This submission of written evidence was prepared in response to the ‘Consultation on a change of ownership of Channel 4 Television Corporation,’ Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (14 September, 2021). This DCMS consultation called for views and evidence on the potential change of ownership of Channel 4 Television Corporation.
Channel 4 is an integral part of the UK’s broadcasting ecology. The social, cultural and economic benefits it delivers for the public clearly demonstrate its significant value as a publicly owned, commercially funded broadcaster. This public value is epitomised by three core commitments: a founding remit for creativity and serving “the tastes and interests of a culturally diverse society”; a publisher-broadcaster framework that supports the growth and competitiveness of SME producers; and a not-for-profit model that guarantees reinvestment in the UK creative industries across TV, film, advertising and online media, particularly in the Nations and Regions.
Based on the evidence presented in our submission, Cardiff University PEC recommends: 1) Channel 4 Television Corporation should remain in public ownership; 2) Channel 4’s obligations should be revised to strengthen its founding remit for serving minority audiences and supporting SME producers; and 3) The renewed 2024 Channel 4 licence should include further obligations for reaching and appealing to under-30s with innovative, UK-made public service content.
Tom Chivers and Stuart Allan, ‘Arts, Culture and Public Service Broadcasting’ Workstrand (Cardiff University) for the Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre (Nesta, London).