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Home arrow newsitems arrow PanEuropean AudioVisual Observatory Experts to "EF" 25 Years After: Focus on Web NewsMedia +Video OD

PanEuropean AudioVisual Observatory Experts to "EF" 25 Years After: Focus on Web NewsMedia +Video OD

Pisac ACM
03. 11. 2017.

*Strasbourg/CoE/Angelo Marcopolo/- PanEuropean, 41 Member-States strong (including Russia, etc), CoE's Observatory for AudioVisual works (EAVO), which was Created on 1992, when Cinema Films' production and Exports' Global Competition was Shaking the World AV Markets by a "European Cultural Exception" clause in Trade Deals, celebrating Today in Strasbourg its 25th Anniversary (1992-2017) by an Exceptional Conference at CoE's Headquarters, revealed mainly that the Focus is Now much More on Internet Digital Medias, including for Political News, as well as for Fast-Evolving "Video-on-Demand" (VOD) Web Services, as it was also Hghlighted to "Eurofora" by some among its Key Experts, with certain Topical concrete Examples :



 - The Times have Gone since Long, when EAVO's Chief Economist, the experienced André Lange, (present also Today), was responding to "Eurofora" co-Founder's pioneer then Questions about New, Digital Medias, just with a Kind : - "It may Arrive soon !", and, Afterwards, with their First Mention in a Brand New, but Small, specific Chapter, placed at the Margins of EAVO's Annual Reports...




 Nowadays, on the Contrary, this is Right at the Frontpage Headline News and keeps a Growing Central place : Many Key Experts' exchanges, artfully monitored during Today's Conference by EAVO's Executive Director, Suzanne Nikolchev, (an experieneced former Legal Analyst), clearly proved it :


- F.ex., it's mainly the Fast Increasing Influence of various "On-Line Media News", which was a Main reason for EAVO's Exceptional Decision to Launch, for the 1st Time, a Wide-ranging, Comparative Analysis on the "Legal Framework" of "Media coverage of Elections" throughout Europe this Year 2017, considering also the Rare Fact that during 2016-2017 Many Elections (Parliamentary, Presidential, Local/Regional, Referenda, etc) were due to be organized in about 24 and 25 CoE's Member States, respectively, which is More than Half of their Total Number (47).

 - Thus, the Co-Head of the Legal Experts who Drafted that EAVO's 2017 New Report, Francisco Cabrera, speaking to "Eurofora", observed, in particular, that, while Broadcast (RadioTV) Medias were Traditionaly subject to quite Heavy Regulations, and the Print Medias (Newspapers, Magazines, etc) had Less Regulations to observe, but generally fairly Monitored, on the Contrary, Many Questions were Nowadays Raised about the various OnLine Medias, (WebNews Sites, etc, f.ex. also on so-called "Self-Regulatory" commitments, a.o.), particularly, also because of their, technically, "Global" nature :



 - F.ex., during the 2017 Presidential Elections in France, where Publishing Polls is Prohibited at the Eve of the Vote, many People had a Look at relevant Polls Legally Published in Belgium, where it's allowed up to the Last Minute (as also in the UK, etc), just a "Cliq" away... Also during the Latest 2016 Parliamentary Elections in Spain, where Last-Minute Polls are Prohibited too, People were, nevertheless, bombarded by a lot of Polls Published until the Last Hours of the Vote, by a Website News located at Nearby Andorra (on the Pyrenee Mountains, between France and Spain), where they barely Masked their Electoral Estimations by a ...Colorfull Artefact which pictured each Political Party in the Colors of a ...Fruit or Flower (sic !), corresponding to its Real, Official Presentation, in a way that Everybody understood easily who was who, CoE's Officer told "Eurofora"...

+ An even More Important recent Development, particularly for the PanEuropean Audio-Visual Observatory's specific area of activities, is also the Fact that, as anOther EAVO's Expert stressed Today, the On-Line/VOD Networks of Films' Distribution, are already ByPassing the Classical, Cinema Rooms- based, Film Distribution Networks, and, since, at least for the Time being, the Overall Films' Market is rather Atonic yet, this has Provoked a much More Intense Competition, nowadays, between those 2 Networks...

++ Almost at the Same Time, EAVO's Experts have Found that, while Not Only the "Public Funding for Audio-Visual Services", but Also the "Advertising-Financed TV Market", are in "Stagnation", on the Contrary, "Pay-TV" marks, at least, a "Limited Growth", and the "Pay On-Demand AudioVisual Services" mark even a quite "Rapid Growth".

+++ EAVO's Expert for Both "Television" and "On-demand AudioVisual Services", Agnès Schneeberger, told "Eurofora" that such Issues were Discussed, Earlier Today, also by the PanEuropean body's Top Governance : its "Executive Council", which had convened at the CoE during the Morning, including in order to have a First OverLook and Debate on its foreseable Future, (i.e., practically, its ...Next 25 Years !).




EAVO has already announced its intention to Focus on "Video on Demand" ("VOD", i.e. Digital/Internet Communication Technologies) and its "Impact on the Exploitation of Films", during its Annual Conferences at Cannes' International Film Festival, (which are, reportedly, Attended by a Huge and Growing Number of People) each May.




++++ indeed, Despite USA's  Cinema Film Production Industry's persisting Global predominance, via "Hollywood" etc, (See Infra), the American Film Market-place appears to be Less Important than Europe's Film Market-place, annually accessible at Cannes' prestigious International Film festival, each Spring, where EAVO's Regular Presentations usually Attract a Large Audience, right "at the Heart of Global Film Industry", as EAVO's Marketing specialist, Markus Booms, boasted enthousiastically...


Last, but Not Least, an EAVO's "Birthday Party" withOut a Film even on that Big, 25 years old, "Baby" itself, being, naturally, inconveivable, CEO Nikolchev projected, in Fine, an Original Short Film, precisely, with various CoE's Political and/or other European AudioVisual Industry, Market or Experts' groupings, presenting their Best Wishes for the Future :


- Pictured there, was naturally, the Historic former Mayor of Strasbourg, and Long-Time f. MEP, as also former Minister of Culture, currently in charge of the Development of European and Other Big Infrastructures in this City, Catherine Trautmann, at the 1st Place : Trautmann had Already said, Earlier, to "Eurofora", that, when she had Decided to actively support the very Creation of the PanEuropean AudioVisual Observatory, Back during  the 1990ies, in fact, her Main Aim was to Boost a Strong Audio-Visual News pole in Strasbourg, Together with ARTE's Franco-German RadioTV, (the Only European RTV Media to be Head-Quartered near the EU Parliament's and CoE's main Buildings), etc., in order to Help make MEPs' work even More Attractive and Efficient, as well as Closer to European Citizens.

Something which, certainly, has Not yet been done, but Could, eventually, be achieved in the foreseable Future, if one added also a New Dimension in line with "Eurofora"s Original Project, (which could gradually Start, logically, with the Preparation of the Forthcoming, May 2019 EU Elections).

"Eurofora" has recently Highlighted that issue, also with the Director of Stasbourg University's Digital "Video-Conferences a.o. Internet Communication brand New Technologies, who appeared genuinly interested.



EAVO is currently Chaired, during 2017, by World-Famous Film-Director, Andrei Wajda's Country : Poland, whose Ambassador/Permanent Representative to the CoE was Present at this Exceptional Conference.



As well as that of France, which will Chair all the CoE on 2019, and has the Biggest Number of Screens in the EU Nowadays, closely Followed by Italy, Germany, the UK and Spain, while Poland, and afterwards the Netherlands, Sweden and the Czech Republic, also Distance the Other EU Member States.



He was Joined also by his Collegue from Italy, (Comp. Supra), as well as from Denmark, (Incoming CoE's Chairman from Mid-November 2017 up to May 2018), Bulgaria (which will Chair the EU from January 2018), Switzerland, and Other European Countries.






Inside the EU, France holds also the, comparatively, Biggest Share in its National AudioVisual products Market, with almost 36% of the Total, closely Followed by the UK, with about 35%, Afterwards Italy : more than 29%, Germany : about 23%, distancing Spain with 18,5%, and Russia : almost 18% too, etc.

The overall Average for all "European Films"' Market Share in the entire EU is almost 27%.

But the USA hold... about 94% of their AV Market Share, India 85%, Japan 63%, and China more than 58%, South Korea almost 56%, etc., according to EAVO's Latest available Figures..., showing that Global Competition is still Harsh...

The Extreme Counter-Example among Developed Nations, seems to be Australia and New Zeland, who hold Only ... about 9% of their Market Share !










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    The incoming Swedish EU Presidency (July-December 2009) may still remain in favour of Turkey's controversial EU bid, despite June 2009 EU Elections' results, but it has "very strong demands on Turkey"'s obligation to respect EU Rules, said the Head of Swedish Foreign Ministry's Press Service, Cecilia Julin, to "EuroFora", reacting to critical Press reports.

    - "I know (that) the link is often made also to Sweden's position on Turkey"'s controversial EU bid. Indeed, "we (Swedish EU Presidency) are very much engaged in the future membership of Turkey, but not without fullfiling all the Criteria".

    - "It's very clear that we (Swedish EU Presidecny) have very Strong Demands on Turkey, in a sort of concept for Future membership of the Union, ...which will be a Long Process...", she stressed.

    This means, in particular, "the Copenhagen Criteria (on Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law), and also the adaptation to the Acquis of the European Union".

     - "If you listen to what Mr. Bildt (the Swedish Foreign Minister) says on Turkey at different occasions, it's very clear : We want Turkey to become part of the Union, in the Future. But we want it to fullfil all the Criteria : The Acquis of the European Union. That's very clear", she concluded.

    The Senior Official of the Swedish Foreign Ministry was reacting to critical Press Reports, from Brussels' Journalists invited by EU Commission's secretariat to Stockholm, who claimed that Bildt was abusing of a ..."Whip" (sic !) against Cyprus, by "threatening" the presence of UNO's Peace-keeping force at the "Green line" which separates the island's Government-controlled areas from the territories occupied by Ankara's army, if Nicosia didn't accept any political solution, regardless of Turkey's demands, before the end of 2009.

        Governing AKEL Party's new Secretary General, Andros Kyprianou, reacted by declaring that no-one can threat the People of Cyprus : -"We shall decide for our Future, and nobody else",  he reportedly said, asking to "keep calm". "In order to find a Solution soon, certain basic Principles must be respected", he stressed, calling those who feel an urgency to use their influence on Turkey. Other Political Parties were more critical.

    This was a reference to recently reported statements by Turkish Minister Bagis, Prime Minister Tayip Erdogan and Turkey's National Security Council (a Military-Political body), accused to push towards a partitionist "2 States" solution, contrary to UNO SC Resolutions for Cyprus' reunification.

    December 2009 is a crucial moment for EU's appraisal of Turkey's controversial EU bid, because EU Council has decided to review then Ankara's compliance with the European position on the recognition of Cyprus' Government, which was clearly set out by an EU reply of 21 September 2005 to Turkish Prime Minister Tayip Erdogan's claims, refusing to recognize even the existence of EU Member Cyprus, in controversial statements he made to London (former EU chair) on July 29, 2005.

    EU Parliament's latest Resolution on Turkey, adopted on March 2009 in Strasbourg, warned Ankara that "the non-fulfillment of Turkey's commitments... by December 2009, may further seriously affect the process of Negotiations" with the EU.

    In practice, the issue boils down to Ankara's "embargo" against Ships and Airplanes using Cyprus' seaports or airports at the strategic EU island, which traditionaly hosts one of the World's biggest Shipping flags. EU has already "freezed" 6 relevant Chapters in EU - Turkey Negotiations since December 2006, after Ankara refused to fullfil a commitment it had undertaken when EU had decided to open controversial "accession" negotiations with Turkey, back on December 2005.

    - "As far as EU - Turkey relations are concerned, it's clear that Turkey needs to fullfil its obligation of full, non-discriminatory implementation of the additional Protocol (to "EC-Turkey Association Agreement"),  This is an important issue....and should be addresseed as soon as possible as it clearly affects the pace of the accession negotiations.Issues covered by the Declaration of September 2005 will continue to be followed up, and progress is urgently awaited", warned earlier in Strasbourg the out-going Czech EU Presidency (former vice-Prime Minister Alexander Vodra).

    But the Head of the Swedish Foreign Ministry's Press Service, Cecilia Julin, dismissed "interpretations" by "some" that Foreign Minister Carl Bildt was reportedly "threatening" Cyprus with consequences on the UNFICYP, if it doesn't accept any solution until December 2009, while Turkey is reportedly delaying in an attempt to impose a partitionist "2 States" solution.

    On the contrary, Julin, stressed that "Sweden has strong demands on Turkey'"s respect of "Copenhagen Criteria and EU Acquis".

    Meanwhile, Sweden  is "concerned" about the risk of "Stalemate" in Cyprus' Talks, but is well aware that "the main responsibilities lie with the two leaders and the UNO", Europe playing only a role of "facilitator".

    After carefully verifying, the Head of Swedish Foreign Ministry's Press Service, stressed to "EuroFora" that Bildt's reference to UNFICYP "was not linked to a Threat", and dismissed those who "interpreted" it so.

    On the contrary, the Swedish EU Presidency acknowledged the fact that Peace Talks are mainly for the UN and the leaders of the Cypriot communities, EU's role being limited into that of a "facilitator".

    As for Turkey's reported attempts to impose a "2 States' solution", the Head of the Swedish Foreign Ministry's Press Service sharply replied by stressing that Turkey must respect the "EU Acquis" rules.

    In particular :

    - "Basically he (Bildt) underlined that it's the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus and the UN that have the main responsibilities for solving the problem", started to say the Swedish Senior Official to "EuroFora", referring to the above-mentioned "briefing".

    - "But the EU had a role in sort of pointing out the benefits and facilitating a little bit the outcome for the settlement of the whole Cyprus' issue", she added.

    - "And he did state the Fact, that the rest of the World (i.e. USA, etc) will, of course, look at the differend issues which are at the table, and the future of the UN Peace keeping force is part of what is at the table", she admitted.

    - "I understand that some have interpreted that as a Threat, by the Swedish Minister" "But", in reality, "it's a statement of a Fact, that, when we'll look at the differend issues, one of the issues on which we shall have to take a stand on, is the future of the UN Peace keeping force in Cyprus".

    Indeed, one of the questions usually raised for a Solution of Cyprus' issue is what International and/or European or other Guarantees, by a Peace-keeping force, might be needed afterwards, eventually for a transitory period.

    Questioned anew by "EuroFora" whether (according to critical Press Reports) this could be taken as a veiled warning that, if Cyprus didn't accept any Turkish demand for any solution whatever, it might be left alone to face Ankara's Military Invasion/Occupation, she denied :

    - "He (Bildt) didn't say it in that way"... "It was not linked to a threat, or anything like that", the Head of the Swedish Foreign Ministry's Press Service stressed.

    On the contrary, "he (Bildt) underlined that the main responsibility lies with the parties concerned on the island". "The EU can try to facilitate and show the benefits of reaching a settlement. But also, when the EU and the rest of the World (i.e. USA) will have to look at it, they will look at all the Facts on the table, and the presence of the UN Peace-keeping force is one".

    And "he (Bildt) didn't speak about that at all", she replied to "EuroFora" question on Turkey's reported attemps to impose, in one way of another, a partitionist "2 States solution".

    Asked whether Bildt's aim was to incite both parties to move forward efficiently, she agreed :

    - In fact, "the EU is really very concerned with the Stalemate in the situation. Yes !", the Head of Sweden's Foreign Ministry's Press Service anounced. That's why Bildt "was hoping for the two parties (i.e. for Turkey's also) to engage and break, a little-bit, the present stalemate, come to a solution of the issue" of Cyprus.

    But, replying  to a "EuroFora"s question on the risk, denounced by several politicians in case of strict Time Deadlines, for Turkey to provoke a stalemate and wait for the time to come to impose a partitionist "2 States' solution", she reacted by pointing at Turkey's obligation to respect "EU Acquis" :

    - "Turkey must fullfil the EU Acquis : That's clear !", the Swedish Senior Official stressed.

    More details are expected when Swedish Prime Minister Reinfeldt will debate his Programme with new MEPs at EU Parliament's plenary mid-July in Strasbourg, that he has visited already in 2008.

    Foreign Minister Carl Bildt became familiar with Strasbourg's CoE last year, when Sweden chaired the PanEuropean organization of Human Rights. As EU chairman-in-office, he will also chair the 27-member States strong EU Group inside the 47-member States strong CoE.

    Minister for EU affairs, Cecilia Malmstrom is well known at EU Parliament, where she has been an active MEP of the Liberal Group for many years, following also Press Freedom issues.

    Both have already made various statements at "EuroFora", on differend topical matters.



2009 EU Elections were won by Parties against Technocracy and Turkey's controversial EU bid, while the 1999-2004 Majority Abstention trend decelerated. What should be done in 2009-2014 ?

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