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IGF 2018 - Day 2 - Salle XII - BPF Local Content

The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during the Thirteenth Annual Meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Paris, France, from 12 to 14 November 2018. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the event, but should not be treated as an authoritative record. 

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>> MODERATOR:  Thank you, please take your seats so that we can start.

Okay.  Thank you, and welcome to this session of the 2018 Best Practices for Local Content and introducing myself and the other.  I'm working with the IGF Secretariat and working as a Consultant supporting this year's Best Practice Forum on Local Content.

The Best Practice Forum is basically one of the forums or one of the activities the IGF is having in between sessions, so it's not limited to just this one workshop at the meeting itself.  It starts before, it works in between the two IGF meetings, and the idea is to bring people, stakeholders, specialists together around one specific topic and have them exchange collective best practices and document that into a document that then later can be used as an inspiration, basically, for everyone that could make use from it.  Also, as an inspiration for the policy debate or policy debates on the topic.

As you might have seen it as a second year, there is a Best Practice Forum on Local Content.  Last year there was a BPF Local Content more focusing on the initial question of what is local content and why is it important.  That BPF also collected some examples but more examples of initiatives that are focused on the creation of local content without asking specific questions on who are the organizations behind or who is doing it, just focusing on the question of why is local content important and what examples can be found.

This year there was a proposal, I think supported by the two coordinators in the room.  There was a proposal to dive a little bit deeper and go and look for existing models and take the step from the existing project, make the step to more the economical model behind and whether there is a value chain that can be identified and whether it's possible to move from local content initiatives to local contented initiatives that are sustainable and that can be further developed in the longer term.

So that brings us to the session today.  I think throughout our work and our discussions, we have identified different elements off angles.  One is the idea for okay, this is the Internet, and there are probably completely new models and completely new things that have been developed that are worth sharing.

There might also, second point, be elements that can help the producers of local content, that can help them in a way, elements that can create an enabling environment that can support them or to put it another way, try to less hinder them in creating content.

And the third angle we also looked at were order specific policy initiatives or initiatives that already support the creators of local content.

But I would like to keep it there as an introduction of what the BPF is and what the BPF is doing.  You might have seen that we have a Draft Document out on the IGF website.  The idea is that that document will also include and reflect the discussions and the experiences shared during this session and that will be published as an output document of the meeting, so if you have time also go and please take your time and have a look there, and if you have suggestions or ideas that can be included in the document, please do so.

But then I would like to move to our discussion ‑‑ to our main discussion today, the exchange of experiences.  We have, I think, a great panel of people that do a lot of great work in different ways and in different parts of the world.

The panel will be led by Bertrand Moullier, and I will let you introduce yourself, and we will hear a lot of great story, and I hope that you take something from it but we're also counting on the room to bring in your experiences and share that with us.  So thank you, and Bertrand, please, the floor is yours.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you.  I think I'll spare you introduction.  I'm a Consultant I work with trade acquisitions in the video content sectors across the world, and it's an honor and privilege to be involved in the IGF process for the fourth year running.  It's also very encouraging to see that IGF has expanded its coverage of discussions on local content.  Yesterday we had a Local Content Forum with wip and ITU among others and there will also be a session tomorrow morning at 10 passed 10:00 on local content in underserved region, and so do watch this space and that will contribute to the process (WIPO).

We have a jumjumbo panel, and we have a remote participant that is hidden, and we are also short of time and this has to be a participatory process.  So there with that we're going to try to give you a very clipped and dynamic and introductory moments from each of the speakers.  We'll spare the introductions about their long and distinguished careers, and they'll go straight to the core topics, but the context I think is interesting again because we have a can henote speech from the President yesterday that gives a clear history if they care to put the emphasis on the preservation of createitivety and in connection to the economic development of the Internet and even talked about the reinforcement and the primacy of the content of a network, controversially or not, I do not know, but again this shows local content has indeed acquired a place in this important forum.

So I will start ‑‑ we start this short introduction with Roberto Gaetano of Italy, a very experienced ICANN participant and insider and also the founder of the Individual Users Association and we would like to hear about the aspects of underwiring, the technology issues as they relate to the empowerment of local content, especially in minority language regions.  Yes.

   >> ROBERTO GAETANO:  Thank you, Bertrand.  Yes, I will keep it short because we have a lot of interesting examples of real content to show you, and I would like just to spend a few words to explain what could be an issue, what could be a problem that is related to ‑‑ that can hinder the development of local content.

In the early days of the Internet, domain names were basically only in ASCI, the English alphabet, script, the top‑level domain were short three letters like two letters for the country codes and three letters for the generic, like.com,.org and so on.  And then at a certain point in time this was changed, and new domain names were introduced, some of which also in different scripts.

I was actually on the ICANN Board when the decision was made and those IDNs, which stands for Internationalized Domain Names was introduced and the idea was that that would have helped the development of local websites using local names in the local languages and using that local script.

So we have introduced domain names that were in Arabic, in Chinese, in Georgian, Israeli, and so on.  The problem is that a lot of the applications that are part, even now in 2018, are part of the Internet infrastructure, don't fully support these names, even years after their introduction.

And for this there are groups that are working, especially the Universal Acceptance Working Group, but I don't want to, you know, get into details and then if somebody is interested we can have a chat outside after the ‑‑ after the session.

I wanted only to raise this because in my opinion, it is ‑‑ it is a potential limitation for the access to the Internet by users who don't speak English and are unable to read the English alphabet.

But I have also a question, basically to the next presenters, whether they believe that this limitation is something that is really hindering the development of local content or not, and as a matter of fact you can have local content on the website that has a name in English with the English alphabet.  In my opinion, that will make it a little bit more difficult for local people to access that content, but I would like, you know, to hear whether this is just the view of ADECI or whether this is a real problem.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you so much, Roberto, and perhaps to go a little deeper into that dimension, we're lucky to have a colleague which has just joined us.  As you can see the roster is very full, you're welcome to come up, happy to speak from your seat, this is an informal process.  You've been involved in telecom operators association of Georgia and in a remeet region of Georgia, so how much do you resinate with the remarks that Roberto has made on the necessity to, to universalize scripts so that the access can be secured for minority languages in particular regions and that you can then use the infrastructure to make local content, but also make it reach out.

   >> UCHA SETURI:  Excuse m me for being late.  It's very crucial because connection is, it's a very remote area of my country and don't necessarily have a connection, but most important parties rise and help them to have some ways to produce local content because without this this is just Internet without some real points and real meaningful then.

That's why we had some trainings, we did some trainings for the local community members for skills and for creating some local content, local pages to survey local products.

And also, I have to speak about, a little bit about the Georgia script because the script is very Unix which is more famous 14 scripts and so it's very crucial.  In Georgia society is very small so this project was very important for them, I mean, the trainings for the local community members for creating their e‑commerce space, e‑commerce pages and content on the local language for local society, but they are also creating content on Georgian and English and also Russia because Georgia is a bilingual society and so Russia.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you for that and I hope there will be other opportunities for you to pitch in.  As I say, we're trying to ‑‑ thank you for respecting that format and trying to create the initial introductions quite short and crisp.

I would like to turn now to the individual creators and producers of participants and I'm starting with, you were once a accountable and then you decided recklessly to throw it all away to become a producer of music and increasingly some content in your country of Nigeria, and I think it would be interesting to see how you see your activities creating a stable prospect for you in your colleagues in building effective that is sustainable and what strategies you're deploying to that effect.

   >> ENYI OMERUAH:  Thanks again for having me.  Just a regular accountant, maybe that makes it easier to lead.  But I do, I have always sort of believed in the ability for content to sort of shape the way people are seen and who they are and what they say about themselves, and with technology enabling us in my space to tell stories, and I always remark what is known as Nallywood, which is Nigerian version of Hollywood, men and women bring up from bootstramps and telling stories out of nothing and the African‑centered through these story, but now there is a revolution and I think people like me who see ‑‑ who also have the big picture in mind and see the power of this thing as a cultural, what's the word I'm looking for, you can tell sort of a temperature and the fact that now we can live in a world to spread the messages out, the narrative about who we are, who we say we are, who we want to be, and it's now our time to own the narrative.  I think every state has its narrative, every state has its brand, but to sort of lift our voices up among the group of voices to own and tell the world who we are as opposed to what everybody else thinks we are.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  I think hopefully welcome to you with maybe a case study, you had some interesting recently which you might talk about later on.  Ema Edesio, you also have, it's nice that I have about your film screened tonight as part of the evening on local content at 7:30 in the restaurant, if you haven't RSVPed, please do so and come to us.  Would you like to tell us how you made a decision to actually take the considerable risk of put together your first feature and what sort of opportunities and obstacles are accounted?

   >> EMA EDESIO:  My first film is called Cathela and it's a story about four boys who live in one of the ‑‑ who live in the slums in one of the biggest slums.  I decided to make this film because I had worked as a video journalist for the BBC and I would go into this communities and speak to people from there, and they had a sense of pride with the environment, unlike the narratives that we see from people of these areas saying that they are destitute.  Yes, they have problems, but they have sort of a coping mechanism around them to cope with the issues facing them and they had a sense of community.

And I was very inspired by my interactions with them and I wanted to make this film.  It was one of the hardest things to have done as a filmmaker because there is no sort of funding for independent filmmakers in Nigeria, and then there is a certain type of narrative being put out there in Naliwood where everyone has to come from wealthy homes and wealthy backgrounds and from people from this community to have their stories told.  So I went to friends and families, I threatened my sisters, I raised enough money and I went into the community and used the skills that I built over time to produce, direct, shoot, and edit the film because I was really passionate and I wanted to see this film come to life.

Initially, we have less than 157 screens in Nigeria and there is a fight for this content to come into ‑‑ to go to the cinemas, and my film was refused in Nigeria because they said it was too artsy and wasn't for the target audience and it wouldn't fit the Naliwood narrative.  I put it out in film festivals, in traveling to about 24 different film festivals and there is a huge demand for content like this because the Nigerian audience wants to see themselves on the screen and we've sort of built an ecosystem where even though the film was made with with a budget of about $10,000, yes, (Laughing), it's like an ecosystem of young people earning a living from this sort of film from making films, and you know, telling their story, so it's a fight within Naliwood to create and put work out there.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you very much.  We'll come back to you with questions later on.  I'd like to move to Gregoire Ndjaka, he'll be speaking French and I'll do my best to run a running translation so forget my symphoniering.  You've been involved in a long time with the television producers in Ivory Coast making a program that is focused on the young really, in not telling the young how they ought to be but really working with the youth and trying to harvest their impressions about their place in the world and reflect this in your very successful series which is now on the third season, Teenagers, and also around this create this web community, this social media presence in which the young can further interact into your process.  It will be interesting to hear you describe this in a few words.

   >> GREGOIRE NDJAKA:  He said 27 years of content, I'm from Camrun but feel at home in the Ivory Coast.  I produce documentaries ‑‑ (two speakers at the same time) ‑‑ 18 to 25‑year‑old demographics that we focused on.  When we try to produce a second season going around the different countries, I realized that the most engaged target group was more the teenage subdemographic.

It would seem more appropriate for me to focus on that particular target group that was following, basically, the series more because it was the series watched by the older brothers.  So the older brother or older sister that was already a young adult.  So we wanted to project back at them the image of their own world.  We started with a young 10 to 15 years old.  It was at school, school age, so the stage was not alternative to school.

Rather, it was an opportunity for them to express who they felt they were at teenagers.  It's a 10‑year ‑‑ it's been 10 years and this project has been going on for 10 years.

I realize it's public, had something to say, society in which they live was not necessarily the society in which they felt at ease.  We put together focus groups over the 10 years made up of 50 young and it was actually built from inputs from the 50 young in those focus groups.  We're back to the 18 to 25‑year‑old group, those who had grown up.  We now had 120,000 followers, so following you online.  And we launched the idea of consulting the community through a concept called Call To Text.  The idea is the young youth have a thing that can be money, family, work, write a text in which they translate in relation to the ‑‑ and crucially he or she expresses what kind of world they want to live in going forward.

The theme is chosen according to his or her sense of personal experience and through we know the expectations.  The objective is across several countries in the region to have a thousand text by a thousand young in each country.  So we'll have a vivid picture of the expectations of the youth in each of these countries, which may be a feedback system for decision‑makers to refine the policies because they would be ready to contribute to ‑‑ the young would be ready to contribute to a world that more reflects their expectations.

It's through a Internet presence or digital presence that we developed this way of communication.  We we're convinced we can create a economic model out of this.  We just can change the behavior of the attitudes ‑‑ as to fulfill that role and not just to entertain ‑‑ and digital networks become an important partner in achieving this.  I need people intellectually join them in the project.  I am convinced that there is considerable substance and I'm aware I can't carry it all by myself, I'm expecting you.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you very much, and again I'm sure there will be questions.  We'll turn now to have a go in English, thank you, and a consultant and also a self‑agent, a self‑agency that specializes in African content but he's here in lieu of the current president of the African broadcasting union on his behalf to explain the barebones of a project of an alliance between public broadcasters in Africa to develop content strategically together.

>> I hope my English will not prevent participation 6789 I'm just talking from the AUB and from all the partners that have been working on this project.  In fact, since working in Africa for five or six years, I ‑‑ I understood that the market is very difficult not only for themselves as explained but also for public broadcasters and new broadcasters, the market was looming, the market was very difficult to create and to support African content.

So the idea is to see what is possible to do together with public broadcasters, independent, and also experts to also raise a sort of virtuous mechanism which will give the opportunity be for the public broadcaster to get premium content and for independent producers to be funded for their project.

This idea of this came from the fact that today in Africa, there are only most of the time, 10 or less public channels and I'm sure that many African viewers would want to see something different.

The second thing, most important, is the share of the good African content is taken by broadcasters from different countries, and the idea is to give to the local channels, the national channels, even some time, but the possibility to reach this content, to reach the primary content, and to air it on the premium window in order to give good content to the audience and also to get some money from the local market.

So the idea we're working on since two years is to create this kind of Sindication, this hub, where all the African members, broadcasters will work together, they'll bring and pool all together to choose what kind of program they want to buy or what kind of programs they want to finance, and when they come together, the big advantage of this solution is that it does not cost more for each of them because it brings the same amount of money and all together they can have a reasonable amount of money, but finally what is interesting is that they bring the territories where the public channels are broadcasting over   100% of the territory and these are interesting for two kinds of partners.  First, advertising is always looking for a way to footprint for, but also for public firms like Bill Gates Foundation when doing a campaign on public health, they really need to reach people they want to talk to and sometimes the best possibility is to reach these people with public television, so this will not only be a possibility for public television in Africa to get fresh content, high‑quality content to broadcasting in premium window, but it would also be an opportunity for people to bring, I guess to bring quality and to be funded by this mechanism.

And so finally, the possibility to some partners like Bill Gates Foundation or or other big in Africa, to reach a huge number of people and a huge number of countries.

So this cindication will be also the possibility to be more transparent and more well managed for the investment and transparency, quality, and diversity would be the major goals to reach together between broadcasters and producers.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you, and we have Ani Dallakin waiting to speak with us about the very important aspect of local content.  Before we do that, logically, I would like to maybe wrap up this subsection on the individual professional content with you.  You strategic film agency in Colombia, and your industry has gone from something like 4 a year to 44 or 45 last year, yeah, so can you explain what was the need to create ‑‑ how you went about creating this transformation and also why it was needed for the public sector to intervene in order to make a viable, sustainable sector emerge?

   >> GONZALO LAGUADO SERPA:  Thank you.  We created several systems that have boosted local production.  I'm going to be short so I will save you the details on how they work, but they were needed especially because there was no money to produce content, and this is something that earlier sessions of the Best Practice Forum, the IGF has mentioned, is he jokingly mentioned that what producers needed most was money, and to some extent she was correct because we have created autonomous sources of financing that in turn have created what you just mentioned, which is an exponential rise in the number of local films that are produced yearly.

But I will spare you the details on how it works.  We feel ‑‑ I mean, we have tackled production, we have tackled access to production to a degree, but we have some other challenges that we still need to face and that is the delivery of that content, and mentioned this as well, local content doesn't travel very well at least in my region, and not only does it not travel very well, but it doesn't have a very long lifespan in our country, and so the theatrical span in which movies exist in Colombia is very short and I'm speaking about local content exclusively, and so we need to find several different places to go to market, either by digital means or by alternative circuits of distribution, such as museums and what not, we're trying to devise new ways to make it easier for films to stay in relevance for more time.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you for that.  I know it's quite difficult to ask you to set the pitch in very little time, but again we can come back.

We'll close this first kind of roundup as it were with Ani Dallakin with I think, in Armenia.  She's not with us?  I think she has a colleague in the room who also has some knowledge of the project that we'll be discussing.  No?  No connection at this point?

Would you like to perhaps speak, or perhaps introduce yourself, I'm sorry, you haven't had a chance to speak, but to discuss the interesting projects which have to do with local libraries, rural library, and education in Armenia, and especially in rural Armenia.

>> Thank you.  I'm Leanna from IGF and I'm sorry that aina cannot connect remotely and this is one of the technical challenges that we have.  She's a graduate of the Armanian School of Internet Governance and what she prepared and had a discussion at the IGF, National IGF that we had recently on the 10th of October, the Online Educational Platform that we have in Armenia and we touched upon three aspects, and should I talk about that now or it will be on a later discussion?

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Briefly, if you could headline what we'll be talking about and then feel free later on to pitch in, yes.

>> Thank you.  So one of them is the virtual college that we have on our topics and courses in Armanian, and the second one is the rural libraries and in general, the situation in libraries and the digitalization of all the materials in libraries that we have.

And the third project is the creative technology center for creative technologies and all the courses that we have there, so all of these materials are available online and we'll talk about this project.  Thank you.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you so much.  Well, we arewhere I thought we would be, given the small budget, the time is nothing due to what we have, and the extended panel we have attests to the fact that the local content is a important concept to lots of different areas of issues are attached.

I think one of them we've seen is, and was pointed out in a introduction, was sustainability which can mean all different things, cultural and economic.  That might be one area of focus.  I was tempted to ask you, in terms of what you've done in this sub‑region of Georgia, whether there are examples of create or local content creation but rather tangible products like agricultural products that reach the e‑commerce infrastructure from or cultural products relevant to people living in the region, for instance.

   >> UCHA SETURI:  All need a sustainable business model because without it you suggest results without support.  So for local communities, it's also opportunity because they are serving local products online, and I'll explain.  For example, very special Georgian cheese is just from this region, so Georgians, it's very special opportunity to buy across the region and always result in connection, so right now they had planned again so it's working inside, but I'm talking about also another problem, so the decision results in some influence, et cetera, so the products are in very high demand, so that's why it's working.

And another point is also related to e‑commerce because it's a area, and that's why right now are hostiles and so business and so in these options also internal or somewhere they also create a content for selling the services, hospitallalty services, and that's why it's working in a few directions, and I checked data just one month ago, the amount of traffic is also increasing 10 times more than what is 6 months ago, so it's working ‑‑ this model is also sustainable so maybe it should be interesting for some.  Thanks.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  I in every thought that making the connection between formers to film producers, and I think to make more than a joke, there are ‑‑ I mean, the issue of sustainability is one that you encounter all the time in the industry, I'm thinking of Enyi and Ema, and Ema mentioned giving job opportunities and you were working with skeleton screw, but people got job prospects and got experience to go work on in the rest of the industry.  How do you see, or perhaps is there an example of any that you may have been involved in, how do you see making your content sustainable so that what you have to spend to make it is actually much of what the demand out there is prepared to pay for it.

   >> ENYI OMERUAH:  We deal a lot with rethinking the process, so how do we do things to fit our specific environment, and in this case specifically, we're working on a faith‑based film and the name is called God Calling and going out to raise for this film because I do fundraising and threatening friends and family and brothers and sisters and uncles to raise money to make a film, and in this case it was a little ‑‑ I wanted it to be easier but it was interesting because you were appealing to heart and religion to try to tell a story, but what I wanted to do is to make sure we're able to pay this money back is we started with a distributer who is going to let us release in theaters and at the same time do literally go out to churches and distribute through church halls, and at the same time also release digitally.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Can you explain then, sounds like industry jargon.

   >> ENYI OMERUAH:  So I'm not sure I understand myself, but it is when you're able to bring a film out across your multiple sort of streams, theater, physical, distribution, and digitally all at the same time, and the way the industry has normally worked in Hollywood or in the outside world is there are windows, so you might do a theatrical release first, and then you can do a streaming release later, and then maybe go on to do your other end of your tale, but for us it's been like we need to make this money back and we're in an environment where there are only under 50 cinemas and over 100 million people and how do you get this thing out to them and how do you avoid being plagiarized and copied and sold on the street.  You know, there are many examples of people, your film is in cinema, so someone made a copy and on DVD selling on the street.  So how do you make it to the people and at the same time maximize investment, so we needed to rethink the model in pulling things out and it's been interesting, we were shocked when the distributer agreed to do this, I think they understood where we're coming from, and we think now we can probably pipe this certain kind of genre‑specific project in this model because it's built a specific audience where you can take it to them.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Something you wanted to add to this, Ema?

   >> EMA EDESIO:  I think that Naliwood, that's the Nigerian Film and Television Industry, has learned to take the bull by the horn.  We come from the home video background where we started making films out of home video cameras and, you know, the beautiful thing about Naliwood is that even in that time, in that era of home videos, the Nigerian audience, the Nigerian population will go and buy this, will buy this cassette and there was a huge demand, and it just goes to show the fact that people want content or want film that relates to them and they will pay for it, irrespective of how big or small they're able to buy this movie for themself, and it's what's happening right now in the Naliwood space where filmmakers are taking the home video model to the Internet where independent filmmakers are fighting to create, and because we do not have enough cinema spaces or we don't have enough cinema screens in the country, the Internet how becomes another aspect or another viable ‑‑ another viable way to show our films and earn a living and build an ecosystem for the Naliwood industry in Nigeria.

   >> ENYI OMERUAH:  Really quickly, also, I was alluding to this earlier on, there is a need to rethink the system where it can't be one‑size‑fits‑all, especially in our specific environment, we have to curtail another shape, the rollout to fit the space, to fit the people, it's not America, it's not an established system, it's not even the French system, you're not backed by government, you have to make people's money back for them, and so it's forcing people to rethink how they go about doing things so that there is respect for the content, respect for the audience, and respect for the investor.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you.  Of course, I'm full of other questions I'd like to ask but I'm really keenly aware that this is a participatory process and there are people in this ‑‑ or on the floor who have a lot of contributions to make or questions to ask.  Yes?

   >> AUDIENCE MEMBER:  Good afternoon.  From international federation of broadcasters association.  My question is a clarification.  So the project means that when one broadcaster will buy rights for one, the content will be automatically available in the other territories and you may be aware that the material is discussed at the moment in Europe and territory gives right to people of instruments or even producers to finance, distribute, market individual content, and this is also a incentive, I would say, to have independent producers coming to develop at a national level in order to be in a position to be able to develop positions and so on.  Thank you.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Before there is an answer, maybe we should take a couple more questions or points.  Enyi, I'm sure you know what to say, but any other immediate questions?  Yes?

   >> AUDIENCE MEMBER:  Does it work?  Yes.  This is from WIPO.  First of all, congratulations for this very rich final.  I think we have served that there is a trend, and if we compare what we listen to yesterday, I would like to put forward a question to you, which is the following.  It seemed to me that demand for local content is set to remain high, not only in terms of movie sector, but as mentioned yesterday, definitely news media, educational publishing, so that's not a challenge.  We know that local content will still be required.

We saw that we have luck of having a great amount of talent and passionate people that are engaged in creating local content and try to find the means for doing that, so is that fair to say that the real problem is distribution or another way, how if you were to highlight the main challenge in terms of local content, how would you describe it?

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Okay.  Two fairly rich questions.  We'll come back to all of you.  If you agree, we'll just try to process this.  You could probably answer both in different capacities, and of course any of you here, and I'm thinking of you also on the issue of distribution, and the question mark is where the system challenge is stuck.

>> My company is working to date for 175 African producers coming from 30 different countries, and when I'm selling content they bring to us, I try to make, of course, the biggest number of sales on the largest number of territories for it, and the idea that we try to work with a Africa hub is not to give the price of one territory the rural African territories, and this is the idea of where can I produce because it's too large for African broadcasters.

And for in a sense it's more interesting for us, for producers to sell a film to France or to any other for right then it pays for two years of right, so we take care of this situation and we want to help them to get the biggest number of partners or broadcasters also for their content, and all of these broadcasters are working with African broadcasters operators in local territories and they don't take international rights, they just take the rights for their territory, so it's not an issue for us to give the right no free or for formerly for all kinds of territories.

And to answer your question, there are two major issues for African content.  The first one is financing and the second is distribution.

Coming back to what was said by my colleagues here, there are countries where there are no theaters, in cases and many others, there are no theaters.  There are few broadcasters able to pay for content.  Video‑on‑demand is existing, of course, but it's only existing in big cities where the high‑speed Internet is existing because in many of the parts of the countries, there is no Internet.

So the big issue for content, first, is to be financed and this is where you are thinking about trying to put this mechanism on its feet in order to support financing.  The other is distribution, and a company like mine is trying to put, for clients for producers, to bring all kinds of guidance around the table for the same content.  And our best, for instance, have been one Nigerian film called now, and this is Burkina Faso and we're able to do this on different but nowhere in theaters, and this is important of the content today.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Like to hear about the topics of distribution, especially on the context which is the lack of what is perhaps called a traditional distribution system which starts in the theater and continues in the video market and digital broadcasting and so on, and given the nature of this forum, how do you see the Internet platforms playing a role in both the financing and future distribution of the things you'll be making in three, four, five year's time.

>> Thank you, again.  It's interesting, if you look at theatrical releases for pictures, I think on the one end, people use that as a potential for which ‑‑ or rather a financing stream.  In Nigeria, a huge country as far as population is concerned, under 50 cinemas, if I'm correct.

A picture like Disney Black Panther did a little over 2 million dollars in that market, and it could be imagined if there were 100 cinemas, and so now we have films fighting for real estate at this point and Ema's picture finds it hard for anyone to go because everybody else is fighting for that space, so it's really a tight situation and it's another space where people are rethinking what to do there, so people are rethinking, okay you know what, maybe I miebt be able to do multiplexes but maybe I can do one‑screen spaces in a high densely populated area that is built for cheaper ‑‑ I might not have to pipe in AC, it could be standing AC, just finding ways to make this model a little cheaper and affordable, and I was having a conversation the other day where the conversation was now about the DCI projectors, how they're about nearly $200,000 for every screen that you're going to be putting this in, how is ‑‑ how is an exhibiter in a market where unit prices cannot match the $10 or $20 that are paid in the West, how do you afford that kind of projector in your space?

So there is a lot of rethinking and that's just for theater alone.  If you talk about streaming and digital, the Internet is not necessarily proliferated across the country so there are people who do not go on the Internet at all.  I hear some people whose highest video connection are watching videos run sending to us by the way, and so there is an expansion that has to happen and when you talk about the next four to five years, it's going to be a mix of the regular cinemas, community cinemas and telecos able to zero rate or reduce drastically the cost of the Internet service structure or Internet service to a base, and then the development of culture for people to go there to download or to even go to the cinemas because in my country, there is not yet a culture of cinema going, it is still something that people ‑‑ it's still a luxury, so there is a lot that has to be happening at the same time.

>> I would like to add to that.  You know, I will use my film as an example.  Give or take six years before now, six or seven years before now, if I had made the film, I would not ‑‑ I probably would have made the film and put it on my shelf and not had been able to earn a living with the film.  Right now there is sort of hope, the Internet brought hope for filmmakers especially from Nigeria, to make us see in some ways we can still make a living out of our films, and with my film, like I said it's been traveling, we've been to 24 international film festivals and how did this happen?  People started hearing about the film through film freeway, through the Internet, and there is a huge demand, a huge demand for African content and people have been making inquire ees about it and even though within the African communities we can't afford to watch films over the Internet, but there is another large community who would pay a premium, who will pay at least some good money to watch my film and help me raise money or to get money together for the next film, so giving us some sort of hope so that at least you make your film and then you can earn a living and get enough money to make your next project, so it's brought some kind of hope to filmmakers.  Yes.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  I'd like to hear you on the subject then.

>> As well as relates to this discussion today, I want to report on the sustainability and on your question about platforms.  The interaction I had with one of the biggest Youtubeurs in African continent that I invited to this session and unfortunately he cannot come or he decided not to come, but he's one person that has around 1 million contacts on YouTube, and has produced every month, I believe, four or five short videos of 5 to 8 minute, and I'm asking ‑‑ I was putting on the web with him from UNESCO because it's considered one of the most followed.

I ask him on the phone when I invite him to come, could you share with us how do you live through this work that you do?  Can you earn enough money, as Ema said, for making your living?

And his answer was very simple.  He said, no, not at all.  Even I have a million viewers on YouTube, this brings back to me only in average, 200 Euros a month, on average 200 Euros a month for a million viewers, and I ask how is this possible?  He said because my share of the revenues that is brought back to me from Google is based on the advertising of the local market of Morocco that they can quantify and they pretend that they can number and this is my share, and I say then why you do it?  Because 200 Euros a month you cannot produce 4 or 5 short bits of 5 minutes well done even if they're done with very light equipment.  He said oh, yes, I use my image on YouTube and then I go to advertising agencies in Morocco that ask me to produce movies or clips, and then I get the money out of that, so there is no direct funding mechanism at the moment coming out from the platform.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  I'd like to continue on that vein, unless people want to ‑‑ I'm conscious that there might be other areas that have not been adequately covered yet.  Bear with us, we again have a limited amount of time, but perhaps we've not exhausted or find our closing point on this particular issue of sustainability and the distribution issue.  Could you describe how you financed teenagers and what element of it is your risk and what element depends on pre‑sales of that series to broadcaster situations in various countries in the African region, and what's the element of uncertainty and risk for you when you do that ‑‑ let me ask a question.  Are people happy to pick up the running translation in English, or shall I speak?  There is a running translation in text which I'm told is very good.  Are you happy to do this or shall I ‑‑ shall I shout along?

(no English translation).

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Hang on.  We don't have a English translation.  (Laughing).

He has a community of 120,000 adolescent followers to the program and not to him personally.  So that is ‑‑ so each?  The one that subscribes, there is another five friends that will join him or her.  It's important to develop this community.  We're going to develop related products and ancillary products around the series.

So what really gets the youth going is music.  So I go to the music through the text strategy that I outlined earlier on that carries a message.  So I approached Sony Music which has a HQ in Africa.  And we're working on producing an album around the theme of the world of teenagers, of adolescents, and this album will be released in June 2019.  Just after the release of a broadcast premiere of Season 4 of Teenagers.

The element, the album, the music album with the element they'll able to share between themselves, and the texts are written by the young ‑‑ the lyrics, therefore, are written by the young.  To answer my question on the economic models for these kind of adventures for each season, puts up 40% of the budget and I self‑finance 20% of it to my own company and the balance of 40% ‑‑ so there are 12 other countries that will broadcast my series ‑‑ (multiple speakers) ‑‑ my investment in the community is of the teenagers I developed, and they are the ancillary products of this that will help finance the follow through and next situations of this program.  We have one objective, we want to approach companies interested in the demographics of people from 6 to 26 because we want to create a season where we're working specifically on a series between kids ages between 6 and 12, and that way I'm going to have a full range of 6 to 26.  We're convinced it's a representative value.  A strong stateable economic model can emerge from this venture.

And I have hopes to build other brands that are stronger.  One of the brands I like but I'm not sure how to contact them, it's Disney.  But I think there is something that can be done with such, and when Black Panther was released, the President of Disney went ‑‑ to present Black Panther in Ivory Coast.  Mobilized producers and journalists to ‑‑ to develop my community of young and maybe to do this together.  The work of the producer and in my case is took 12 years for the ideas at some point to find a convergence point with the existing, and even if I don't get there ‑‑ developing children, and that makes me a happy man even before I have my meetings with those brands.  But I'm insisting and I'm expecting them.

Thank you so much.  Thank you so much.  I'd like to be conscious of not monopolizing the panel time on this issue.  I wanted to go back to you because at the other end of this spectrum of issues we have education and you're making an effort to develop a capacity there for population, God bless Google of 2.976 million in Armenia plus substantial as those who live in the U.S. or UK know.  So what or how do you do ‑‑ what do you need as resources in order to develop initiatives like the virtual college or rural libraries, digitization program, et cetera?

>> Thank you, Mr. Chairman, for this opportunity to speak about that.  As I said, I have recently had discussions about the online educational platforms in Armanian language, and during the preparation of that session, the youth organizers made research on this topic collaborated with experts and were presented some educational resources available in local language.

In fact, there are a lot of professional corporations available online and online education, goes really viral everywhere.

So why the representatives thought that this topic was important to the discussion of the National IGF?  Being a group of students they come to an issue that they have different options of getting a lot of different information online in either in English or Russian, but if they search for something in Armanian, they get very poor data or don't get anything at all.

So they have to read in other languages, and that's why they made this session with people that are doing something to this field development.  They're using speakers with relevant experiences to share their stories for the development of the area and they're brutally inform you about the projects and initiatives as I told you before, and which have been done for local content development in Armania.  The American University of Armania in cooperation with the Armenia General Benevolent Union launched a local university that has well‑designed courses and as you might known, Armenia has a unique situation in terms that we have a very big worldwide diaspora and in fact there are around 3 million ar mainians living there and more than 7 million living outside of the country.

People of Armenia nationalities fled over and especially young generation usually don't speak Armenian language and in order to prevent this the virtual university provides all of these in several languages, English, French, Spanish, and tushish, along with Armenian, the university gives first the opportunity to study the Armenian language and then also the culture around 3,000 years of culture.  The university has almost 3,000 students who are not only from Armenia but from all around the world, and so in fact within 10 years this project did quite a lot and went a long distance.  This has been a very unique startup in the Armenian online educational sphere.

Another very important project in Armenia is the development of rural libraries with a grant received by the Internet Society.  Nearly six years ago, rural libraries had no Internet access or even a computer in Armenia.  For many students living and studying in regions where Internet access is a really big issue, and that is why a list of libraries of institutions is provided for them.  This must have been highlighted as an important issue which needed solutions.

So so the team of project computer services, and WiFi Internet for rural libraries, it's been six years already that Armenia is supporting this project to support rural libraries with computers, Internet access, and appropriate software for those computers.

Around 120, 130 computers were granted to libraries and provided further maintenance.  The problem is not just providing technology but also to be able to help them in using it.  On the other hand, as a continuation to the discussions about the libraries, we mentioned that the importance of digitalizing educational sources, creating e‑libraries and making them open to everyone.

Digitalization, of course, brings more issues with it, but it is becoming more and more important with the technological development.  Despite the fact that most universities in Armenia have the online platforms, lots of the study materials are not available online which makes the platforms useless.

So here comes a question of what resources to use, how to digitize material, and how to keep the copyright issues, these issues are also being discussed and developed.

The third thing that I want to highlight another relevant and big project is being implemented by a center for Creative Technologies which is one of the best known formal educational centers, and by the way free of charge for everyone.

They now have around 40,000 students across Armenia and it is enlarging its community by opening new centers in new cities and country, and by the way very recently a center was opened in Paris as well.  And it is already a very popular center.

The educational formal is 50% self‑education and 50% via structured courses.  This gives the average of raising the effectiveness of the educational process.  Right now it has almost 100 courses around IP making robots, creating games, and other computer programs.

Right now we're working on a new software to enable them to make the educational materials available for everyone and accessible by the Internet.  They also provide solutions for improve the technical aspects, particularly they moved to Cloud Computing technologies for achievement of their goals and the local educational content development in English and Armenian, basically.

Besides this, the major objective for it is empowering the youth to receive qualified education, especially when they aren't able to receive it at school.  This is why we wanted to share with you about existing and successful initiatives on local content in Armenia.  Thank you.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you.  The centers, which is your third item, the one you just spoke about, are these for higher education students at any level?  Does it reach out to the teenagers?

>> There are two more centers, this is not high education, it is for the school‑age years, it's formal education after the classes starting from the age of 12, actually.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  And can some students be exclusively educated through the center or do they have to combine with normal school curriculum?

>> Can you do that.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Right.  Thank you.  I'm aware there is only a few minutes left.  I suppose we could be rogue and go a little bit over, but ‑‑ sorry.  To choose to broaden the scope of what we've covered already, at least as a placeholder for the next iteration of this open process, please do so now or forever hold your peace.

Yes?  Over there?  If you could say who you are and then address your question.

   >> AUDIENCE MEMBER:  My name is Susan Anthony, a proud card carrying member of the international documentary association based in Los Angeles, I'm just a want‑to‑be not like the very lovely people on the panel, but I like to ‑‑ I like to watch what's happening in the industry, and one of the questions that I have in my mind is about crowd funding.  I get quite a bit of solicitations from KickStarter and Indigogo and similar initiatives for crowd funding various projects and because I identified myself as a person very interested in creative content, I get a lot of things for crowd funding for a variety of films, sometimes documentaries, sometimes fictional, so but I have no idea whether that's really working for the people in the film industry, and I would be very interested in knowing whether this has been explored in Nigeria or any other country that may be represented on the panel.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you so much.  One final question if we have the time, and then I'll get the panel to perhaps answer, perhaps those who want to.  Perhaps also, I would like to ask the panel to say in a few words, perhaps what their wish is for what the regulatory environment of the Internet could deliver to them to help deliver sustainability of local content.

Any more questions or points before we do that?  Right, well I can see there is a bit of fatigue.  Perhaps then I will ask each panel member, if you would, not just to address Susan's interesting question about crowd funding if you think you're up for it, but also segue into what ‑‑ very briefly into one or two asks about what sort of regulatory initiative systems would enable you to further make your activity sustainable wherever you are.  Can you go and then pass on.

>> To answer your question about crowd funding, I like to say I'm African and we've been crowd funding before crowd funding was ever a term.  We are constantly asking our uncles and aunts and friends and loved ones, right.

But then also, there is a perceived ‑‑ there is a preconception about who we are as Nigerians, once again living bands, we have the 419 sort of name attached to our in addition that willty, examples of people who have done bad things but not everyone is bad.  It's an interesting format to find.  I know a filmmaker who made a film called the barrel of Kodu in Gauna I saw it in New York in September and the last I heard, a lady, her name has she has a company ‑‑ she made the film Selma a director in a Winkle in Time and was wanting to distribute the picture, and he's a big talent in the U.S. and interested in ‑‑ on heard voices, so the African voice she's interested in distributing, so that one transaction has moved into something else.  But to your question specifically, crowd funding does exist but in a different model in my market and not necessarily on somewhere on known faces.

As far as what I would like to see, I think it's more about the development of distribution, development of story development, development of the talent as we move to make this projects, films, stories.berth.

>> I'm not sure that crowd funding could be a solution for film industry, especially in Africa, and I'm afraid that even France, crowd funding is decreasing in many of the platforms we're working on bankruptcy.  Now, just to complete, Africa is a rich territory with many big differences between English speaking, Portuguese speaking, and French speaking territories, but there are huge for institution and banks that are quite strong and very healthy and I'm sure that the panel for African bodies public or private could be a lot for the fit am industry when they'll able to work together with creators, producers, and with different member states.  This is one of the lack I saw on this continent, Member States are working in their side but there is nothing ‑‑ nothing about policy.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you very much.

>> Okay.  I'm going to talk as an independent producer and I will say that the film industry is sort of my life.  It is something that I have and you're very jealous when you decide that you want to become a filmmaker you practically can't do anything else because you're spending days, months, years producing or creating, so this had is our life, my life, and we've managed to build an ecosystem around us.  We've managed to hire, we've managed to create, and it can be very, very nice to have policies that protect our work.  I mean, I want to constantly do this, I want to tell the African stories, but I can't do it if my work is released out there for free and I can't make money to survive or to create, so I think that policy should sort of be put in place to protect our work and to help us filmmakers distribute and to be able to make a living out of what we do.

>> I meant to add something that is not part, we're developing the young views, especially with the Sony ‑‑ (two speakers at the same time) ‑‑ the recognition of the ‑‑ the intellectual property of the young in the creations that have contributed to this.  It's important because the recognition of the fact that even though they're young what they have to say matters and the text they send in has value.

What help do I get to do what I do?  The structures that are there to ‑‑ yeah, for the local institutions that are coming to realize the importance of this, of what we're constructing and building here and that we hope that their awareness will increase.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Roberto, would you like to?

   >> ROBERTO GAETANO:  Well, just one sentence.  I think that I'm looking forward to the moment in which universal acceptance will be fully deployed and that we will be able to remove those obstacles to the development of local platforms and therefore local content.

>> In response to Susan's question and adding to what Ema said and one of your questions earlier, one, I don't think that crowd funding is a viable source or very used source of acquiring resources for making films in Colombia, which is my country.  What we have established in Colombia is public policy under which you can access public resources for the production of film in any of the stage, and they're quite happy in some cases.  It's not just any money, it's a lot of money, so there is that.

And in response to your question, as to what I would change about that public policy in order to further get more incentives to producers, I would definitely ‑‑ I think that what Ema just said recently, the problem is not sometimes the time and money that you invest in making a film, but the inability to make returns from that movie, and that has to do a lot with distribution which Paulo touched recently in one of his question, so I would definitely change our public policy in a sense that we should give more resources to distribution, not only in traditional platforms but online, and that of course brings a problem of bridging the digital breach that affects most of us ‑‑ most of our developing countries.

   >> BERTRAND MOULLIER:  Thank you, Ucha.  Would you like ‑‑ no.  Okay.  Lianna?  Sure?  Okay.  I'm going to hand it over, and before that I thank all the panelists from the bottom of my heart for a passionate contribution and it was very helpful in the context of a gathering of evidence of best practice which can help the process and we hope to have added some useful material to this today.

I remind you that Ema's film will be screening tonight at the restaurant on 7th floor, if you would like to join us, come to us after the panel and it's essential that you RSVP because there is limited space and it will be proceeded by a cocktail dinner for those of you with appetites and more discussion about local content, this is the place to be tonight, thank you.  I'll hand it over for final words.

>> Thank you.  Very, very brief because the next group is already waiting outside.  As I said, we will produce a final document and we will do our best to reflect as much as possible and also the experiences that were shared on the panel.  So the only thing that's for me is to thank the panelists for this different, very different views and ideas and experiences, and of course thank you very much to for pushing this panel and carrying the heavy work today.  Thank you very much.

 

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