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BBC at ‘high risk’ says Hall

BBC director Tony Hall has said the UK pubcaster is entering a period of “high risk” as it attempts to renegotiate the terms of its royal charter, which governs the broadcaster’s operations.

Hall told staff on Wednesday that the broadcaster could be “diminished” by negotiations with the government, with his comments coming after previous demands that the pubcaster become more aggressive in its defence of the licence fee system used to fund it.

The BBC boss also told producers working for it to spend “every penny of the licence fee as if it were your own” and said the broadcaster was in danger of being “stuck in an analogue cul-de-sac” if it did not quickly adapt to digital media.

He added: “We live at a time of unparalleled change in media. Never have audiences changed so fast or global competition changed our environment so radically.”

The charter, which will dictate the cost of the licence fee over the next five years, as well as the breadth and scope of its operations over the next ten, is due for renewal in 2016. Hall also spoke about the “colossal scrutiny” the pubcaster would face during the upcoming general election.

The BBC director, who was appointed in 2012, has already revealed a host of changes for the pubcaster including moving youth-skewing channel BBC3 online and scrapping production quotas.


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