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The Ivors Academy responds to DCMS Select Committee inquiry into the future of Public Service Broadcasting

The Government is exploring what, if anything, should change in the way Public Service Broadcasting works.

The BBC itself makes clear it sees the need for modernisation to keep up with the digital era we live in. We argued it is vital that its evolution doesn’t cause a revolution, where everything that makes the BBC great will be lost.

We showcased the BBC’s central role in commissioning, producing, broadcasting, and developing the most diverse and innovative music, and highlighted the positive impact Public Service Broadcasting has on the music-creating profession.

  • In the UK, the BBC is the biggest commissioner of music, and for many it provides their first steps on the world stage. Initiatives such as BBC Music Introducing have demonstrated the BBC’s pivotal role in providing a platform for emerging talent across the country.
  • The UK’s PSBs are undefeated in providing job opportunities for composers for screen – commissioning and licensing both bespoke scores and library or production music.
  • The BBC allows for new orchestral compositions to be commissioned that otherwise wouldn’t. Orchestral music heavily relies on the BBC employing over 400 musicians in five full-time orchestras, and sponsoring and broadcasting the Proms, which offer the opportunity for new contemporary and cutting-edge composition to be given prominence.
  • The BBC’s public duties also mean it plays a central role in promoting cultural diversity. It is recognised that 75% of music played on BBC radio stations is not played on commercial stations.
  • Broadcast royalties have increasingly come to be considered the only financially viable way of having one’s music played. Broadcast has become significantly more profitable than selling records – or, nowadays, music streaming. In a world where streaming royalties are negligible for the vast majority of creators and the music streaming market is built to squeeze out non-mainstream genres, our public broadcast sector has never been more valuable. Sign our #FixStreaming petition and #KeepMusicAlive
  • In the economic recovery post-Covid, PSBs will be able to provide local job opportunities thanks to their creative hubs outside of London.
  • Stable public funding is what allows the BBC to carry out its immense service to the country’s creators and audiences.
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