|The fate of the BBC (see Guardian news feed) is likely to be the big media news story|
a hands off approach to the press, almost all of which encouraged readers to vote Tory in 2015 (even the Indie). IPSO looks safe ... unless a paper decides to break its 5 year contract and, as Desmond did with the PCC, just walk away from it. The local press can look forward to new tax breaks
newspapers will largely breathe a sigh of relief, both local newspapers promised rates relief and the nationals which feared more legislation to increase press regulation in the wake of Leveson. Martin Moore, director of the Media Standards Trust, said that the election result “removes this particular Sword of Damocles” as more legislation was unlikely.Indeed, at the end of April Javid said his party would not back a Leveson-approved regulator as: “It interferes with the freedom of the press. It goes fundamentally against one of the Leveson principles, which is independent self-regulation.” Besides, press regulation was a job done.Yet with nearly all major newspapers with the exception of the Guardian, Independent and Financial Times having signed five-year contracts with Ipso, the independent press standards body set up in the wake of the Leveson inquiry, it will be interesting to see whether any organisation considers breaking the contracts. [quotes from Martinson, 2015]
The BBC will be hammered. A Tory target for decades, look out for swift action, as controversial policies are often brought in quickly enough to reduce any electoral fallout in the next election. Top-slicing will continue, with options such as local press and the so-far failing local TV franchises possibly getting some of the licence fee whilst broadband rollout financing will continue.
it is clearly the BBC which has most to worry about from the Conservative mandate. With the royal charter set to expire at the end of 2016, there are just 19 months to agree the future funding and structure of the corporation. Of all the main parties, the Tories have shown signs of being the most hostile to the cost and expansion of the BBC. They were the only main party offering to freeze the £145.50 annual licence fee as a way of saving voters money, putting the pledge at the top of their manifesto’s media wishlist.
the BBC’s spending and its ability to provide “value for money” will be at the heart of the charter renewal debate. That the Tories meant business was reflected in the manifesto also containing a pledge to continue “top-slicing” the licence fee to fund superfast broadband across the country, a charge taking £150m per annum out of the BBC’s £3.6bn funding pot.2016 may be too early to scrap the licence fee or privatise the BBC, but both would be welcomed by most Tory MPs. The SNP is far from happy at how the BBC has covered it, UKIP is with the Tories in perceiving a left-wing bias (and Farage loudly complained about this during the leadership debate programme), and, from the left, the Greens are opposed to the license fee continuing ... so there may not be an effective opposition to any radical changes.
A new report by Loughborough University’s communication research unit to be published today shows how much more coverage Ukip garnered [twice as much] in national TV and newspapers than the SNP despite the latter going on to win 50 times more seats.The BBC Trust will surely go - OfCom to replace it?
the BBC Trust has already been called a busted flush by a cross-party group of MPs. In bringing in figures such as Sir Roger Carr, Javid signalled that the party is keen to have pro-business leaders identifying a replacement.How effective is debatable, but age rating will spread to music videos and possibly teen magazines, with some effort to restrict and regulate access to some categories of websites for adults as well as children.
Labour pushed the separate ITV companies to merge back in 2001, arguing a larger corporation was needed to compete with global conglomerates; I wouldn't be surprised to see liberalisation of ownership restrictions putting C4 up for grabs (C5 was recently snapped up by a US conglomerate). Murdoch may well resurrect his bid, originally pushed through by Tory Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt, to buy up the remaining 60% of BSkyB shares.
within 24 hours of polls closing on Thursday, home secretary Theresa May confirmed that the draft communications data bill, or so-called snoopers’ charter, was back on the agenda now the Liberal Democrats were no longer around to block it. Prior to the election Cameron said that there should be no communication that the government was unable to read.