ITN warned over News Direct coverage

ITN has been given a yellow card by the Radio Authority for using material from its TV news channel on its News Direct 97.3 FM radio station.

The Radio Authority has rapped the news organisation for putting TV material on the radio without adapting it for a listening audience.

"There were some references to visual things which obviously would not mean much to a listening audience," a spokeswoman said.

She added that the Radio Authority was also concerned about the amount of international and national news that was not appropriate for a London rolling news station.

The Radio Authority also criticised ITN for the quality of some of its output and "technical problems".

The reprimand follows reports earlier this year that the station had been forced by the RA to drop its plans to change the station’s format.

Speculation about the future of the channel has increased since the departure of Steve Holt, who had been wooed from New York where he was news director of the pioneering rolling news station 1010WINS

A spokesman for ITN said there had been "technical problems" during the recent relaunch of News Direct which had since been ironed out.

Dismissing claims that the station was now understaffed, he added: "Although the team dedicated to working on the station is relatively smaller, for a local news station to be able to draw upon a 100-strong news room at ITN is a very impressive resource."

By Julie Tomlin

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