A predictable outcome 

25 September 2008 tbs.pm/946

NUJ warns of 500 ITV job cuts

It’s no surprise whatsoever to learn that Ofcom has ‘bought’ the economic arguments put forward by ITV plc in its determination to cut back on regional broadcasting, especially given Channel 4’s predicted economic woes combined with a general shakiness of the UK economy that currently seems to be the case.

And given the historical weakening of ITV’s regional commitments, the outcome was perhaps a foregone conclusion long before Ofcom delivered its final verdict. So is there anything more to learn or is regional commercial broadcasting completely dead in the water?

Paradoxically, Ofcom has also revealed that a significant number of licence fee-payers are prepared to pay more money in order to maintain public service broadcasting on the commercial channels, but by the time such a proposal reaches the statute books, ITV’s regional broadcasting could have vanished altogether, at least within England.