This morning's FT carries an interview with Gerhard Zeiler who is CE of RTL stake holders in Channel 5 which is well worth a read.
According to Zeiler
It is not just a question of television – it is also about how the strengths and characteristics of traditional television can be translated into the new digital world of online and on-demand.adding that tinkering around with the system is not the way forward
Now is the time to think big. The government has a matchless opportunity to create an entity able to deliver new public service content in new ways
And that big thinking is to merge 4 and 5
Channel 4 and Five share many characteristics. Both are funded by advertising, both commission programmes from outside producers rather than making them in-house and both are reliant on a mix of home-grown and acquired programming. A merger that brings together two such complementary broadcasters would create a much stronger operator
I realise that many will hold their hands up in horror at the merger and will forecast a diluting of Channel 4 but I have maintained before on this blog that in these turbulent times unpopular business decisions will hacve to be made to protect media brands.This is one of those instances