ITN protests about BBC online policy

ITN has called government controls of the BBC’s online strategy “out of date”.

In its submission to the review of the corporation’s online policy, ITN demanded transparency on how the BBC invested licence fee cash in online activities. It called for “a new clear and precise remit” and “greater transparency” for BBC Online.

It also reiterated a widespread objection among the BBC’s rivals to the corporation’s propensity to give away content to partner companies.

“ITN objects to the BBC giving away content for free to third-party platform operators, where they pose a serious threat to our future growth. ITN has had several experiences of the BBC’s online activities squeezing ITN’s ability to develop on new media platforms. ITN believes that a new remit for BBC Online should restrict the BBC’s provision of free content to third-party platform operators.”

ITN also proposed that the BBC be required to account separately for both its licence fee-funded and commercial online activities in the annual report.

A BBC spokesman said it would be “inappropriate to comment” on ITN’s submission before the review’s conclusion.

The deadline for broadcasters’ submissions has been extended from 17 to 24 November.

By Wale Azeez

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