Channel 5 has hit back following the British Retail Consortium’s
criticism of its retuning programme (Campaign, last week).
The BRC wrote to the Department of National Heritage to express fears
that Channel 5’s programme for retuning the nation’s TV equipment could
‘severely jeopardise’ the good relationship that exists between
retailers and consumers.
Channel 5 has responded with a letter to the BRC that says the
organisation did not give the channel the chance to dispel concerns and
find a way to work together.
The BRC’s attack included claims that ‘the prospect of other people’s
engineers, with perhaps varying skill levels, working on this equipment
not only causes worry but may invalidate guarantees and extended
Channel 5’s letter defends the training given to its retuners and claims
that, after consultation with a range of industry bodies, television
equipment guarantees will not be invalidated. The letter says: ‘Channel
5 will be responsible for any damage caused by its retuners and has
Channel 5’s response came as talks with TeleWest collapsed over plans
for the cable operator to retune homes connected to its services. A
similar agreement has already been reached with Nynex.
The talks foundered after the two sides failed to reach an agreement on
how much TeleWest would be paid for its retuning work.
Meanwhile, Channel 5 is trawling for an agency to handle its launch
Saatchi and Saatchi is responsible for advertising the current retuning
work, and Channel 5 has not ruled out the possibility of the agency also
handling its branding campaign, which is scheduled to launch later this
autumn. However, a number of other agencies are understood to have been
issued with briefs for the branding business.