Television industry unites for United nations’ “World television day”
World Television Day – the United Nations led initiative backed by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), the Association of Commercial Television in Europe (ACT) and egta, the Brussels based association of television and radio sales houses.
Broadcasters across Europe, Asia, Canada, USA and Australia have been invited to screen a 30 second video commissioned by the organizations in recognition of the crucial role TV plays to inform, educate and entertain. Numerous broadcasters have already confirmed that they will air the clip on 21st November across their networks or online portals.
The clip features entertainment, news, culture, sport and drama highlights and urges viewers to nominate their best TV moment using the social media hash tags #WeloveTV and #WorldTVDay.
Contributions made to websites, Facebook and twitter will be collated by local broadcasters with the potential to create a new clip called ‘You love TV.’
EBU president Jean-Paul Philippot says public service media television helps strengthen democracy by ensuring that everyone – including those without political or economic influence – can access information.
“The EBU has 63 Active TV Members in 55 countries, operating 937 TV channels broadcasting in 69 languages with a potential audience of 1.02 billion people,” Mr Philippot said. “It gives a voice to those who would otherwise go unheard and by serving all sections of society; it promotes tolerance and understanding and facilitates debate around issues of national concern.”
egta President Franz Prenner says the initiative celebrates television’s everlasting audience appeal.
“Television viewing across most European countries is stable or increasing,” said Mr Prenner. “Throughout the European Union, the average viewer tunes in for 236 minutes a day. The odd fluctuation cannot mask the big picture that people love to consume quality content on multiple screens, including OTT. TV is only beginning to embrace its golden age!”
Chairman of the ACT Board of Directors Magnus Brooke describes television as a ‘European success story’.
“Television is the medium used most by Europeans. 87 per cent watch TV content daily either on a TV set or online,” says Mr Brooke. “This enduring popularity is made possible thanks to commercial channels’ investment in programme content. Our viewers demand the best news, sport, entertainment and drama. Good quality doesn’t come cheap and 40 per cent of commercial TV revenue is reinvested in TV content. This investment is rewarded in consumers’ trust. Although information today is everywhere, television remains the most trusted platform for news in Europe and beyond.”
Regional Information Centre Deputy Director Caroline Petit says World Television Day was proclaimed an annual event by the United Nations in 1996 in recognition of the impact television increasingly has on decision-makers.
“TV’s power lies in its ability to foster democracy, to encourage freedom of speech, to contribute to innovation, to mobilise and to support cultural diversity,” Ms Petit said. “By alerting world attention to conflicts and threats to peace and security, TV has the potential to help sharpen the understanding of some major global topics.”