Reinventing the BBC in the 1950s
While the scale of current events may be unprecedented, they are far from unique. Step back 30 years and consider how the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) responded to new circumstances, to those shifts in ideology and technology which respect not regulations and traditions and which mean that either the institution evolves or perishes. This chapter sets its sights firmly on broadcasting in Britain in the 1950s and 1960s. Implicitly it is about the strong parallels with events and conditions today: the ideological challenge of commercial television, the antagonisms implicit in the breaking of the monopoly, and a forcing of a reexamination of the BBC's cultural leadership; the potential economic problems caused by a declining audience share threatening the integrity of the licence fee; and the rise of a new technology, television.
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