Community TV Gains Momentum by Tyler


With more than four organizational meetings under its belt, the group working to bring community access television and live streaming of local events to everyday reality on the Olympic Peninsula is gaining momentum. Peninsula Area Public Access, or PAPA, elected a Board of Directors and an Executive Committee, and is actively moving forward with formalizing the group as a tax exempt non-profit corporation.

The CEO is Dr. Ralph Smith, with Dale Wilson as Executive Director. Dr. Smith has experience with successfully setting up a community television channel in Boise, Idaho, and Wilson holds college degrees in broadcast journalism, and has years of experience. Other Board members bring lots of enthusiasm and years of related and relevant experience in broadcast media, finance, and organization.

At its last meeting, the group adopted an ambitious schedule of tasks required to m the goals of having community- based programs begin airing by January of 2016.

Wide Variety of Programs

Already PAPA founding member Stephanie Noblin volunteers her time to record the meetings of the Port Angeles City Council, the Charter Review Committee and many other advisory committee meetings. She then makes them available on the internet via the YouTube channel Clallam Public Eye.

Once formalized, all local government meetings will be recorded, broadcast, and made available via an internet-based archive. PAPA envisions a diverse array of programs coming from citizens with interesting skills, school plays, civic events, area sporting matches and much more. Perhaps video tours of fly fishing Peninsula rivers, or halibut fishing off Sekiu. Gardeners may provide videos on gardening in water-restricted seasons. Maybe classes on canning locally accessed vegetables and fish, or making furniture from local woods.

Civic Groups Encouraged

Also desired are programs from local civic organizations featuring guest speakers on topics of interest. Broadcasts of fine arts exhibitions and gallery openings are certainly an attractive idea for bringing them to more viewers than now see them in person. Winter basketball games are a sure crowd pleaser. Road trips to spotlight attractions in the area will attract more tourists to the area.

Interesting hobbies may be highlighted. Religious, philosophical and political discussions are sure to bring in viewers. Important programs on water conservation techniques, and how to use “gray water” safely will help conserve our precious water supply. We all should know how to install solar panel systems to cut our power bills. The topics to be explored are almost limitless. And with three television channels potentially available, there will be many choices for people.

With events recorded and archived on the PAPA site, the public will be able to access at a later date programs that aired on the Wave Cable community access channels if they were unable to catch the program when it first aired. They will be able to share their child’s performance in a football game or play with grand parents and friends.

Training Courses Planned

In order to have citizen-recorded programs be part of the programming, a training course for producers will be available for anyone to learn the skills necessary to meet the requirements for broadcasting their show. Also planned is training for young people in broadcast journalism as well as production techniques for programming.

Although the primary goal of PAPA is enabling all points of view to be made available to the community, a review committee is planned to maintain a minimum standard of civility and decency. Contrary to Phil Lusk’s concern there will be no naked preachers on PAPA.

Because PAPA is a non-profit organization, people, businesses and organizations will be encouraged to sponsor programs to facilitate their production. Those interested should contact Dr. Ralph Smith to discuss what they would like to produce and make available to a wider audience.

With work and dedication, PAPA can become a central unifying source of information and entertainment. It also can be a showcase for the diversity and beauty of the area. Moreover it can act as a public safety channel to knit the County together in an emergency situation.

If you would like to hear more about Peninsula Area Public Access contact Dr. Smith or Dale Wilson. They will be happy to speak to your club or civic group.

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