Could advertisements fund the World Service?
This week our inbox has been overflowing with emails about the recently-announced changes to the way the World Service is to be funded from 2014, when, like the rest of the BBC, it will be paid for from the UK TV licence.
Interestingly, quite a number of listeners outside the UK want to be able to make financial contribution – although as Alice Choyke from Hungary points out, “it is clearly not possible to make this mandatory”.
So it’s a topic that Rajan raises on this week’s programme with Professor Stephen Barnett, from the University of Westminster. He rules out the idea of listeners’ contributions – you can hear why on the programme.
Rajan asked him whether advertising might be a better option.
Professor Barnett’s view is that “there’ll be a lot of people against that because there is a problem with contaminating the BBC brand, and I think both the BBC corporately and its listeners and viewers would worry about that”.
So we’re interested to know what you think about that.
Would listening to adverts between programmes drive you mad? Would you feel it was contaminating the brand? Or would you be happy if it meant there was more money available for programmes?
We also hear from a regular listener, Dipak Bhandari from Kathmandu in Nepal, who tells Rajan how valuable the World Service is in his country.
And to reinforce his point, we also hear from Narayan Shrestha, who presents a discussion programme made by the World Service Trust and broadcast on 130 radio stations across Nepal.
The idea is to let listeners speak directly to politicians, something they don’t have the opportunity to do elsewhere.
Cathy Packe is the Producer, Over To You