Sky: Automation threatens studio staff jobs

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Up to 46 Sky studio staff face redundancy as the broadcaster looks to replace crew with an automated camera and galleries system.

The proposals were announced on Thursday and will see 31 new roles created in areas such as automation direction.

It is understood affected staff would be found alternative roles where possible, although staff consultations aren’t expected to be finalised until the end of August.

While the Sky studio already uses some robotic camera technology, the new Ross Overdrive system will automate yet more of them.

But its main function is as a tool to automate a number of functions in the gallery – the control room from where producers run shows including Sky News and Sky Sports – bringing it in line with industry standards, Press Gazette understands.

A Sky spokesperson said: “We have put forward proposals that we believe will significantly improve the service we deliver to our viewers. No decisions have been made at this stage, and we will talk to our people to agree the best way to move forward.”

It comes as Sky plans to move its studio to a new facility at its campus in Isleworth, West London.

Three Sky News presenters are set to leave before the move, planned for next year. They include Andrew Wilson, who has been at the channel for 22 years, Lorna Dunkley, who has been at Sky for 14 years and Samantha Simmonds, who has worked at Sky for ten years.

In an email to staff, Wilson said: “If ever there were a moment to part with an organisation with which I share so much history, this is it,” in reference to the move.

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