2.4 The Brazilian Digital Television System (SBTVD) Forum
After the release of Presidential Decree 5,820, the role of private organizations in the development of DTT was intensified, mainly because of the SBTVD Forum.
The Forum is a nonprofit entity, whose main objectives are supporting and fostering the development and implementation of best practices to the Brazilian digital television broadcasting success. The most important participants of broadcasting, reception-and-transmission-equipment-manufacturing, and software industries are part of this Forum.
The Forum’s main tasks are: to identify and harmonize the system’s requirements; to define and manage the technical specifications; to promote and coordinate technical cooperation among television broadcasters, transmission-and-reception-equipment manufacturers, the software industry, and research-and-education institutions; to propose solutions to matters related to intellectual property aspects of the Brazilian DTT system; to propose and develop solutions to matters related to the development of human resources; and to support and promote the Brazilian standard in the country and overseas.
Besides the private sector, federal government representatives also participate in the Forum. And such participation is considered very important, since it allows those representatives to closely follow the discussions taking place, while strengthening the relationship between forum members and public regulators.
The Forum of Brazil’s Terrestrial Digital TV Broadcasting System was formally instated in December 2006. The Forum’s mission is to help and encourage the installation or improvement of the digital sound and image transmission and receiving system in Brazil, promoting standards and quality that meet the demands of the users.
The purpose of this Forum is to propose voluntary or mandatory technical norms, standards, and regulations for Brazil’s terrestrial digital television broadcasting system, and, in addition, to promote representation, relations, and integration with other national and international institutions.
2.4.2 Structure and Composition
There are three membership categories: Full Members, Effective Members, and Observers. The full members, who have the right to vote and the obligation to pay annual dues, belong to the following sectors:
Manufacturers of receiver or transmitter equipment.
Teaching and research institutions that carry out activities directly involving Brazil’s digital TV
Effective members come from sectors that are different from those mentioned previously, but they must also pay annual dues. The observer members are those who, when formally invited by the Council, accept to enter the Forum, without any voting rights and without the obligation to pay annual dues.
The Deliberative Council is comprised of 13 councilor members elected by the General Assembly. The Council shall be able to draw up general policies of action, strategies, and priorities, adopt the results of the work, and refer them to the Development Committee of the Federal Government.
Brazilian digital TV Forum
2.4.3 Modules Assignments
The Forum is comprised of four modules that address different aspects of the Digital TV implementation effort.
188.8.131.52 Market Module
The market module must identify the needs, wishes, and opportunities of the market, defining functional requirements, time limits for availability, and costs, and coordinating the relationship between the various sectors represented in the Forum.
This module checks conformity with the technical specifications and requirements that are drawn up and analyzes and proposes solutions to issues related to planning the implementation of terrestrial digital television.
184.108.40.206 Technical Module
The technical module coordinates the efforts relative to the technical specifications of Brazil’s digital TV system and research and development activities, identifies specification needs, and defines the availability of technical solutions referring to the generation, distribution, and receiving of the digital TV system, including high definition, standard definition, mobility, portability, data services, interactivity, content protection, and conditional access.
This module also coordinates the efforts to harmonize technical specifications with other national and international institutions.
220.127.116.11 Intellectual Property Module
The intellectual property module must coordinate efforts in the search of solutions regarding intellectual property, drawing up policies and practices to be adopted among the members and proposing the legal approach to these issues to the competent institutions.
This module also helps and monitors the negotiation of royalties linked to the incorporation of technologies along with their holders and informs the council about the costs involved in the techniques being adopted or incorporated.
18.104.22.168 Promotion Module
The promotion module coordinates efforts to promote, distribute, and disseminate Brazil’s system. This module must promote seminars and courses; publish newspapers, bulletins, and other carriers of information. The Promotion Module is also responsible for organizing the common activities of broadcasters and industries aimed at increasing the awareness about the advantages of the Digital TV system.
2.4.4 Outline of the Technical Standards
Standardization activities, performed by the Technical Module, are divided among eight subgroups of specialist volunteer members, which work in the sectors of the broadcasters, consumer electronics, transmitters and software industries and universities. The working groups are organized as in Fig. 37.
The standards for the digital terrestrial television, showed in the Fig. 37, are listed below:19
− ABNT NBR 15601:2007 – Transmission system
− ABNT NBR 15602:2007 – Video coding, audio coding and multiplexing
− ABNT NBR 15603:2007 – Multiplexing and service information (SI)