International challenges to TV CHANNELS
Broadcast journalists have become accustomed to technological change. They have accommodated their working habits and technique to suit, successively, the switch from black and white to colour, the switch from film to videotape, the arrival of live transmission, and the advent of computer-assisted electronic graphics and titles. But none of this technological advance encompasses such through changes of environment and procedure as the coming computerization process.
Television is quite different from radio. Expert report that there will three kinds of technological advance which, in greater or in lesser measure, will alter the nature of TV journalists work, both in the studio and in the field. The first advance already nearing perfection, involves the change over from the present analog system of television to the new digital system. The analog TV system signal is produced by waves whose frequency and intensity re-create a picture analogous to reality. The system entails a certain amount of distortion and picture loss, including of TV cut off phenomenon.
The digital system, produced by, what else. Computer, re-create a picture exactly by breaking it down into digital information that is then reconstituted at the point of reception. Because analog and digital system are incompatible the home TV set has to be able to “read” the digital information. It will take many years before the new system completely displace the old.
The 2nd predictable major technological advance in the perfection of a new generation of compact, lightweight videotape, camera and recorders. According to TV technology experts the next “plateau” will be perfection of 8mm (called quarter inch) videotape gear. Inexorably however, the technology will improve and the experts say the day will come when both from the technical and financial viewpoint station will no longer be able to resist especially, if as seems likely, their three quarter inch gear is on its last legs at the time. This third predicted advance in TV technology brings us into what only a few years ago was considered stars wars territory. The development of powerful transmitter in TV technology will permit live remote broadcasting anywhere, any time.
Soon, the experts predict, will come to the day when a TV news reporter, a cameraman is one hand, a microphone in the other, and a mini-transmitter strapped to his or her back, will be able to report live via satellite from anywhere in the world to anywhere in the world, any time day or night.
HOW CAN TV CHANNELS FACE THESE CHALLENGES
Pakistan Television Corporation Limited (TV CHANNELS) is a public limited company. Government of Pakistan holds all its shares. The decision to establish a general-purpose television serves with the participation of private capital and under the general supervision of Government of Pakistan (GOP) was taken in 1963. Subsequently the GOP signed an agreement with NIPPEN electronic company of Japan, allowing it to operate two pilot stations in Pakistan. The first of these stations went on air in Lahore on 26th November 1964. On the completion of experimental phase, a private limited company, called television promoters limited was set up in 1965, which was converted into public limited company in 1967. Television centers were established in Karachi, Rawalpindi/Islamabad in 1967 and in Peshawar and Quetta in 1974. TV CHANNELS satellite transmission is round the clock. The transmission includes ETV and TV CHANNELS world transmission.
TV CHANNELS has launched his 3rd channel Channel-3. The daily six and a half hour transmission from 5:00p.m. to 11:30p.m. telecast features, dramas, music, film, sports, kids programmes. The aim is to cater the entertainment needs of the people that are considered to be mixed out before regional language programmes will get maximum transmission time. The regional programmes, wit Urdu subtitling, will not only serve as a window for our rich and diverse culture but would also strengthen national integrity large chunk of the prime time will be allocated to children programmes. Which will both entertaining as well as informative.
The government is likely to convert the TV CHANNELS World into 24 hours new and current affair channel, shifting all entertainment programmes now being shown on this channel to the channel-3 formerly known as STN. The TV CHANNELS-World is on satellite, but STN is not which is likely to make the later not so attractive, business wise, for those operators who have already bought and paid for the broadcasting space on the former. These additional requirement are expected to keep all these operators out of the reckoning from the trading process of channel-3, broadcasting slot who already on slots on TV CHANNELS and TV CHANNELS-World. And those operator who would get the slot on channel-3 would also get all the programmes stated to be shifted from TV CHANNELS-World. Here it should be made clear that in most of the big cities in the countries clandestine cable TV systems have been flourishing for sometimes.
The year 2002 saw a plethora of activities in electronic media. The significant development throughout the year was the emergence of more news channels on the scene and thus the viewers proceed with choices of watching private news channels rather then depending only on TV CHANNELS. However, while facing global and local challenges, TV CHANNELS has transferred the major chunk of news and current affairs programmes on TV CHANNELS-World. Which is now a separate news challenge with a new style quite contrary to TV CHANNELS’s policies.
During the course, TV CHANNELS launched a separate news channel and the Indus vision also came up with a news channel. But the best treat turned out to be the launch of GEO TV channel by the Jung Group Pvt. Limited, widely watched, acclaimed and praised. The launch just before the general elections was a fresh breath of air for al. With the largest network of correspondents, GEO is always first to break the major news with a difference since it launch. Candid talk shows, discussion on current affairs with the most authentic critics of the country and innovative ideas of entertainment programmes during the election campaign took the channel by storm.
Moreover the Pakistan Media Regularity Authority (REMRA) has taken a welcome decision to allow the private channels to cover the news, but with an iron hands. The policies are not different as that of TV CHANNELS’s. Even the cable TV system being a medium offering diverse entertainment having tremendous potential for convergence with the computer technology, have been struggling to find ground in Pakistan. They have grown rapidly in major cities of the country. Since the government authorized the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority to issue licenses to cable operators sometime back on the whole. It was a prosperous year for the electronic media. Four new digital channels have been approval by Dr. Atta-ur-Rehman, out of which two were supposed to start by the end of this year. The information revolution has lead to information overflow, and people are confronted with hundreds of news each day. The target of the growing electronic media should be to maintain the friendship between the neutrals and to shape the public taste and attitudes.