Television

BBC's future vision involves connecting the global audience

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MUMBAI: The BBC has unveiled its future vision. As per this at some point in time everyone in the UK will have equal access to digital services - on demand, portable and personalised.



The broadcaster is also looking to transform the relationship with the audience by connecting them with each other locally and globally.



The report is called Building Public Value. It lays out a nine point manifesto and actions for how the BBC can take a lead in building a fully digital Britain. The aim is to ensure that no one is excluded from the second stage of the digital revolution.



While building platforms and better access to more affordable digital technologies is a first step to a fully digital Britain, the second is about opening up the creative potential and public, as well as private, value.



Innovations like access to the BBC's Creative Archive and the Digital Curriculum - due to launch in 2006 - are already underway. However pilots such as BBC News' iCan, which enables active participation in civic life, and Media Player (iMP) which, like the enormously successful Radio Player, allows people to download any TV programme within seven days of transmission, give audiences more freedom from schedules than ever before.



BBC DG Mark Thompson added, "An economist might conclude that the BBC has an important role in preventing various kinds of market failure in the new digital world. Our vision is far bolder. We look forward to a future where the public have access to a treasure house of digital content; a store of value which spans media and platforms, develops and grows over time, which the public own and can freely use in perpetuity."



Thompson also said that the beeb was hoping to achieve switchover from analogue by 2012. The most urgent priority for the BBC in the future is not further expansion, but completing the challenge of creating a fully digital Britain. That is what will enable the BBC to deliver its vision of universality the report stated.



Thompson however went on to say "We can help build an infrastructure but digital Britain will only come to life if it also becomes a creative space in which the best ideas and the best talent can meet audiences who are hungry for originality and quality.



"In the end, the future will not be about pathways and platforms but about content. Universally available, outstanding, distinctive content has always been and remains the point of the BBC."



Three reviews are currently underway. One is looking into the BBC's production base and commissioning needs, including a level playing field and a fairer deal for independents. Another is examining the BBC's commercial services and a third is focussing on general efficiencies.

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