Monday, July 20, 2009

Dear Prime Minister - Community Plea on Digital TV

19th July 2009

TVS viewers have appealed to the Prime Minister via video asking for support for the inclusion of Community TV on digital television.

The on-screen appeal was masterminded by Joy Hruby OAM, the host and producer of Joy's World - one of TVS's longest running programs. Twenty-two loyal viewers recorded their pleas in a series of 'vox pops' that were sent to the Prime Minister on DVD.

"All the other channels have been given digital spectrum except ours", said Joy Hruby. "We just want TVS to be given the same opportunity as the others".

The Federal Government recently embarked on a campaign to encourage Australian households to switch to digital television. "Yet, while all the other free-to-air stations are broadcasting in both analogue and digital Community Television remains marooned on analogue," said TVS Chief Executive Laurie Patton.

With its predominantly local content Community TV offers a vital source of programs that encourage and support Australian culture, ideas and interests. After just over three years on air forty percent of the programs screened on TVS are produced by community groups and individuals based in Sydney.

Each year Community TV provides a valuable training ground for hundreds of young Australians wanting careers in television and a platform for innovative new programs and emerging talent. People like Rove McManus, Corrine Grant and Hamish and Andy proudly acknowledge their start came on Community TV.

Despite Government assurances that Community Television will not be left behind as Australians are urged to switch to digital the Community stations are still waiting for the allocation of desperately needed digital spectrum.

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