You’ll know that I have had some thoughts about the nature of a PSP and whether or not OFCOM should look to create/fund one. To summarise these thoughts are:-
- Yes they should
- Not in the way that they are currently proposing to do so
The Register is obviously wholeheartedly against this idea, qed their referring to it as a “Nathan Barley Quango”. Far from being as frivolous as a Nathan Barley Quango the proposals for it were focused around the most boring elements of public service, with little understanding of the value of playful proposals for content delivery. But largely I think it is a proposal that should continue to be investigated. The main reason for this is that, with the exception of the BBC, television companies focus their efforts and thoughts on the funding and delivery of television programming. This is as it should be. But there is an equally creative community that could really benefit from, and benefit, a PSP. Real leaps forward in online development (content, technical etc) are likely to come from projects with more creative freedom, clearly defined outcomes to make people think and reasonable budgets. No one ever made a great leap forward when creating a brochure ware site.
One only has to look at the commercial and societal benefits that Channel 4 created when it was set up to see the virtue of this argument.
Some have thought that tv companies should retain responsibility for online public service publishing, yes if they would give it the creative freedom, budget and respect it deserves, but at the moment that’s not happening in the commercial sector and the BBC needs something to push against to drive further creative sucesses such as their excellent project that accompanied the Rome series – CDX – which a real example of creativity and lateral thinking in public service online projects.
The comments are quite funny however so see if you can helicopter above the situation and generate some bandwidth to flash mob the low lying fruit on this article….