Story over production values: TV in Indigenous languages

I was just sent this from ICTV Limited (Alice Springs) – looks like v good news
Indigenous Community Television Ltd
22 October 2009
Remote Aboriginal Communities to celebrate the return of their Indigenous Community Television service
An official launch of Indigenous Community Television – ICTV – will take place in DJARINDJIN COMMUNITY (200km north of Broome) at 6pm, November 13 2009.

In their comprehensive audience study of community media in 2007, titled Community Media Matters, An audience study of the Australian community broadcasting sector, Prof. Michael Meadows et al of Griffith University said of Indigenous Community Television:
“ICTV represents the most significant advance for remote communities in the past 20 years in terms of its potential to contribute to the maintenance of languages and cultures, boosting self-esteem and making a significant contribution to reinforcing a sense of identity amongst its diverse audiences.”
In association with Pilbara and Kimberley Aboriginal Media (PAKAM), ICTV Ltd. is proud to announce the reprise of ICTV on a new satellite carrier provided through Westlink, a division of the Western Australian Department of Regional Development.
ICTV, a consortium of remote indigenous media producers who collectivised their output, had broadcast to remote communities around Australia – seven days a week, 24 hours a day – using the Imparja 2 channel from 2002 to 2007 and had developed a strong, nation- wide following. However, on July 13 2007, ICTV was taken off air to make way for the new National Indigenous Television Service (NITV).
ICTV will be a weekend service available free-to-air to some 147 remote and very remote Aboriginal communities Australia-wide, and direct to home via satellite. Broadcast will commence each Friday at 6pm and conclude on Monday at 6am.
Original, community-initiated, community-produced television programming will be aggregated in Alice Springs by ICTV and will initially draw video programs from Remote Indigenous Media Organizations (RIMOs) in Western Australia (PAKAM and Ngaanyatjarra Media), South Australia (PY Media), and from many other remote communities. These three primary RIMO hubs alone support 58 indigenous communities in the production of radio and television. In Western Australia there are about 40 communities with television broadcasting and re-transmission licenses serviced out of the PAKAM and Ngaanyatjarra Media hubs.
The content and style is unique, having been developed by bush video producers over the past twenty-five years (since the ‘invention’ of indigenous TV at Yuendumu and Ernabella in the mid-1980s). The focus of ICTV is on culture and language, and the need to keep Aboriginal cultures and languages alive and vibrant. ICTV emphasizes story over production values. These are stories that engage and inform, that share the news and events of the indigenous communities in remote and regional Australia. ICTV is rough and raw, relevant and entertaining, programming for and by the audience it is intended for.
The key values that guide ICTV are community ownership and control at a local level, free access and active participation. The right of each community to contribute is a given. There will be no gatekeepers. Thus ICTV aims to provide for authentic self-representation; direct responsiveness to Indigenous cultural protocols; community determination of production values or ‘quality’; community determination of programs of interest; decentralized consortium-style institutional structure and governance; and predominantly traditional and remote/regional audience or constituency.
The emphasis of the service is on supporting the social integrity and development of remote indigenous communities through the maintenance and preservation of Indigenous language and culture, and communications capacity.
The provision of Westlink to ICTV by the WA Government represents a very important contribution to improving communications in remote indigenous communities – communities that face immense challenges in overcoming comparative disadvantage. Their decision acknowledges the real benefits the functionality of indigenous media services can bring to a host of remote community endeavours including vocational education and training, health, community development, employment, enterprise, the maintenance of social and cultural networks, the distribution of essential information and news, and so on.
It will be two years and four months since ICTV was last transmitted to remote communities. During this time ICTV has received repeated requests from people in remote communities for the return of the service. The launch of the ICTV service, then, is a much anticipated event for remote Indigenous communities around Australia.
Media planning to attend the launch should contact the PAKAM office on 08 9195 5338 or email neil AT
For further information about the launch or ICTV, please contact Rita Cattoni on 0458527524 or by email at manager AT
ICTV 10b Wilkinson Street, ALICE SPRINGS NT 0871
Tel: 08 8952 3118 Fax: 08 8918 8100 Email: manager AT
ICTV would like to acknowledge the assistance of the Western Australian Department of Regional
Development, the Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) and Gilbert &
Tobin for their ongoing support.

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