Thursday, 17 September 2009

Only way is down for Beeb

Ben Bradshaw's speech to the Royal Television Society convention in Cambridge last night did not specifically mention the regional press, but there is no doubt that its content will have repercussions for the industry, in particular his comment that the BBC has "probably reached the limits of reasonable expansion."

The culture secretary pointed out that in the last 20 years, Bradshaw said, the BBC has grown from being a provider of two TV channels, four national radio stations and a local radio network to a media giant with a world-leading online presence and a commercial publishing arm, adding: "If it were to continue on anything like that trajectory, the rest of the industry would be right to be worried and the mixed economy would be seriously imbalanced."

This confirms the fairly widespread view that last year's battle over the corporation's plans to set up 68 local internet TV stations, and the ultimate defeat of those plans by a powerful regional press lobbying operation, probably represented the apex of the trajectory he describes.

Media Guardian has the full pdf of Mr Bradshaw's speech here.

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