‘Public’ broadcasts to be more than just a phrase at IBA

Wish you were part of the decision-making process so that you could get a better choice of programs? Now you can.

IBA 311 (photo credit: Courtesy)
IBA 311
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Fed up with the fare you’re getting on radio and television? Wish you were part of the decision-making process so that you could get a better choice of programs? If your answer to both questions was yes, you have a chance to influence the content of future programming on Israel Radio and Channel 1.
Israel Broadcasting Authority chairman Amir Gilat has decided that if the IBA is running public broadcasting, then the public should have a say in what is broadcast.
Gilat is inviting listeners, viewers and Internet surfers to offer suggestions on what can be done to improve the program content and the overall image of the IBA’s media outlets.
In the invitation on the IBA’s website, Gilat wrote: “I attach great importance to the opinions of television viewers, radio listeners, and Internet surfers. All those who pay a license fee to the IBA, have a stake in public broadcasting. I would like to hear from you in that capacity.
“I would like to know your views about public broadcasting: the messages and values that you believe it should convey as we move in a new direction. How do you perceive the uniqueness of public broadcasting in the State of Israel, and in what way should public broadcasting be different from commercial channels? “What should be the basic substance of public broadcasting in order to answer present needs and to still be relevant for the future?” The questions are posed with an eye to the Broadcasting Authority reforms that are on the verge of implementation.
Agreements between management and the various unions within the IBA have been reached. To reduce the IBA’s annual deficit, the payroll will be drastically cut, and several hundred employees will be retired or dismissed.
Many programs will be outsourced to save on production expenses. While all of these measures will be cost-efficient, issues of values and content remain open, and the IBA management is urging the public to take on the responsibility of partnership.
Members of the public who are interested in influencing the future of the IBA should e-mail their comments and suggestions to yor@iba.org.il by May 30.