Thursday, 17 July 2008


Some inconvenient truths

David Currie, Ofcom Chairman

It is the very channel and audience fragmentation that challenges public service broadcasting that militates against the growth of market led origination. The Discworld dramas that Sky point to, with justifiable pride, may continue to be the exception not the rule. Absent movies and sport, the four public service broadcasters still account for 90 per cent of UK origination.

Which takes me to the second point of agreement in the responses. That is about the role of a strong BBC as the cornerstone of public service broadcasting. It is welcome that this was, if not absolutely , a very nearly universal view in the responses. (There was one, in green ink, that differed.) Welcome, because there are still noises off, including recent pamphleteers to free-market think tanks who argue that British broadcasting would somehow be richer or better with a minimalist BBC.

Our view is straightforward: you do not strengthen public service broadcasting by weakening the BBC.

What a refreshing home truth from David Currie Ofcom Chairman!

It is excellent that at least one official voice speaks out in favour of our BBC.

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