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BBC, C4 talk VoD with House of Lords

The director general of the BBC and Channel 4’s CEO are set to be questioned this week as part of the House of Lords’ inquiry into the future of UK public service broadcasting (PSB) in an age of VoD.

Alex Mahon

The House of Lords Communications Committee will question Tony Hall and Alex Mahon tomorrow, as well as Sir David Clementi, chairman of the BBC, and Ian Katz, C4’s director of programmes.

The inquiry into whether the rise of VoD services spells the end for PSBs was announced earlier this year in reaction to Netflix and Amazon Prime emerging as powerful competitors to pubcasters such as the BBC and C4.

The committee will ask the BBC how it is responding to challenges like losing viewing share to new on-demand services, as well as its recent announcement that it would no longer fund the TV licence fee for most over-75s.

The committee will then question C4 about how it is adapting to changes in the TV sector and how PSBs can improve their appeal among 16- to 34-year-olds.

Other topics for discussion include rising costs in high-end TV production, diversity on screen and behind the camera, the implications of the BBC’s proposed subscription service Britbox and whether cost inflation has undermined C4’s ability to produce high-end drama.

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