Sturgeon condemns “cultural vandalism” in Channel 4’s privatization plans
Scotland’s First Minister has branded the UK government’s plans to privatize Channel 4 as “cultural vandalism”.
Icola Sturgeon spoke at the First Secretary’s Questions on MSPs on Thursday.
Jenni Minto, SNP MSP for Argyll and Bute, expressed her concern at the controversial proposals for a change of ownership of the 40-year-old television company.
She asked: “Does the First Minister share my concern that Channel 4 is currently under threat from a Tory government which appears to be doing everything in its power to undermine the principles of public service broadcasting for its own narrow-minded political interests? “
I see absolutely no reason why Channel 4 should be privatisedNicola Sturgeon
The First Minister said that is “absolutely what is happening”.
She continued: “These proposals amount to cultural vandalism in my opinion, but they also represent an attempt by the UK government to undermine public service broadcasting.”
She told MSPs that the current model is a “good one, a successful one” and urged people to “stand behind themselves” to try to reverse the Conservatives’ move.
Ms Sturgeon said: “I see absolutely no reason why Channel 4 should be privatised, and especially at a time when it has shown resilience in dealing with the pandemic and increased its content spending and investment in Scotland.”
Meanwhile, former Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson drew comparisons between plans to privatize Channel 4 and the news that Netflix had lost 200,000 subscribers in the first three months of 2022.
i like netflix Damn, I’m a subscriber. I want things to go well. But the current tough patch makes it clear why those in government who say Channel 4 needs to be flogged to compete with such streaming platforms should pause and recognize that C4’s stability is indeed a strength pic.twitter.com/7wtFqQM3nP
— Ruth Davidson (@RuthDavidsonPC) April 21, 2022
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The streaming giant has warned shareholders it could lose another two million subscribers in the three months to July.
Ms Davidson said: “I like Netflix. Damn, I’m a subscriber. I want things to go well.
“But the current difficult patch makes it clear why those in government who say Channel 4 must (must) be flogged to compete with such streaming platforms should pause and recognize that Channel 4’s stability is indeed a strength is.”
The plans drew much criticism, with the network’s bosses warning of a “real risk” for some of its programming.
https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/sturgeon-condemns-cultural-vandalism-in-channel-4-privatisation-plans-41574359.html Sturgeon condemns “cultural vandalism” in Channel 4’s privatization plans