In a big blow to the BBC’s ambitious plans for launching online local video service, the BBC Trust, governing body of the corporation, has refused the allocation of £68 million worth of funding for the same.
Proposals had been put forth advocating that regional coverage of BBC could be increased with the increase in online videos featuring news updates, sports and other such contents.
In order to evaluate the worth of the proposed service, the Trust conducted a sort of public value test, and concluded that any such added web-based media would not lure the licence fee payers at all, and hence decided to thrash the proposed plan.
Indicating the Trust’s preference on quality over quantity, Diane Coyle, chairman Strategic Approvals Committee and BBC trustee, said in a statement, “The Trust is committed to improving regional and local services from the BBC for licence fee payers but a broadband-only local video news proposal is unlikely to achieve what they want”.
Coyle further went on to say that the Trust will instead focus on enhancing the quality of its already existing content, and the ways to achieve this goal could vary in various parts of the UK.
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In this period of austerity, this was something to be expected. The BBC is coming under immense pressure to cut whatever is not deemed necessary. Huge salaries are scrutinised and the popular online department was not spared. Expect the corporation to put more emphasis on bigger, more generic, overarching projects rather than niche ones.