Following a meeting with the Newspaper Publishers Association, representing the national press, the BBC Trust today confirmed that it has asked the BBC Executive to delay the launch of its range of free mobile applications while the Trust undertakes an assessment of the potential significance of the proposals.
The Trust said the assessment will examine the plans in four areas:
• The extent to which the change is likely to affect users and others
• The financial implications of the change
• The extent to which the change would involve the BBC in a new area of untested activity
• How long the activity will last
The NPA wrote to the chairman of the BBC Trust and to the BBC’s director general earlier this month to express the national newspaper industry’s deep concern that the BBC would be allowed to launch the services in direct competition with commercial operators without prior scrutiny.
David Newell, director of the NPA, said: “It is vital that these proposals are scrutinised properly to avoid any adverse impact on commercial media organisations. We are pleased that the BBC Trust has listened to the industry’s concerns and acted to delay the planned April launch. We hope this will enable a thorough assessment to be undertaken.”
I am a freelance journalist based in the UK and was deputy editor of Press Gazette, the journalists' magazine, from 1993 until 2006. I want to give an independent view on media matters.
You can contact me with stories, ideas and comments by email at firstname.lastname@example.org You can also follow me on Twitter @jonslattery