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24 September 2014
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BBC Jam to be suspended


The BBC Executive today confirmed that BBC Jam, the Corporation's online interactive learning service for 5 to 16-year-olds, will be suspended from next Tuesday 20 March 2007, following a decision by the BBC Trust.

 

The Trust's decision follows extensive discussions with Government and the European Commission about how to address allegations from some in the industry that Jam is damaging their interests.

 

Mark Thompson, the BBC's Director-General, said: "We are sorry that BBC Jam is to be suspended, but we believe the Trust has reached the right decision.

 

"We believe that BBC Jam is an innovative proposition, aimed at pushing forward the BBC's digital learning agenda and delivering the formal educational remit enshrined in our Charter.

 

"The service was launched in January 2006 with many conditions attached, following a rigorous consultation process. It was approved by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport in January 2003 and by the European Commission in October the same year.

 

"Since then, the BBC Jam team - and numerous independent suppliers - have aimed to deliver the vision of a distinctive, interactive online resource focussed on the individual learner.

 

"The service, still in its relatively early days of roll-out, has begun to prove itself in delivering those aims, and all involved deserve praise for what they have achieved already.

 

"We remain committed to the vision of serving learners with innovative content. In responding to the BBC Trust's request for fresh proposals for how we should carry forward that vision, we will aim to build on the firm foundations of the content launched in BBC Jam. The BBC Trust will subject those proposals to a full Public Value Test, including a market impact assessment by Ofcom.

 

"We regret that for the BBC, all staff involved in the service, our external production partners and the many people who have enjoyed using BBC Jam over recent months - children, their parents and teachers alike - the decision to suspend the service will come as a real disappointment."

 

Notes to Editors

 

BBC Jam is an online public service (bbc.co.uk/jam) providing resources for learners in support of the curriculum requirements in the UK.

 

The first elements of BBC Jam were launched in January 2006.

 

Little more than 10% of the content of the whole service has been made available, while the remainder was due for roll-out up to September 2008, building up to a portfolio of 136 subject areas (including separate language versions).

 

The service has a total budget of £150m, while 50% of the total content budget - some £45m - was agreed to be commissioned from independent production companies in the private sector.

 

BBC Jam was approved with a complex range of interlocking conditions - including specifying that only a relatively small proportion of the content budget should be spent on "Core" curriculum subjects; limiting the coverage of any one subject; and limiting the scope for secondary commercial exploitation.

 

BBC Jam's service licence, which includes details of all the conditions of the original consent, is available at www.bbc.co.uk/bbctrust.

 

CP/BBC Press Office

 

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Category: BBC; New Media
Date: 14.03.2007
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