Television industry unites for United Nations' "World Television Day"

The capacity of television to engage audiences in critical issues will be recognized on 21 November through an initiative led by public service and commercial broadcasters, sales houses, as well as trade associations around the world.

TORONTO, Nov. 19, 2013 /CNW/ - In a world first, key industry bodies including egta, the association of television and radio sales houses, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and the Association of Commercial Television in Europe (ACT) will unite for World Television Day, which was proclaimed an annual event by the United Nations in 1996.

Broadcasters everywhere have been invited to broadcast a brief video commissioned by egta, ACT and EBU in recognition of TV's crucial role to inform, educate and entertain.

The clip features people of all ages and nationalities watching television content on different devices, ranging from entertainment to news, to culture, education and drama. Broadcasters across Europe, Asia, Canada, USA and Australia have confirmed their participation. The three associations expect broadcasters in more than 20 countries to air the clip on Thursday 21st November.

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon says in a digital age, "TV remains the most trusted and popular medium for news, culture, sports and entertainment." Europeans watch more linear television than ever before - an average of 235 minutes per day. 

"Television helps bring the world to people's lives and living rooms," he says.  "Through quality programming, television sheds light on global issues and opens windows of understanding on the struggles and hopes of communities and families everywhere."

Franz Prenner, egta President and Head of Research at ORF Austria, expresses praise for a medium, which he said 'repeatedly demonstrated its capacity for reinvention.'

"These are exciting times both for broadcasters," he declares, "who are innovating in the way they deliver television content to viewers, and for their sales houses, who contribute to the financing of great content through ever more informative, targeted and relevant advertising."

Philippe Delusinne, ACT President and CEO RTL Belgium, says that "television's success story is built on proximity to our audience, local relevance and telling great stories.'

"TV is constantly evolving with one major goal: we want viewers to be the big winners of this technological evolution," he adds. "In the end, new technology means more ways to watch TV: what you want, when you want and on whatever screen you want. Thousands of talented people work in television, backstage or on screen to continue our success story. It's an honour to be part of this media family."

EBU President and General Administrator of Belgian public service broadcaster RTBF, Jean-Paul Philippot says TV remains 'the dominant platform for live events,' despite the rise of social media and the more personalised consumption of media via the internet.

"TV is, and shall remain the medium par excellence for people to simultaneously share their emotions and participate in seminal events," says Mr Philippot. "It was the medium that took us to the moon and it will continue to inspire us today and in the future."

The website www.worldtelevisionday.tv created by the three associations features, this year again, short testimonies from celebrities around the world and from all walks of live  who explain what television has done for their career, life, cause or industry.  The video clip, and interviews from the associations' Presidents are also viewable on this website.

ABOUT EGTA
egta is the association representing television and radio sales houses, either independent from the channel or in-house, that market the advertising space of both private and public television and radio stations throughout Europe and beyond. egta fulfils different functions for its members in fields of activities as diversified as regulatory issues, audience measurement, sales methods, interactivity, cross-media, technical standards, new media etc. During its 35 years of existence, egta has become the reference centre for television & radio advertising in Europe. egta counts 125 members operating across 37 countries.
For more information visit: www.egta.com

ABOUT THE EUROPEAN BROADCASTING UNION (EBU)
The EBU is the world's foremost alliance of public service media organizations, with Members in 56 countries in Europe and beyond. The EBU's mission is to defend the interests of public service media and to promote their indispensable contribution to modern society. It is the point of reference for industry knowledge and expertise.
The EBU operates EUROVISION and EURORADIO.
EUROVISION is the media industry's premier distributor and producer of top quality live sport and news, as well as entertainment, culture and music content. EURORADIO enhances public service radio through the exchange of music, professional networking and the promotion of digital and hybrid radio - to ensure radio remains a key protagonist in a multimedia world. The EUROVISION/EURORADIO satellite and fibre network is the largest and most reliable in the world directly plugged in to public service media everywhere.
web: www.ebu.ch - twitter: @EBU_Eurovision  @Euroradio_EBU

ABOUT ACT:
The Association of Commercial Television in Europe (ACT) represents the interests of the commercial broadcasting sector in Europe. Formed in 1989, the ACT has 33 member companies licensed in 37 different European countries and distributed across 45 European markets and beyond. Our members operate several hundred free-to-air and pay-tv channels and distribute many more channels and new services. The ACT members encompass several business models: free-to-air broadcasters and pay-TV players, digital platform operators and multimedia groups. For more information visit: www.acte.be

Video with caption: "Video: Television industry unites for United Nations' "World Television Day"". Video available at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=eKRqbpiFugQ

SOURCE: Television Bureau of Canada

For further information:

Press contacts:

Katty Roberfoid
Secretary General, egta
Association of television and radio sales houses
T: +32 2 290 31 32
Katty.roberfroid@egta.com

Anne-Laure Dreyfus,
Communications Manager, egta
Association of television and radio sales houses
T: +32 2 290 31 34
annelaure.dreyfus@egta.com 

Sue Neilen
Senior Communications Officer
T +41 (0)22 717 2203
M +41 (0)79 376 4920
neilen@ebu.ch 

Matthew Trustram
Project Manager, EUROVISION TV Unit
T +41(0) 22 717 26 23
trustram@ebu.ch 

Ross Biggam
Director General, Association of Commercial Television in Europe (ACT)
T: +32 27 38 76 13
M: +32 477 407 733
E: rb@acte.be  

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Television Bureau of Canada

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