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UK Drops Controversial TV Network Privatization Plan

Channel 4 network logo

The UK government was accused of running a political vendetta against the controversial television network Channel 4 and on Thursday decided to drop its intentions to privatize the public-service broadcaster.

Nadine Dorries, who was the cultural secretary at the time, announced the privatization last April as a method for the innovative channel to compete with streaming goliaths like Netflix and Amazon.

However, detractors said that Dorries and former prime minister Boris Johnson had taken personally offended by Channel 4’s political broadcasting, which has frequently been sharply critical of the Conservatives.

Now that Johnson and Dorries are no longer in office, the new administration of Prime Minister Rishi Sunak declared that it would pursue reforms to guarantee that the channel hires more talent and produces more shows outside of London.

In a statement, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Michelle Donelan praised Channel 4 as “a British success story and a pillar of our expanding creative industries.”

She stated, “I have determined that Channel 4 should not be sold. I have reviewed the business case and engaged with the appropriate sectors.”

The company was founded in 1982, and its goals include producing a wide variety of shows and promoting the UK independent TV sector.

It is government owned but privately funded; 90% of its revenue comes from advertising. It was the first UK network to cover homosexual, disabled, and racial minorities.

Alex Mahon, the CEO of Channel 4, applauded the government’s change of heart.

The choice to keep Channel 4 under public ownership for the foreseeable future, she said, “allows us to be even more of a power in the digital world.”

“I am personally thrilled that we will be able to accomplish more, bringing about change for those who other people don’t fight for.”

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