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Industry groups react to BBC report

Industry groups have reacted to yesterday’s report from a committee of MPs into the future of UK public broadcaster the BBC.

The Commercial Broadcasters Association said it welcomed the recommendation from the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee that the BBC should consult more openly.

Coba gave evidence to the Committee arguing that the BBC’s current governance arrangements restricted the pubcaster from properly consulting the wider industry when launching new services.

“This has meant various developments such as the Radio 1 video channel on the iPlayer have not been subject to formal consultation with industry, despite their potential to impact negatively on the market,” Coba said in a statement.

Coba called for the BBC Trust to be given powers to consult industry formally through a streamlined process.

It also took aim at the way the BBC handled the process of formally submitting its proposals to take BBC Three from a linear, to an online service, noting the ‘public value test’ on the plans for the channel started almost a year after BBC bosses outlined the plans.

On the kids TV front, the Children’s Media Foundation said was glad that the MP’s report commends the BBC for the provision and content of its children’s programming over the last Charter period.

The CMF noted that the report said that “children’s programming must remain a core and priority PSB genre for the BBC beyond 2016”. However the CMF then noted that to do this will require the continuation of an assured licence fee, which was then questioned by the committee.

“We are also concerned at the report’s suggestion that a small amount of the licence fee should be allocated to fund external PSB content such as children’s programming,” the advocacy group said.

It added: “Although contestable funding might be one way of correcting failure in the children’s market it would be counterproductive if it was taken from the licence fee and resulted in the consequent reduction of BBC children’s output and budget.

Tags: BBC, CMF, COBA