On June 8-9 Batumi hosted the workshop for journalists on digital broadcasting and commercial TV platforms. The workshop was conducted by Davit Mukatadze and Ivan Poltavets. 22 journalists took part in the workshop. 13 participants were from Tbilisi, 9 - from regions. The workshop was organized by Internews Georgia.
The workshop participants were provided information on digital broadcasting and commercial TV platforms; they also got acquainted with the international practice in the field and discussed the issues related to the need for raising awareness of the Georgian TV audience as well as the problems TV viewers or the TV companies themselves might face in the process of switchover from analogue to digital broadcasting.
According to the workshop trainers journalists should be seeking for raising public awareness of expected switchover to digital TV broadcasting. The training was also dedicated to the definitions of technical details.
“As long as I have been absolutely unaware of digital broadcasting any type of information obtained during the training was important and interesting at this stage. Technical details though have been of less interest to me as a journalist and somehow failed to retain everything. The issues of importance to me are still vague and, the trainers themselves had no answers to them.
For instance, we don’t know the how the switchover procedure looks for Georgia since no State strategy has been determined thus far. We are also unaware of the extent of financial resources needed for the process, whether the State will provide subsidy or what is going to happen in general to regional broadcasters and small televisions lacking financial resources for the switchover,” said the workshop participant Tamta Kapanadze, editor, online newspaper Sando.Ge, the project implemented by the Union of Free Journalists.
On June 1, 2015 the analogue signal will be off across Georgia. Even though Georgia has got three years left the country is still missing the strategy in this direction. The Ministry of Economics and Sustainable Development once again postponed the deadline for drafting the strategy for the switchover to digital broadcasting until December 2012.