Government to discuss selling channel 4 in major change to British television

The Government will launch a session into the proposed privatisation of Channel 4. The Office

The Government will launch a session into the proposed privatisation of Channel 4.

The Office for Digital, Lifestyle, Media and Sport announced the would be wanting into the transfer on Wednesday immediately after bosses at the broadcaster were being quizzed on the situation by MPs on the previous day.

The division reported going Channel 4 into non-public ownership and changing its remit would assure its “future achievement and sustainability”.

The session will also critique regulation of streaming providers this kind of as Netflix, Disney+ and Amazon Primary Video.

It will think about whether or not new policies all-around impartiality and precision are necessary for documentaries and news content on the platforms to “level the enjoying field” with broadcasters, who are controlled by the watchdog Ofcom.

Society Secretary Oliver Dowden said: “Technology has transformed broadcasting but the regulations shielding viewers and supporting our standard channels contend are from an analogue age.

“The time has come to seem at how we can unleash the likely of our general public assistance broadcasters while also making positive viewers and listeners consuming information on new formats are served by a truthful and well-working process.

“So, we’ll now be looking at how we can support make guaranteed Channel 4 retains its location at the heart of British broadcasting and degree the participating in discipline between broadcasters and online video-on-demand from customers products and services.”

Nonetheless, Channel 4’s chief govt Alex Mahon mentioned on Tuesday the broadcaster could have “different priorities” if it is privatised, and cautioned in opposition to carrying out anything “irreversible” which could “possibly damage some of all those factors that we do for the sector”.

She was talking after the publication of Channel 4’s yearly report, which showed it shipped a report monetary surplus of £74 million at the stop of 2020, as nicely as important digital development.

Mr Dowden has previously confirmed that privatisation of Channel 4 was below evaluation in a assessment of public service broadcasting, nevertheless the consultation was not formally declared until eventually Wednesday.

Channel 4 has been owned by the Authorities since its start in 1982 and gets its funding from marketing.

The money generated is then utilized to fee unbiased producers to make programmes for the channel.

The session will come ahead of a Authorities White Paper on the potential of broadcasting which is due in the autumn.