The Financial Times have today published an article discussing the proposed privatisation of Channel 4 and the possible consequences for independent production companies.
It details the government’s plans for privatisation and what it could look like in practice, along with the response from indies who fear “that a new owner will be given leeway to sideline [them] from a network that has been their lifeblood for four decades”. The publisher/broadcaster model under which Channel 4 currently operates means that it must commission all of its programmes from external companies – around 300 per year produce programmes for Channel 4. Privatisation could bring an end to this model, harming the indies. Our Chair, Pat Younge, is quoted in the article as saying:
To me, it’s ideological. If you look at their reasons for why you’d sell Channel 4, to me they don’t really stack up. This looks like an answer in search of a problem.Pat Younge
You can read the article in full here. It comes with just 12 days left for members of the public to contribute to the government’s consultation on a change of ownership of Channel 4. If you would like to respond to that consultation, you can find a briefing, including model answers, on our Not 4 Sale page.