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BBC boss's bespoke service 'vision'

Viewers will be able to watch more shows on the BBC iPlayer before they are broadcast on TV under changes planned by the new director-general.

Tony Hall set out his vision for the BBC's future as he gave his first major address since taking over at the corporation in April.

He said he wanted the BBC, which has been hit by the Jimmy Savile scandal and controversy over excessive pay-offs to executives, to offer a bespoke service to viewers and listeners.

The director-general said he wanted to see a BBC that was "more simply run, with a renewed commitment to producing world-class programming."

"I want the BBC of the future to have a much closer relationship with audiences. We should be treating them like owners not just as licence fee-payers. People should not be saying 'the BBC', but 'my BBC', 'our BBC'," he said.

"Our audiences demand to be involved and expect to participate. In the future they will talk to us and we will listen."

Lord Hall, who took over following the resignation of George Entwistle, who lasted only 54 days in the job, announced plans for viewers to access content on the "next generation" iPlayer before broadcast and "at times that suit them".

The BBC has already debuted some shows such as the sitcom Bad Education and Peter Kay's Car Share, which will be made available online first, on iPlayer, but plans to make this more routine.

Under Lord Hall's "vision", viewers will also have 30 days instead of seven to catch-up on content on iPlayer, the service for BBC TV and radio programmes which was launched in 2007.

A new service, BBC Store, will allow people in the UK to buy, watch and keep a selection of BBC shows.

Lord Hall also said he wanted to introduce a new digital service, BBC Playlister, for listeners to pick and tag any piece of music they hear on the BBC and listen to it later.

He wants the BBC to link to streaming services such as Spotify so that listeners can keep their favourite music in one place, listening to it across whatever devices they have.

Lord Hall, who used to run the Royal Opera House, is planning an extra 20% investment into arts programming.

He also announced an emphasis on live performances of events such as the Winter Olympics, the World Cup, the FA Cup, Commonwealth Games, Edinburgh Festival and Glastonbury, on TV, computer, mobile and tablet.

The broadcaster wants to double the BBC's global audience by 2022 - when the BBC will be 100 years old - from 250 million users a week to 500 million.

In the speech at New Broadcasting House, Lord Hall said: "As we head towards our centenary in 2022, I want us to be much more confident about the mission Lord Reith gave us a hundred years before.

"Still confidently informing, educating and entertaining, but in a much more personalised way. I want a BBC that everyone can be proud of, whose best days lie ahead of it."


From Belfast Telegraph