BBC license fee review ‘feels like a giant red herring to hit the broadcaster’

According to a production company boss, the government’s plans to replace the BBC’s royalties are a “huge red herring” to hit the broadcaster.

on Thoday, co-founder and executive co-chair of Avalon, which produces shows like Channel 4’s Taskmaster, was among a group of top producer figures who discussed the future of the BBC’s funding model at the Edinburgh Television Festival.

He also expressed why a subscription model is not an appropriate substitute for license fees.

The fact that most people can’t afford to subscribe and most people want free TV and they always willJon Thoday

Reflecting on the Government’s review of the license fee, he said: “I think it’s the big red herring case. License fees have been running for many years. There are problems with it but in the end nothing is perfect.

“It feels like it’s just a way of attacking the BBC.”

Patrick Holland, executive chairman and chief executive officer of Banijay UK, which has produced shows like Top Gear, noted that BBC general manager Tim Davie had previously mentioned the subscription model for the broadcaster. .

Mr Thoday said the suggestion of subscription models was an “incredible middle-class thing”.

He said: “The reality is that most people can’t afford to subscribe and most people want free TV and they always will, that’s why TV commercials won’t be any time soon. appeared and hopefully free – after you’ve paid the royalties – TV isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. “

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Nadine Dorries (Kirsty O’Connor / PA)

Jane Turton, chief executive of All3Media, which has produced shows including Fleabag and Gogglebox, said no one on the panel had a definitive answer to the BBC’s royalty question.

She added that the main concern for producers is that the broadcaster needs to be “properly funded”.

It comes after Culture Minister Nadine Dorries announced in January that licensing fees would be frozen at £159 for the next two years until April 2024.

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She said she wants to find a new funding model before her current contract expires in 2027 because it is “completely outdated”.

She announced a review of the funding model, which she said would begin before the Commons summer break on July 22, but this was called into question after Boris Johnson stepped down as Tory leader.

Speaking on the panel was also David Abraham, co-founder of Wonderhood Studios; Fatima Salaria, CEO of Naked; and journalist and creative leader Pat Younge. The Times media reporter, Jake Kanter, led the discussions.

https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/bbc-licence-fee-review-feels-like-massive-red-herring-to-attack-broadcaster-41934166.html BBC license fee review ‘feels like a giant red herring to hit the broadcaster’

Fry Electronics Team

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