Does Theresa May really want an independent BBC? The jury’s out – Steven Barnett

24 09 2016

rona-fairheadThere are two ways of looking at Theresa May’s decision to reverse Rona Fairhead’s appointment as BBC chair, thereby effectively dismissing her. The first is benign, reflecting a genuine impatience with David Cameron’s decision to allow Fairhead to move across from the BBC Trust to the new Unitary Board, which will come into effect early next year. Read the rest of this entry »





The BBC and public service TV has a future: but it must change to survive – Des Freedman

9 07 2016

BBCWhat is the future of television, in an era of extraordinary technological change that has brought new challengers to the established broadcasting companies and their scheduled programmes? Who should it be aimed at and how will it be paid for? Read the rest of this entry »





UN and OSCE Watchdogs urged to address media freedom in the UK

21 06 2016

ParliamentARTICLE 19 and concerned experts and academics have urged Dunja Mijatović, the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media (“the Representative”), and David Kaye, the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression (“the UN Special Rapporteur”), to address the state of media freedom in the UK, in particular to address attempts to undermine the independence of the BBC, the public service broadcaster, and to ensure the independence of the press in relation to self-regulation.  Read the rest of this entry »





BBC gets out of the kitchen as government turns up the heat – John Jewell

18 05 2016

image-20160517-9464-1eul4b3I suppose it says a lot about our current national obsession with all matters gastronomic that the focal point of media attention concerning the BBC’s decision to “redefine” its online presence centres around the decision to take down its food website. Read the rest of this entry »





The BBC White Paper is a recipe for long-term decline – Steve Barnett

15 05 2016

WhittingdaleWant a glimpse of the culture minister’s real agenda for the BBC? Just turn to pages 112-115 of the government’s White Paper and the commissioned questions asked by the polling agency. They are very revealing. Read the rest of this entry »





Decoding the BBC White Paper – Des Freedman

13 05 2016

OfcomThe good folk at the Cambridge University Conservative Association must be a little disappointed. Having listened to culture secretary John Whittingdale tell them only last month that the disappearance of the BBC was “a tempting prospect”, they will now have noticed that his white paper on the future of the BBC is planning to do no such thing. Read the rest of this entry »





Four ways John Whittingdale could wreck the BBC – Steven Barnett

9 05 2016

image-20160506-32015-x86ta3Is John Whittingdale the most hostile politician ever to have responsibility for the BBC? When a senior Telegraph journalist called his appointment as culture secretary “an effective declaration of war” on the BBC, some of us thought it excessive. Read the rest of this entry »