The leaders of nine top UK broadcasters have issued a statement urging the government to pass the Media Bill ahead of the UK General Election. 

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced on Wednesday that a UK General Election will be held on 4 July. MPs now have until Thursday 30 May to pass remaining legislation in a period known as the wash-up before Parliament is dissolved. 

2. Media Bill

Broadcast execs urge UK parliament to pass Media Bill

Executives including Sky’s Dana Strong, ITV’s Carolyn McCall and the BBC’s Tim Davie issued a joint statement which said: “As leading CEOs from the UK broadcasting industry, we call on politicians across Parliament not to let the opportunity to modernise the rules that govern our sector pass. The Media Bill as currently drafted is widely supported across industry and Parliament itself and has undergone Parliamentary scrutiny in the Select Committee and both Houses of Parliament, having completed second reading and committee stage in both houses.” 

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“The reforms proposed in the Bill will update key aspects of media legislation for the online TV era, to ensure audiences continue to benefit from the highest quality UK-originated content from the PSBs, and help the UK’s content sector thrive for years to come,” the statement added. 

Signatories to the statement also included Channel 4’s Alex Mahon, Channel 5 and Paramount’s Sarah Rose, STV’s Simon Pitts, S4C’s Sioned Wiliam, MG Alba’s Domhnall Campbell and ITN’s Rachel Corp. 

The Media Bill is currently in its “third reading” stage in the House of Lords and is very nearly at point where it can pass. It is set to introduce an Ofcom-regulated video-on-demand code for major streaming platforms such as Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney+, subjecting them to editorial standards and accessibility requirements similar to broadcast TV.  

It will also allow Channel 4 to produce and monetise its own content and ensure prominence of public service broadcasters on connected TV platforms. 

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