European Parliament Vice-President Vidal-Quadras (EPP, Spain) today announced to members of the European Parliament via email that the new EP web-TV is open for testing via the Parliament’s intranet. We understand that if the test goes well, those behind the channel are hoping to launch to the channel to the rest of us in the New Year.
One of the first to have a look at the channel was one of our intrepid former interns, who happened to be in the Parliament this afternoon conducting research for his undergrad dissertation on the use of digital in public affairs and communications (funny that). He bounced back into the office like a giddy schoolboy who had just won the annual boys only marathon conker competition. “The quality of the videos and the platform look top notch”, he enthused. It’s all bells and whistles apparently; news items, infomercials, live committee streams (we like), ask an MEP a video question, clips for teaching kids about the Parliament and a sack load more across four internet channels.
Some of us are a tad concerned that the Parliament may not have thought about the audience in this whole endeavor. But nevermind. A more seasoned member of staff points out that these things are little bit like graffiti on a wall. Great that your work is up there with that of Banksy in terms of quality, but has anyone noticed? Promoting the web TV channel to citizens that don’t usually walk down the graffiti strewn street of the Europarl website is going to determine how successful you are.
Apparently the budget for promotion will not stretch to much advertising, especially once divided by 27 Member States/markets. As such may we suggest the services of a global public relations agency with a very strong digital PR service offering? I am sure we can find someone to help the Parliament show that it is the closest institution to the digital citizen.
(30 November – Since this post was first put up we have now had the opportunity to see the promotional video made by the Parliament to push the merits of the new channel. It features clips of some of the programming. We can confirm that it looks very impressive indeed as a platform.)