Many rivers to cross - fixing the broken PSB model

20 July 2010

The final Ofcom statement on the future of PSB advocates fixing the commercial PSB crisis by designating Channel 4 as the core alternative provider of public service programming to the BBC, and freeing up ITV and Five commercially by means of considerably lightened PSB obligations

The fundamental issue of the Channel 4 (or any other) solution is funding the new commercial PSB model. Eyes are now being set on a Channel 4 partnership with BBC Worldwide, centred on its UK assets as the marriage made in heaven

Another major recommendation of the Ofcom PSB proposal is the abolition of the national Channel 3 breakfast time licence, currently held by GMTV, which is running a viable business with its own sales force. This recommendation appears at odds with Ofcom’s commitment to plurality in news provision and its statutory duties to encourage competition in the communications industries

Recent reports