January 16, 2004
Most of the companies pledged to use public service announcements, expanded news coverage and documentaries to educate the public about the AIDS epidemic. Many participants agreed to weave AIDS-related stories into entertainment programs, recruit other media outlets to join the campaign and provide their campaign materials free-of-charge to other broadcast outlets (McNamara, AP/Yahoo! News, 1/15). Specific company commitments include:
Viacom, which owns CBS, UPN, MTV, BET and several other cable channels, will commit $200 million in air time to its HIV/AIDS education campaign in 2004, AP/Yahoo! News reports (AP/Yahoo! News, 1/15). The $200 million is in addition to the $380 million that the company has already spent on AIDS-related programming, according to the Globe (Boston Globe, 1/16). The Kaiser Family Foundation and Viacom on Feb. 1 during the pre-game show of the Super Bowl plan to air an HIV/AIDS public service announcement that will kick off the second year of the "KNOW HIV/AIDS" awareness campaign, which Viacom and the Kaiser Family Foundation launched in January 2003 (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 1/12). In addition, MTV plans to convene a "creative summit" to discuss methods of informing young people about HIV/AIDS, MTV International President Bill Roedy said (Financial Times, 1/16).
Annan said, "As leaders of the media, you have the power and the reach to disseminate the information people need to protect themselves from HIV/AIDS. Silence is death. As broadcasters, you can bring the disease out of the shadows and get people talking about it in an open, informed way" (Boston Globe, 1/16). "The commitments made by the media organizations [at the forum] are one of the most important collective contributions to the fight against AIDS to date," UNAIDS Executive Director Peter Piot said, adding, "By harnessing the media's unparalleled ability to communicate with billions of people around the world, we can now provide more people than ever with vital life-saving information on AIDS." Kaiser Family Foundation President and CEO Drew Altman said, "For more than a decade, the Kaiser Family Foundation has worked with media companies in the U.S. and globally to include HIV/AIDS public education messages into their programming that will resonate especially with young people and those who are most at risk," adding, "The new Global AIDS Media Initiative signals a new and expanded commitment by media leaders that will reach millions more people with public health information" (U.N./UNAIDS/Kaiser Family Foundation/Gates Foundation release, 1/15). Bill Gates, who delivered the keynote address at the meeting, told the industry executives, "You are joining into something where there is very much positive momentum, but we're not even doing half of what should be done. The challenge for all of you is to think about how to raise visibility" (Reuters, 1/15).
Webcasts of the Global Media AIDS Initiative meeting, Gates' keynote address and press conference announcing the intiative are available online from kaisernetwork.org.
Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, search the archives, or sign up for email delivery at www.kaisernetwork.org/dailyreports/hiv. The Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of the Kaiser Family Foundation, by The Advisory Board Company. © 2003 by The Advisory Board Company and Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.