Articles by David Hastings

Beating the retreat

Published 2 March 2010

BBC to cut £100m from overhead costs and axe digital stations BBC Strategy Review document (PDF file) When proposing something as major as the closure of public services like radio…

Sacrificial lamb

Published 26 February 2010

BBC ‘to axe radio stations and halve website’ in strategic review The Times: BBC signals an end to era of expansion (enjoy it free whilst you can) It seemed that…

There’s an app for that

Published 18 February 2010

Paid Content: UK Newspapers Want BBC Mobile Apps Blocked For ‘Undermining’ Them, BBC Disagrees I have a message for anyone within the BBC who is considering whether or not to…

Not a time for favours

Published 8 February 2010

BSkyB agrees to cut ITV stake In recent weeks it has been obvious that the “love affair” between politicians and BSkyB – at least in public – has started to…

Changing the perspective

Published 28 January 2010

BBC spent £250,000 for better view of Vienna at Euro 2008 It has to be said that the general headline-grabbing tone of this Guardian article is edging dangerously close to…

Living in the past

Published 21 January 2010

‘Set BBC targets to partner its rivals’, says ex-Channel 4 chief From the tone of Andy Duncan’s Oxford Media Convention speech, you get the impression that he thinks that he’s…

Not the only game in town

Published 18 January 2010

Cost of TV sport to tumble as Ofcom turns screw on Sky Some people appear to be rather puzzled as to why the Conservatives in particular seem ambivalent towards Ofcom’s…

Swallowing your pride

Published 13 January 2010

BBC admits it went too far in U2 tie-up On the surface this just appears to be yet another complaint from the commercial media sector (this time, the RadioCentre) along…

Not just the money

Published 7 January 2010

Jonathan Ross quits BBC Maybe Jonathan Ross jumped – but the BBC weren’t standing in his way It was blatantly obvious that something like this was going to happen, especially…

Hit list

Published 14 December 2009

Delia Smith and Michael Palin of ‘limited appeal’, says leaked BBC list Any list such as this leaked internal document from BBC Knowledge should be treated with great caution simply…

Asset appeasement

Published 8 December 2009

Government urges BBC to consider Worldwide sell-off HM Government: Operational Efficiency Programme: Asset Portfolio (PDF file) So what on earth is BBC Worldwide doing in a document with unlikely bedfellows…

A battle may be won

Published 17 November 2009

BBC fears part of licence fee may still be used for ITV regional news But the war won’t finish unless the BBC learns to stop fighting – that seems to…

Canvassing opinion

Published 13 November 2009

BBC director Erik Huggers gives a preview of Project Canvas Much has been talked about Project Canvas but until now there wasn’t much to actually see of what it consisted…

Bad idea to copy

Published 9 November 2009

BBC’s plea for anti-piracy measures on Freeview is turned down It seemed rather strange that the BBC of all broadcasters should suddenly propose something that could restrict an individual’s right…

Even more questions

Published 26 October 2009

Coup or crisis? Can the panel discuss … As the controversy surrounding BNP leader Nick Griffin’s appearance on Question Time rumbles on, it’s still hard to properly determine the long…

News from somewhere

Published 22 October 2009

ITV to drop Big Ben from News at Ten titles It’s no surprise to learn that ITV bosses have decided to partly apportion the blame for relatively low ratings for…

Lightning strikes twice

Published 15 October 2009

Broadcast Now: Andrew Jackson at centre of BBC row – before he even starts Perhaps the most bizarre yet of a series of incidents that have affected the BBC in…

No (regional) branding please, we’re ITV1

Published 13 October 2009

ITV faces regional news battle Conveniently forgetting about GMTV (in which ITV have, ahem, a majority shareholding), ITV plc is perhaps unsuccessfully trying to demand that any new regional news…

A whole new ballgame

Published 12 October 2009

Digital Spy: Online England game attracts 500,000 Last Saturday, something truly momentous happened in the world of television that was arguably on a par with the launch of Sky Digital,…

Not really solving the problem

Published 7 October 2009

BBC to crack down on swearing and violence Draft BBC Editorial Guildelines (PDF) Hmmm… 13.3.8 Any plans to re-use, reversion or make available archive material featuring members of the Royal…

Paying for Five

Published 2 October 2009

Broadcast Now: Five mulls switch to pay-TV Originally being the smallest of the five ‘national’ terrestrial channels along with having a patchy analogue terrestrial TV coverage area even at its…

Risky business

Published 28 September 2009

ITV uncertainty could open doors to takeover bid, says analyst If you now have a distinct feeling along the lines that “We’ve been here before”, then you are almost certainly…

Strictly off limits?

Published 22 September 2009

BBC’s Sir Michael Lyons weighs into row over Strictly scheduling clash It seems very obvious at this point in time that the BBC Trust has to at least look as…

Surplus to requirements

Published 17 September 2009

Ben Bradshaw and Sir Michael Lyons clash over BBC licence fee It’s no wonder that the BBC Trust has turned into little more than a ‘cheerleader’ for the BBC when…

Selling point

Published 13 September 2009

Rule change allows TV product placement When Andy Burnham (the previous Culture Secretary) said that there was no room for paid product placement on British television, the general consensus was…

The wrong impression

Published 5 September 2009

Public rejects Murdoch view of BBC, says ICM poll It’s now a week since James Murdoch made his predictably controversial MacTaggart speech that was conceived from the outset to make…

The language of compliance

Published 29 August 2009

Broadcast Now: Stephen Fry savages TV box-ticking Perhaps unsurprisingly, it turns out that BBC TV (and radio) producers are now self-censoring much more often than not because of the additional…

Family values

Published 28 August 2009

James Murdoch hits out at BBC and regulators at Edinburgh TV festival James Murdoch attacks BBC and regulators in annual MacTaggart lecture speech shocker – who would have thought otherwise?…

The final eviction?

Published 26 August 2009

Channel 4 to launch ‘creative overhaul’ as it axes Big Brother Big Brother axed by Channel 4 Channel 4’s decision to axe Big Brother admittedly wasn’t that unexpected, but it…

Grounded

Published 24 August 2009

BBC News: BBC to investigate daytime show Yes, it’s another ‘fakery scandal’ rearing its head again, just like the (still) fairly recent events of Crowngate, Sachsgate, etc., that the BBC…

Laugh. Or else

Published 16 August 2009

Engadget: Sony’s laughter-tracking PS3 patent You may have noticed recently that most digital cameras can now take a photo automatically when they detect when the person being photographed is smiling….

Awaiting stardom

Published 10 August 2009

Some MediaBlog readers might just remember something I posted nearly a year ago that attempted to explain the effects of the credit crunch, albeit in a somewhat unorthodox fashion. Anyway,…

There’s no “I” in STV

Published 7 August 2009

Broadcast Now: Grade slams STV opt outs Michael Grade in “cannot understand STV’s attitude” shocker; who would have thought it? From a purely commercial viewpoint, STV’s decision to drop the…

ITV no longer free?

Published 6 August 2009

Broadcast Now: ITV digital channels may leave Freeview If such a thing had happened merely two years ago it would have been a bigger deal than it is today. That’s…

Fringe benefits

Published 4 August 2009

Broadcast Now: BBC slammed for low Edinburgh turnout It seems to elude some people that an arts festival might conceivably be covered in a radically different way to a pop…

People have opinions

Published 24 July 2009

Top Gear’s Jeremy Clarkson faces row over new Gordon Brown slurs Perhaps as predictable as night following day, controversial TV presenter Jeremy Clarkson has again stirred the proverbial hornets’ nest…

Top-slicing: Been there, done that?

Published 18 July 2009

FT.com: Archives reveal BBC shared its fee It was perhaps inevitable that historical research into the BBC’s iicence fee would at some point unearth claims that the fee had previously…

Defending their share

Published 15 July 2009

MPs sign motion against top-slicing licence fee Ben Bradshaw attacks BBC bosses It was perhaps inevitable that there would now be open conflict between the BBC and certain government ministers…

Lacking reality

Published 9 July 2009

BBC News: ITV ‘to charge for Talent clips’ At least proving that Michael Grade has either a good sense of humour or a complete lack of perspective, he’s just announced…

Off the rails

Published 3 July 2009

ITN newsreader Alastair Stewart calls for ‘Beeching’ inquiry into BBC Weirdly misappropriate-yet-somehow-highly-appropriate analogy of the month: TV presenter demands inquiry that results in major cutbacks based on short-term desires which…

It’s not just tennis

Published 1 July 2009

ITV1 slumps to all-time ratings low This is rather hard to believe even allowing for ITV1’s lax summer schedule combined with Wimbledon tennis and the slow but continuing growth of…

Casting suspicion

Published 30 June 2009

BSkyB’s Mike Darcey attacks ‘culture of dependency’ in UK television Up to now, BSkyB has enjoyed a near-privileged position as the UK’s dominant pay-TV operator, and this has been tolerated…

Jackson mania

Published 26 June 2009

Once every so often, a news story breaks of great enough importance that gets the media into such a tizz it makes everything else take a back seat for a…

The wrong answers

Published 24 June 2009

BBC’s Mark Thompson attacks plans to ‘top-slice’ licence fee BBC pledges crackdown on ‘intrusive and humiliating’ broadcasts If politicians tend to live in a world of their own, as evidenced…

The final whistle

Published 23 June 2009

Setanta goes into administration with loss of 200 jobs After numerous ups and downs that somewhat mirrored the trials and tribulations of football itself, the Setanta saga finally draws to…

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