ITV considering cutting news bulletins in half
ITV is considering halving the length of its national and regional news bulletins and full the gap with a cheap game show after recommendations from consultants hired by the broadcaster.
ITV is considering halving the length of its national and regional news bulletins and full the gap with a cheap game show after recommendations from consultants hired by the broadcaster. The consultants recommend that ITV’s regional news bulletin at 6pm and national news programme at 6.30pm should both be reduced to fifteen minutes. In the half hour gap left behind by the reduced news programmes a cheap quiz-show should be placed.
The recommendations by consultants are part of ITV’s aim to cut ITV’s early evening programming cost. Another recommendation by the consultants would see the regional and national bulletins combined to form a ‘Nationwide’ style of programme. However, any such move to trim down ITV’s news programmes or re-organised them further would generate a great deal of controversy. It would also be seen as a sign that ITV was retreating further from current affairs to concentrate on cheaper formats and genres.
ITV’s news programmes in the 6pm hour are by far its highest rated with over 4 million viewers. While the BBC still, on average, has more viewers the gap between the two broadcasters is closer than the 10pm bulletins. Cutting down the news programmes is also likely to anger ITV’s news providers, ITN. However, it seems at the moment that ITV is unlikely to act on the proposals but is seeking to cut the cost of its regional news programmes further.