A select committee of MPs is to probe proposals for a publicly funded new media entity competing against the BBC in digital broadcasting and on-demand markets. The proposal is the brainchild of Ofcom CEO Ed Richards. He says the proposed public service publisher (PSP) will be needed as "hundreds of millions of pounds" are due to "seep out of public service funding" for commercial television in an all-digital environment.
Announcing its latest inquiry the House of Commons culture, media and sport select committee yesterday said would look in detail at the "prospects for maintaining plurality in public service broadcasting in the digital age" and the value of the PSP concept as advanced by Ofcom. The inquiry comes as Ofcom prepares to publish a new discussion paper on the PSP.
The probe will also look at:
- The practicality of continuing to impose public service obligations on commercial broadcasters
- The viability of existing funding models for ITV, Channel 4 and Five
- The case for public funding of broadcasters in addition to the BBC
- The future of key areas of public service media content such as news provision and children's programming
- The case for the provision of public service material in new media.
The committee is inviting written submissions by e-mail by January 18.
Earlier this week the committee announced a separate investigation into the growing number of premium rate TV quiz channels.
Lovelace Consulting | 27.10.2006