International Digital Entertainment Creative Association (IDEA) aims to be a catalyst to integrate segments of Taiwan's digital entertainment industry to create synergy and boost its internationalization, according to IDEA chairman Ken Chen.
The industry consists of segments of videos/movies, animations, cartoons, online and arcade games, music and literature, and each segment is more or less interrelated to another or more, Chen said. Computers, as a strong tool, have linked these segments into a digital content supply chain with large business opportunities.
Chen in 1998 established Gemhorn, a Taiwan sales agent for 3D and animation software such as Autodesk 3ds Max and Autodesk Maya as well as plug-in VFX (visual effect) and after-effect software. From his business operation experience for many years, Chen has found there are internationally competitive local experts in each segment but there is lack of cooperation or exchanges for horizontal linkage among segments.
Chen in 2017 set up IDEA for combining various local expertise in creation of digital entertainment content and providing an international platform for locally created content to go internationally.
In the international market, movies, animations and games have been linked into a particular digital entertainment industry due to IP (intellectual property) licensing and high compatibility, Chen noted. The Taiwan government, in its efforts to promote creation of digital entertainment content, has to understand the situation to make really effective policies and design efficient subsidization programs, Chen indicated. IDEA not only helps local content creators but also will play a bridge between the industry and the government, Chen noted.
Viewing that quite many locally created animations are of good quality but there are no platforms to advertise and market them, Chen and Chang Yen-jung, an assistant professor with National Taiwan Normal University's Department of Graphic Arts and Communications, established aniFlix Online, an open platform for animation creators to launch their works and set prices themselves to support local creativity for animation.
Launched in December 2018, aniFlix Online has an English version to promote Taiwan-produced animations in the international market, Chen indicated, adding in the future, the English version will facilitate launches of animations from abroad to boost international exchanges.
IDEA chairman Ken Chen
Photo: Vincent Mao, Digitimes, April 2020