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BBC allays pubcaster cable fears

The BBC is discussing ways of drawing new revenues from interactive cable channels.

At a European Broadcasting Union confab last week, director general John Birt sensed an “unfounded fear” among delegates that the growth of new cablers, spurred by digital technology, could only damage pubcaster revenues.

The BBC’s approach, he said, is “to seize the opportunities,” saying he sees “no conflict” in redistributing programming, such as the BBC’s, that’s made from public funds.

“We are investigating launching interactive pay TV services onto European cable using BBC educational programming,” said the BBC topper.

Birt predicted change would be slower and “less apocalyptic” than anticipated.

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