Under pressure from the British budget, the BBC is cutting 1,000 jobs and accelerating a digital transformation under a radical plan that will merge national and international news channels and move a few others online.
Several austerity plans are already underway in recent years, and an aging audience, a public audiovisual giant whose authority extends far beyond Britain’s borders, has darkened its financial horizons this year as the Conservative government has decided to freeze royalties for two years.
The new measures announced by the authority in a press release on Thursday aim to save £ 500 million (€ 586 million) a year, including € 200 million to fill most of the holes excavated by the decision.
The rest needs to be invested in digital technology “to create the BBC, which is first and foremost a digital subject, something really new (…) for the UK and the world,” said Tim Davie, CEO, in a statement to staff.
In particular, there are plans to create a single BBC News channel for British and international audiences, which is currently being segregated, “while maintaining the possibility of broadcasting separate content by event”.
The group will stop broadcasting its children’s channel CBBC (for children aged 6-12) and its cultural channel BBC 4, so their content will be available online.
Some foreign language services will also be available online only, and longwave radio broadcasts will be phased out after consultation with the maritime services.
In total, this will mean 1,000 fewer jobs than the approximately 22,000 currently employed.
– “Existential question” –
The group has set a goal to reach 75% of its audience through the digital platform iPlayer.
Investment will be made in content for this platform and BBC Sounds audio content from which the least effective content will be removed.
The venerable Beeb is going through a difficult period due to the coup reversal of its audience’s consumption habits, the emergence of Netflix or Disney +, and a difficult relationship with the Conservative government, which has been exacerbated recently by the appointment to the ministry. Culture. created by Nadine Dorries, openly hostile to public service broadcasting.
The latter froze the tax in January for two years (£ 159, € 185) and questioned the long-term survival of this unpopular way of financing, especially in times of historic inflation.
Conservative authorities are accusing the BBC of biasing the coverage of Brexit and speaking out against leaving the European Union.
He criticizes him in general for focusing on the city’s elite rather than the working classes, the attacks that resonate with conservative electorates, and the tabloids of “Germanism” killers who quickly reject him. BBC.
The announcement of this transformation plan coincides with the launch of a review of the mission of Nadine Dorries, a very conservative author of critically acclaimed novels and one of the ministers most loyal to Boris Johnson during the scandals.
The work aims to make the BBC “more impartial, more accessible and more reflective of diversity”. They require a legal obligation for 25% of workers to be in the working class, and most programs by 2027. to be held outside London.
On that occasion, the government confirmed its desire to investigate the “likelihood” of abolishing the tax from 2028.
The group’s management said this week that it was open to all possibilities, including a subscription model for entertainment or beauty shows, and its chairman, Richard Sharp, emphasized the BBC was facing an “existential issue”.
In addition to the BBC, the government has recently made a fuss by announcing its desire to privatize the state-owned but advertising-funded Channel 4. She reinvestes her profits in creativity, creating successful innovative programs or series, making cultural strata concerned about her destiny.
gmo / pau / cpy
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