The Curmudgeon


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Media Management

Triumph for Big Society as personal intervention saves local news

The Prime Minister has intervened to stop a BBC plot to axe local news services in his Witnit constituency.

He wrote to the director general, Mark Thompson, to express his displeasure at the way the Government's efficiency-savings agenda had been misinterpreted as somehow involving cuts that might affect someone other than the little people.

By a remarkable coincidence, the famously independent Thompson had already decided not to proceed with the savings, blaming "some of my colleagues" for daring to propose such a retrograde step.

The Prime Minister's intervention may have been prompted by yesterday's visit to Wapping, where he reassured Rupert Murdoch about the Government's intention to rubber-stamp the takeover of BSkyB.

Although the Prime Minister avoided being seen making "informal contact" with Murdoch's orifices, he was almost certainly appraised of News Corporation's requirements as regards a hacker's charter and the ongoing Lansley-style reform of the BBC.

Jeremy C Hunt, the Secretary for Cultchah, Meedjah and Giggs, while nearly as ferociously independent as Thompson, has indicated that he might be inclined to fall in with Murdoch's wishes, despite all the dinners News Corporation has bought him.

The leader of the opposition, Ed Miliband, was present "to provide political balance" by agreeing with all the Government's plans but saying they go too far and too fast and warning that protest would be counter-productive.


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