BBC restructures news unit as part of new digital investment plans

The BBC News has unveiled its savings and reinvestment plans to boost digital journalism and enhance its news streaming offering across BBC iPlayer and the BBC News app, as it rejigs its news unit. 

The BBC News’ story team operations based in the UK will be restructured with a focus on digital storytelling and live coverage, and a reduction in the amount of television packaging, as the BBC moves to digital-first.

An extended hour-long edition of the BBC News at One will relocate to Salford, which will mark the first time a daily BBC national news bulletin will be broadcast outside London. More news content will also broadcast from Salford as BBC Breakfast will be extended for an extra 15 minutes daily.

The BBC has also outlined it plans to launch a new “in-depth digital experience” which will include BBC’s analysis and journalism online. The online hub will house BBC’s written articles, podcasts and radio moments, investigations and documentaries in one place, commissioned by a newly created team of editors, specialists and experts.

The pubcaster will also reformat BBC2 investigative journalism show Newsnight, following audience feedback. The format that airs from Mondays to Fridays will become a 30-minute interview, debate and discussion show on daily news. The moves will see the BBC cut a number of roles across Newsnight’s reporting, production and operational functions.

BBC News and Current Affairs CEO Deborah Turness said: “Like many businesses, we are in a tough financial climate and as our audiences shift rapidly from TV to online news consumption, we need to make choices about where we allocate our resources. While TV and radio remain crucial to BBC News, we must invest in our digital platforms to ensure they are also the home of our very best journalism, and today’s package of measures will accelerate this transformation.”

“Audiences have told us how much they value Newsnight as an iconic BBC debate and discussion programme, and we’ve listened to what they’ve said – we’ve made the decision to keep the programme on air five days a week, despite the financial challenges we face,” Turness added. “Newsnight has also been a source of great investigative reporting and films but we know that people are consuming the news in different ways, and it can no longer make sense to keep a bespoke reporting team for a single television programme. We will offer more to audiences by investing to ensure the best investigative journalism and reporting is produced – and consumed – across the whole of BBC News.”

Tags: BBC

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