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Former Channel 4 exec takes Digital UK top job

Jonathan ThompsonFormer director of strategy for Ofcom and Channel 4, Jonathan Thompson, has been appointed chief executive of Digital UK – the non-profit organisation formed to help consumers covert to digital TV.

The hire comes after current Digital UK CEO David Scott said last month that he is stepping down, with Thompson due to take up his new role this summer.

Thompson will help to oversee Digital UK’s shift to leading developments on the Freeview platform, taking responsibility for strategy and policy, as well as handling the day-to-day technical management of the electronic programme guide, following the UK’s completion of its switchover from analogue to digital last year.

Caroline Thomson, Chair of Digital UK, said Thompson was joining Digital UK at a “crucial stage” in its development. She said: “His experience across broadcasting and media regulation makes him ideally suited to leading the company in the post-switchover era, ensuring free-to-air television remains the foundation of the British system with Freeview at its heart.”

Thompson said that now Freeview is available across the whole UK, it is important to build on this “by developing the platform so it can continue to thrive in a rapidly changing TV landscape.”

“I believe passionately in the long-term value of Freeview for viewers, and look forward to being part of a very bright future for the platform,” he added. Freeview is watched in three-quarters of UK homes, and is watched on the main TV set in 11 million homes, said Digital UK.