Digital dawning

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The Independent Online
Quality must always take precedence over quantity, writes Roger Bolton

Hold on to your wallets, the next great television selling game is about to begin. We are all about to go digital, the choice will be infinite, they say. So, are we at the dawn of a new age of enlightenment?

I am an independent producer and know what it takes to make decent TV programmes.

First, we have to ensure that the BBC and Channel 4 remain decently funded so they can produce high-quality, well-funded, original programmes.

Then we should ensure that no individual organisation controls this new revolution (at the moment, Rupert Murdoch owns the means of encryption on satellite).

Third, we should ensure that the new channels have a significant proportion of original production. There is a place for cheap TV. It can be a rich area for experimentation. But the danger is of too many programmes using the same facts, with marginally different graphics and presenters.

We may be on the verge of hundreds of television channels but the question to ask before ploughing in resoucres - what will there be to watch?

The writer presents `Right to Reply' on Channel 4.

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