Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Size matters

BBC programme makers are increasingly hacked off with Little Jimmy Purnell, Head of Digital, Strategy and Giving Away All Their Work, in his Napoleonic adherence to the belief that this will secure Charter Renewal.

Yesterday it was revealed that more family silver was heading to indies, in a new deal with PACT, their trade association, ahead of the establishment of BBC Studios as a giant new competitor. If Childrens and Current Affairs at the BBC thought they were safe from further cuts, the agreement reduces their guaranteed output by 10% to 40% over two years, and raises the genre guarantee to indies to 40%, from 25%, so there's less the BBC side can compete for in the middle.

And, where the emerging BBC Studios previously thought they could hang on to recommissions as long as the Controllers deemed their shows to be doing well, a minimum of 40% of the in-house guarantee has to go out to wider tender within two years of their formal creation as a company.

All this in Christmas week. At least network radio production has had a little longer to absorb their rapidly diminishing future, diminished by the man who warned the Government about the risks of diminishing the BBC.  It seems the Government can afford to sell off C4, because the BBC is rapidly becoming a replacement - a bunch of commissioners, with a few programme makers appended.

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