What’s happening to Scots Gaelic TV?

January 13, 2008

Despite the launch of the Welsh TV station S4C in 1982 and Ireland’s TG4 in 1996, it seems that Scotland’s plans to follow suit have been thwarted – yet again. The summer edition of Carn magazine discussed the launch of a dedicated Scottish language TV by the end of 2007, with non-satellite users receiving broadcasts by 2010 – disgracefully late, but better late than never. Latest updates inform that the launch is not considered viable, because there are supposedly not enough Gaelic speakers to merit the financial costs of a new TV station. But how can the language be promoted in the twenty-first century without the very medium that has become essential to the lives of most people? And how can speakers in the remote parts of the Highlands keep in daily contact with the language otherwise? The language needs urgent attention, with 1.2% of the population speaking Gaelic, according to the 2001 Census, as recorded on Bòrd na Gàidhlig. And we want a future for Irish here in Ireland, it also means promoting all Celtic languages and defending them, accordingly, as their histories are all interlinked.