Friday, July 17, 2015

What the papers say..

The Guardian: The BBC is not perfect. But set against its role as a thread in the warp and woof of national life, its flaws seem insignificant. Its funding model and its mission to inform, educate and entertain allow it to reflect the different parts of the UK to each other and to the world. That is why Britain tops the global soft power league. There could be a different BBC. But it would reflect a different Britain.

FT: Given the range of media options available to the public, the BBC must justify its existence as never before. It will face tough choices. But ministers should not second guess. They should set the money and mission, leaving the BBC to set priorities itself.

Daily Mail: The Mail has long argued that the Corporation’s massive website and proliferation of channels and local radio stations are crushing plurality and stifling debate. We believe its relentless expansion at taxpayers’ expense must be curbed.

The Telegraph: Both Labour and the BBC are already crying foul. Yet this review is not part of some diabolical Tory plot; instead it is an attempt to save a venerable institution from itself – an institution that has been beset by scandals born of arrogance and self-indulgence. The BBC needs to go back to the drawing board and think carefully about what it is for.

The Times: Mr Whittingdale must not be satisfied with lazy assertions of the BBC’s treasured place in public life, nor distracted by the excessive lobbying it has organised in recent days with the help of rich celebrities on its payroll. He asks if it can go on aspiring to be “all things to all people”. It is already clear that it cannot. In a multichannel universe in which the internet increasingly competes with television, the BBC should be ready to identify what it does best and can do better. At the same time it must rein in what George Osborne has called its “imperial” online ambitions. The corporation is a broadcaster, not a publisher. It cannot expect a renewed charter to endorse a status quo that lets it trample on private-sector rivals with public funds.

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