Wednesday, February 18, 2009
ITN needs a new settlement.
Now that ITV, DMGT and UBS have all indicated that they'd like to be shot of their holdings in ITN concern is growing that they could either be swallowed up by a larger group or lose their credibility as an alternative to the BBC News.
The challenge for ITN is to continue to box above its weight, in a world of media giants where CNN is part of a much larger AOL Time Warner how can a small UK based news organisation effectively compete with the mega resourced BBC News?
As an independent ITN will be forced to compete for the contract for ITV News it already tenders for Channel Four News and some years ago lost the contract for the news programmes on Channel Five to Sky News.
News as a former colleague Prof. John Jirik was always keen to stress is a part of the entertainment industry and TV news bulletins are competing with so many easier to digest media offerings, should it have special treatment?
Well there are times when we all switch to news, be it a national disaster or a royal wedding and when we do surely we should have an alternative to what in all honesty is a state broadcaster - I'd like to see a healthy UK based competitive news business to keep the "beeb "on its toes and if this has to be under the auspices of the legendary OFCOM alternative PSB so be it.