RTS London

RTS London discuss the hunt for the next BBC Director General

In a month that saw No.10 Downing Street train its guns on the BBC, Bolton was pointing out how difficult the job has become. With current Director-General Tony Hall leaving the BBC in the summer to take over as chair of the National Gallery, the search is on for candidates.

There are serious issues to address for an incoming D-G: the Government wants to decriminalise failure to pay the licence fee; the decision by the BBC to make over-75s not on benefits begin paying the licence fee again this year; and the decline in young people accessing BBC services.

Are The Kids Alright?

Children are the canar­ies in the mine, picking things up first,” obser­ved Greg Childs, direc­tor of the Children’s Media Foundation, as he introduced an RTS debate on how children’s TV and content movers and shakers are adapting to the fact that young people have migrated online.

An optimistic tone was established from the start by Alice Webb, the out­ going head of BBC Children’s and Education, who asserted: “Yes, the kids are absolutely fine. They have more choice than they ever had. They are exercising choice and are after things that interest them.

David Abraham delivers RTS London Christmas Lecture 2019

David Abraham (Credit: Phil Barnes)

Speaking at the RTS London Christmas Lecture, he predicted that despite the growth of streaming services a lot of people would still be watching live, scheduled TV in a decade.

He said: “In ten years’ time linear TV will be distributed by IPTV, but scheduled TV will still be important, that more passive way of consuming curated content will have a very important role, not least in news and entertainment.”

About the RTS Digital Convention 2020

 

The online convention explores industry trends and the challenges and opportunities they present in the sector, and how the industry has adapted to the new normal.

BBC Director-General Tim Davie, Channel 4 CEO Alex Mahon, ITV CEO Carolyn McCall and many more will speak at this year’s RTS Digital Convention 2020.

The RTS Digital Convention 2020 is sponsored by YouTube.

 

About the sponsor

Leading animators share their tips for mastering the craft

Neil Kidney, Elmaz Ekrem, Terry Marsh, Christine MacKay and Will Cook (Credit: Phil Barnes)

“Make your face known… just apply and pitch for stuff, even if you might feel out of your depth,” said young 2D animator and film-maker Elmaz Ekrem. “Someone will eventually take a chance on you.”

Ekrem’s film (made with Dominika Ożyńska) about the refugee crisis in Europe, The Law of The Sea, was part of Channel 4’s short-film strand, Random Acts.

The four-strong panel offered advice to the many young animators in the audience.

Making professional productions on the go

Deirdre Mulcahy at the University of Westminster (Credit: RTS London/Phil Barnes)

The freelance producer and trainer gave a demonstration of the smartphone’s filming capability at an RTS London event in early November.

“No matter how big the tool, it comes down to the person who is actually using [it],” said Mulcahy. “Storytelling is about where the focus is – and understanding how you shoot.”

TikTok: The bridge between broadcasters and Gen Z?

Twist and Pulse, winners of Britain's Got Talent: The Champions (Credit: ITV/Syco/Thames)

“There’s a huge opportunity for news broadcasters to tell the softer or more interesting stories through the platform – also [stories] that aren’t necessarily so time relevant. That’s basically what our audience want,” said Edward Lindeman, TikTok’s European strategy manager.

“I don't really want to go on the platform and hear about [Brexit] – but I am interested in learning new things and discovering content.”

IBC review 2019 explores the rise of the FAANGS

Robert Ambrose, consulting editor of IBC 2019, spent much of his time working with content producers. Looking back at September’s conference, he argued there was clear evidence that the industry is going through a period of disruptive change and uncertainty, as content owners try to figure out new business models to deliver content.

This was particularly focused on delivering content direct to the consumer and building a successful subscription streaming service. Both gained lots of coverage at IBC.

RTS London reflect on this year's RTS Cambridge Convention

Reed Hastings and Kirsty Wark (Credit: RTS/Richard Kendal)

The late-September event was hosted by the University of Westminster, and chaired by media producer and consultant Aradhna Tayal. It featured Bloomberg media reporter Joe Mayes, London Centre Chair Phil Barnes and James Cordell, a London committee member and first-time attendee at the convention.

The panel noted that one of the key themes throughout was the rise of streaming and whether the already established subscription video on demand (SVoD) companies – with more set to enter the market – will dominate the UK broadcast industry.