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> Hillary Clinton or Obama?
Because itâ€™s exciting, interesting, new and exciting. But Clinton is not that.
> So what does that mean regarding you? Are you also revolutionary or you just fancy him?
Iâ€™m not sure politician are leaders. Last year was good for HArding, because Bush took the position of â€œworse presidentâ€.
America as a country looks strange from outside, because we elected Bush twice. We live in times where american are unnerved and then Obama comes.
> Gordon Brown or Tony Blair?
Gordon Brown is at least honest. I know what he is, heâ€™s a doer, whereas Tony Blair was just an actor.
> You loved him thou? You gave him 50 grand.
Yes, I did. Iâ€™ve been in a Labour party for many many years. We wanted to win, and he looked like the person who will win. And we discovered that that winning was not enough.
> Tony was a master of media, but Gordon failed in that. So you have to have a master of the media now?
Al Goreâ€™s book about broadcasting where he talks about the fact that itâ€™s a two-way way and itâ€™s too powerful for politics now.
Most the traditional media is getting last important.
> More people voted in BB than in last election ..
Yes, but itâ€™s a bit skewed. My kids voted for that lots of time.
But the fact that you need to get Sun on your side, itâ€™s not that important anymore. Sun is selling one million less copies.
> You tried to buy ITV ..
Yes I did.
> And the price is right.
Right, we tried to buy it for 1.50 .. But the board refused, and now its 50p.
> Would you still like to buy ITV?
I think it still can be turned around, but the decline is very fast now.
> How fed up were you when your governors at the BBC did not support you over the Gilligang business?
Avoid them like a plague, because they were afraid.
> Information superhighway. Does it concern you as a trained journalist? It doesnâ€™t necessarily reason to believe that itâ€™s factual or truthful.
One, Iâ€™m not sure who pays for good journalism, and in our lifetimes it was by advertising and government and stuff, but Iâ€™m not sure who pays in the future.
And in terms of television, Iâ€™m also not sure who pays in the future.
They asked me whatâ€™s my definition of public service broadcasting, as opposed to american programming and weâ€™ve managed to sustain it by giving large license feeâ€™s to BBC. So what happens when we donâ€™t have that anymore and commercial television gives everything to sport, as opposed to HBO who funds some incredible dramas.
> BBC should not use the license money to intervene in the commercial market..
Itâ€™s a complicated job. â€œLooks easy to me, someone gives me 3 million pounds and I get to spend itâ€.
> BBC is not involved in the commercial market .. Should it be PBS for Britain?
The commercial market has failed. ITV digital, one of the dire decisions to destroy the station and the brand.
Freeview worked because we had enough money and market. â€œMore telly, less moneyâ€.
> Do you see BBC more involved in the commercial market? This seems unfair.
We were very careful what we do. Weâ€™ve gone to freeview because commercial market have failed. The digital world was left to Murdock and Iâ€™ve though he should dominate the digital world, and it doesnâ€™t.
> So BBC is a player now in this market.
Yes, and it survived and it work.
> Vast majority can still receive 4 and half channel
Not true. 80% of people can receive multi-channel. Largely because of the freeview.
> Do you believe they have more choice?
Youâ€™re coming back to 67 channels and nothing on. The question is going to be, who pays for it. A lot of channels are just repeating other stuff. The question is, who can afford to produce original channel. ITV is producing twice as much, and they canâ€™t afford it.
Sorry, the discussion is too lively for a good transcript. Iâ€™ll update with podcast link when itâ€™s available.