The opening plenary session of the IBC2010 conference is given over to the question ‘Does public service broadcasting have a future?’. In the era of the connected world, multiscreen consumption, social networking and TV anywhere, are the big national broadcasters, once the mainstay of our industry, now dinosaurs heading for extinction?
Setting out the arguments in favour of public service broadcasting is this year’s opening keynote speaker, Sir Michael Lyons, chairman of the BBC Trust. He will be followed by Yoshinori Imai, vice president of Japanese national broadcaster NHK, Ingrid Deltenre, director general of the European Broadcasting Union (pictured), and Vincent Curren, executive vice president and chief operating officer of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
In their speeches, and in their responses to questions, they will address the challenges facing them. Should public service broadcasters retain their financial and access privileges over their commercial competitors? As audiences fragment, how do you define the success of a public service broadcaster? PSBs have traditionally led the way in new technology, from stereo radio to high definition television, but is it viable for them to continue this role as we look forward to stereoscopic 3D and ultra high definition content?
All these questions and more will be tackled in this very special session, at 10:30 tomorrow morning. This opening session is sure to set the agenda for much of the discussion at IBC2010.