RTS Cambridge Convention 2017

News executives debate the accuracy of online breaking news coverage

"Publish and be damned.” That was the credo of the great newspaperman Hugh Cudlipp, who ran the Daily Mirror during its glory days and was the architect of post-war popular journalism.

If only it were that simple in the age of Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. For TV news people, the digital era is throwing up new challenges and dilemmas, no more so than when a big, national news story breaks, such as a terrorist attack.

Step up to counter harassment of journalists demands BBC Chairman

A couple of years ago, in his MacTaggart lecture, Armando Iannucci called public service broadcasting “one of the best things we’ve ever done” as a country. It’s something I have always believed. And I believe that the British public does as well.

The BBC always features right at the top of those lists that often appear in the papers of the things that make us feel most proud to be British.

I remember reading one of those not long ago. You know you occupy a special place in the nation’s heart when you’re right up there between Shakespeare and fish and chips.

A+E Networks boss Nancy Dubuc: Celebrating failure is key

A+E Networks has successfully reinvented itself as a producer of original global content. Giving the international keynote address at the RTS Convention, President and CEO Nancy Dubuc explained how the US media giant had moved into new broadcasting territory.

In 2002, A+E lost the rights to reruns of the long-running police procedural Law & Order. This was a big blow, because the network had been pulling in huge audiences on the back of the crime show.

How TV can tackle the challenges of the digital era

How well equipped is British TV to make the most of the changes that technology entrepreneurs are unleashing around the world?

There is a consensus that, creatively, UK television continues to punch above its weight. Equally, there is a fear that the unregulated tech giants threaten domestic broadcast businesses as never before.

Opening the 2017 RTS Cambridge Convention, conference chairman and Sky group COO Andrew Griffith stressed the health of British television while also acknowledging the growing competition from the online behemoths.

Watch highlights from the RTS Cambridge Convention 2017

James Murdoch in conversation with Sarah Sands (Credit: RTS/Paul Hampartsoumian)

The three-day Convention featured keynotes from James Murdoch, Ofcom chief Sharon White and the Secretary of State Karen Bradley MP, as well as some lively panel discussions.

Watch highlights from the event below, or scroll down to watch the sessions in full. You can read more about this year's RTS Cambridge in the October issue of Television magazine.

Video: Seizing The Opportunity

Reflecting on the discussion and debate of the RTS Cambridge Convention 2017, some of the leading figures in the industry share what they have learned and how their organisations will flourish in the future world.


Tim Hincks, Co-CEO, Expectation Entertainment


David Abraham, Chief Executive, Channel 4

Damian Collins MP, Chairman, Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee

Mai Fyfield, Chief Strategy and Commercial Officer, Sky

Tom Mockridge, Chief Executive, Virgin Media

Video: Talent – How To Find It, Nurture It, Pay For It and Keep It

Finding and keeping the best talent is the key to commercial success – whether it’s the face of your channel, or the personalities who anchor your entertainment formats.  But it’s a tricky balancing act. Agreeing the right deal, keeping your existing talent happy and preventing your rivals from poaching them is enough to keep broadcast execs awake at night.  A panel of experts take a look at navigating the talent jungle. 
Chaired by Heather Jones, General Manager UK / Senior VP of Content & Creative, A+E Networks, the panel features:

Video: Does TV have a problem with class?

Long term success is built by mobilising and engaging the very best talent both on and off screen. Whilst progress has been made on diversity, issues such as class, social mobility and the under-representation of some viewpoints are now rising up the agenda. With the contribution of some young people trying to take their first steps into broadcasting, the panellists debate the issues and the solutions in this important area.
Tim Hincks, co-CEO of Expectation Entertainment, chairs a panel including:

Greg Dyke, broadcaster and former BBC Director-General

Video: A League of Our Own? The future of entertainment TV

Pointless host Richard Osman presents a light-hearted look at the future of entertainment. 
A panel of leading commissioners offer their thoughts on how to have a linear hit in a digital age. What are the next big trends? Can entertainment break out of Saturday nights?  The session also features a very special all-star League of Their Own task with a number of familiar faces.

On the panel with Richard are: 

Philip Edgar-Jones, Director of Sky Arts and Head of Entertainment, Sky

Siobhan Greene, Head of Entertainment, ITV