Letter: News viewers

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The Independent Culture
Sir: Your Word on the Street (Media 22 September) couldn't have been more wrong about BBC News 24. More than 2 million homes can receive News 24 and it is being viewed in 44 per cent of those homes; it is also broadcast overnight on BBC1 to an average audience of 120,000. It may come as a shock that a public service broadcaster should have the nerve to invest in future viewer demands, but we are determined that BBC News will not be left behind in the digital revolution.

BBC News decided in advance of the release of the Clinton tapes how it would cover the event. No one knew for sure what was on them. The fact that the broadcast was happening at all was historic and we took the opening live. But our job was also to make a judgement as to how the tapes would affect the Clinton presidency. Broadcasting all of the tapes was the easy option; it would have meant surrendering our journalism for four hours and leaving the viewers to wade through questions and answers that went nowhere.


Controller, TV News Channels, BBC

London W12