Greg Dyke: The digital revolution at the BBC

From the Richard Dunn Memorial Lecture, by the director-general of the BBC, delivered in Edinburgh
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The Independent Online

It seems every generation has a media revolution. For my mother, it was radio; for me, it was television; for my children it is digital. The digital revolution has many things in common with the radio and television revolutions. As before, it is making new and wonderful things possible. As before, it is changing the way people use their time. And, as before, it is changing the structure of our industry in profound ways.

The first phase of this revolution has produced some great things - in television, 200 channels, movies on-tap, imaginative interactivity, and 24-hour sport and news. In radio, it is bringing many new specialist stations, and, in the world online, it has brought information and new types of communication to your fingertips.

I believe we are about to move into a second phase of the digital revolution, a phase which will be more about public than private value; about free, not pay services; and about inclusivity, not exclusion. In particular, it will be about how public money can be combined with new digital technologies to transform everyone's lives.

As we move forward, the BBC will not, should not and cannot be the only publicly funded player committed to making the most of these opportunities. They will need the involvement, skills and financial support of government, local government, schools, universities, art galleries, museums, the voluntary sector and many other parts of our society. But there are areas where the BBC can play a vital role, and some where only the BBC can make a real difference.

For example, the BBC probably has the best television library in the world. The digital revolution and broadband provide an easy and affordable way of making this treasure trove of BBC content available to all.

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