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The Vision Thing
126
The Vision Thing
The whole ecology of broadcasting is changing rapidly as audiences gain more
choice in how they obtain their information and use their leisure time. Public
service broadcasting’s central role in people’s lives can no longer be taken for
granted. In order to remain at the heart of the National Conversation it has to
stay at the forefront of the changes that are taking place in society, not be
forever trying to catch up. Continued failure to respond to the diversity of today’s
audiences is a certain route to rapidly becoming irrelevant.
But it needn’t be that way. Britain still leads the world in having a strong tradition
of well-funded and high quality public service programme-making. It could also
lead the world in demonstrating how its rich cultural diversity is a source of
unparalleled creative opportunity and take delight in the programme-making
possibilities that offers. Our music and fashion industries are thriving because
they have recognised the value of cross-cultural experimentation and found a
ready market for the resulting innovations. Broadcasting can do the same - but
only if we enable a much wider mix of people to get involved and help to reshape
the way we do things.
We need to make programmes that really resonate with modern Britain so that
audiences of all backgrounds see public service broadcasting as the natural arena
for a culturally intelligent dialogue with each other. A place that makes them feel
equally valued and heard. A place they are drawn to because it makes them feel
good about belonging to and participating in this society.
So let’s do it.
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