ITC criticises Channel 5’s low-budget output

The Independent Television Commission has slammed Channel 5 for its over-reliance on low-budget programming in its annual report on TV channels’ performance.

The Independent Television Commission has slammed Channel 5 for its

over-reliance on low-budget programming in its annual report on TV

channels’ performance.



The report, which looks at the programming output of Channels 4, 5, GMTV

and Teletext, acknowledges that Channel 5’s resources are less than the

larger terrestrial channels.



However, it notes: ’There is still a lot of low-budget material of

little distinction and the ITC hopes to see a more consistently high

standard maintained.’



Films shown on Channel 5 after 9pm were under particular scrutiny, with

the ITC noting that the editing of films classed as ’18’ was ’not always

successful’ and that the channel did not fulfil its licence application

commitment to ’classic’ films.



It also felt that the channel should lessen its focus on erotic films

and series.



Responding to the criticisms, Channel 5’s chief executive, David

Elstein, said that the concerns over programming resource would be

’addressed over the next 12 months’.



He added: ’We have announced that our programme budgets will rise from

pounds 120 million to pounds 150 million over the next three years.’



Channel 4 was praised for its ’freshness and innovation’ across a number

of programme genres although the ITC felt its religious output was

’disappointing’ and it could be more innovative in terms of its

youth-oriented programming.



The ITC has also published its report on the switch over from analogue

TV to digital terrestrial TV. It warned the Government that the take-up

of the latter was expected to be slow.



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