The BBC has been directed by the government to check the impact its web services are having on private competitors operating in the UK media market, The Guardian reports.
UK culture secretary Jeremy Hunt, while praising the BBC for providing Britain with the best television in the world, has said that the corporation must ensure that it does not upset competition in the wider market.
In an interview for the Andrew Marr Show on BBC 1, Jeremy Hunt said: “The web is a very good area where the BBC needs to have clearer red lines about what it will and won't do. I mean, we all recognise that programmes need to have websites. But do we want Top Gear to have a strategy to say 'we're going to be the biggest motoring website in the country?' No, we don't, because that will put off anyone who's got an idea for a website to do with cars from bothering to invest in it."
Hunt also denied rumours that Rupert Murdoch would soon be able to open his US channel Fox News in the UK.
He said: "Absolutely not. We have said – and I announced in opposition – that we are committed to protecting the impartiality requirements amongst the major broadcasters."