Sunday, October 28, 2012

[pima.nius] Pacific Broadcaster Tom Etuata Passes Away in Auckland

5:11 PM |

The Pacific Islands Media Association team would like to extend its condolences to the family of Tom Etuata, CEO of Radio 531 PI and Niu FM, after he passed away in Auckland on Saturday.
 
This is a very sad loss for the Pacific communities in New Zealand, especially the Niuean community. His passing will also leave a huge gap in Pacific broadcasting.

In 2009 Tom was appointed CEO of the Pacific Media Network Trust which runs both the nationwide Radio Niu FM and Auckland's Radio 531pi. He was committed to a quality news service for the Pacific communities in New Zealand as well as for the region.

The son of Reverend Tom Etuata senior, Tom was not only active in the Niuean community but he also played a key role in the promotion of various Pacific events including the prestigious Pacific Music Awards.

He was well known for his commitment to a healthy lifestyle and held the position of Secretary-General for South Pacific Bodybuilding Federation as well as being involved with the Samoan Sports Awards.

 
Our thoughts and prayers are with Tom's family and work colleagues at this sad time.
 
Kia Monuina and Fakaue Lahi Tom
 
The team from PIMA
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Monday, October 15, 2012

[pima.nius] Graduate Diploma in Pacific Journalism

5:04 PM |

Graduate Diploma in Pacific Journalism

Some 8 million people live in the South Pacific. The Pacific region offers cultural diversity, and is one of New Zealand's biggest sources of migrants and export trade. It is also under threat from climate change, can be a hotbed of political tension and is rapidly becoming a highly contested place for resources. For journalists, the South Pacific is a complex region with a wealth of fascinating stories.

The Graduate Diploma in Pacific Journalism (GradDipPacJourn) is designed to develop more journalists with the specialist skills to report on the South Pacific. You will explore the role of the Pasifika media and the treatment of Pasifika, Māori and diversity issues in the mainstream media. You will learn to analyse and comment on Pasifika political, social, economic and cultural issues, and other issues in the Asia-Pacific region.

  • Addresses the shortage of Pasifika journalists
  • Suitable for anyone who wants to develop journalism skills in and about the South Pacific in as little as 1 year
  • A pragmatic and critically relevant journalism qualification for the many Pacific Islanders (and others) across the region already working in the media
  • Focuses on practical and critical news reporting skills for print, broadcast, narrowcast and digital media
  • Develops a critical awareness of the demands of the local and wider publishing and broadcasting industry in a Pasifika context
  • Opportunity to complete media attachments and a newsroom internship in a Pasifika or mainstream news media organisation
  • Encourages bilingual or multilingual interviewing skills
  • Papers cover ethics, media law and digital media storytelling in a cross-cultural context

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Sunday, October 14, 2012

[pima.nius] Fwd: COUPS, CONFLICTS AND HUMAN RIGHTS: Pacific media challenges in the digital age

3:07 PM |


Tuesday 16 October 2012

4.30pm–5.30pm

WA Conference Centre

City Campus

Level 2, WA Building

55 Wellesley Street East


Refreshments will be served after the address

Please RSVP to: sue.chapman@aut.ac.nz

 

At the heart of a global crisis over news media credibility and trust is Britain's so-called Hackgate scandal involving the widespread allegations of phone-hacking and corruption against the now defunct Rupert Murdoch tabloid newspaper News of the World. Major inquiries on media ethics, professionalism and accountability have been examining the state of the press in NZ, Britain and Australia. The Murdoch media empire has stretched into the South Pacific with the sale of one major title being forced by political pressure. The role of news media in global South nations and the declining credibility of some sectors of the developed world's Fourth Estate also pose challenges for the future of democracy. Truth, censorship, ethics and corporate integrity are increasingly critical media issues in the digital age for a region faced with coups, conflicts and human rights violations, such as in West Papua. In his address, Professor David Robie will reflect on the challenges in the context of the political economy of the media and journalism education in the Asia-Pacific region. He will also explore emerging disciplines such as deliberative journalism, peace journalism, human rights journalism, and revisit notions of critical development journalism and citizen journalism.

 

Dr Robie holds a PhD in History/Politics (2004) from the University of the South Pacific, Fiji, where he was formerly head of the Pacific regional journalism programme (1998-2002). His Masters in Journalism degree was gained at the University of Technology, Sydney, in 1996. He was also previously coordinator of the University of Papua New Guinea journalism programme prior to 1998 and served as head of the South Pacific Centre for Communication and Information in Development (SPCenCID) at UPNG.

 

As a journalist, Professor Robie has worked for a global news agency and reported widely in Africa and the South Pacific. He has written and edited several books on Pacific media, environment, politics, social justice and human rights, including Eyes of Fire: The Last Voyage of the Rainbow Warrior; Blood on their Banner: Nationalist Struggles in the South Pacific, Tu Galala: Social Change in the Pacific; Nius Bilong Pasifik: Mass Media in the Pacific – with a foreword by the late professor 'I Futa Helu of 'Atenisi; and Mekim Nius: South Pacific Media, Politics and Education. He was made an Australian Press Council Fellow in 1999, awarded the Pacific Islands Media Association Media Freedom Award in 2005, won a Vice-Chancellor's Excellence in Teaching Award in 2010, is founding editor of Pacific Journalism Review, and co-founded the Pacific Media Watch advocacy and research project and Pacific Scoop website.

 

Pacific Media Centre | Te Amokura
D-63 School of Communication Studies
16th Floor | WT1006
AUT Tower

2 Rutland St
AUT University
Private Bag 92006
AUCKLAND 1142
Aotearoa/New Zealand
www.pmc.aut.ac.nz 


Director: Professor David Robie david.robie@aut.ac.nz 
Postgraduate project students:  pmedia@aut.ac.nz


Pacific Media Centre Facebook: www.facebook.com/PacificMediaCentre

PMC YouTube channel: www.youtube.com/pacmedcentre

PMC on Twitter:  twitter.com/pacmedcentre

 

Tel: (+64 9) 921 9388

 

 

 

 


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[pima.nius] Fwd: [pacific-journos] CBD COP 11 News

2:12 PM |


 

Kia orana all,

 

Below is some news from the CBD COP 11 in Hyderabad, India.  This covers Traditional Knowledge and an intervention made by Fiji as well as the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing with an intervention made by FSM.

 

For more please visit www.bionesian.blogspot.com

 

Kia manuia,

nan

 

Traditional knowledge a valuable resource for the Pacific

Article 8. In-situ Conservation

(j) Subject to its national legislation, respect, preserve and maintain knowledge, innovations and practices of indigenous and local communities embodying traditional lifestyles relevant for the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity and promote their wider application with the approval and involvement of the holders of such knowledge, innovations and practices and encourage the equitable sharing of the benefits arising from the utilization of such knowledge, innovations and practices;

12 October 2012, CBD COP 11, Hyderabad India - The value of traditional knowledge in the Pacific was acknowledged at the 11th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity.  Known as Article 8J this strengthens the role of traditional knowledge in contributing to the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity.

Fiji presented a statement on behalf of FSM, Kiribati, Solomon Islands, Samoa, Nauru and Tonga:

"Traditional knowledge and culture are important components of biodiversity within these countries. The Pacific island countries including the stated countries are diverse in culture and traditional knowledge which are intricately linked to our livelihoods. Cultural practices and traditional knowledge have enabled the people of these nations to survive on the islands since time immemorial. It is for this reason that the Governments for these countries consider cultural diversity, an important component of the national biodiversity programmes implemented at the national, islands and village levels."

While the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing pertains to the genetic resources and their use, Traditional knowledge is about the innovations, practices and knowledge of local communities around the world.

The Institute of iTaukei Language and Culture is undergoing a Cultural Mapping project working closely with the Department of Environment to look at linkages between Traditional Knowledge and Biodiversity.

This project covers all villages within the 14 provinces in Fiji with research teams recording and documenting indigenous knowledge and cultural expressions.  A key objective of these activities is to retrieve important traditional knowledge from the elderly who are often the key repositories of knowledge.

"We proposed on behalf of these countries that we link the role of biodiversity and traditional knowledge to climate change, as traditional knowledge can assist with climate change adaptation," said Sarah Tawaka of the Fiji delegation.

"We also asked that they consider how we can resolve repatriation of traditional knowledge before Article 8J came into force as countries have varying levels of traditional knowledge that was released before Article 8J, we would like to address this."

For more information on Article 8J.

 

Pacific interest in the Nagoya Protocol

10 October 2012, CBD COP 11, Hyderabad India - Three Pacific island countries, Fiji, FSM and Palau, have signed the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing, with Fiji, the fourth country in the process of acceding to the Protocol.

The Federated States of Micronesia announced their agreement to ratify the protocol at the 11th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity in Hyderabad, India. 

"The Federated States of Micronesia is thrilled to join its fellow small islands developing state colleague Seychelles in ratifying the Nagoya Protocol.  My delegation is pleased to report to this distinguished body that as of October 1st, 2012 our National Congress adopted a resolution to ratify the Nagoya Protocol and looks forward to depositing our instrument of ratification," presented by Mae Bruton-Adams as the FSM Delegation.

Palau and Vanuatu join FSM in signing the Protocol, but are yet to ratify it.  Fiji is not a signatory but will become a party through acceding to the Protocol.

The Protocol addresses one of the CBD's three objectives – the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits from the use of genetic resources.  It is designed to give developing nations a fairer share on profits made by companies, such as pharmaceutical and cosmetics firms, from their genetic resources.

Prostratin is a compound found in the bark of the mamala tree of Samoa, Homalanthus nutans.  Research has indicated that prostratin has potential to be useful in the treatment of HIV.  The development of compounds called Calanolides, derived from the latex of a tree, Calophyllum species, found in the Malaysian rainforest, as a potential treatment for HIV and certain types of cancer.

Benefits derived from genetic resources may include the result of research and development carried out on those genetic materials, the transfer of technologies which make use of that research, or monetary benefits arising from the commercialisation of products based on those genetic resources.

The protocol recognises that indigenous knowledge should be protected and communities that possess it must be adequately compensated if that knowledge is used for commercial gain.

"Our work will mean that all four states plus the national government are united when it comes to the implementation on the Nagoya Protocol with respect to regulating research and the possibility of users accessing our genetic resources," said Alissa Takesy of the Federated States of Micronesia. 

"We need to fully comprehend their intentions and come to a common understanding on what our genetic resources are utilised for and if they are going to commercialise it, we'd like a process capturing the benefits being reciprocated back to the local communities"

The Nagoya Protocol was adopted on 29 October, 2010 in Japan after six years of negotiations. For more information on the Nagoya Protocol on access to genetic resources and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from their utilization to the Convention on Biological Diversity.


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[pima.nius] Fwd: [PFF] International Journo Fellowship

2:10 PM |

Of interest?


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Saturday, October 13, 2012

[pima.nius] Gordon Campbell: Acting Under Orders

4:09 PM |

Original source: http://werewolf.co.nz/2012/10/dealing-with-mistah-hollywood/

Does John Key know the conditions facing Kiwi workers within US film and TV productions here?

by Gordon Campbell

Prime Minister John Key was in Hollywood a few days ago, touting this country's virtues as a location/destination for US film and television productions. The scenery, the studio space, the skilled and cheap work force etc. as he recently told RNZ, make this a good place to make movies.

Jobs in the film industry was the alleged purpose. To that end: "We've got everything from the flexibility in the way that the crews and things operate, through to a very high level of expertise."

Quantity not quality, perhaps. Key's efforts in this regard two years ago famously rewarded US studios (a) by raising the level of money refunded to studios if they locate their big productions here and (b) by exempting them from some fairly basic requirements of our labour laws. In the wake of The Hobbitdispute, Parliament removed the right of access by workers in the film and video gaming industries to overtime pay rates, sick leave and holiday pay entitlements and the health and safety protections available to employees – who can now (legally) be defined as 'independent contractors' and engaged on terms largely to suit Hollywood's (or Wellywood's) budgetary needs.

Recently, a contract for the Power Rangers production – a further season of which is currently being shot here – came my way. It is an eye-opening document. Since 2005, the New Zealand taxpayer has rewarded the Power Rangers show quite generously,to the tune of early $20 million via the incentives available under the Large Budget Screen Production Grant Scheme (LBSPGS.) (Year to March 2005 : $2.891m, March '06 : $3.077m, March '07 : $2.703m, February '08 : $2.823m, March'09 : $3.009m, March 2010 : $3.031m).

Those incentive moneys were paid to the Disney Corporation, the previous owners of the Power Rangers franchise. The show has now been bought back by its original owner, the US entrepreneur ( and reportedly 104th richest man in America, Haim Saban.) There's more about him, below. Presumably, the Saban production will also be applying in time for LBSPGS moneys. As the Herald on Sunday recently reported, there are concerns that many of the higher paid, high tech positions on the production are going to foreigners, and not to New Zealanders:

A new series of Power Rangers began filming in West Auckland this week, amid complaints that more technical crew were Americans, not Kiwis.

Well, there is nothing new about this. On Lord of the Rings, skilled workers from the US, France and elsewhere swelled the ranks of technicians required for the high pressure, highly specialised work needed to complete the films on deadline.

This is inevitable. New Zealand alone cannot meet the demand at the top end of The Hobbit production – and within Immigration, neither the will or the ability exists to arbitrate which local post-production technician could, or couldn't match the skills of the foreigner that the production wanted for the job. The bigger issue is whether the contracts being offered to New Zealand workers are fair and equitable. And both the law change that occurred in the wake of The Hobbit dispute and the content of the Power Rangers contract raise genuine concerns on that score.

The contract that is being offered to Kiwis seems to give the Power Rangers producers a staggering amount of power over the actors it employs. The preamble to the contract document for instance, says that the performer has to be available anytime between I October 2012, and 10 May 2013 (by my reckoning, a period of 222 days) but "shall be guaranteed a minimum of 20 (twenty) not necessarily consecutive days" during that production cycle. These "working days" are 12 hours in duration, with a 45 minute lunch break. There's a week of preparation that the performer is also expected to donate to the production free of charge :

At Producer's request and subject to Performer's professional availability, Performer shall appear at such place(s) designated by Producer during the period of one (1) week immediately preceding Performer's start date(s) hereunder for tests, photo sessions, makeup and wardrobe. Performer agrees that, except as….agreed by the parties in writing, no additional fees shall be payable by Producer in connection therewith or in connection with any and all necessary travel or hold days, and Performer's start date(s) shall not be accelerated thereby.

Furthermore, clause 4.5 demands that the performer agree to significant restrictions on their trade. Or on their ability to seek any other work at all that could conceivably devalue their image as a children's performer, for nearly 18 months afterwards :

During the term hereof and continuing through the 2012/2013 Production Season, Performer grants Producer exclusivity in the area of children's and children's-related programming, including, but not limited to, programming for the United States television networks (CBS, FOX and NBC), Cartoon Network, Disney, Nickelodeon and Pax Net and Performer shall not perform in a continuing role or as a regular performer on any other episodic television series or perform in any program that is intended for exhibition in the United States on before 30 November 2014 without Producer's prior written approval, which shall not be unreasonably withheld. During such period, Performer shall not provide services for Performer's own account or for any third party that would interfere with Performer's ability to perform
Performer's required services for the Series or other works hereunder or which may be inconsistent in content, taste and sensibilities with the traditional and family-oriented values of the intended telecaster of the Series without Producer's prior written approval.

Here are a few other examples of punitive clauses in this contract, which looks more like a feudal document of bonded servitude than a 21st century agreement between professionals :

1. Extra Duties, No Pay. Under contract clause 2.2 The performer (actor) will do adverts, sound recordings to sell thePower Rangers merchandise, and/or work for them to make computer games – all without pay, if this work is done during the production period while they are doing the acting job for which they were originally hired. Or as the contract charmingly puts it :

During Performer's engagement hereunder, Performer shall, on any Working Day and for the compensation specified in clause 2.3 provide his or her Services in connection with the Series, whenever and wherever Producer may require, in a competent, conscientious and professional manner having due regard for the production of the Series within the budget, and as directed by Producer in all matters, including those involving artistic taste and judgment.

Performer shall provide services in non-commercial openings, closings, bridges, lead-ins, lead-outs and in and in connection with promotional materials (for both print and electronic media) created in connection with the advertising and exploitation of the Series, including, without limitation, trailers, interstitials, theme parks, video and computer games, public service announcements, station identifications, on-air promos, sound recordings for merchandise, phono records….; adlibs, improvisation, gags, bits and song lyrics etc and no additional fees shall be payable to Performer in respect of such Services provided the Services are rendered by Performer during a Working Day; such Services shall be provided either during or after the production period, subject to Performer's reasonable professional availability. Performer may be required to perform in multiple episodes on the same Working Day and within the same work week and no additional fees shall be payable to Performer therefore…..

2. The 60% Clause. Under clause 2.5 if the producer decides to re-record any number of dialogue lines, this will be done by the performer for free in addition to their normal work if scheduled on a designated Working Day for the performer – otherwise, the performers can be called in and paid only 60% of their ordinary daily rate, for recording sessions of up to five hours duration.

3. No Residuals. Under clause 4.5, The producer will own all the proceeds of all Power Rangers DVD sales and computer/video games. So much for the highly touted access to residuals (i.e. a small percentage share of the downstream profits from marketing spin-offs or foreign sales after the initial production costs have been recouped) reportedly offered under The Hobbit contract. No such crumbs from the table here. Normally, actors get paid a daily fee which covers the first four years of the show being screened in their own country, but then when other countries buy the show, they may get a 'residuals' payment. Not so with Power Rangers. The "100% world buyout" phrase below means the actors won't get any residuals when the show is sold anywhere else in the world.

Producer shall have the unlimited right to exhibit and exploit all works hereunder and audio and visual excerpts therefrom in all forms and mediums now known or hereafter devised or discovered throughout the world in perpetuity without any further amounts owing to Performer (i.e., 100% world buyout).

4. Use of Identity, Throughout The Universe. Under clause 4.6 the performer gives the producer the right to use their photo, voice, signature in all merchandising without them earning an extra cent from it. e.g

Performer authorises the use, photographing and recording of Performer's name, sobriquet, professional name. nickname, photograph, voice, sound effects, personal characteristics, caricature, signature, Performer's actual or simulated likeness, performance, attributes and biographic data (collectively, "Name and Likeness"), and their reproduction in all manner and media in perpetuity throughout the universe in connection with the production, distribution, advertising, promotion, merchandising, exhibition and other exploitation of the Series and other works hereunder, including all advertising, publicity and promotion and materials related thereto (including, without limitation, reprises, flashbacks, promos, trailers, teasers, etc.) in any manner and by any means now known or hereafter devised including, without limitation, use on album or jacket covers of commercial recordings related to the Series (whether or not Performer's performances are contained therein), use in theme parks, trade shows, Producer promotions, etc. and in connection with commercial advertising and commercial tie-ups relating to the Series (but no direct product or service endorsement without Performer's consent), and no additional payment shall be required for any such uses.

And it doesn't end there :

Producer may use and license others the right to use Performer's Name and Likeness in and in connection with publications (including, without limitation, novelisations, press books, souvenir programs, one-sheets, commercial publications, etc.), by-products, tie-ins, merchandise, commodities and services of every kind and no additional payment shall be required for any such uses. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, Producer may include photographs or other images or depictions of the likeness of Performer in or on or in relation to any exploitation of the Series and all documentaries, "behind the scenes", "the making of" featurettes, promotional films and videos (including so-called "music videos") of the Series in any manner and by any means throughout the world in perpetuity, and no additional fees shall be due to Performer therefore.

And if you thought you could get around all this by changing your name…. fergeddit :

Performer shall not change Performer's professional name during the 2010/2011 Production Season.

Morality, Behaviour and Physical Appearance :

The performer is forbidden to do anything in private or in public during 2012 or 2013 that might conceivably devalue the franchise :

Performer acknowledges that the Series and other works hereunder are intended for children and that Performer will conduct himself/herself during the 2012/2013 Production Season with due regard to social convention and good morals and decency and will not make any statement, commit any act or perform any role that will or may create notoriety, or bring Performer, Producer, or the Series or other work hereunder into public disrepute or reflect adversely thereon or on any distributor, exhibitor, or sponsor thereof.

Not now, not in the future, and not even in the past :
As a material inducement to Producer to enter into this Deal Memo, Performer represents that Performer has not done in the past any act that would be a breach of the preceding sentence if done during the 2012/2013 Production Season.

This control over behaviour extends (in clause 4.12) to physical appearance. Woe unto any employee who changes their haircut, gets a tattoo or even tries to tan any part of their body (!) without getting prior written permission from the Power Rangers production beforehand :

Performer acknowledges that a condition of Producer's desire to engage Performer has been and will continue to be Performer's physical appearance and characteristics and significant change(s) or alterations) thereto may have an impact on Producer's business or production activities. During the 2012/2013 Production Season, Performer agrees to consult with Producer and obtain Producer's written approval before knowingly making any such change(s). For example, Performer will not cut, restyle, colour, or alter in any way his/her hair, teeth, eyebrows, skin, body size or general physical appearance including, without limitation, becoming underweight, overweight, or piercing, or tattooing or tanning any part of Performer's body without the prior written consent of Producer.

So much for (only some of) the conditions of servitude. What kind of person is John Key inviting to do business with us? Who, exactly, is Haim Saban? Well, Saban has been a staunch donor to the Democratic Party and has been its biggest individual donor in some years. He was very close to the Clintons and reportedly slept over several times at the Clinton White House during the 1990s, and he supported Hillary Clinton strongly during the 2008 primaries. Saban has now transferred that support to Barack Obama and last month wrote this laudatory opinion piece for theNew York Times spelling out why he prefers Obama to Mitt Romney. Some of Saban's reasons are almost comically destructive of any lingering illusions about Obama being an independent or liberal player in the Middle East. Here's how Saban sees it:

When the first President Bush had disagreements with Israel over its settlement policy, he threatened to withhold loan guarantees from Israel. Mr. Obama has had his own disagreements with Mr. Netanyahu over the settlers but has never taken such a step. To the contrary, he has increased aid to Israel and given it access to the most advanced military equipment, including the latest fighter aircraft.

Ask any senior Israeli official involved in national security, and he will tell you that the strategic relationship between the United States and Israel has never been stronger than under President Obama….That cooperation has included close coordination by intelligence agencies — including the deployment of cyberweapons, as recent news reports have revealed — to thwart Iran's nuclear ambitions.

And is Obama grateful to Haim Saban ? You bet he is. Last month, Obama appointed Saban's wife Cheryl Saban as the official US representative for this session of the United Nations.

In Democratic Party circles, Saban is seen as a counterweight to the huge monies being poured into the Republican cause by right wing billionaires such as the Koch brothers and Sheldon Adelson. For his part, Saban has described himself publicly as a "single issue guy" in his political activism and that issue, as he told the New York Times in a 2004 profile, is "the state of Israel."

Here's how the New Yorker magazine spelled it out in a profile in 2010:

His greatest concern, he says, is to protect Israel, by strengthening the United States-Israel relationship. At a conference last fall in Israel, Saban described his formula. His "Three ways to be influential in American politics," he said, were: make donations to political parties, establish think tanks, and control media outlets. In 2002, he contributed seven million dollars toward the cost of a new building for the Democratic National Committee—one of the largest known donations ever made to an American political party. That year, he also founded the Saban Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution, in Washington, D.C. He considered buying The New Republic, but decided it wasn't for him. He also tried to buy Time and Newsweek, but neither was available…

By far his most important relationship is with Bill and Hillary Clinton. In 2002, Saban donated five million dollars to Bill Clinton's Presidential library, and he has given more than five million dollars to the Clinton Foundation. In February, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton delivered a major policy address at the U.S.-Islamic World Forum in Doha, co-sponsored by the Saban Center. And last November Bill Clinton was a featured speaker at the Saban Forum, an annual conference attended by many high-level Israeli and U.S. government officials, which was held in Jerusalem. Ynon Kreiz, an Israeli who was the chairman and chief executive of a Saban company and Saban's closest associate for many years, attended the conference, and when I commented that his former boss appeared to be positively smitten with Bill Clinton, Kreiz replied, grinning broadly, "No! No! I remember once Haim was talking to me on the phone, and he said in Hebrew, without changing his tone so Clinton would have no idea he was speaking about him, 'The President of the United States, wearing his boxers, is coming down the stairs, and I am going to have to stop talking and go have breakfast with him.' "

Saban's current bond with Obama has been forged on the basis of the Obama administration's truculent stance towards Iran's nuclear programme. Saban has had Iran on his mind for many years, and he said this to the Haaretz newspaper in 2006 :

When I see Ahmadinejad, I see Hitler. They speak the same language….. Nuclear weapons in the hands of a religious leadership that is convinced that the annihilation of Israel will bring about the emergence of a new Muslim caliphate? Israel cannot allow that. This is no game. It's truly an existential danger."

Only last month in that NYT opinion piece, Saban congratulated Obama on his resolve to confront that alleged existential danger posed by Iran, and by military means if need be :

Mr.Obama not only has declared that all options are on the table, but he has also taken the option of merely "containing" a nuclear-armed Iran off the table. He has directed the military to prepare options for confronting Iran and has positioned forces in the Persian Gulf to demonstrate his resolve.

So there you have it. Contracts that impose virtual servitude on New Zealand workers, in order to add to the fortune of someone willing and able to use those resources to egg the Obama administration on into a military confrontation with Iran over its nuclear programme, thereby setting the Middle East ablaze. Is this the film and TV investment that John Key wants to foster in New Zealand?

ENDS

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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

[pima.nius] PR: Key’s Hollywood romance is about the TPP

7:33 PM |

Scoop News   
http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1210/S00033/keys-hollywood-romance-is-about-the-tpp.htm 


Key's Hollywood romance is about the TPP

Tuesday 2 October 2012


Look beyond Kim Dotcom: Key's Hollywood romance is about the TPP

The focus on the Kim Dotcom saga misses the deeper significance of Prime Minister John Key's trip to Hollywood, said Professor Jane Kelsey from the University of Auckland.

"The entertainment industry is the principal driver of US demands for radical new intellectual property protections in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, currently under negotiation," Jane Kelsey said.

The next round of TPPA talks is in New Zealand in early December and (secret) new US proposals are expected to be on the table.

The intellectual property negotiators from the US Trade Representative's Office are currently in Wellington putting pressure on the government to stop resisting the US demands and agree to its new text.

Hollywood is driving the US push for unprecedented extensions to intellectual property rights, carrying with them the further criminalization for breaches and massive cost increases for everyday Internet users. It also wants a ban on parallel imports.

The DotCom saga shows how far the US government will go to secure the commercial interests of the industry.

"The Hobbit saga was a forerunner of things to come if a proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership treaty is agreed and the US has its way", said Professor Kelsey.

"Two years ago the mere threat to shift production of the Hobbit elsewhere was enough cause for the government to strip kiwi workers of their rights and protections under New Zealand law."

Under a TPPA, the new intellectual property rules would be enforceable by the US. Worse, Hollywood's extended 'intellectual property rights' would become investments protected under special rules, and industry players could enforce them directly against the government in private offshore investment tribunals.

Professor Kelsey predicts "the chilling effect would see the Hobbit saga pale into insignificance. This Prime Minister has shown a penchant for backroom deals. His current trip to the Hollywood studios no simple photo opportunity; it will be a time of intense lobbying by Hollywood to sell us down the river".

Ends.


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[pima.nius] A Preview of Pukepuke o Tonga

4:01 PM |

Pukepuke o Tonga

A Preview of Pukepuke 'o Tonga
By Aaron Taouma on behalf of Pacific Dance New Zealand

Reprint from DANZ Quarterly Issue 29

Pukepuke 'o Tonga is the new work by Tongan choreographer Sesilia Pusiaki Tatuila and will show for one night only during this year's Tempo Dance Festival (Loft, Qtheatre, Saturday 20th October, 6pm).

Inspired by an ancient suite of dances from Tonga, Pukepuke 'o Tonga (To Uphold Tonga) seeks to preserve these dances within a contemporary context. Harking back to the time of Momo, the 10th Tu'i Tonga (King of Tonga) circa 1200AD, the dances – Otuhaka, Faha'ilua and the Me'etupaki – have been practiced and kept within one village in Tonga for generations, Lapaha. In particular these dances have been preserved by Sesilia's family and their performing group - the Lomipeau.

Through Pukepuke 'o Tonga, Sesilia and the Lomipeau hope to present these dances as they've never been seen before – both in a theatrical stage setting and with contemporary dance elements.

For the uninitiated it may be difficult to spot what is traditional and what is contemporary though, as the dance work is presented within a Tongan heritage dance framework and it is mostly in the positioning, formation and transitioning between movements and the dances that the piece is contemporised. But it's not only the dance which will be on display.

Tongan and Pacific dances in general are not distinct from the music, poetry and song they accompany. Pacific dance is entwined with the aural means by which they tell their meaning. Pukepuke 'o Tonga, with 20 dancers accompanied by 12 singers and musicians, is not only a spectacle of dance but of the intertwining of dance with music and song of times long ago.

Sesilia says of the work, "I want to mix it up with traditional and a bit of contemporary. But, it's more about the journey of young Tongan youth living in Auckland today and their journey trying to hold on to their Tonganhood through music and dance."

What she means here is that it's not purely just about entertainment or the preservation of these forms. It is the sharing of a process, a process in which the youth members of her group, some of whom have never been to Tonga, have keyed into this ancient heritage and have found something of themselves. Sesilia explains quoting a line from the novel come play by award winning Samoan writer Sia Figiel - 'Where We Once Belonged',

"I as we always," she says with a smile. "Even though we're individuals living our modern lifestyles, we still belong to a wider group whether it's family, school groups or community. The process we've gone through is to let these kids find that, as well as preserving the music and song it's also about letting them understand these dances and how they fit in with life today."

Sesilia hopes too that the audience will not be distinct from the performance. She goes further, "I want the audience to feel like they are a part of a village where everyone comes together feeling the spirit of the songs and just enjoying the atmosphere."

This was seen in the development of this dance work during Sesilia's presentation of a work (Hau 'o Momo) made during her stint at the Pacific Dance Artist in Residence (run by Pacific Dance New Zealand) in Auckland this year. The singers and musicians sat as part of the audience and during the performance members of the audience spontaneously joined in. That atmosphere is what Sesilia hopes will again be reflected and felt in Pukepuke 'o Tonga.

Pukepuke'o Tonga is the first work of its type to be included in the Tempo Dance Festival and as such will be a first not to be missed. As Sesilia says, "It's more about finding and sharing the spirit of Tonga, empowerment and sharing of knowledge."

In this Sesilia believes the Tongan community, like many small distinct communities in New Zealand have a lot to offer in the arts and here Pukepuke 'o Tonga becomes more than just the re-performing of handed down lineages, it becomes the shared experience of a part of a modern Auckland community and what she hopes will be the creation and spawning of something entirely new.

You can see Pukepuke o Tonga during the Tempo Dance Festival on October 20th, 6pm at Q-Theatre, the Loft. Book at Ticketek or Q Theatre. The show duration is 60 minutes and tickets are $15 - $25.

For media inquiries email - marketing@pacificdance.co.nz or call 09 376 00 60. You can also call Sesilia directly on 021 0253 9544.

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