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British Broadcasting Corporation
Industry Predecessor Founded Founder(s) Headquarters Area served
Broadcasting British Broadcasting Company 18 October 1922 Sir John Reith City of Westminster, London, United Kingdom Worldwide Sir Michael Lyons (Chairman, BBC Trust) Mark Thompson (Director-General) Television, Radio & Online www.bbc.co.uk
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) is the principal public service broadcaster in the United Kingdom, headquartered in the Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff. Its main responsibility is to provide public service broadcasting in the United Kingdom, Channel Islands and Isle of Man. The BBC is an autonomous public service broadcaster that operates under a Royal Charter. Within the United Kingdom its work is funded principally by an annual television licence fee, which is charged to all United Kingdom households, companies and organisations using any type of equipment to record and/or receive live television broadcasts; the level of the fee is set annually by the British Government and agreed by Parliament. Outside the UK, the BBC World Service has provided services by direct broadcasting and re-transmission contracts by sound radio since the inauguration of the BBC Empire Service in December 1932, and more recently by television and online. Though sharing some of the facilities of the domestic services, particularly for news and current affairs output, the World Service has a separate Managing Director, and its operating costs have historically been funded mainly by direct grants from the UK government. These grants were determined independently of the domestic licence fee. A recent spending review has announced plans for the funding for the world service to be drawn from the domestic licence fee.
The Corporation's 'guaranteed' income from the licence fee and the World Service grants are supplemented by profits from commercial operations through a wholly owned subsidiary, BBC Worldwide Ltd. The company's activities include programme- and format-sales, magazines including Radio Times and book publishing. The BBC also earns additional income from selling certain programmemaking services through BBC Studios and Post Production Ltd., formerly BBC Resources Ltd, another wholly owned trading subsidiary of the corporation.
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1 History 2 Governance o 2.1 BBC Trust o 2.2 Executive Board o 2.3 Corporate structure 3 Finance o 3.1 Revenue o 3.2 Expenditure 4 Headquarters and regional offices 5 Services o 5.1 Television o 5.2 Radio o 5.3 News o 5.4 Attitudes toward the BBC in popular culture 6 Criticism and controversies 7 Other media venues o 7.1 Internet o 7.2 Interactive television o 7.3 Commercial services o 7.4 Music o 7.5 Miscellaneous 8 Unions 9 Cultural significance 10 See also 11 References 12 Bibliography 13 Further reading 14 External links
Further information: Timeline of the BBC Main article: British Broadcasting Company
everybody.. The motto is generally attributed to Montague John Rendall. London. Western Electric. "As I was saying before we were so rudely interrupted .. alternating between an improved Baird mechanical 240 line system and the all electronic 405 line Marconi-EMI system. incorporating the motto "Nation shall speak peace unto Nation". the first person to appear when transmission resumed was Jasmine Bligh and the words said were "Good afternoon. General Electric. The superiority of the electronic system saw the mechanical system dropped early the following year. from station 2LO. Metropolitan-Vickers." In fact. The British Broadcasting Company Ltd was created by the British General Post Office (GPO) and John Reith applied for a job with the existing company and later became its employee general manager. A widely reported urban myth is that. Limited regular broadcasts using this system began in 1934. in Torquay with the BBC among the 23 founding broadcasting organisations. the Corporation adopted the coat of arms. and an expanded service (now named the BBC Television Service) started from Alexandra Palace in 1936. To represent its purpose and values. The motto is said to be a "felicitous adaptation" of Micah 4: 3 "nation shall not lift up a sword against nation". announcer Leslie Mitchell started by saying. upon resumption of service. . The original company was founded in 1922 by a group of six telecommunications companies—Marconi.. Experimental television broadcasts were started in 1932 using an electromechanical 30 line system developed by John Logie Baird. The company was wound-up and on 1 January 1927 a new non-commercial entity called the British Broadcasting Corporation established under a Royal Charter became successor in interest. and British Thomson-Houston—to broadcast experimental radio services. How are you? Do you remember me. located at Marconi House.?" The European Broadcasting Union was formed on 12 February 1950. Jasmine Bligh .The BBC coat of arms The privately owned BBC was the world's first national broadcasting organisation and was founded on 18 October 1922 as the British Broadcasting Company Ltd. and member of the first BBC Board of Governors. former headmaster of Winchester College. The first transmission was on 14 November of that year. Radio Communication Company. Television broadcasting was suspended from 1 September 1939 to 7 June 1946 during the Second World War..
and non-musical content such as quiz shows. and digital television services. created initially to provide subtitling. As well as the four national channels. a series of local BBC radio stations were established in 1967. The BBC Research Department has played a major part in the development of broadcasting and recording techniques. the BBC released minutes of the Board meeting which led to Greg Dyke's resignation. Greg Dyke. the BBC has faced increased competition from the commercial sector (and from the advertiserfunded public service broadcaster Channel 4). BBC2 used the higher resolution 625 line standard which had been standardised across Europe. cable television. and forced the British government finally to regulate radio services to permit nationally based advertising-financed services. and ITV was very heavily criticised for not providing enough quality programming. in 1964.Competition to the BBC was introduced in 1955 with the commercial and independently operated television network ITV. On 18 October 2007. in which the BBC was praised for the quality and range of its output. especially on satellite television. The 405 line VHF transmissions of BBC1 (and ITV) were continued for compatibility with older television receivers until 1985. but developed into a news and information service. In January 2007. including Radio London. readings. However. BBC2 was broadcast in colour from 1 July 1967. the BBC monopoly on radio services would persist into the 1970s. Ceefax. BBC World Service is funded by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. renaming the existing service BBC1. more commonly known as the Foreign Office or the FCO. The Home Service became Radio 4 offering news. This led to resignations of senior management members at the time including the then Director General. In 1978 BBC staff went on strike just before the Christmas of that year. As a result of the Pilkington Committee report of 1962. thus blocking out the transmission of both channels and amalgamating all four radio stations into one. the BBC's teletext service. Unlike the other departments of the BBC. is the British government department responsible for promoting the interests of the United Kingdom abroad. the decision was taken to award the BBC a second television channel. The "Third" programme became Radio 3 offering classical music and cultural programming. In the early days it carried out essential research into acoustics and programme level and noise measurement. Since the deregulation of the UK television and radio market in the 1980s. The Light Programme was split into Radio 1 offering continuous "Popular" music and Radio 2 more "Easy Listening". In 1974. dramas and plays. The 2004 Hutton Inquiry and the subsequent Report raised questions about the BBC's journalistic standards and its impartiality. BBC Director General Mark Thompson announced a controversial plan to make major cuts and reduce the size of the BBC as an . and was joined by BBC 1 and ITV on 15 November 1969. BBC2. was introduced. Starting in 1964 a series of pirate radio stations (starting with Radio Caroline) came on the air. In response the BBC reorganised and renamed their radio channels. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
he is the BBC's Editor-in-Chief and chairs the Executive Board. consolidating news operations. who is appointed by the Trust. who have threatened a series of strikes. Promoting education and learning. It states that the Corporation exists to serve the public interest and to promote its public purposes: • • • • • • Sustaining citizenship and civil society. the Board of Governors. and appoints the Director-General. however the BBC have stated that the cuts are essential to move the organisation forward and concentrate on increasing the quality of programming. with its activities being overseen by the BBC Trust (formerly the Board of Governors).800 redundancies. The current members of the Trust are: • Sir Michael Lyons (Chairman) . This Charter also created the largest change in the governance of the Corporation since its inception. regions and communities. BBC Trustees are appointed by the British monarch on advice of government ministers. and replaced it with the BBC Trust and a formalised Executive Board. and taking a leading role in the switchover to digital television.  BBC Trust Main article: BBC Trust The BBC Trust was formed on 1 January 2007. its nations. Representing the UK. General management of the organisation is in the hands of a Director-General. educate and entertain". The plans included a reduction in posts of 2.organisation. The 2007 Charter specifies that the mission of the Corporation is to "inform. Stimulating creativity and cultural excellence.500. reducing programming output by 10% and selling off the flagship Television Centre building in London.  Governance The BBC is a corporation. assesses the performance of the BBC Executive Board in delivering the BBC's services. These plans have been fiercely opposed by unions. replacing the Board of Governors as the governing body of the Corporation. independent from direct government intervention. The current Charter came into effect on 1 January 2007 and runs until 31 December 2016. The Royal Charter is reviewed every 10 years. Helping to deliver to the public the benefit of emerging communications technologies and services. Bringing the UK to the world and the world to the UK. It abolished the sometimes controversial governing body. The Trust sets the strategy for the corporation. including 1.
co-founder and Chief Executive. BBC Vision) Tim Davie (Director. British Airways Dr Mike Lynch OBE. Chief Executive. The Executive Board consists of both Executive and NonExecutive directors. Autonomy Corporation David Robbie. Executive directors: • • • • • • • • • Mark Thompson (Chairman of the Executive Board. Mark Thompson. BBC People) Zarin Patel (Chief Financial Officer) Caroline Thomson (Chief Operating Officer) Peter Salmon (Director. Director. Future Media & Technology) Lucy Adams (Director. Barclays Robert Webb QC. BBC Worldwide Ltd) former General Counsel. BBC North) Non-executive directors: • • • • • • Marcus Agius (senior non-executive director). and the BBC's Editor-in-Chief) Mark Byford (Deputy Chairman of the Executive Board. and is headed by the DirectorGeneral. Juniper Communications Val Gooding former Chief Executive of BUPA  Corporate structure • • • Trust Unit Director-General's Office Content Groups: . BBC Audio & Music) Erik Huggers (Director.• • • • • • • • • • Richard Ayre Diane Coyle Anthony Fry Alison Hastings Dame Patricia Hodgson Rotha Johnston Elan Closs Stephens David Liddiment Bill Matthews Mehmuda Mian The post of Vice Chairman is currently vacant  Executive Board The Executive Board is responsible for operational management and delivery of services within a framework set by the BBC Trust. Journalism Group) Jana Bennett OBE (Director. Rexam Dr Samir Shah OBE. (also chairman. Deputy DirectorGeneral. Director-General. Group Finance Director. Chairman.
This TV Licensing collection is currently carried out by Capita.  Revenue See also: Television licence and Television licensing in the United Kingdom The principal means of funding the BBC is through the television licence. A 50% discount is also offered to registered blind. The revenue is collected privately and is paid into the central government Consolidated Fund. an outside agency. as follows: . Media and Sport (DCMS) and the Treasury and approved by Parliament via legislation. legal. According to the BBC's 2008–2009 Annual Report.• • Journalism (incorporates News. Communications and Audiences o Finance o BBC People (incorporates human resources and training) Commercial Groups: o BBC Worldwide Ltd o BBC Studios and Post Production Ltd. strategy. costing £145. Additional revenues are paid by the Department for Work and Pensions to compensate for subsidised licences for eligible over-75 year olds.26 billion in 2009/10 compared to £5. its income can be broken down. however no licence is required to own a television used for other means. property and distribution) o Marketing. Such a licence is required to receive broadcast television within the UK. £1. with BBC Worldwide contributing some £145 million to the BBC's core public service business. Income from commercial enterprises and from overseas sales of its catalogue of programmes has substantially increased over recent years.50 per year per household (as of April 2010). or for sound only radio sets (though a separate licence for these was also required for non-TV households until 1971) The cost of a television licence is set by the government and enforced by the criminal law. formerly BBC Resources o o o  Finance The BBC has the second largest budget of any UK broadcaster with an operating expenditure of £4. Sport and Global News) Vision (incorporates television production and commissioning) Audio & Music (incorporates radio and music production and commissioning) o Future Media & Technology (incorporates web-based services plus Research and Development) Professional Services: o Operations (incorporates policy. A discount is available for households with only black-and-white television sets.9 billion for ITV and £214 million in 2007 for GCap Media (the largest commercial radio broadcaster). Funds are then allocated by the Department of Culture. a process defined in the Communications Act 2003.9 billion for British Sky Broadcasting.
8 million in licence fees collected from householders.02 . especially as there have been cases where such letters have been sent to premises which are up to date with their payments.9 million from BBC Commercial Businesses. such as providing content to overseas broadcasters and concert ticket sales.493. multi-channel availability. 3. Audio clips and television broadcasts are used to inform listeners of the BBC's comprehensive database.6 million from government grants.1 million from other income. or do not require a TV licence. £41. £294. attracted criticism.04 BBC Radio 1. It has been argued that in an age of multi stream. There are a number of pressure groups campaigning on the issue of the licence fee. The amount of each licence fee spent monthly breaks down as follows: Department Monthly cost (GBP) BBC ONE £3. The licence fee has. The BBC's use of private sector company Capita Group to send letters to premises not paying the licence fee has been criticised. The BBC uses an advertising campaign to inform customers of the requirement to pay the licence fee. £775. for having a threatening nature and language used to scare evaders into paying.08 Nations and English Regions television £1. an obligation to pay a licence fee is no longer appropriate. 2.52 Transmission and collection costs £1. however. 4 and Five Live £1. These letters and adverts have been criticised by Conservative MPs Boris Johnson and Ann Widdecombe.52 BBC TWO £1.• • • • £3.  Expenditure The BBC gave two forms of expenditure statement for the financial year 2005–2006.
54 The total broadcasting spend for 2005–2006 is given as: Department Total cost (£million) Television 1443 Radio 218 BBC Online 72 BBC jam 36 Interactive TV (BBCi) 18 Local radio and regional television 370 Programme related spend 338 Overheads and Digital UK 315 Restructuring 107 Transmission and collection costs 320 Total 3237  Headquarters and regional offices .00 68p 36p 14p 10p 8p £10.Digital television channels Nations' and local radio BBC Online BBC Jam Digital radio stations Interactive TV (BBC Red Button) Total £1.
and BBC 7. London. England The headquarters of BBC Northern Ireland at Broadcasting House on Ormeau Avenue. The major part of this plan involves the demolition of the two post-war extensions to the building and construction of an extension designed by Sir Richard MacCormac. Broadcasting House (Cardiff). characters from William Shakespeare's play The Tempest. Belfast. BBC Radio 4. Following completion Broadcasting House will also be home to most of the BBC's national radio stations. As part of a major reorganisation of BBC property. the entire BBC News operation is expected to relocate from the News Centre at BBC Television Centre to the refurbished Broadcasting House to create what is being described as "one of the world's largest live broadcast centres". sculpted by Eric Gill. although many of these will move by 2011 to the purpose-built MediaCityUK in Salford. They are BBC Radio 3. and the BBC World Service. which includes the Media Centre. Broadcast Centre and Centre House. London. Greater Manchester. By far the largest concentration of BBC staff in the UK exists in White City and Shepherd's Bush in West London. Broadcasting House (Belfast). Northern Ireland Main article: List of BBC properties Further information: Broadcasting House. BBC Television Centre Broadcasting House in Portland Place. Renovation of Broadcasting House began in 2002 and is scheduled for completion in 2012. but much of it is due to return to .The headquarters of the BBC at Broadcasting House in Portland Place. It is home to three of the ten BBC national radio networks (of which five are currently digital only services not carried on conventional 'analogue' radio). On the front of the building are statues of Prospero and Ariel. is the official headquarters of the BBC. BBC News is currently based at White City. Well-known buildings in the White City and Shepherd's Bush area include BBC Television Centre and the White City complex.
which is home to the world-famous BBC Natural History Unit. Manchester but moving to MediaCityUK by 2011) Leeds (Quarry Hill) Bristol (Broadcasting House Bristol). along with the World Service. As well as the two main sites in London (Broadcasting House and White City). Scotland. This will mark a major decentralisation of the Corporation's operations from London. the BBC is planning to move several departments including BBC Sport and BBC Children's. on completion of the redevelopment there. In 2011. .Home of the BBC's biggest 'English Region' BBC South There are also many smaller local and regional studios scattered throughout the UK. Newcastle BBC Scotland's and BBC Alba's HQ in Glasgow. Greater Manchester.Broadcasting House. Southampton . as well as BBC Radio 5 Live north to newly built premises in Salford Quays.  Services  Television Main article: BBC Television BBC North East & Cumbria. there are seven other major BBC production centres in the UK: • • • • • • • • Cardiff (Broadcasting House Cardiff) Belfast (Broadcasting House Belfast) Glasgow (BBC Pacific Quay) Birmingham (The Mailbox) Manchester (currently based in Oxford Road.
Since 1975. BBC One and BBC Two are the BBC's flagship television channels. BBC One would follow in November 1969. BBC Alba. then carry a small-scale regular colour service from 1967. BBC Parliament. was launched in September 2008. BBC Four. received off-air. or from digital satellite. the BBC channels are available in a number of ways. with analogue transmission being phased out by December 2012. BBC News. It is also the first multi-genre channel to come entirely from Scotland with almost all of its programmes made in Scotland. Northern Ireland. Several digital only stations are also broadcast: BBC Three. the BBC has also provided its TV programmes to the British Forces Broadcasting Service (BFBS). allowing members of UK military serving abroad to watch and listen to them on two dedicated TV channels. A new Scottish Gaelic television channel.e. or via 'deflectors' – transmitters in the Republic which rebroadcast broadcasts from the UK. In these countries digital and cable operators carry a range of BBC channels these include BBC One. BBC One is a regionalised TV service which provides opt-outs throughout the day for local news and other local programming. and states that it hopes to produce 100% of new programmes in HDTV by 2010. BBC Two variations within England are currently rare. Scotland and Wales. i.MediaCity:UK. CBBC and CBeebies. . albeit on analogue only. The corporation has been producing programmes in the format for many years. a high-definition simulcast of BBC One was launched. These variations are more pronounced in the BBC 'Nations'. On 3 November 2010. From 9 June 2006. though most regions still have the ability to 'opt out' of the main feed. Switzerland and the Netherlands. BBC Two was also the first channel to be transmitted on 625 lines in 1964. The service is currently[when?] only available via satellite and cable television. In the Republic of Ireland. Digital television is now in widespread use in the UK. BBC Two and BBC World News. where the presentation is mostly carried out locally on BBC One and Two. the BBC began a 6–12 month trial of high-definition television broadcasts under the name BBC HD. although viewers in the Republic of Ireland may receive BBC services via 'overspill' from transmitters in Northern Ireland or Wales. and two children's channels. Manchester In the UK.
6 Music (less mainstream genres of music). partly because the island has long been served by the independent commercial radio station Manx Radio. The World Service is a major source of news and information programming and can be received in 150 capital cities worldwide. The BBC also provides separate local radio services for the Channel Islands of Guernsey. BBC Radio 7 (comedy. BBC Radio Scotland. and BBC Radio Foyle.9 million weekly listeners) Radio 3 (classical and jazz music) Radio 4 (current affairs. the BBC produces the BBC World Service funded by the Foreign Office. .In 2008. There is also a network of local stations with a mixture of talk. drama & children's programming) and BBC Asian Network (British South Asian talk. The BBC does not offer separate local services for the Isle of Man. These services are provided as a convenience. news and music in England and the Channel Islands as well as national stations (Nations' radio) of BBC Radio Wales.BBC Guernsey and Jersey.BBC Radio Jersey. the BBC began experimenting with live streaming of certain channels in the UK. In addition the BBC World Service is now also broadcast nationally in the UK on DAB. with a weekly audience estimate of 163 million listeners worldwide. drama and comedy) Radio 5 Live (24 hour news.  Radio Further information: BBC Radio. For a worldwide audience. with 12. BBC Local Radio The BBC has five major national stations: • • • • • Radio 1 ("the best new music and entertainment") Radio 2 (the UK's most listened to radio station. and in November 2008. music and news in English and in many South Asian languages). which is broadcast worldwide on shortwave radio. with local TV news coverage from BBC Channel Islands. BBC Radio nan Gaidheal (in Scots Gaelic). BBC Radio Ulster. urban and gospel music). As of 2005. a station which had evolved from BBC Local Radio origins in the 1970s and still is broadcast on Medium Wave frequencies in some parts of England. BBC Radio Cymru (in Welsh). factual. sports and talk) In recent years some further national stations have been introduced on digital radio platforms including Five Live Sports Extra (a companion to Five Live for additional events coverage). all standard BBC television channels were made available to watch online. since strictly the Channel Islands are not part of the United Kingdom so the funding for the Guernsey and Jersey broadcasts comes largely from locally collected licence fees. the Service was broadcasting in 33 languages and dialects (including English). and on DAB Digital Radio in the UK. 1Xtra (for black. though not all languages are broadcast in all areas.
was launched as the first (and now oldest) legal independent radio station in the country. Historically. are available over the Internet in the RealAudio streaming format. The BBC is a patron of The Radio Academy. In April 2005. the BBC did not enjoy a complete monopoly before this as several Continental stations (such as Radio Luxembourg) broadcast programmes in English to Britain since the 1930s and the Isle of Man based Manx Radio began in 1964. then under the name Radio York. Since 1943. e-mail alerts.In 2005. BBC Radio 1 is carried in the United States and Canada on XM Satellite Radio and Sirius Satellite Radio. and regional BBC radio stations. as well as BBC Red Button. as well as the BBC World Service. which broadcasts in countries where British troops are stationed. .[not in citation given] providing services to BBC domestic radio as well as television networks such as the BBC News. the BBC has also provided radio programming to the British Forces Broadcasting Service. the BBC was the only (legal) radio broadcaster based in the UK mainland until 1967. BBC Parliament and BBC World News. local. Desktop news alerts. when University Radio York (URY). Ceefax and BBC News Online. and digital TV alerts are also available. the BBC announced that it would substantially reduce its radio broadcasting in Thai language (closed in 2006) and Eastern European languages and divert resources instead to a new Arabic language satellite TV broadcasting station (including radio and online content) in the Middle East to be launched in 2007. the BBC began trials offering a limited number of radio programmes as podcasts. New BBC News services that are also proving popular are mobile services to mobile phones and PDAs. However.  News Main article: BBC News BBC News is the largest broadcast news gathering operation in the world. All of the national.
The previous all time high at BBC Online was caused by the announcement of the Michael Jackson verdict.Ratings figures suggest that during major  crises such as the Weekly reach of all the BBC's services in the UK 7 July 2005 London bombings or a royal funeral. It was then borrowed. On 7 July 2005. Weekly reach of the BBC's domestic television services the BBC Online website recorded an all time bandwidth peak of 11 Gb/s at 12:00 on 7 July. At peak times during the day there were 40.  Attitudes toward the BBC in popular culture Older domestic UK audiences often refer to the BBC as "the Beeb". when he referred to the "Beeb Beeb Ceeb". said to originate from the old-fashioned "Auntie knows best" attitude (but possibly a sly reference to the "aunties" and "uncles" who were presenters of children's programmes in early days) in the days when John Reith. is "Auntie". The two nicknames have also been used together as "Auntie Beeb". BBC News received some 1 billion total hits on the day of the BBC Television Centre at White City. a nickname originally dubbed by Peter Sellers in The Goon Show in the 1950s. Another nickname. was in charge. the UK audience overwhelmingly turns to the BBC's coverage as opposed to its Weekly reach of the BBC's five national analogue radio stations commercial rivals.2 Gbit/s. and Auntie has been used in outtake programmes such as Auntie's Bloomers. West London. shortened and popularised by Kenny Everett. the day that there were a series of coordinated bomb blasts on London's public transport system.000 page requests per second for the BBC News website. text and HTML). the BBC's first director general. . The previous day's announcement of the 2012 Olympics being awarded to London caused a peak of around 5 Gbit/s. now less commonly used.5 terabytes of data. which used 7. event (including all images. serving some 5.
uk website receives too much funding from the television licence.uk allowed legal downloads of selected archive material via the internet. In response to this the BBC carried out an investigation. and .co. and initially used peer-to-peer and DRM technology to deliver both radio and TV content of the last seven days for offline use for up to 30 days. It was launched as BBC Online. with the new site enabling the user to customise the BBC's internet services to their own needs. The BBC claims the site to be "Europe's most popular content-based site" and states that 13.co. then bbc.co. or a reduction in the amount of content available on the site.co. since then video is now streamed directly. As of February 2008 the BBC has also offered television programmes for download on Apple iTunes under the studio title "BBC Worldwide". The website includes a page for every programme on television and radio. before it was rebranded back as BBC Online. was made permanent.uk. BBC Jam was a free online service. and it is common for viewers and listeners to be told website addresses for the website sections relating to that programme. delivered through broadband and narrowband connections.uk should be reduced—either being replaced with funding from advertisements or subscriptions. and the 46th most popular overall. before being renamed BBCi. This. Criticism and controversies Main articles: BBC controversies and Criticism of the BBC  Other media venues  Internet Main article: BBC Online The BBC's online presence includes a comprehensive news website and archive.uk. The site also allows users to listen to most Radio output live and for seven days after broadcast using the BBC iPlayer platform. A new version of the BBC homepage was launched in December 2007. Initial content was made available in January 2006 however BBC Jam was suspended on 20 March 2007 due to allegations made to the European Commission that it was damaging the interests of the commercial sector of the industry. on 28 February 2008. meaning that other websites are unable to compete with the vast amount of advertising-free online content available on bbc. in July 2008 BBC Online was the 27th most popular English Language website in the world. through participation in the Creative Archive Licence group.co. Also. In recent years some major on-line companies and politicians have complained that the bbc. which launched on 27 July 2007. According to Alexa's TrafficRank system.2 million people in the UK visit the site's more than two million pages each day. bbc. providing high-quality interactive resources designed to stimulate learning at home and at school. The website uses GeoIP technology and carries advertisements when viewed outside of the UK. Some have proposed that the amount of licence fee money spent on bbc.
 BBC Worldwide also runs a 24-hour news channel. Director General of the BBC. BBC television news appears nightly on . bbc. BBC Japan. BBC America.uk will now attempt to fill in gaps in the market. BBC World News and co-runs.  Commercial services BBC Worldwide Limited is the wholly owned commercial subsidiary of the BBC responsible for the commercial exploitation of BBC programmes and other properties. proposed that the BBC's web output should be cut by 50%. and video. and rediverting money to redevelop other parts.  January 2011: Online service will cut around 360 jobs and close hundreds of websites as part of 'a more streamlined' approach inline with cutting budget by 25 percent from Poundsterlling 137 million to 103 million by 2013/14.O. (and radio stations on Freeview). On 2 March 2010.has now set in motion a plan to change the way it provides its online services. as does UK. and will guide users to other websites for currently existing market provision. Sky (satellite). Recent examples include the interactive sports coverage for football and rugby football matches and the 2008 Olympic Games. In addition. instead of providing local events information and timetables.D. As well as the 24/7 service. A similar service. and Virgin Media (cable). which are available through Freeview (digital terrestrial). with Virgin Media. ceased broadcasts in April 2006 after its Japanese distributor folded. Africa. and Asia). BBC Soundbites which starred young actress Jennifer Lynn and an interactive national IQ test.co. Unlike Ceefax.) Part of this plan included the BBC closing some of its websites. the UKTV network of stations in the UK. BBC Red Button is able to display full-colour graphics. amongst others. as well as Freesat. On 26 February 2010 The Times claimed that Mark Thompson. the Middle East. with online staff numbers and budgets reduced by 25% in a bid to scale back BBC operations and allow commercial rivals more room. and Dave. allow access to the BBC Red Button service. including a number of television stations throughout the world. as well as programmes. (For example. The cable and satellite stations BBC Prime (in Europe. broadcast popular BBC programmes to people outside the UK.L. All of the BBC's digital television stations. including news and weather.  Interactive television Main article: BBC Red Button BBC Red Button is the brand name for the BBC's interactive digital television services. users will be guided to outside websites already providing that information. the BBC reported that it will cut its website spending by 25% and close BBC 6 Music and Asian Network. BBC Red Button provides viewers with over 100 interactive TV programmes every year. photographs.TV (co-run with Foxtel and Fremantle Media) in Australasia. Test the Nation. G. producers of. BBC Canada (alongside BBC Kids).
is available to more than 274 million households. documentaries and historical drama productions are popular on the international DVD market. BBC Records produced soundtrack albums. such as The Beatles (The Beatles Live at the BBC is one of their many albums). BBC Good Food. including BBC Lifestyle.  Music The BBC runs orchestras and choirs. Between 2004 and 2006. In December 2007. a show with which the broadcaster has been associated for over 50 years. BBC World News. formerly known as BBC Publications. BBC Knowledge and BBC Entertainment. BBC Wildlife and BBC Music. Also many famous bands have played at the BBC. initially as BBC Radio Classics and then BBC Legends. BBC Worldwide also produces several branded channels available on satellite in Asia and India. BBC Sky at Night. including the BBC Concert Orchestra. talking books and material from radio broadcasts of music. and archive classical music recordings. The BBC is also responsible for the United Kingdom coverage of the Eurovision Song Contest. BBC Worldwide also maintains the publishing arm of the BBC and it is the thirdlargest publisher of consumer magazines in the United Kingdom. its journalism arm. the BBC Philharmonic. the BBC Television Orchestra (1936– 1939). publishes the Radio Times (and published the now-defunct The Listener) as well as a number of magazines that support BBC programming such as BBC Top Gear. the BBC Symphony Orchestra. has bases or correspondents in more than 200 countries and. and it is the oldest surviving entity of its kind. most notably Doctor Who (including books and merchandise). BBC Magazines. a Polish version of BBC Entertainment launched in Poland. . though also possibly far more individual persons and groups than surveys can gather. and comedy. as do reruns of BBC programmes such as EastEnders. and in New Zealand on TV One. The BBC has traditionally played a major role in producing book and music tie-ins with its broadcast material. Lonely Planet. Many BBC programmes (especially documentaries) are sold via BBC Worldwide to foreign television stations. The BBC's reach is significantly more than CNN's estimated 200 million. BBC Big Band. the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. BBC History. BBC Worldwide also licences and directly sells DVD and audio recordings of popular programmes to the public.many Public Broadcasting Service stations in the United States. BBC Worldwide also own the biggest travel guidebook and digital media publisher in the world. BBC Worldwide owned the independent magazine publisher Origin Publishing. as officially surveyed. the BBC Singers and the BBC Symphony Chorus. the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra.
and is paid for by staff members and not by the BBC. The export of BBC programmes. current affairs. the arrival of BBC2 allowed the BBC also to make programmes for minority interests in drama. It "reached into every home in the land. with the introduction of Independent Television (ITV)". Even after the advent of commercial television and radio. was the only television broadcaster in the UK until 1955. entertainment and sport. documentaries. and simultaneously united the nation. because they all pay the licence fee. Civilisation. Monty Python's Flying Circus.  Cultural significance Until the development. most notably the BBC Micro. Tonight. This heralded the transformation of television into a popular and dominant medium. and now attempts to accommodate the interests of all strata of society and all minorities. However. . the BBC has also become more inclusive. In the 1980s. and domination of television. but other examples can be given in each of these fields as shown by the BBC's entries in the British Film Institute's 2000 list of the 100 Greatest British Television Programmes. Nevertheless. Doctor Who and Pot Black. the organisation now makes more use of regional accents in order to reflect the diversity of the UK. The BBC introduced the world's first "highdefinition" 405-line television service in 1936. though clarity and fluency are still expected of presenters. an important factor during the Second World War". the BBC developed several PCs. Further. "throughout the 1950s radio still remained the dominant source of broadcast comedy". the BBC has remained one of the main elements in British popular culture through its obligation to produce TV and radio programmes for mass audiences. television. popularisation. "The BBC's monopoly was broken in 1955. the BBC World Service and BBC World have meant that BBC productions have also been experienced worldwide. radio was the broadcast medium upon which people in the United Kingdom relied. and apart from suspending service throughout World War II until 1946. Union membership is optional. Claudius. the BBC was the only legal radio broadcaster until 1968 (when URY obtained their first licence). the press and the internet worldwide. someone notorious for spreading news. Miscellaneous The BBC and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office jointly run BBC Monitoring. staff are not automatically covered by a union. However.  Unions Staff at the BBC are normally represented by BECTU. The term BBC English (Received Pronunciation) refers to the former use of Standard English with this accent. From its 'starchy' beginnings. which monitors radio. Examples are cited such as I. along with journalistic staff by the NUJ and electrical staff by Amicus. gossips and personal secrets is often called 'BBC'. The influence of BBC as a broadcaster of world news is such that in India.
has lessened the BBC's influence.Competition from Independent Television. Sky and other broadcast television stations. Channel 4. . but such public broadcasting remains a major influence on British popular culture.