Saturday, December 6, 2014


Without wishing to give the BBC's enemies more ammo, you have to say that the handling of the process aimed at taking BBC3 off-air next August lacks agility.

The idea became public in March, and it's taken nine months to get the fag-packet calculations into a plan to put before The Trust. Staff will get a presentation on Wednesday (when presumably the public will get some details); then the full Trust meeting on December 17 discusses it. We have to wait til January to understand what form the public consultation will take, whilst Ofcom lurches into a Public Value Test.

Heaven forfend anyone should work over Christmas, put the pdf of the report out there and invite online comments - let's leave that to the court of public opinion, already ready to flex in papers, social media and online forums. We might just get a decision before the end of the financial year, leaving staff working for the network in limbo, losing out on current redundancy packages, and poor old Anne Bulford strapped for £50m (and the rest) in 2015/6.

It took just six months for the BBC to announce plans to close 6Music and the BBC Trust to reject the idea.

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