Scotland

Is Scottish TV production falling behind?

ouglas Henshall starred as DI Jimmy Perez in the Scottish BAFTA-winning drama Shetland (Credit: BBC/ITV Studios/Mark Mainz)

Is the glass half full or half empty? That classic question, or cliché, is actually a really useful way to look at the production industry in Scotland. On the surface, all appears rosy. 

The BBC has survived largely intact from the Charter renewal process. Whatever emerges from the scrapping of the in-house guarantee and the establishment of BBC Studios, the corporation’s spending commitment in the nations and regions of the UK remains undamaged.  

Our friend in the West

Ron Jones

One of the best contributions to the issue of the public purposes of the BBC was written almost 20 years ago by a then-future Chair of the BBC Board of Governors, Gavyn Davies.

He wrote: “Some form of market failure must lie at the heart of any concept of public service broadcasting. Beyond simply using the catchphrase that public service broadcasting must ‘inform, educate and entertain’, we must add ‘inform, educate and entertain in a way that the private sector, left unregulated, would not do’. Otherwise, why not leave matters entirely to the private sector?”

Our Friend in the North

It is impossible to summarise the political change that swept through Scotland in the period between the independence referendum and the general election. Yes, it was unprecedented. Yes, it was seismic. And yes, it has delivered the biggest number of pro-independence MPs to Westminster since the romantic heydays of Irish nationalism.

What the SNP's 'Team 56' means for broadcasting

BBC Scotland

With Team 56 – as SNP MPs call themselves – forming the third-largest party in Parliament, the impact on broadcasting in the UK is likely to be profound. And the effects are certain to spread beyond the BBC Charter debate.

The economist Jeremy Peat, a former BBC Scotland Governor and Trustee, observes that the general election outcome "represents a massive vote for change," requiring "not sticking plaster, but fundamental change." He adds: "We are miles away from a stable equilibrium."