The Media Policy Group of the Institute of Welsh Affairs made a submission on 3rd March to the Inquiry into the future of S4C which is being held by the Culture, Welsh Language and Communications Committee of the National Assembly of Wales.
This inquiry precedes that expected from the DCMS.
During this year’s Celtic Media Festival in Dungarvan I was on a panel about factual tv. I took immediate issue with the assumption behind the session’s brief – The most prolific and successful genre in the Celtic nations is factual, both in English and in the indigenous languages. Is factual prolific and what is the measure of success? But further, I question the festival’s decision to ignore the biggest challenge to the factual genre – adequate media policy.
PSB Television in a digital world – what’s the recipe for Wales?
On April 6th there was a chance to get Welsh voices on the record at the session for Wales of David Puttnam’s Future of PSB TV Inquiry. The event was hosted by Cardiff University’s School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies. This independent inquiry is gathering evidence from around the UK and will report in June.
I spoke for the Institute of Welsh Affairs alongside Angharad Mair (Tinopolis, BAFTA Cymru), Huw Jones (S4C), Rhys Evans (BBC Cymru Wales) and Ian McKenzie (Nations and Regions, Channel 4).
“The Inquiry has been set up to consider the nature, purpose and place of public service television today and for the future. It aims to address how public service content can be most effectively nurtured taking into consideration a range of services, platforms and funding models.Continue reading Future of PSB TV Inquiry – Wales→
Another fascinating group of people on my workshop for academics about involvement in tv documentary on 1st March.
This three-hour session for Cardiff University Graduate College covers what an academic needs to know about how tv documentary gets developed, commissioned and made and how academics can contribute successfully and enjoyably. Universities commonly offer training in how to engage with news via sound-bites but seldom on what it means to be involved in long-form output or series.
On the day of the IWA’s Cardiff Media Summit I fronted an analysis of the challenges facing broadcasting in Wales shown on The Wales Report BBC One Wales ahead of Huw Edwards’s interview with BBC Director of Strategy, James Purnell.
“This is the story I want to focus on this evening.” said Tony Hall, Director General of the BBC in a speech given to Cardiff Business Club on Monday 23rd November. “The BBC as a home for distinctive quality and creativity, supporting the best talent and brightest ambition – a driving force behind the UK’s extraordinary global competitiveness in the creative industries.”
How big is ‘small’ in terms of a nation? And to what extent should size determine the value of a culture? Or should cultural value be kept separate from political clout? These questions matter increasingly in many arenas but on 16th November I spent a day at the first of three University of South Wales workshops with people who address them in terms of tv. It was fascinating and inspiring.
I loved the trailer we were shown by the producer of Norskov, a new Nordic detective story set in a fictional regional town in Denmark. A cheerful character addresses a huge, jovial crowd:
“Some people say Norskov’s out on the edge. I guess they don’t know the world’s round!”
The BBC Trust held a seminar in Cardiff ‘as part of the Charter review process’ on 20th October. It was open to the public but the majority of those present were media workers, academics or correspondents. The Western Mail report on it is accurate but conveys nothing of the atmosphere among the attendees which was, at times, mutinous and, finally, outspokenly critical. These sore spots have to be examined or they will go on festering to no good purpose.