Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Grade says no future for children's shows on ITV1

ITV Chairman Michael Grade has told MPs that children's programming has no future on ITV1 reports Chris Tryhorn on Media Guardian (free registration required).
"In terms of the valuable air time on a main network like ITV1, maintaining a loss-leading service for children seems to be unlikely to be sustained in the medium to long term," he said.

Pressed if that meant there would be no children's programming in the main ITV1 schedule in the long term, he replied: "I can't see it, no."

At the moment ITV is still bound to show eight hours of children's programmes a week on ITV1, but so far it has failed to persuade media watchdog Ofcom to reduce that obligation.

Once analogue switch off is completed in 2012, ITV hopes it can move all its children's programmes to CITV, the free-to-air digital channel launched a year ago, which it says is already available in 90% of homes.

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