BBC spending review imminent

BBC Television Centre Image copyright bbc

This round-up of Tuesday's main media stories focuses on the review of BBC spending due to be published in the next few weeks.

The BBC pays £32.5m a year in extra allowances to more than 8,000 employees whose hours of work are deemed unpredictable because they "only" receive two weeks' notice of their shift patterns, reports Patrick Foster on the front page of the Daily Telegraph. He writes: "Senior executives at the BBC admit that the allowances are embarrassing and should be scrapped under a review of the corporation's spending that is expected to be published in October." The BBC is seeking savings of 20%, following an agreement to freeze the licence for six years.

Around half the savings being made as part of the BBC's Delivering Quality First cost-cutting exercise will come from budgets for programming and other content, a senior executive said at the Edinburgh International Television Festival. The Guardian reports: "With just a few weeks to go until the final proposals from the long-running DQF initiative is made public to staff, BBC Vision chief creative officer, Pat Younge, said the corporation is still looking to make about half of the....cuts from content budgets."

Remember all those stories saying "TV is dead. Long live the internet"? What once seemed the conventional wisdom now looks premature at least - as Google's chairman Dr Eric Schmidt admitted at the weekend at the Edinburgh International Television Festival. In my BBC News analysis, I write: "Far from being killed by the internet, television viewing has never been more popular and some in the industry claim TV is now set to be the dominant partner, creatively at least...The underlying theme of the TV Festival was not which of the two was going to 'win', but their convergence, and how this is changing the way people watch and engage with programmes."

Google chairman Eric Schmidt has said education in Britain is holding back the country's chances of success in the digital media economy, reports BBC News. He made his comments at the MacTaggart Lecture at the Edinburgh International Television Festival. Dr Schmidt said the UK needed to reignite children's passion for science, engineering and maths.

The man behind QI and Spitting Image has claimed that BBC bureaucracy and creating programmes "by committee" is making comedy "bland", reports the Daily Mail. It reports: "Acclaimed writer and producer John Lloyd warned that classic shows such as The Two Ronnies would have been watered down by the current regime." It says Lloyd's criticism follows similar comments from screenwriter Lord Julian Fellowes at the Edinburgh TV Festival: "The Oscar-winner said he never considered taking his ITV hit Downton Abbey to the rival broadcaster because he feared that 'interventionist' bosses would not let him 'execute his vision'."

Libya still dominates the broadsheet newspaper coverage on Tuesday, but the tabloids are turning to other stories, as reported in the BBC's newspaper review three of his children fleeing to Algeria.