BBC charts new relationship with commercial media

LONDON - The RTS Cambridge Convention signalled the start of a very different relationship between the BBC and commercial media.

RTS convention:  James Purnell (left) urged BBC chief Mark Thompson (right) not to make drastic cutbacks
RTS convention: James Purnell (left) urged BBC chief Mark Thompson (right) not to make drastic cutbacks

While insisting the corporation was not entirely to blame for the commercial sector's ills, BBC director-general Mark Thompson promised delegates a "radical" and "open-minded" review of the BBC.

Speaking to Media Week, Thompson confirmed a likely end to big radio or TV channel launches by the BBC.

"Yes, it's probably an end to the big launches of the past," he said. "But we will do activity like partnerships."

But former culture secretary James Purnell warned the BBC not to rein in its activities too harshly after recent criticism. "If the BBC starts contracting, it will have bad long-term consequences on the kinds of people you attract and their ambition," he said.

The future of BBC Worldwide will also come under review. Thompson said: "Yes, we will obviously examine ownership options."

Most attendees expected the BBC Trust to be abolished - a proposal that has been floated by both Labour and shadow culture secretaries.

Speaking to Media Week, BBC Trust chairman Sir Michael Lyons robustly defended the Trust. "I absolutely believe we should stay as we are. We play a role just like the board of any plc. We are both a supporter and a regulator."

Have your say...

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Media Week Jobs
Search for more media jobs

Latest

AOL's Graham Moysey on why we need to invest in people to evolve

AOL's Graham Moysey on why we need to invest in people to evolve

At college I once read a quote from Aristotle that has stayed with me to this day - "The one exclusive sign of thorough knowledge is the power of teaching".

Share
Thriving digital listening opens up new opportunities

Thriving digital listening opens up new opportunities

As this week's Rajar figures highlight digital listening hours are at an all-time high, up 6.4% (yoy), Simon Kilby, head of marketplace at Bauer Media, points to new commercial opportunities.

Share
Trinity Mirror considers appeal of £1.2m phone-hacking charges

Trinity Mirror considers appeal of £1.2m phone-hacking charges

Trinity Mirror is considering an appeal after a High Court judge ordered the publisher to pay "very substantial" damages to celebrities Sadie Frost, Paul Gascoigne and others for phone-hacking.

Share

Get news by email