical footage in black-and-white the same censor screen came on: "For legal reasons, this content cannot be shown on the Internet". Really, Tagesschau? Sometimes I think some of the content regulators need to get their heads examined.

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