ITV chiefs have announced an increase of pounds 70 million in
advertising revenue as a result of removing News at Ten from its
schedule last March.
However, a spokesperson from the ITV Network said the decision to move
News at Ten was based on the need to improve the quality of ITV
peak-time programming rather than to increase advertising revenue.
ITV also denied the sum of pounds 70 million represented a profit-making
figure, claiming the total had been reinvested into ITV schedules.
News at Ten was withdrawn from ITV schedules last year and replaced with
viewer-pulling hits such as Who Wants to be a Millionaire?.
ITV was severely criticised by the Independent Television Commission
last week for continuing to fail to meet standard audience requirements
for its news programmes. The total audience for the early and late news
bulletins has fallen by 13.9 per cent.
As a result, ITV has been asked to submit a proposal on how to put an
end to declining audiences before the next ITC meeting planned for 18
The Institute of Practitioners in Advertising criticised the ITC’s
attitude and said there was no need to reinstate News at Ten because
viewers had alternatives such as the BBC and Channel 4.