BBC Trust to examine YouView participation

Editor | 31-07-2013

Just as the project has found itself facing a huge challenge in the subscription-free VOD and catch-up arena, YouView is to be scrutinised by the BBC Trust in terms of how it has met the corporation's conditions of engagement.

Only days ago, in a move explicitly designed to capture share of the large section of the UK TV market that does not want or cannot obtain subscriptions, BSkyB launched its £9.99 NOW TV box. This territory had hitherto been more or less the sole preserve of the joint venture between the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5, BT, Talk Talk and Arqiva, with services available via an STB available from the ISPs as part of a package or from retailers at a price of about £300.
The BBC Trust approved the BBC's involvement in YouView In June 2010 subject to a number of conditions which would be reviewed 12 months after launch, to ensure that BBC participation remains consistent with the terms of the Trust's approval.
The Trust's review of this agreement, which will conclude in autumn 2013, will focus on a number of key areas. These will include syndication, as to whether the BBC's involvement in YouView has had an impact on other public service broadcasters in the approach they take to making their programme content available to other platforms and the way in which YouView is promoted by its partners. This will offer particular reference to BBC activity, which is subject to the BBC code on cross promotion.
Commenting on the point of the review, BBC trustee Diane Coyle said: "We put in place conditions to ensure the public got the greatest possible benefit from YouView. Now almost 400,000 YouView boxes have been sold, this review is an opportunity to check that the conditions are working as they should."