Carter calls for ad industry shake-up

The government minister charged with driving Britain into a new digital age has called for a shake-up in the way the UK ad industry does its business.

Lord Carter, the one-time JWT boss, now the Minister for Communication, Technology and Broadcasting, told ISBA's London conference on Wednesday (4 March): "We should look at the way the traditional advertising markets operate. A lot of people would say that's long overdue." The conference also called on internet advertisers to join the self-regulatory fold and for the media industry to keep up with the lightning pace of digital technology.

The price of failure could be costly both in terms of money and the industry's credibility, delegates were warned.

Mike Hughes, ISBA's director-general, urged the Government not to burden the business with more regulation. But he also called on internet advertisers to "step up to the plate" and "take on the responsibility of a major player in the UK industry".

The conference convened only hours after ITV reported a 41 per cent drop in its profits, provoking a warning from Ed Richards, the Ofcom chief executive, of the brutal environment facing free-to-air broadcasters. "There's no hiding place from our economic challenges," he said.

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