A poll of over a thousand people has revealed strong support for a Scottish Broadcasting Commission replacing the BBC in Scotland – in an independent Scotland – and for broadcasting powers to be devolved from where they currently reside – Westminster – to Holyrood.
The poll – in the Sunday Times newspaper, and reported on by Jason Allardyce – reveals 47 per cent backing for a Scottish Broadcasting Network in an independent Scotland, an idea floated earlier this year by the SNP. Of the 1040 people surveyed, just 18 per cent said they were opposed to it. Thirty-five per cent said they were undecided.
Says the SNP's broadcasting spokesperson at Westminster, Pete Wishart MP: “This is very welcome news and just confirms the need for a dedicated Scottish network. Scotland is currently being short-changed by the current system and the only way to remedy that is to create a dedicated Scottish channel.
“A dedicated Scottish Network would be a platform to showcase the talent and skills we have here in Scotland and also create jobs in the process. We have a wealth of talent in the media industry here and they should be able to work here in Scotland.
“The SNP Government has laid out plans for the creation of this network, now Westminster must listen to the calls and give Scotland the powers over broadcasting. For too long now they have ignored them, but the longer they ignore the calls the louder they will get.”
Last year, a commission set up by the First Minister, Alex Salmond, to look at the future of Scottish broadcasting, recommended the creation of a digital TV channel – the Scottish Digital Network – dedicated to Scottish content, but in addition to that already provided, not as a replacement. The Scottish Broadcasting Commission also declined to recommend that broadcasting be devolved to Holyrood.