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EBU’s Simon Fell elected to lead the WBU Technical Committee

February 13, 2017
Simon Fell has been elected to chair the World Broadcasting Union (WBU) Technical Committee (TC).
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The Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union’s (ABU) Dr Amal Punchihewa and North America Broadcasters Association’s (NABA) John Lee join Simon Fell as vice-chairs

The World Broadcasting Union (WBU) has announced that Simon Fell, director of the European Broadcasting Union’s (EBU) technology and innovation department, has been elected to chair the WBU Technical Committee (TC) for a two-year term.

Consisting of the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU), the Arab States Broadcasting Union (ASBU), the African Union of Broadcasting (AUB), the Caribbean Broadcasting Union (CBU), the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), the International Association of Broadcasting (IAB/AIR), the North American Broadcasters Association (NABA) and the Organizacion de Telecomunicaciones Iberoamericanas (OTI), the work of the WBU revolves around the WBU-TC, which has worked together and shared knowledge of broadcasting technologies, and prepared common recommendations on issues such as broadcast spectrum and programme production for many decades.

Commenting on his appointment, Fell said: “The world’s broadcasters face many common challenges, which include protecting broadcasters and their customers from IT security threats, understanding the impact of 5G on broadcasting, investigating whether there can be common file formats for programmes, and much more.”

Fell is joined by John Lee, chairman of the North America Broadcasters Association (NABA) TC, and Dr Amal Punchihewa, director, technology and innovation, Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU), who will both serve as vice-chairs.

Acknowledging the rapid developments in broadcast technologies, Dr Amal highlighted that it is now more difficult for broadcasters to achieve consensus on common technical standards throughout the world due to several factors such as advancements in mobile technologies, convergence with IT, commercial interest and diversity in national media markets.

He concluded: “We are slowly migrating to a world where, many elements which need to be common are software interfaces rather than hardware.

“The next two years will be challenging in addressing issues around the use of IP for media productions while completing the digital migration. However, the WBU-TC and individual broadcasting unions are working with the industry, manufacturers and standard-making bodies to mitigate interoperability issues.”

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