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TELECOMMUNICATION AND SPORT(Teletech 1996)

Siddique Ali Miah

INTRODUCTION

One might think what is the relation of Telecommunication with Sport or what Telecommunication has to do with it? Long back it was enough for a city or a country to find or develop a location for any sport events of national and international nature. Geographical location, basic facilities and little facilities for news media coverage were necessary. Preparations were necessary for viewer present and journalists and reporters. But today preparations are to be done for the billions of people of the world covering 5 continents, 197 countries. This is only possible through telecommunication to bring the events right up to the remotest corner on any part of the planet.

2. WORLD TELECOMMUNICATION DAY (WTD).

Every year 17th May is celebrated as "World Telecommunication Day (WTD)". The day commemorates the founding of Union in 1865 under the name "International Telegraph Union", by the representatives of 20 stale signatories of the International Telegraph Convention. Later it was named as International Telecommunication Union (ITU). This was the first inter governmental organization founded in 1865 and became a specialized agency of the United Nations in 1947. At present ITU has got a membership of 188 countries/administrations.

ITU adopts international regulations and treaties governing all terrestrial and space uses of the frequency spectrum as well as the use of the geostationary-satellite orbit, within which countries adopt their national legislation; it develops standards to ensure the interconnection of telecommunication systems on a world wide basis regardless of the type of technology used. It also fosters the development of telecommunications in developing countries.

ITU along with its member countries observe this day with due solemnity and importance. The idea behind is to project the importance of telecommunications in the life of an individual or of a nation, create a national and global awareness in developing their telecommunications. Every year on this day ITU selects a theme depending on the contemporary important topic/subject. This year ITU has selected the theme "TELECOMMUNICATION AND SPORT" for World telecommunication Day 1996.

For the purpose of observing this day to arouse the awareness of the nations regarding the importance of telecommunications in all sphere, Bangladesh also observes World Telecommunication Day on 1’7th May officially.

3. OLYMPIC GAMES AND TELECOMMUNICATION ARRANGEMENTS.

The xxvi Olympic Game is going to be held from 19th July to 4th August 1996 in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, which coincides with the 100 years of Olympic Movement since 1896. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) prepares to the centenary year of the Olympic Games in a befitting manner. It is a great occasion for Olympic Movement and Sport lovers of the world. Since 1896 Olympic Games have generated tremendous interest and now the modern Olympic has reached to a great peak. Due to unthinkable development of telecommunication technology and merging of computer with it the whole world has become a new global village and people are enjoying world events anywhere it held.

Telecommunication and broadcasting technologies have been used to bring the events to the people across the globe. The first modern Olympic Games were held in Athens 100 Years ago in 1896. The events were covered by the reporters who transmitted stories and results hack to their news papers and news media through the international telegraph system. The next success of radio telecommunication technology was the first five radio broadcasts, sent from the Chamonix Winter Olympic in 1924 printed reports in news papers and journals could not give such excitement as radio could do with a testing of "being there"1964 Olympic Games in Tokyo marked the start of first worldwide television coverage. Now a days Sports represent the single biggest and thrilling television Spectacle in the world. In last Olympic Games in Barcelona, Spain in 1992 the Olympic city was developed such a way that it was a "Telecommunication Technological City". The technology was transparent to the general people of the world. The main telecommunication infrastructure consisted of a "network of networks" made up of different technologies including radio communications, optical fiber, coaxial cable, satellite link stations, etc. Barcelona’s telephone system had to deal with 30,000 calls an hour. 70,000 telephone calls were made each day by the press contingent alone apart from transmitting data and images (telephoto). Equipment used have been given in Annex I.

1996 will be the Centennial Olympic Games to be held in Atlanta, USA. A massive preparation of telecommunication, broad casting etc. for media coverage are going on.

The state-of-the-an telecommunications will he in operation on a 24-hour basis. The host broadcaster alone will produce 3,000 hour of live radio and television coverage. In addition, about 40 TV mobile units, 400 cameras and 275 video tapes machines will be used. Atlanta is going to be the Worldwide Huh of global telecommunications.

It is expected that 15,000 athletes and official will participate in 26 Sports and 271 events. To cover this to the people of the world, 16,000 media representatives, 4000 journalists, 8000 photographers, 4000 technicians, 8000 broadcast media representatives (Radio, TV Commentators, producers and technicians) from 197 countries of the world and 3000 from host broadcasting organization. It goes without saying that the people of the world will watch the events live through TV and Radio and others through printed media.

Computer and telecommunications together are going to give a tremendous and thrilling coverage to the viewers in the remotest corner on earth. Arrangement have been made to such as extent that the Result Systems has the capability to deliver the results of 271 Olympic events to the reporters on-site in less that 1/3 second.

The Recent Wills Cup Cricket tournament, covered through TV, Radio, Press, etc. through telecommunication, created such interest in the people, irrespective of age and sex, that for these few days all enjoyed the games very much. Now it is found that very many young people started playing cricket. It is very big diversion toward healthy activities in today society of crime.

The systems which will be used to cover this years Olympic Games as live-to-air global satellite transmission, digital photo transmission system, high speed JSDN lines, global mobile telephony and fax system, a high speed global computer networks which given a new modern and sophisticated globally interconnected communication systems. This and continued development of Telecom networks allow more people to share the excitement of sporting events like Olympic, event to the areas once inaccessible because of distance or geography, Bangladesh is a good example of this. The disc antenna and different programs have brought the whole world visually at one’s fingertips.

4. BANGLADESH SITUATION.

Bangladesh takes very much active parts for the people for the coverage and propagation of any kind of sports event national or international through Radio, TV, Press etc. Through satellite and terrestrial telecommunication facilities athletic meets, games and other tournaments are telecast and broadcast through out the country. With the telecom facilities available in Bangladesh, world sports events, athletic meets are brought live to drawing room and the remotest inaccessible corner of the country.

For Olympic ‘96, Bangladesh TV has already booked satellite channels with Intelsat through BT&T Board to cover opening/closing ceremonies of Olympic 1996 and every day high lights for viewers of Bangladesh. Similarly Radio Bangladesh is also drawing programs of coverage, Press will give a good coverage of the Olympic games. They are going to use telex, fax, computers, radio photo etc.

Bangladesh have covered the VI SAF games, Hand Ball, Tennis etc. held recently at Dhaka and other cities which were telecast through the telecom facilities available within Bangladesh and BTV. The Media Centre established by B1TB earned a good name locally and internationally. People in general enjoyed the games all over the country, not even coming to Dhaka or game sites. The whole country was in a festive mood. This was only possible due to a well structured Telecommunication networks of BTTB and networks of BTV. Bangladesh Radio played a good role as well as for the people of remote, rural areas.

5. BENEFIT OF TELECOMMUNICATION COVERAGE OF THE GAMES.

Games, sports, athletics help in making a healthy nation. Participation in national and international competition people of the country get interacted and involved in it through their support. Inter mixing of sportsmen of different nations, cultures, languages broadens the ideas and out look not only of the participants hut also the people in general because the telecommunication bring the games, players and people closer, get interested about

the country where competitions are held, its people and their culture, Goodwill between the nation increase. By watching the different event, be it Kabadi, Tennis, Football or Olympic, people get interest in games, especially youngsters. This helps the younger generation towards games which not only help good health but discipline as well.

6. CONCLUSION:

The objective of the Olympic movement is to build a peaceful and better world through games and sports with mutual understanding, friendship and fair play, without discrimination. From the above, it is seen that sports and telecommunication have one very important thing in common. Both foster good communication between nations and people of the world irrespective of race, culture and geographical distances. Bangladesh with its limited resources, has gone ahead with its telecommunication networks to be a part of Global Telecommunication Network (GTN) and a member of the global village. Probably Bangladesh can not host an Olympic in near future, but can through telecommunications be a part of it wherever is held and can bring events up to the home of the people.

Reports are coining from the parents that their children want to tune their TV to sports channel then to spy thrillers. It is a good outcome of coverage of games through telecommunication. There are many more benefits of media coverage of sports for an individual, a nation and for the whole world.

This paper started with the question and can be concluded with the question "can one think of the Olympic 1996 without telecommunication?" the answer is obviously NO. This NO will justify the choice of the theme of World Telecommunication Day 96 by ITU.

Reference

1. ITU Press Release.

2. Message of ITU Secretary General.

3. Message from International Olympic Committee.

                                                     ANNEX - 1

   Equipment used at the Barcelona Games

Technology                                                                                     Quantity


Private telephones                                                                             10,000
Public Telephones                                                                             1,000
Standard telephones                                                                           2,000
Fax teminals                                                                                         617
Ibermic lines                                                                                         225
TMA terminals                                                                                     407
Press terminals                                                                                     3,900
Radio-trucking terminals                                                                     2,110
Portable transceivers                                                                          3,000
Pagers                                                                                                3,340
Television                                                                                         10,000
Videos                                                                                             1,200
CCTV cameras                                                                                 470
Portable terminals for the press                                                         4,000
PS/2-AMIC terminals                                                                     1,510
PSI2-SIGO terminals                                                                         300
PSI2-CTS terminals                                                                         1,050
P5/2-SIR terminals                                                                             950
DOCUMENT terminals                                                                     605
Office automation computers                                                             715

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Siddique Ali Miah

Siddique Au Miah, a graduate in Electrical Engineering joined the then Pakistan T and Dept. 1966. Later he continued in Bangladesh T and T Dept (now Board) in different capacities as Divisional Engineer, Director and General Manager Important among them are Project Director and CO-Project Manager of its/UNDP projects of Telecentre, Dhaka and Telecom Staff College, Joydevpur, under his supervision German aided projects of TTC,

Khulna and 5 771’S C were completed. He was also in an ITU mission in the capacity of Dy. Project Manager in Riyadh, KS.A.  He is worked as General Manager Dhaka Telecom Region (South). Now Retired