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Channel 4 slams BBC plan to open up iPlayer

Other broadcasters to get iPlayer access

Channel 4 has slammed a new BBC proposal that would allow other broadcasters to access the technology behind the BBC iPlayer.

The plan forms part of the BBC Executive's Partnership Proposals, which were released in response to an Ofcom review into public service broadcasting. Also detailed in the proposal was a plan for the corporation to join forces with ITV and BT to offer viewers free-to-air content and TV-on-demand through a broadband-connected set-top box.

BBC iPlayer review

It has also been revealed that the BBC is considering sharing iPlayer content with a national newspaper by embedding the player in the newspaper's website. A number of sources have named the Daily Telegraph as the newspaper but the BBC has refused to confirm this.

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Director general of the BBC, Mark Thompson, said: "Through partnerships I believe broadcasters can help secure the future of public service broadcasting in this country."

However, in response to the proposals, which still need to be approved by the BBC Trust, Channel 4 chief executive Andy Duncan, said: "This is overdue recognition from the BBC that it should be using its privileged position to help support the broader public service ecology."

"Based on our considerable experience of selling advertising around on-demand viewing, we've given the BBC clear feedback that their assumptions about the commercial benefits of a link with the iPlayer are inaccurate. We do not share their view that this particular proposal could deliver an immediate and sizeable financial upside."

See also: BBC, C4 & ITV on-demand service hangs in balance


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