British Broadcasting Corporation, which is usually
known simply as the BBC, is a large broadcasting
corporation. It has 28,000 employees in the United
Kingdom alone and a budget of more than £4
on 18 October 1922 as the British Broadcasting
Company Ltd, it was subsequently granted a Royal
Charter and made a state-owned corporation in
1927. The corporation produces programmes and
information services, broadcasting globally on
television, radio, and the Internet. The stated
mission of the BBC is "to inform, educate
and entertain"; its motto is "Nation
Shall Speak Peace Unto Nation".
BBC is a quasi-autonomous public corporation operating
as a public service broadcaster. The Corporation
is run by the BBC Trust; and is, per its charter,
"free from both political and commercial
influence and answers only to its viewers and
BBC's domestic programming and broadcasts are
primarily funded by levying television licence
fees (under the Wireless Telegraphy Act 1949),
although money is also raised through commercial
activities such as sale of merchandise and programming.
The BBC World Service, however, is funded through
a grant-in-aid by the Foreign and Commonwealth
Office. As part of the BBC Charter, the Corporation
cannot show commercial advertising in any services
in the United Kingdom (television, radio, or internet).
Outside the United Kingdom the BBC broadcasts
commercially funded channels such as BBC America,
BBC Canada, and BBC World. In order to justify
the licence fee, the BBC is expected to produce
a number of high-rating shows
in addition to programmes that commercial broadcasters
would not normally broadcast.
UK audiences often refer to the BBC as "the
Beeb", a nickname coined by Kenny Everett.
Another nickname, now less commonly used, is "Auntie",
said to originate from the old-fashioned "Auntie
knows best" attitude in the days when John
Reith, the BBC's founder, was in charge. The two
nicknames have also been used together as "Auntie
Beeb", and Auntie has been used in outtakes
programmes such as Auntie's Big Bloomers.
the TV and radio services are combined, BBC is
probably the largest broadcasting system in the
world . It also claims to be the largest news
gathering system by means of its regional offices,
foreign correspondents and agreements with other
news services. It reaches more than 200 countries
and is available to more than 274 million households,
to CNN's (its nearest competitor) estimated 200
million. Its radio service is in the short wavelength,
which makes it available to many regions of the
world. It also broadcasts news - by radio or in
the Internet - in some 30 languages, and its total
number of broadcasted radio hours per week is
surpassed only by the Voice of America umbrella
and the Chinese public radio. Being public, its
revenue is not comparable to that of other media
conglomerates, though, of which News Corporation
is the largest. (Credit:
Media and BBC partner to bring BBC iPlayer to
is a joint press release from Virgin Media and
time BBC iPlayer is available on a TV platform
Media (NASDAQ: VMED) today announced a partnership
with the BBC to launch BBC iPlayer onto its platform,
making its 3.5 million TV customers the first
in the UK to get the popular service via a TV
using BBC iPlayer on Virgin Media will be able
to watch full screen pictures at full quality
on their television set without the need for downloading.
of today, Virgin Media customers will be able
to catch up on their favourite BBC programmes
by pressing the red button on any BBC channel.
to BBC iPlayer through Virgin Media's EPG (Electronic
Programme Guide) menu is due this summer.
iPlayer allows viewers to catch-up on over 350
hours of TV programmes from the past seven days,
at no extra cost.
includes shows such as EastEnders, Doctor Who,
Gavin And Stacey, Top Gear and The Apprentice
as well as documentaries such as Louis Theroux.
Wall, CEO of Content at Virgin Media, said: “We're
delighted to be the first TV platform in the UK
to offer our customers BBC iPlayer as part of
our on-demand service.
enormous success of iPlayer online has demonstrated
the desire TV viewers have for viewing quality
programmes at a time that suits them, and now
it's available from the comfort of the living
Media is proud to be working with the BBC to continue
to lead this revolution in TV viewing."
Highfield, BBC Director of Future Media and Technology,
said: "We have always envisaged BBC iPlayer
on a TV platform and in the living room and are
delighted that by working with Virgin Media, this
ambition has today been realised.
partnership takes us a step closer to transforming
the way our audiences watch TV.
also further underlines our commitment to making
BBC iPlayer a multiplatform offering that appeals
to a wide range of audiences."
Media has pioneered on-demand television in the
UK with almost half (47%) of its 3.5 million TV
customers regularly using this service.
number of views per customer has grown in the
last year from 10 to 23 times-per-month and in
the last three months of 2007 there were 99 million
find out more about Virgin Media's products and
services visit www.virginmedia.com.
BBC iPlayer on Virgin Media
number of hours of available programming on Virgin
Media will increase as the iPlayer service grows.
Further enhancements such as the integration of
the highly successful BBC Radio Player are planned
to be added in due course.
BBC iPlayer online
iPlayer online continues to show significant growth
with the total number of requests for downloads
or streams of BBC programmes in the first three
months of the year reaching 42 million. The average
number of weekly users of BBC iPlayer reached
1.1 million in March, up from January's average
About Virgin Media
Media is an innovative and pioneering UK entertainment
and communications business. For the first time
consumers can get everything they need from one
company – the UK's only quad play of TV,
broadband, phone and mobile plus the most advanced
TV on demand service available, the UK's first
high definition TV service and V+, our high specification
personal video recorder. We're the UK's largest
residential broadband provider, the largest virtual
mobile network operator and the second largest
provider of pay TV and home phone.
Media owns two content businesses – Virgin
Media Television (VMTV) and sit-up. VMTV owns
seven entertainment channels – Virgin1,
Living, Living 2, Bravo, Bravo 2, Challenge, and
Trouble – and is a 50% partner in UKTV which
consists of nine channels including Dave, UKTV
Gold and UKTV History. sit-up runs retail TV channels
bid tv, price-drop tv and speed auctiontv.
Media is the largest Virgin company in the world
and has almost 10 million customers. To find out
more visit www.virginmedia.com/presscentre.
BBC exists to enrich people's lives with great
programmes and services that inform, educate and
entertain. It provides a wide range of distinctive
programmes and services for everyone, free of
commercial interests and political bias. They
include television, radio, national, local, children's,
educational, language and other services for key
BBC is financed by a TV licence paid by households.
It does not have to serve the interests of advertisers,
or produce a return for shareholders.