UK: Ofcom backs BBC Scotland channel

A new BBC Scotland channel has been given a provisional go-ahead by regulators. British media regulator Ofcom looked at whether the creation of a new channel would have an unfair impact on competition but decided after a “careful review” that the corporation can proceed with plans to expand its coverage in Scotland.

Ofcom said it supported the BBC’s proposals in full, but chastised the corporation for failing to consult on its plans to reduce new programming for the channel to 50% of its output after 7pm.

Ofcom also said the BBC had to pay close attention to the impact the channel could have on rival broadcasters such as STV, and to whether it was “crowding out” Scottish newspapers and online news services.

The BBC plans to hire 80 additional journalists to help produce a one-hour weeknight news and current affairs program. Scottish newspaper editors complained last year that this would increase competition and involve poaching their staff.

Full Content: The Guardian

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