My Minority Report moment

I’ve never actually seen the Tom Cruise movie in question, but I knew what my colleagues from the comms department were talking about when they asked me whether I would help out with a Minority Report style corporate video. They were looking for a native English speaker, perhaps a little bit of acting experience, and ideally a young attractive female. As Meatloaf said, two out of three ain’t bad.

The video was used at last week’s EBU General Assembly in Strasbourg. The European Broadcasting Union, for which I work, is the organisation that represents all of the public service broadcasters in Europe, i.e. the BBCs and RTEs of this world. It does a lot of things covering everything from technology research and guidance to legal advice and lobbying, exchange of news and other content, and the purchase of sports rights. Oh, and it runs the Eurovision Song Contest.

Over the last couple of years the EBU has been undergoing a process to try to clearly define the values that public service media should strive to embody. I think they’ve done a pretty good job in summing up the things that should differentiate public broadcasters from their commercial counterparts. The video below is a summary of a longer declaration.

It was shot in the building where I work. I was standing in front of a window that looks out onto a corridor from a meeting room. This made it easier for the graphics guy to map the graphics onto my gestures. I’ve been informed that the graphics were animated frame by frame. The video was produced by Jeroen Depraetere.

It’s a bit odd for me to watch it, as I don’t really look or sound like me to myself, if you know what I mean. But it was fun to be involved in it, and I happen to agree fully with the values themselves. While I think we’d all be better off if everyone watched less TV, it’s really important that public broadcasters continue to exist and have the support of people and governments. You only need to look to the USA to see what can happen to media in the absence of strong support for public broadcasting.