30 April 2007

BBC Trust Blows It

The bad news:

we recognise and share the strength of feeling on platform neutrality. We do not consider it practicable to offer catch-up television over the internet on a platform neutral basis immediately. We consider it preferable to allow the BBC to provide value to a majority of users now rather than to wait until full platform neutrality can be achieved before providing catch-up television. We still require platform neutrality for seven-day catch-up television over the internet within a reasonable timeframe, but we have decided not to specify a deadline for achieving this. To counter-balance this, the Trust will take a more active role in holding the Executive to account on the issue by auditing its progress every six months.

Six-monthly audit, eh? Heavy - that's really going to make a difference.

The good news:

In our consultation, members of the public expressed strong feeling in large numbers that seven-day catch-up television over the internet should be available to consumers who are not using Microsoft software. 81 per cent (5,804) said this was very important and a further 5 per cent (355) said it was important. Such was the strength of feeling that respondents did not appreciate, or did not consider it relevant, that the Trust was proposing that the BBC achieves platform neutrality within a specified period. Any period of excluding other operating systems was apparently considered unacceptable by our public respondents.

OK, we lost, but it looks like a lot of us cared enough to act: that's good, not least for the future.

La vida es una lucha.

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