Radio Authority boss sets out vision

Radio Authority chairman Richard Hooper set out his “radical vision” to significantly deregulate the radio industry at the Radio Festival in Glasgow yesterday (Tuesday). He offered to set up a tier of not-for-profit radio stations to ensure plurality.

Hooper outlined the Radio Authority’s submission to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport/Department of Trade and Industry’s White Paper.

The Radio Authority proposes a Radio Regulator, within a vertically integrated “Ofcom”, with responsibility for licensing and content regulation for analogue and digital stations and multiplexes.

The regulatory body proposed liberalising national ownership by replacing the points system with UK competition rules, with local ownership of analogue and digital licences governed by “simple, transparent rules”. The proposed rules provide that where ten or more Independent Local Radio (ILR) analogue licences exist, no more than four may be owned by the same company to ensure plurality of ownership in place of the “current opaque system”.

The Radio Regulator would not have responsibility for licensing radio stations broadcasting over the Internet, telephone, cable and satellite platforms but would offer co-regulation of advertising and programming to these non-licensed stations.

Public interest tests in cross-media ownership would be abolished in favour of measures ensuring plurality. The beauty parade method of licensing would continue to prevail over auctions.

Introduction of a tier of not-for-profit radio stations called “Access Radio” is also proposed. Access Radio would be seed-corn funded by a new Radio Fund, drawn from sources such as a levy on national radio advertising revenue from ILR services.

Hooper also called for external regulation of the BBC under “Ofcom” saying: “As the BBC moves further into radio services and related audio output with commercial implications, they will need the regulation equivalent to that which applies to commercial broadcasters.”

There is also a proposal to extend ILR and Independent National Radio analogue licences from eight to 12 years.

Latest from Marketing Week

NOT REGISTERED? IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email subscriptions@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here