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Int'l Council With TV Future in Mind.

With the multitude of changes occurring in the international television industry, the International Council of The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS) is poised to present the future of the business. The International Council has a unique opportunity to foster information between international companies interested in the developments of the television industry.

The Council will feature the first International Television Week in New York City, with the United Nations Television Forum, the iEMMYs (the International Emmy Award Nominee Festival) and the International Emmy Awards Gala.

The television forum is in its fourth year and will be held at the United Nations on November 18-19. U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, NBC news anchor Tom Brokaw, CNN correspondent Charlene Hunter-Gault and other renowned television industry leaders will address television's impact on peace and development. Panels and workshops will offer additional opportunities to congregate.

In its inaugural year, the iEMMYs will screen 21 nominated programs. Meanwhile the producers and directors will have a chance to reflect on their work which will be screened. New media technology related to television broadcast over the Internet will be demonstrated, in addition to panel discussions and an exhibition. Sponsors for this year's iEMMYs include Microsoft, Channel-Seek, SPORTEL and the Monte Carlo Television Festival. Scheduled panelists are Tom Rogers, president of NBC Cable; Bruce Paisner, president of Hearst Entertainment and Kay Koplovitz, founder of USA Networks. The event will take place at the University Club.

This is the 27th anniversary of the prestigious International Emmy Awards Gala, to be held November 22 at the New York Hilton. Awards will be given in seven categories: Arts Documentary, Children's and Young People Programming, Documentary, Drama, News & Events Coverage, Performing Airs and Popular Arts.

This marks the inauguration for the category of News & Events Coverage. Entries for all awards have increased by more than 20 percent from last year, with 525 entrants representing more than 40 countries. Territories that will be represented for the first time will be Cyprus, the Georgian Republic, Sri Lanka and Albania. Thus far, this year's presenters are Walter Cronkite, Isaac Stern and Sir Peter Ustinov.

Cronkite will be presenting the Directorate Emmy Award to Ralph Baruch, the founder of the media conglomerate Viacom International. Baruch served as Viacom's president from 1971-1983 and as its chairman from 1983-87. During his tenure, Viacom acquired MTV, Nickelodeon, The Movie Channel, VH1 and all of Showtime and Lifetime. The Founders Award will be granted to Hisashi Hieda, who entered Fuji Television in 1961. After a variety of posts at Fuji, he became president of the Fuji. Television Network in 1988. Since 1992, Hieda has been chairman of Fujisankei Communications International.

The Dinner Chairman will be Michael MacMillan, CEO of Alliance Atlantis Communications. Event sponsors include ABC/Disney, Alliance Atlantis, CBS International, Hubbard Broadcasting, NBC, Phoenix Satellite Television, MIP-TV 2000, Universal TV & Networks Group and Variety.

Find out more by visiting www.un.org/av/rvforum99 or contacting the United Nations directly at (212) 963-2339.

The Future Considered by a Voice of Wisdom

Renato Pachetti started in the television industry as a journalist with Italy's RAL Corporation, assuming that company's presidency in 1980. Additionally, he served as chairman of the International Council of NATAS from 1977-1993. Video Age caught up with Pachetti for a few thoughts on the upcoming Council.

Regarding the new category "News & Events Coverage," Pachetti noted three alarming trends with regard to how news is presented to the public. First, there seems to be little sympathy on the part of reporters covering emotional stories. Rather, news programs seem to relish in showing the pain and sorrow of people. He noted, for example, that soon after a child is shot, the reporter goes directly to the parents to ask how they feel. "This is the most disgusting thing that anyone can do," claimed Pachetti. Second, very much aware that television is a visual medium, news producers seem to hunt down gory scenes that, according to Pachetti, are unnecessary. "They have no purpose but to impress," he remarked. Finally, it seems that television news programs seem to gravitate toward violent stories, giving more stock to shock value than social commentary.

Pachetti also lambasted the American press for limiting its world coverage. "The U.S. is the leader of the world," he noted, "but both the print press and the broadcast news do not [offer] enough information on the rest of the world."

Regarding the rapid pace of developing technology, Pachetti recalled that just five years ago, nobody at the Council spoke of the Internet. Now it is all they talk about. "For my generation, it's a big effort to think of ways we can use the Internet," he offered.
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Publication:Video Age International
Date:Nov 1, 1999
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