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BBC cleared for cable net

The British Broadcasting Corp. will start airing a round-the-clock news channel on the country’s cable networks next month after gaining government permission. The permission was given despite protests from Rupert Murdoch’s satcaster BSkyB, which operates its own Sky News channel.

The BBC is to offer its channel free to cable operators whereas BSkyB sells its 24-hour news service to the cable companies for about 50 pence (80¢) per subscriber.

Per the Financial Times newspaper, BSkyB indicated Thursday it did not intend to seek a judicial review of the decision by Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport Chris Smith.

The BBC’s news service will also be broadcast overnight on the pubcaster’s terrestrial channel, BBC 1, in the hours between signoff and the beginning of breakfast television.

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