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Allow Anyone To Set Up A Local TV Station

Comment 16th May 2015

Allow any one to set up a local TV station.  Impose a low power limit and prevent operators having licences for more than one area, but just make it easier.  Don't force people to categorise their channels. Remove massive bureacratic and operational hurdles – it's all but impossible to operate a TV channel without a legal department. Remove scope for malicious complaints.

OK, impose a few conditions. Convicted criminals, sex shop onwers and people "convicted" of trading offences in civil courts should be required to undergo full "Appropriate Person" checks, and debtors, but let ordinary people set up channels.

Let people sub-lease capacity at different times of day without assuming liability for content.

Make it even easier by making Ofcom provide "TV station in a box" model kits, eg docs, retention of recordings, etc.

And keep local council out of it, there is enough bland well meaning rubbish out there.

Why does this matter?

Despite the growth in the number of TV channels it is as hard as ever to break through barriers.

The sheer volume of repeats is strangling new talent. Live venues are closing and less new material is being made than ever before.

Setting up a channel under existing rules is expensive, but there are plenty of hobbists out there who would happily operate a free local channel. But heaven help them if they seek sponsorship or have adverts.

Local content is almost non-existent on TV. Grow up watching Sky or Virgin Cable and you won’t have a Geordie/Scouse/Cornish accent, but will know all about knife crime in London.

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