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Primary target group: international opinion leaders interested in Germany and Europe.
"Welcome to the Journal on DW-TV. Hello, I'm Melinda Crane in Berlin." Eight o’clock in the German capital – time for the news magazine of Germany’s international television service: nearly 30 minutes of current affairs from all parts of the world, with a special focus on Germany and Europe and their view of the world. It presents stories from politics and business, society, the arts, science and sport. Then, "In Depth" and the "Business Review" provide viewers with detailed background information on the day’s most important events.
Deutsche Welle has focused its television activities at its address on Voltastrasse in Berlin. DW-TV presents an information-centred television service that is available globally via satellite 24 hours a day – switching every hour from German to English, with two hours of Spanish as well in America. In mid-2002, a programme slot in Arabic was added, which is to be extended from three to eight hours in 2007. It can be viewed in more than 20 countries via the NileSat satellite – from Morocco to Saudi Arabia, as well as in large parts of Mali, Niger, Chad and Sudan. It is also broadcast via Hotbird, making it available in Europe as well. Opening regional windows is part of DW’s long-term strategy; it increases acceptance of Germany’s international television broadcaster.
Increased cooperation with the regional broadcasters of ARD and ZDF will bring about a substantial expansion and enhancement of DW-TV’s programme, following the signing of an agreement at the end of 2006. New programmes for Latin America and the US are already on air and new regional schedules for the rest of the world will follow in 2008.
Journal – the flagship
Journal, the half-hour news magazine, is DW-TV’s flagship: every hour, alternately in German and English. In Latin America, viewers can see two Spanish editions of the programme per day, while for the Arab world there are six broadcasts in Arabic.
DW-TV also presents a range of other programmes providing even more in-depth information. These include People and Politics, the political magazine, Made in Germany, the business magazine, European Journal from Brussels, the science show Tomorrow Today, and Arts.21, the arts magazine. Quadriga is a talk show focusing on international topics. In euromaxx, DW-TV presents "life and culture in Europe." Since the summer of 2006, this lifestyle magazine can be watched in a Chinese-language version in the People’s Republic of China.
DW-TV also presents other programmes with a cultural bent, such as Kino, the German film magazine, and the bi-monthly show popXport. Once a month, Discover Germany looks at Germany as a travel destination.
DW-TV presents the latest from the German football league each week during the playing season on Bundesliga Kick off! Once the season is over, automobile lovers are catered to with drive it!
The reports and documentaries on the programme In Focus cover a broad spectrum of topics as well. Here, viewers will also discover series looking at research and science, and the arts and history, as well as portraits of outstanding personalities.
The most important target groups are international opinion-shapers with an interest in Germany and Europe. DW-TV can be received directly by more than 210 million households. Hundreds of partner stations rebroadcast it completely or in part. DW-TV is fed into cable networks and is part of room service in tens of thousands of top-ranking hotels on every continent. Every day, ten million people around the world watch Deutsche Welle’s television service. A multitude of other programs and shows can also be seen as a live-stream on the Internet (dw-world.de), which are available as video on demand or podcast.
DW-TV was launched in April 1992. Germany’s international broadcaster evolved from RIAS TV during the course of German reunification. Initially, six hours of programming (German and English) went out to the world via satellite. Only a few months later, the programme was extended to 14 hours, and in July 1993 to 16 hours. Then Spanish was added as a third language. Since 1995, DW-TV has been broadcasting around the clock.
The content and structure of the programme have been adapted and updated a number of times – a process that has always been guided by an efficient overall concept of the way Germany’s media image is presented to the outside world. The most radical change was DW-TV’s repositioning as of 1 January, 1999: since then, DW-TV has focused on news and information, with an additional spotlight on the arts and culture in general.
In 2002, the Arabic Service was introduced, as well as a special service for the national Afghan television service, RTA: news in Dari and Pashto. The DW-AKADEMIE trained staff and set up an editorial office for the partner station in Kabul, which has produced this news programme on its own since the end of August 2006.
In the television business since 1963
Deutsche Welle’s experience with global television goes back to 1963. That was when DW, then based in Cologne, sent a foreign-language adaptation of a German film beyond Germany’s borders for the first time. Two years later, the company TransTel was founded to transcribe and distribute German TV productions. As one of the shareholders, DW took charge of the selection and adaptation of the programmes, as well as the acquisition of foreign rights. From 1983, DW began producing television programmes on its own. In 1998, TransTel was closed down and its tasks were fully integrated into DW. In this way, hundreds of hours of programming continue to go out to the world every year in many languages. Today, programmes are adapted in and dispatched from Berlin.