News, Culture & Society

BBC launches fight to protect British broadcasters against US giants

The director general of the BBC is to warn British broadcasters are in a ‘David versus Goliath’ fight for their future against US media giants like Facebook, Netflix and Google.

Tony Hall will set out in a speech to staff how he believes the values of public service broadcasters matter ‘more than ever’ in an era of fake news and a future post-Brexit landscape. 

In a speech to staff which will be made at the Television Centre in London on Wednesday, he is expected to say: ‘Today, Netflix and Amazon are available in over half of British homes, they are services that are admired and trusted, and yet, on average, the great majority of television output viewed in the UK each day is still British content. Even among younger audiences.

‘So don’t let anyone kid you that British programming no longer matters to our audiences, even younger ones.

Tony Hall will set out in a speech to staff how he believes the values of public service broadcasters matter ‘more than ever’ in an era of fake news and a future post-Brexit landscape 

‘Instead, we know audiences in the UK are still drawn inexorably to storytelling that reflects the lives and passions of our own square mile.’

Against a backdrop of global brands, and a media landscape becoming increasingly dominated by a handful of businesses on America’s west coast, he will say that storytelling that reflects ‘the lives and passions of our own square mile’ is what truly appeals to audiences.

Ten years ago, around 83 per cent of independent production companies in the UK were either UK or European-owned, the BBC said. 

Today, US multinationals own around 60 per cent.

Acknowledging the BBC was ‘maybe’ not the biggest kid on the block anymore, Mr Hall will claim that, nevertheless, ‘nobody is fighting harder for Britain and for our audiences’.

UK public broadcasters will be able to thrive as long as reform is sped up to keep pace with the current challenges, he will say.

The BBC’s mission must be to back young and emerging talent fervently, while it will need to change radically to remain relevant for younger audiences.

Mr Hall will say: ‘The country needs a BBC that helps society understand itself better … that explores our nation’s differences passionately and robustly … that projects British creativity and values globally … that reminds us every day of the things we hold in common, not just the things that divide us.

‘These are not the passions of the West Coast giants – why would they be? They are our passions.’



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk