Survey shows support for licence fee-funding of commercial channels

LONDON - There is significant backing for plans to use a small proportion of the TV licence fee to fund news provision on TV channels other than the BBC, according to a survey by the Department of Culture Media and Sport.

DCMS survey: support shown for using licence fee funds to support commercial channels
DCMS survey: support shown for using licence fee funds to support commercial channels

In its survey, 65% of respondents said a small part of the licence fee should be used to support regional news on another channels, with most of the money still going to the BBC, as opposed to 24% who said the licence fee should be used only for the BBC.

In addition, most respondents, 71%, said regional news should be available on non-BBC channels, while just 17% said it would be enough to have BBC regional news only.

The findings come in contrast to figures cited by BBC Trust chairman Sir Michael Lyons in a letter to licence fee- payers sent last week (9 September), when Lyons said he was concerned about "any attempt to use the licence fee to subsidise commercial operators".

He cited a survey in which licence fee-payers were offered six options for what should happen to the licence fee, once spending on digital switchover is completed. This survey found that about half the respondents would prefer the licence fee to be lowered by £5.50, compared to 6% who wanted surplus money to be spent on regional news on other commercial channels.

Respondents to the DCMS had stronger feelings about regional news than other public service programming.

Earlier in the survey, 48% of the 2,024 respondents said a small amount of the licence fee should be used to support certain types of programmes on other channels, while 35% said the licence fee should be used only on BBC content and services.

 

Topics

Become a member of Campaign from just £88 a quarter

Get the very latest news and insight from Campaign with unrestricted access to campaignlive.co.uk , plus get exclusive discounts to Campaign events

Become a member

Looking for a new job?

Get the latest creative jobs in advertising, media, marketing and digital delivered directly to your inbox each day.

Create an alert now

Partner content