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Madeleine McCann's father to speak at TV festival

Original Source: GUARDIAN: 03 JULY 2007
Mark Sweney MediaGuardian, Tuesday 3 July 2007 17.42 BST


Gerry McCann, who is meeting child protection experts in the US. Photograph: Armando Franca/AP

Gerry McCann, the father of missing four-year-old Madeleine, is to give an interview about the role of the media in the hunt for his daughter at this year's MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival.

Mr McCann will talk to presenter Kirsty Wark in the annual Richard Dunn interview, which is sponsored by Talkback Thames.

Madeleine was abducted on May 3 while on holiday in Portugal. Mr McCann will speak about the role of TV and the media in the hunt to find her, as well as their battle to keep Madeleine in the media spotlight.

Mr McCann's appearance has been confirmed alongside full confirmation of the programme for this year's MGEITF.

The lineup includes Jeremy Paxman giving the James MacTaggart Memorial Lecture, with the alternative lecture by Google's chief internet evangelist Vint Cerf, a man regarded by some as the "father of the internet" and winner of the presidential medal of freedom in the US.

A debate on the future of current affairs will be chaired by the Endemol creative director, Peter Bazalgette, with a panel including Ann Widdecombe, BBC Panorama editor Sandy Smith, Channel Five senior controller of news and current affairs Chris Shaw, Channel 4 commissioning editor Kevin Sutcliffe and ITV1 controller of current affairs and documentaries Chris Anderson.

The Channel 4 director of television and content, Kevin Lygo, will give a speech on the delivery of the broadcaster's public service remit, while Andrew Neil will put Channel 4 on trial in a session featuring panellists including the broadcaster's chief executive, Andy Duncan, and the RDF Media director of programmes, Stephen Lambert.

Jade Goody, Mr Holy Moly and Adam Bullmore, maker of Celebrity Sex Tapes Unwound, will appear in a light-hearted session about sex on television hosted by Richard Bacon.

Bebo international president Joanna Shields, a former senior European executive at Google, will form part of a panel looking at new media successes such as Joost, Second Life and Facebook, as well as the next crop of internet start-ups.

Continuing the internet theme a new keynote lecture, called the Futureview, in association with MTV Networks UK & Ireland, will see Janus Friis, founder of Joost and co-founder of Skype, examine the future of internet TV.

In this year's Worldview Address, novelist Lionel Shriver will attack "hyper-narrative" moments in modern TV news, such as the OJ Simpson trial, the death of Diana and the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, which she will argue were overplayed on TV compared to their social significance.

The Guardian editor, Alan Rusbridger, will chair a panel looking at how "old" media such as newspapers and TV are adapting to the digital era and the battle for a viable future on the internet.

Panellists will include Channel 4 new business director Rod Henwood, BBC director of new media and technology Ashley Highfield, Reuters general manager of consumer news Tim Faircliff and Daily Mirror associate editor of development Matt Kelly.

Cat Deeley will join UKTV chief executive David Abrahams and BBC Worldwide vice-president of programming and co-productions Paul Telegdy to talk about how to make it as a Brit in the US market.

"Nanny State TV" will bring together Kelvin MacKenzie, Five's Mr Shaw and Silver River Productions chief executive Daisy Goodwin to talk about whether TV executives producing "change the world" programming are on ego trips.

To contact the MediaGuardian newsdesk email or phone 020 7239 9857. For all other inquiries please call the main Guardian switchboard on 020 7278 2332.


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