#LETITBEEB Campaign Keeps Government On Track

UK Music responds to Government BBC White Paper.

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12.05.2016: The #LetItBeeb campaign has succeeded in convincing Government to value music services and recognise that Radio 1 and 2 “play an important role in the BBC’s public service offering, particularly in support of home-grown talent in the music industry”.

The BBC Charter renewal process must never facilitate a reduction in the breadth of musical choice for listeners. Substantive changes to the way the BBC will operate in the future, and the way it is governed, must not be allowed to open the door to partial decision-making on music programming. UK Music stands by its demand for more, not less music on the BBC.  Indeed, the Secretary of State agreed with this aspiration.

We ask that the new regulatory and governance framework and the introduction of a mid-term five year review of the BBC Charter are given careful Parliamentary scrutiny. These changes, including providing Ofcom with the power to assess market impacts, must not have a negative impact on BBC music programming and services. UK Music will seek necessary safeguards before the new Charter commences at the beginning of 2017.

Valuing music is one of the most important things any institution can do. The announcement to close the BBC iPlayer loophole is the right thing to do. UK Music welcomes enshrining diversity into the next Charter to ensure the BBC serves all audiences and is representative both on and off-screen.

It is important that the White Paper acknowledges that “Radio 1Xtra, Radio 3, Radio 4, Radio 6, BBC Local and Nations Radio, the BBC Asian Network and BBC Four, for example, are quite clearly distinct from commercial competitors. Even on the BBC’s more popular services such as BBC One, BBC Two, Radio 1, Radio 2, Radio 5 Live and its online services there is much that is distinctive.” We hope that Ofcom will recognise that two thirds of respondents to the latest GfK Social Research report do not accept that output from Radio 1 and 2 is similar to that of commercial radio.

Jo Dipple, CEO, UK Music says: “Collectively Radio 1, 1Xtra, Radio 2, Radio 3, 6Music, Asian Network, Proms, BBC Introducing, Glastonbury, festival coverage, five orchestras, BBC Singers, new music commissions, music broadcast programming and music documentaries give fans and listeners access to the most astounding and diverse range of musical content. BBC Music caters for a myriad of tastes which are not served by the commercial sector. Without BBC Music services to support the development of new music, our industry would not only be poorer and listeners deprived, but this country would find it harder to outperform on the world stage. UK Music will be assessing the full implications of this historic White Paper with its members and we look forward to discussing it with the BBC, Government and Parliament in the coming weeks and months.”

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