Online TV service is rejected

CHIEFS at the BBC Trust today rejected the corporation's proposal to introduce a localised online video service.Regional newspapers had criticised the plans for an enhanced network of 65 websites across the UK, saying they would represent unfair public-funded competition.

CHIEFS at the BBC Trust today rejected the corporation's proposal to introduce a localised online video service.

Regional newspapers had criticised the plans for an enhanced network of 65 websites across the UK, saying they would represent unfair public-funded competition.

Nigel Pickover, editor of The Evening Star, welcomed today's decision. He said: “This was one BBC step too far. I am delighted the trust has shown common sense.

“Our journalists are already providing the video that serves the community and this will be stepped up in the future.”


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The BBC Trust said the plans would not improve public services enough to justify either the use of licence fee funds or the negative impact on commercial media.

Sir Michael Lyons, the trust's chairman, said: “It is clear from the evidence that, although licence fee-payers want better regional and local services from the BBC, this proposal is unlikely to achieve what they want.

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“We also recognise the negative impact that the local video proposition could have on commercial media services which are valued by the public and are already under pressure.”

The BBC's proposal, estimated to cost £68 million by 2012-13, envisaged websites with on-demand videos, primarily of news and sport but also including weather and user-generated content.

The content would be free and without adverts, and the BBC would make most of it available to local news sites.

Users would access the videos using either a computer with a Broadband internet connection or a 3G mobile phone.

What do you think of the decision? Write to Your Letters, The Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

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