PM Transcripts

Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 9143

TRANSCRIPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER THE HON PJ KEATING MP LAUNCH OF WORLD SUMMIT ON TELEVISION AND CHILDREN TWO - WAY VIDEO LINK WITH MARK MITCHELL IN MELBOURNE 2 MARCH 1994

Photo of Keating, Paul

Keating, Paul

Period of Service: 20/12/1991 to 11/03/1996

More information about Keating, Paul on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 02/03/1994

Release Type: Interview

Transcript ID: 9143

PRIME MINISTER
TRANSCRIPT OF THE PRIME MINSITER, THE HON P J KEATING, MP
LAUNCH OF WORLD SUMMIT ON TELEVISION AND CHILDREN
TWO-WAY VIDEO LINK WITH MARK MITCHELL IN MELBOURNE
2 MARCH 1994
MM: Prime Minister, Mr Keating, welcome. Thank you for being with us
again today.
PM. Pleasure. Well I was with you a couple of years ago with Janet
( Holmes a Court) and Patricia Edgar and David Hill wthen we launched,
I think, Lift Off on that occasion. And that was a very successful
launch and I am pleased to be back.
MM: Since that time Mr Keating you have made your position and your
feelings about childrens television very clear.
PM: Well I think that I have. I have tried to say that I think what children
see on television is important in the way they think. The sensitivities
they develop in their lives, their value system, and I think we have at
least made some mark on commercial television in requiring that
violence is not being telecast at times that kids are looking at
television, and generally just making a more general point. That is,
that a lot of the grade material and rubbish which is on television
ought to be improved and-it is-organisations such-as theChildren's
Television Foundation which is, of course, leading the role in d~ oing
that.
MM. There is a theory that children enjoy it, that sort of rubbish.
PM: Well I think they will watch what is there for them to see. But in some
of the products which the foundation has produced where it is kids
looking at themselves rather than seeing someone banged up or Ninja
Turtles, or whatever it might be, whether it is violence and other things,
when they actually see something about themselves, in their own
environment or a contemporary environment, particularly when they
recognise the contemporary Australian quality of something they are
looking at, they are much more interested. And I think the support
TEL: 10. Mar. 94 10: 15 No. 002 3 P. 02

ILL: 2
which the various things; Round the Twist and Lift Off and those things
have had demonstrates that point.
MM: I think that is certainly true, Prime Minister, of Round the Twist. It was
very Australian, Australian accents, Australian concepts, they have
even had a ghost in the dunny. I guess the ghost in the dunny or the
loo or the toilet, whatever it is called, wherever they watch it, is a fairly
universal thing for kids.
PM: Well, I think it certainly brought a lot of attention from Australian
children and support, and of course with Lift Off, I think it had
something like a 5 million viewing audience in Britain and it has been a
great success there, even greater than some of the so called popular
programs like Mash and things like that. So, it has produced its own
reward and as Janet said a few moments ago the BBC is now in a coproduction
with the foundation and I think that is the proof of the
pudding.
MM: 5 million viewers in fact watched Round the Twist every Friday night. It
out rated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles at a time when they were
enormously big everywhere in the world. Do you remember them at
all?
PM. Yes, what ever happened to them? They vanished off the scene.
MM: They didn't have the foundation behind them, I guess. I believe that
there is some good news about Round the Twist, Prime Minister,
Patricia Edgar tells me that a feature film is being considered, is in fact
in the pipeline. So, that will be something to look to. I believe you
have something very special to announce today.
PM: Well I am very pleased to be able to announce, following discussions I
had with Janet and Patricia last year, that I am able to announce the
first world summit on television and children. Now, this is not just an
Australian first, it is a world first. It will be in Melbourne next year, the
Delegates are coming from around the-ASEAN area, from China, from
the United States, from Japan and its objective will be to look at the
information highway, the thing Mr Gates was telling us about so
eloquently a week or two ago, the fact that television will be interactive
not just simply delivering product to children and others, but giving the
capacity for interaction and therefore the important focus we should
now have on the cultural impact of that medium, and this is the first
international opportunity to get that focus. I think it also will underwrite
the status of the quality of Australian children's television product and
our foundation.
This will be a good thing for us because I think we are leading the
world in thinking about television product for children and the
organisation of television time for children. And given the fact that we
LL: 10. Mar. 94 10: 15 No. 002 P. 03

3
are now in this country about to embark upon pay television, where it
can't be that many years away where we are looking at the capacity for
interactive television, having if you like the world leader, and I think we
are, in this medium of material for children and thought about children
and television, having us in fact host this conference and manage it is,
I think, a good thing for children around the world, for children in
Australia, and a good thing for Australia's reputation as a country that
has got good values and cares about its children.
MM: Thank you very much, Prime Minister, and thanks for your ongoing
support.
PM: Good, Mark, pleasure.

Transcript 9143