BBC NEWS CHIEF PREDICTS AXING OF MAIN TV NEWS PROGRAMMES: Jack Wright (Daily Mail 20/8) said that Fran Unsworth, the BBC director of news, had suggested in an interview that most ‘linear’ television news programmes such as BBC1 News at 10 could be axed within the next decade, to be replaced by news content in the ‘digital space’, and received via mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. Mr Wright reported that she had said:
‘I think TV journalism will still be around because of the power of pictures to tell a story, but it won’t necessarily be received in quite the forms it currently is. There might be one (bulletin) a day, or something. I think there’ll be fewer of them. But I think that the power of how you tell stories through television, pictures, video will just be in a different space. It’ll be in the digital space, it’ll be on, you know, iPlayer. It’ll be on your tablet, your iPhone. We have to think creatively about what the product is, but that’s the direction of travel and I don’t think that’s changed.’
Mr Wright said that although during lockdown more young people had been watching BBC bulletins, Ms Unsworth did not believe they would stick around, although she claimed they would now understand how the BBC was ‘mot just any other news source’. He added that she also believed the pandemic had ‘helped to mend relations between the BBC and Downing Street’ – and that there had been fewer claims of bias.