Germany has the largest television market in Europe. It has a dual system, with public broadcasters (Das Erste—also known as ARD—and ZDF), free stations (RTL, SAT.1, ProSieben) and the pay-TV broadcaster Sky Deutschland, among others. Some popular TV shows include Tatort, a crime series running since 1970; Türkisch für Anfänger, a critically acclaimed comedy drama series; and Lindenstraße, a soap opera.
In 2015, Deutsche Welle (DW), Germany’s public international broadcaster, increased its South Asian presence with the launch of DWTV in India. Inaugurated by the German Ambassador to India, Dr Martin Ney, and Jawhar Sircar, CEO of Prasar Bharati, it focusses on news, lifestyle and regional content in English.
Radio rocks in Germany! With over 500 radio stations, it certainly is a popular medium with a vast reach. The national pubic radio broadcaster Deutschlandradio runs four stations. Deutsche Welle (DW), another publicly funded service, is beamed to Europe and overseas over short wave. Commercial radio largely follows regional content.
Germans are eager newspaper readers, making Germany the fifth-largest newspaper market in the world. Over 350 daily newspapers are published. Despite strong competition from TV and online media, newspapers still reach 70 per cent of the German population above 14 years. Leading national publications include Süddeutsche Zeitung, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Handelsblatt, Die Welt and the tabloid Bild. The weekly news magazine DER SPIEGEL continues to shape public opinion. The Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa) is the largest German news agency.
Germans are also big on books. They have a strong tradition of literature and philosophy. The theologian Martin Luther translated the Bible into German, thereby setting the basis for the modern German language. Literary giants like Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Friedrich Schiller, Friedrich Nietzsche, the Grimm brothers, Hermann Hesse, Günter Grass, Bertolt Brecht and Thomas Mann were all German! In addition to a rich literary canon, works by a younger generation of German writers like Bernhard Schlink, Daniel Kehlmann, Frank Witzel, Tanja Kinkel, Cornelia Funke and Herta Müller are ensuring a dynamic literary scene. Over 94,000 titles are published every year and Germany hosts some of the biggest literary events: the Frankfurt and Leipzig book fairs. Read on, Germany!