BBC iPlayer, James Murdoch & The Online TV Marketplace
James Murdoch clearly thinks that the isn't a bad product at all, according to comments that he made at a Q&A session after the UK Marketing Society's annual lecture [pdf of full speech via MediaGuardian].
While I'm delighted by this, there are a couple of points that he makes about the iPlayer's impact on competition which deserve comment.
First and foremost, his claim that iPlayer is "squashing" a lot of competitors: when the BBC's on demand proposal (of which iPlayer was a key part) was submitted to the BBC Trust, it went through a rigourous approval process.
This included, crucially, a market impact assessment from Ofcom, and the Trust imposed a number of conditions on the proposal to take account of market impact issues. Not only this, but BSkyB actually contributed to both the market impact assessment and the consultation on the Trust's provisional conclusions.
The launch of the BBC's iPlayer has undoubtedly boosted our service.
We believe that BBC iPlayer has already played, and will continue to play, a significant role in popularising TV viewing online to the benefit of all - including licence fee payers, other broadcasters and content producers.
Eric Huggers is Group Controller, BBC Future Media & Technology