UK News Sale of Channel 4 a ‘high-risk and damaging path’ – chairman
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The chairman of Channel 4 has warned the Government against going down the “high-risk and damaging path” of privatising the broadcaster.
In a letter to Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden, seen by the PA news agency, Charles Gurassa said the Government risks “sleepwalking into the irreversible and risky sale of an important, successful and much-loved British institution”.
The Government is consulting on plans to privatise Channel 4.
Mr Gurassa wrote: “We look forward to engaging in a constructive dialogue with you and your department about the role Channel 4 can play in the long-term media landscape and to providing a comprehensive response to the consultation in due course.
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GB News ‘suspends’ presenter for taking the knee after viewing numbers plummet to ZERO for some shows -Guto Harri was discussing the appalling racist fallout of the Euro 2020 final when he announced that he finally “got” just how “close to the surface racism still [is]” in England. At that point he got up from his sofa in the studio and defiantly knelt down.
“However, we are deeply concerned with the unsubstantiated assertion that a sale of Channel 4 is in the national interest.
“Without a transparent assessment of the implications of such a decision, the Government is in danger of sleepwalking into the irreversible and risky sale of an important, successful and much-loved British institution.”
The channel, which was founded in 1982 to deliver to under-served audiences, is owned by the Government and receives its funding from advertising.
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) said the decision to review Channel 4’s ownership structure had been taken because the changing media landscape posed a serious threat to traditional linear broadcasters.
In his letter, Mr Gurassa trumpeted the channel’s financial health and said it has a “clear plan” moving forward.
Sale in life: Can we negotiate and how to do?
© Cytonon Photography / PEXELS Purchase sale VIAGER Tips - On a life sale, it is possible to negotiate the selling price such as the bouquet and, to a lesser extent, life annuities. How to do it? The sale in life is attractive for the purchaser since the purchase of the dwelling can be realized with a low personal contribution and without a real estate loan, whose monthly payments are replaced by the life annuity paid until the death of the seller.
The board said it shares the Government’s ambition for the channel and as an organisation it “thrives on change and embraces innovation – sticking with the status quo is not the modus operandi of Channel 4, and never has been”.
However, it states: “It is difficult on reading and analysing the arguments put forward in your consultation document, to reconcile those objectives with the stated preferred outcome of a full sale of the corporation.
“The lack of any detailed analysis, evidence or impact assessment leaves us as a Board deeply concerned given our statutory responsibility to deliver Channel 4’s remit.
“Indeed, we have serious concerns that the consequences will be very harmful, both to the UK’s creative economy and to the choice and breadth of distinctive British-made content available to UK audiences.”
The letter touted the board members’ experience in the private sector, but questioned if that was the best environment for Channel 4.
How Sitcoms Got Less White, Less Male – and Funnier Than Ever
In the Nineties, British sitcoms hit a dead end. Now, they're where our most exciting and original TV happens © Emma Shore TV sitcoms If you’re at a loose end, Wikipedia’s list of extinct British sitcoms is a good wormhole to lose yourself in. In the 75 years since the first British sitcom was broadcast live from the Alexandra Palace transmitter in November 1946, there have been some incredibly strange shows. So Haunt Me, about a family who move to Willesden and find that their new house is occupied by the ghost of a Jewish grandma.
“It is thriving without any taxpayer support and in addition is delivering a unique range of public obligations and broader economic benefits,” it said.
And Mr Gurassa wrote: “Channel 4 is not an inefficient state-owned monopoly, but an agile, innovative challenger with a public purpose at its heart.
“It is efficient, well run, and on a sure footing to tackle the future challenges facing the sector.
“Its profits are ploughed back into creative investment in the hundreds of small and medium-sized independent businesses that make up the UK’s creative sector and with whom it partners.
“There is nothing in the consultation that explains how privatisation would aid the delivery of our remit or public purpose, and it is laden with risk of significantly damaging our ability to do so.”
A Government source said: “The Channel 4 model is facing increasing pressure from competition for viewers from high-spending streaming giants and growing pressure on the advertising revenue on which it solely depends.
“We’re looking at reform to protect Channel 4’s long-term future so it can continue serving audiences with great public service content for decades to come.”
France, UK sign new security deal to protect against Channel terror threat .
Britain and France on Tuesday signed a new security deal aimed at protecting the public in the event of a terror attack in the Channel against a large vessel such as a passenger ferry, the British government said. The UK-France Maritime Security Treaty was signed in Paris as the defence and foreign ministers from both sides met for talks on shared security interests. The British government said in a statement that the treaty is the foundation for "seamless joint and coordinated action to be taken by UK and French forces in response to an incident, such as a terrorist attack on board a ferry or other large vessel in the Channel.