According to the UK Green Party website the Green Party will try to achieve the following if they gain power at the 2010 general election:
CMS640 In television and radio an important component of a public service obligation is the production and promotion of non ratings-led programming. Public service broadcasters will not be expected to maximise ratings where they can demonstrate a cultural value to their work.
CMS641 The primary public service broadcaster will remain the BBC funded wholly by public money from a tax which may be ring-fenced (hypothecated) for public service broadcast use. The operation of this tax should not be regressive. The existing licence fee will be abolished and in the first instance replaced by a guaranteed inflation linked payment from general taxation.
CMS642 As part of its public service obligation the BBC will be required to continue to develop its centres of excellence in all regions of the UK and have a significant local presence in all regions. The centralisation of functions in London does great dis-service to the rest of the country, and modern technology makes it feasible to run a fully dispersed national organisation.
CMS643 The BBC should be organised primarily as a public service and thus not have to behave as if it operated in a commercial market. This is not to discourage innovation in the BBC or to prevent the BBC competing in certain markets against commercial companies, but to recognize that the value and success of the BBC is not solely measured in commercial terms. Following from this the funding of the BBC cannot be viewed solely through an economic prism, but must include the idea of public utility.
CMS644 The Green Party believes in maintaining public funding, as long as the BBC is pursuing clearly stated commitments to non-ratings led programming and continuing to fulfill a public service remit defined by the government through the regulators. This would include significant local production and distribution of content reflecting local communities.
CMS645 Whilst the BBC remains a public service organisation it is vital to distance it from Government or State interference. The level of funding available and its distribution between the BBC and other organisations fulfilling public service obligations shall be removed from direct government control through a democratically appointed Public Service Media Council.
CMS646 The Public Service Media Council (PSMC) will agree with government the total level of funding required for all public service media to deliver the agreed public service obligations. PSMC will distribute the funding to appropriate organisations including the BBC.
CMS647 Where an existing public service medium is being supplanted by a new alternative (as for example in the switch from analogue to Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) broadcasting, or the possible movement of some public service programming to new media) then the government has an obligation to ensure universal access before the old medium is discontinued.
I would be interested to hear both positive and negative views on UK Green Party’s Public Service Broadcasting policies in the comments below?