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Taiwan Hosts 2010 WITBC


November 5, 2009

The second ever World Indigenous Television Broadcasting Conference (WITBC ’10) will be hosted by Taiwan Indigenous Television (TITV) and Public Television Services (PTS) – under the umbrella of the Taiwan Broadcasting System – from Wednesday March 10 to Friday March 12, 2010.


TITV chief executive Masao Aki says the theme of WITBC ’10 is ‘Facing the Challenges in the Digital Age for Indigenous Media’ and the aim is to create opportunities for indigenous broadcasters to exchange views and experiences and to encourage interaction and communication among indigenous media worldwide. Leaders, producers and planners involved in indigenous and public television can register their interest to attend the conference on the website, http://www.witbc2010.org .


New Zealand’s national indigenous broadcaster, Maori Television, hosted the first World Indigenous Television Broadcasting Conference in March 2008 which then led to the establishment of the World Indigenous Television Broadcasters Network (WITBN). WITBN represents nine foundation member organisations (www.witbn.org) who meet on a six-monthly basis developing initiatives such as an international current affairs series, programme exchange scheme, staff exchanges and international workshops on indigenous broadcasting issues.


At WITBC ’10, the inaugural chairman of WITBN, Jim Mather from Maori Television, will hand over the leadership mantle of the Network to the hosts, TITV, for the next two years. The conference will conclude with the new TITV chairman of WITBN outlining their vision for the future of WITBN.


Mr Masao says a dynamic programme has been developed for the conference covering an array of key topics including new media challenges, the changing role of indigenous broadcasters in revitalising native languages and cultures, the maintenance of core cultural values whilst operating successful television organisations, and the actual progress made by WITBN since its inception in 2008.


In addition, the chief executive of the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network in Canada, Jean LaRose, will discuss APTN’s success as the first indigenous network to acquire the rights to broadcast an Olympics event – the 2010 Winter Olympics – and the associated HD conversion presently being undertaken by his organisation. The conference will be further enhanced by a series of expert panel discussions on the responsibilities of indigenous broadcasters in relation to the environment, promotion of cultural values, and fulfilling the expectations of audiences.


Mr Masao says a special feature will be a film festival which will showcase the wisdom of indigenous people and the preservation of a sustainable environment. WITBN Council members are submitting new films for the premiere screening and a DVD set of the festival films will also be provided to delegates. It is also planned that independent indigenous producers will have the opportunity to showcase programming and their contribution to international indigenous broadcasting through an expo that will operate in conjunction with the film festival.


“To enhance delegates’ understanding of Taiwan’s indigenous culture, WITBC ’10 will be held at the National Museum of Prehistory in Taitung in south-eastern Taiwan,” Mr Masao says. “This is the first national museum of archaeology in Taiwan, established to not only display Taiwan’s prehistoric cultural heritage but also, within the Peinan Cultural Park, to conserve the natural environment and to exhibit and preserve the Peinan site.”


WITBC ’10 will also be interspersed with leading Taiwanese cultural groups and entertainers, culminating in an opportunity for all delegates to participate in two indigenous cultural tours on the final day of the three-day event.


For more information about the conference, go to http://www.witbc2010.org.


ENDS

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