Happy Birthday to KPS!

by on Tuesday, 09 September 2008 Comments
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In 1958, the Jesuits established a small audio studio in Taichung and started to produce short radio programs and dramas that were broadcasted all around Taiwan. In 1960, the studio moved to Taipei. By the mid-sixties, Kuangchi Program Service, as it was named, had also ventured into the field of television, first by producing educational programs, later by launching drama series. From that time on, the "KPS" brand became an integral part of the history of Taiwan’s media industry.

The road traveled by KPS was sometimes bumpy: it required much courage to be the first to produce drama series in Taiwanese; the collaboration with TV stations and the search for an economic model were not all rosy; most importantly, the dramatic shift in the media landscape that took place in the mid eighties have challenged the relevance and working habits of KPS.

KPS might no longer be the "household name" that it used to be during the seventies and the beginning of the eighties, however, it continues to produce first-rate educational and social educational programs; it collaborates with Chinese TV stations on program series relating the life of early missionaries and Chinese Christians; it plays the role of a consultant in many poor countries of East Asia and Oceania that are trying to develop independent, quality, community-based media outlets (community radio stations, websites, music CD and DVD production units, etc.). It uses state-of-the-art digitalized studios in Taiwan and collaborates with a number of channels. It is now experimenting with Internet TV.

Above all, KPS has formed a vast number of media producers, journalists, cameramen, script writers and directors in Taiwan, giving them an ethical, professional and international outlook. The history of Taiwanese media during the last fifty years cannot be separated from the history of KPS. By celebrating the 50th anniversary of KPS, this special issue of Renlai is also recounting a broader story, and reflecting on the challenges that the media industry faces in Taiwan today.

May KPS continue to be a beacon of quality programming, insisting on spiritual values, attending to the needs of marginal sectors of society, offering educational opportunities to all. May it continue to be a sign of hope in an often discouraging media environment, while achieving technological and commercial breakthroughs that will make it, once again, a leader in the Taiwanese media landscape. Such are the wishes we offer to a company which, at 50, remains as young and energetic as ever!
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Attached media :

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June LEE (李禮君)

Former Managing Editor of Renlai Monthly (2004-2009). Board member of the Taipei Ricci Institute.

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