Regulator Recommends stv’s PSB Obligations Should be Cut

The number of hours stv will require to devote to public service broadcasting per week is to fall, following recommendations by the broadcasting regulators, Ofcom.

Although only recommendations, and therefore subject to consultation, yesterday’s publication of the regulator’s review of PSB can be viewed as the clearest signal yet of how the future will actually unfold. This is the second PSB review by Ofcom, ahead of a final one next year.

Public service broadcasting includes news and current affairs, and from next year, peak time news output at stv and its sister station, stv north, will remain unchanged. But non-news and current affairs is being allowed to drop from four hours per week, at each of the stations, to 1.5. And daytime news bulletins are being allowed to be cut.

As expected, Ofcom have agreed with ITV that – as part of a