Office de Radiodiffusion Télévision Française

The Office de Radiodiffusion-Télévision Française (ORTF) was the national agency charged, between 1964 and 1974, with providing public radio and television in France. All programming, and especially news broadcasts, were under strict control of the national government.[1][2]

Office de Radiodiffusion-Télévision Française
TypeÉtablissement public à caractère industriel et commercial
Key people
Jacques-Bernard Dupont

Jean-Jacques de Bresson
Arthur Conte

Marceau Long
Launch date
June 27, 1964
DissolvedDecember 31, 1974
AffiliatesRadio Stations

France Culture
France Inter Paris

TV Channels

La première chaîne
La deuxième chaîne
La troisième chaîne


Régie française de publicité

Post World War II

A public monopoly on broadcasting in France had been established with the formation of Radiodiffusion Française (RDF) in 1945. RDF was renamed Radiodiffusion-Télévision Française (RTF) in 1949 and replaced by the ORTF in 1964.

From the beginning, the public broadcaster experienced fierce competition from the "peripheral stations": French-speaking stations aimed at the French public but transmitting on longwave from neighbouring countries, such as Radio Monte Carlo (RMC) from Monaco, Radio Luxembourg (later RTL) from Luxembourg, and Europe 1 from Germany (exceptionally, in 1974, RMC was allowed to set up a transmitter on French territory).

French broadcasting revolution

On December 31, 1974, the ORTF split in 5, leaving 7 successor institutions:

Membership of the European Broadcasting Union

In 1950 the ORTF's predecessor, RTF, had been one of 23 founding broadcasting organisations of the European Broadcasting Union. Upon the break-up of the ORTF in 1974, French membership of the EBU was transferred to the transmission company TDF, while TF1 became a second French active member. A2, FR3, and SRF became supplementary active members before eventually becoming full members in 1982. In 1983 the French public broadcasters' membership was transferred to a joint organisation, the Organisme français de radiodiffusion et de télévision (OFRT). Nine years later, the OFRT was succeeded by the Groupement des Radiodiffuseurs Français de l’UER (GRF) which currently holds one of the French memberships of the EBU.

See also


  1. J.F.V. Keiger, France and the World since 1870 (2001) p 39.
  2. Raymond Kuhn (2006). The Media in France. Routledge. pp. 70–180. ISBN 9781134980536.
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