Monday, 11 May 2009

Identify the challenges faced by PSB in recent years (1990) and consider its position within the current Uk broadcasting market.

Public service broadcasting has seen a number of challenges in order for it to succeed in the current Uk broadcasting market, as research such as existence of new technologies, and the 1990 Broadcasting act show this. The main requirements of PSB is to keep up a high standard and wide range of programmes, which cater for a various audience such as educational, religious shows and currents news.  Public service broadcastings need to cater for everyone, as the public are the ones who are paying the licence fee. This could mean that there is too much focus on the customer satisfaction, rather than the financial success. 

There is a limit on the range of specialist interests which can be shown on tv, but there is a clear duty from the BBC and channel 4 to act in a way to guarantee a range of programming. The BBC aim to provide a broad spread of popular programming and supplement this with more varied material on BBC 2.

PSB could be unsuccessful if their ratings become the only factor concerning programme success, as it is reduce the purpose of PSB’s aim for the public benefit. Dating back to the earlier years of PSB, the BBC has struggled to survive the broadcasting market, because when Rupert Murdoch planned to expand commercial tv, the government questioned the BBC licence fee. Ministers argued that unless the corporation produced programmes that everyone watched, they could not expect universal funding. However it was once again questioned due to the Jonathan Ross/Russell Brand incident in 2008, when they made a series of prank calls to Andrew Sachs on Radio 2. Not only does this question the fee but it also questions the way the BBC is run, which makes the scandal hugely damaging, and it may have now seriously undermined the case for the license fee.

As we are gaining new technologies, Sky and digital programming have to be taken into consideration.  For example as viewers now have a variety of channels on digital tv, it allows them to view almost anything. This does then question the purpose of PSB. A 2009 survey states that 42.6 % of people decide to watch "Other Programming" on their T.V, compared to just 19.4 % for the BBC. By the time the digital switchover happens in 2012, PSB could come to an end all together.

The BBC has been criticized by some for being expansionist and exceeding its public service remit by providing content that could be provided by commercial broadcasters. They argue that the  BBC can distort the market, making it difficult for commercial providers to operate. A notable example of this is the Internet services provided by the BBC. However, those who defend the BBC suggest that the BBC needs to provide new services and entertainment, to remain relevant in the digital age. There are also questions about the public service commitments of the commercial broadcasters. All commercial channels that broadcast solely on digital platforms do not have public service requirements imposed. After digital switchover many of these channels will have the same coverage as the analogue commercial broadcasters. This has raised the question of how the analogue commercial broadcasters, with their costly public service obligations, will compete on a level playing field with such digital channels.

1 comment:

Leanne said...

This is good Gemma, rather similar to George's particularly at the beginning though... You make valid arguments and consider a selection of issues and your essay has a good structure and flow for a debate piece. As I said to George, make sure you have some recent facts and figures to hand as the textbooks used for the handouts are about ten years old. Keep it up!