The state broadcaster may soon be forced to choose between raising their funding from ad revenue only, or using the money from the licence fee to finance themselves after Communications Minister Alex White said he wants the dual funding model used at the moment to be examined.
Speaking to The Irish Independent, White said that the current way that RTÉ uses both ads and the licence fee is seen as an unfair advantage by other media companies in competition with them, and has promised to bring a memo to cabinet outlining his belief that the system should be examined.
The memo would focus on the proposed public broadcasting charge, which would make every home pay some form of licence fee even if they don't have a television, and therefore could be a huge boost to the state broadcaster.
However, Mr. White's comments were made after a symposium on the future of Irish local newspapers that looked at the evolving landscape for media in Ireland, where the point was made that RTÉ's presence in the market place seeking ad revenue made it more difficult for the local radio, papers and other media to be competitive.
White added that he doesn't expect a change in the current system any time soon, and that I don't like to see this issue in zero sum ways, that we have to take from one to give to the other. I think public-service broadcasting is critically important in a democratic society, and I think it needs to be funded".