Introduction from the Director General | Live from Westeros | DW | 15.09.2014
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Game of Thrones – DW celebrates 20 years online

Introduction from the Director General

Online for 20 years - Discover a new world with DW

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Director General Peter Limbourg meets with Daenerys Targaryen

It’s our responsibility to provide reliable information worldwide. But it has also become a tradition to use our anniversaries to provide a tongue-in-cheek look at what “worldwide” actually means. To celebrate 10 years online in 2004, we expanded our range of online content from 30 to 31. The added language? Klingon. Now, 2014 represents the 20th anniversary of DW’s website. Some say we were courageous when we were the first public broadcaster in Germany to branch off into the unknown of the Internet in 1994. But maybe even more courageous is our plan to use the 20th anniversary to discover a whole new world - one that has been shaken from crisis and conflict.

Mediation attempts have been futile. Cease-fires would be unthinkable. Borders are crossed again and again. The reality is a full-fledged war that started from a minimal conflict, with a federation reduced to collection of changing alliances. Communication has broken down. In many areas, people have been reduced to using birds to carry simple messages - as well as being under the control of the intellectual elite.

I’m referring to "Game of Thrones" - the conflict between Westeros and Essos that has consumed social networks, the lifestyle pages and forums around the world. Which makes it even more remarkable that our information on this conflict has been so limited until now. The international bestseller from George R.R. Martin (A Song of Ice and Fire) presents a multifaceted albeit notoriously subjective view of the events. The TV series from HBO is a global phenomenon but the standard of reporting leaves a lot to be desired.

That’s reason enough for DW to take on these responsibilities in honor of 20 years of online journalism.We have experience dealing with issues related to conflicts and free speech. Discover a new world with us and support us in our search for the truth.

As we developed our concept for the Klingon website 10 years ago, we could rely on an already existing vocabulary for the fictive language. But in the world of Game of Thrones, the two most used languages - Valyrian and Dothraki - are still being researched. New words, terms, rules and expressions are being published daily. Thousands of people are already sharing knowledge in forums like www.dothraki.org. It’s that type of diversity that we want to highlight here. That’s why you won’t find any complete articles in Valyrian and Dothraki, but rather interactive translation pages. Piece for piece, we will be completing a new version of the website and everyone can take part. I would especially like to thank the staff members who used their own free time to make this project a reality.

Valar dohaeris - this traditional greeting is one of the only Valyrian sentences that we know: "All men must serve." And it is our duty to serve you with reliable information. Sometimes, from extraordinary places.

Peter Limbourg
Director General

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