Furthermore, of those who want cable-TV-like services they will either buy cable TV or satellite DTV. The governments response to this is an effort to force the issue by imposing planned switch-off dates for analog television, but because the public fear that, they will have to replace every television they own; the government are encountering pushback from the public. Due to the dramatic changes in British television in the late 1990s a great deal of requests were made for changes in the regulatory structure.
In response, the government in 2000 proposed the formation of a single regulator for the broadcasting and telecommunications industry (OFCOM), their purpose was to provide a consistency of approach across economic and content issues in the age of coming together. (Briggs, & Cobley, 2002, P136). The future of the BBC has become problematic due to new technology. With new channels being introduced constantly, this has caused many television licence holders to argue against having to pay the licence fee. Such as those that wrote to the BBCs comment page.
Stating that the fee should be abolished and that the BBC obviously wants the fee to remain because it is, in effect free money. They also aired their views that, the BBC is not a public good anymore as there are numerous commercial alternatives; a tax is no longer justified to fund it. Arguing, why those without a television should get BBC radio and web services free, especially given that both are far better than the TV output. Expressing also the feeling of doubtfulness regarding the keep the BBC advert free campaign because the BBC spend a large amount of time advertising its own products.
Querying why this advertising is acceptable but commercial advertising is not. Also stating that the licence takes no account of whether you use the services provided by the BBC or of ability to pay, based only on whether you have a television or not. The overall view was that due to the high level of soaps, repeats, reality and make over shows on the BBC, that most of the time their television are on other channels. Therefore, why should every owner of a television be forced to pay for a broadcast service they do not choose to watch? http://www. bbc. co. uk/thefuture/bpv/comments/bbc_cr_comment10.
html-(between 31st Aug 6th Sept 2004). However, concerning the usage of BBC channels, the BBC differs in its opinion, stating that in 2003/4, 98% of the UK population used the BBC every month. (http://www. bbc. co. uk/info/licencefee/#provides). In the UK, the increase of homes owning a television set, (of which is practically every household). Along with the increase of the usage of televisions sets, which is, on average between four to five hours daily, (of which older people watch twice as much television than children, and women watch more television than men.
1(HMSO 2000). Has caused a huge impact on the sale of newspapers according to a study by HMSO, figures suggest that since the late 1970s the readership of newspapers, (of which was the principal and fastest way to pass on information to mass public) declined. 2(HMSO 2000). In television political bulletins coverage is very much a combined enterprise involving bulletin producers based at their headquarters in BBC, ITN and Sky plus their political teams at Westminster with programmes such as Breakfast News, on BBC, GMTV on ITV and Sky News.
(Briggs, & Cobley, 2002, P457). According to a recent study between 1975 and 1999, the amount of political coverage on terrestrial television bulletins more than halved from 28% of programme content to 13%. (Barnett et al 2000), showing that although in British television news, politics has played an important role, it is a role that has been in decline in recent times. (Briggs, & Cobley, 2002, P456). Some argue that the mass media act as a conservative influence in society, and only give a biased view of the world.
However, others argue that the wealth of information provided by the mass media encourages and promotes a variety of opinions, and this enables the population to be informed on a wide range of issues. For example, one side argue that the media promote democracy by giving an unbiased account of news and that television news has to be partial. However, in research of ITV and BBC news by Gaber in 1997 whilst searching to identify the main sources of political news on television, it revealed that politicians themselves were the most important single source. (Gaber 1997, http://www. psa.
ac. uk/cps/1998%5Cgabor. pdf). Therefore, biased influence must be portrayed to the world by the television news. Conclusion Almost every country in the world now has developed at least one television channel. Television has grown up all over the world, enabling every country to share characteristic of their culture and society with others. However, with the increasing number of television channels, the growing popularity and competition along with the intensifying demand for more programming, it will become more difficult for the government to control the content of television.
Of the past forty years, the rising influences of television is probably the most important development in the media, and according to Gidden (2002 P452), If current trends in television watching continue, by the age of eighteen the average child born today will have spent more time watching television than in any other activity except sleep. (Word count: 2,238).
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