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May 16, 2008

Contemporary British Broadcasting Hub

Contemporary British Broadcasting Hub


This page is primarily designed for those studying the OCR Contemporary British Broadscasting Unit as part of the Media Issues and Debates Paper.  

British Broadcasters 

The Changing Nature of TV in an "On Demand" Era. There is no doubt we arein the middle of a media revolution.   There are a massive range of new media technologies coming into the market place. The digital grail is the notion of 'convergence' where people will be able to slip seamlessly from one format to another and where all information will be digitally encoded in order for this to happen. The reality of course is somewhat different with format wars and different standards ensuring that this doesn't happen easily. The most popular legal music system iTunes doesn't allow downlaods in mp3 format for example. This entry has started to examine how TV might emerge out of all these changes. Whatever else the future is very uncertain and quite a lot depends on what kind of content and services the audiences want as new possibilities emerge. This entry provides maps for the digitisation programme in the UK.

ITV Heavily Fined for Phone Scam by Ofcom

British Broadcasting Going Digital

BBC 2006 Guide to the new broadcasting technologies. (Please note Freesat isn't in here)

2012: Going Digital. This entry looks at the path laid out for British broadcasting to go entirely digital by 2012. 

Chronology of Developments in digital Free TV  in the UK

Finally Freeview Looks as Though it will Deliver High Defintion TV. A November 2007 entry which takes a look at the latest information on whther Freeview will deliver HD (High Definition) TV. 

Digital Radio Mondiale Comes to Devon. This entry looks at an experiment being carried out by the BBC to create digital radio on the old AM or medium wave channels. If successful this could open up even more bandwidth to new services. The system is different to the DAB one which is currently going to replace all the FM stations.

A survey of broadband usage from November 2007. The access to high-speed broadband networks (we are taling several times the speeds currently available in the UK) is going to be a benchmark for societies at the top of the media tree. Increasingly what will be accessed on domestic screens is going to be provided by these networks - indeed the notion of TV itself is becoming eroded by this tendency. This entry starts to explore these problems and provides links into a range of views.  

Digital Projection: Foundation of a New Exhibition System in the UK? This entry looks at the new digital projection systems currently being installed  in  cinemas around Britain.  This is  not just an issue for the Conetempoary Britiish Cinema Unit although it is a part of that as well.  The onset of  high definition mobile recording , tranmission and  prejection systems  will offer those  exhibition spaces which we think of as cinemas  the possiibility to project live  events from sporting events to rock concerts. There will be excellent  screen and audio facilities  and could provide an exciting form of entertainment  which will compete with films as well as broadcast TV by providing access to live performances with unscripted narratives and plenty of excitement. The fact that these will be one-offs rather than the replication of the same film hundreds of times offers exhibitors and investors a much more stable financial income. Expect to see the 2012 Olympics in a cinema near you!

Freesat Launched May 2008 UK

This entry provides links into stories about the launch of the free satellite TV service backed by a consortium led by the BBC and ITV. It means that there will no longer be dependency upon the Rupert Murdoch owned right-wing  Sky-TV which has so marred the broadcasting environment of recent years.

'Murdoch-vision' has managed to outbid other stations for both Hollywood films and for major sporting events and then clawed back the money by charging higher premiums to the consumer and higher prices to the advertisers. It is the onset of Sky which has destroyed football as a 'sport of the people' and turned  it into a 'sport' for the rich. Money flooding into football clubs and overpaid "celebrities" is primed by Sky's buying power.  Anybody buying into Sky is effectively supporting this powerful commercial agenda.  Take a lesson out of the coming recession and get rid of your subsription!

Freesat will provide a range of free TV stations available right across the country. Furthermore  increasing amounts of the content  will be in HD (High Definition) and finally public service broadcasting will be on an even playing field with the commercial power of Sky. Sky's position was created when the Conservative party created an open door for commercial power in the 1990 bradcasting act. The New Labour Party of Tony Balir was so pusillanimous that Blair went crawling to Murdoch before the 1997 general election to get Murdoch's approval and assure him that so-called "New-Labour" wouldn't offer any challenge to Murdoch's powerful position in both press and broadcasting. 

Public Service Broadcasting

Public Service Broadcasting. An introduction to the concept and a range of good quality external links are provided.  

Should the TV License Fee be Topsliced?  

BBC: Moving to a Multicasting Environment and Creating a Vibrant Digital Public Sphere for the 21st Century

The BBC Scandal: Public Service Broadcasting Undermined? Posted in July 2007 this entry is a response to the scandals which emerged from inside of the BBC at the time. That certain individuals have seen fit to act illegally and irresponsibly should not be allowed to undermine the principles of Public Service Broadcasting. That scandals like this have emerged is in part an individualistic response to the presures being exerted by the crass managerialist policies which are so undermining the public sector and quasi-public sector at the moment, from SATS exams to so-called "performance-management". all of this involves people trying to artificially create better numbers and place a veneer of 'quality' upon services. See the scandal emerging in Kingston University in May 2008 for another good example of this. Currently there is a quasi-Stalinist mode of mangerialist thinking which creates a series of outcomes which de-professionalises and results in artificial figures carefully manufactured and manipulated which is reminiscent of Stalinist tractor output meeting all its targets. The fact that most of them didn't work very well wasn't something measured so it wasn't an issue!

History of Television Broadcasting

Timeline of British TV.  Link to a Screenonline chronology of developments in British TV.

Is ITV Going Down the Tubes? This entry looks at the recent scandals around ITV and notes its shrinking shareprice. It raises a number of issues including: 

  • Is there really a need for a company like ITV nowadays?
  • How can ITV reinvent itself to become influential in British Broadcasting assuming that the term broadcasting remains meaningful?  

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