The event industry is up in arms! And this is what everyone should do about it, at least everyone who wants to continue seeing their stage productions and television shows, sports events or news – whether live, on television or on the Internet, produced to the exacting standards that everyone expects. Why so? Because the political decisions that have led to the frequency auctions in Europe ultimately, affect us all. Every single citizen! And there could be more of these types of decisions to come. Is it right that poorly advised politicians should be permitted to take decisions that run contrary to our, the creative and cultural sector’s, interests?
The frequencies that have been auctioned in recent years have traditionally been used by television broadcasts, wireless microphones and by other wireless means of production. After the auction of the “digital dividend 2”, as it is known to experts, these users had to give way. Actors, sports reporters, reporters, show hosts, technicians – all cherished professionals on and off the stage, at the microphone, in front of the camera, in the studio, are, increasingly, collectively concerned.
Politicians have, perhaps inadvertently, been sold the idea of a one-sided mobile (read smartphone and tablet) world; the frequencies recently sold will, in the future, be used for the expansion of broadband mobile networks. But do we want to live in a world where everyone can enjoy fast internet access with their smartphones and tablets, but we can no longer experience sports, cultural and show events or live coverage produced to the high quality and standards that they are today? What is more important? Quality of service, or quality of experience?
What should we consume or download from the Internet with our high data rates on our mobile devices? And especially tragic: in only a few exceptional cases will the auctioned frequencies really help to make access to the Internet that much faster, if indeed it will give access at all, to those located in rural locations. Politicians have, as yet, not embraced the seriousness of the situation: neither for the event industry, nor for the citizens that they represent. It should be properly recognized that the broad and diverse ecosystem that constitutes the entirety of the cultural and creative industries, secures millions of jobs across Europe and beyond.