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Watch: 5 live chief calls for industry to work together

By James Cridland for media.info
Posted 18 September 2015, 9.00am edt

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Speaking at Next Radio on Monday, the Controller of BBC Radio 5 live and BBC Radio 5 live Sports Extra outlined 5 live's election coverage and digital progress, and called for the industry to work together. You can watch the talk from Jonathan Wall in full below.

In a wide-ranging speech, he finished by saying:

The biggest battle isn't with each other. It's not commercial vs the BBC, it's not indies vs anybody. Our biggest battle is how we engage the under 45s. Whether it be long-form, short-form, live or podcasts: how we're going to be tactically astute and brave together over the next five years.

My call today to my colleagues in the industry is: let's have a summit, let's work together on two things. Let's share knowledge and audience information gathering about all the stuff we're now doing on digital. This kind of "play area" that we need to learn more about, let's share some tricks between us, and be even more ambitious in the next year or two.

And how about a joint comms moment, once every two months. We've already got our once every three month RAJAR: so, once every two months, a future-proofing radio story where BBC and commercial radio come together. It's obvious, isn't it, but we need to tell a more positive story, and we should get on with that and do it quickly to show that we're relevant, show that we're mobile, and show that we're adapting. We're radio for the next generation - audio for the next generation - not a declining genre for this generation.

The former BBC Director of Radio, Tim Davie, held regular meetings with commercial radio CEOs. One of the outcomes of those discussions was the Radioplayer, a much-admired cross-industry collaboration; another was clarity on DAB's funding and future.

Jonathan's plea, though, is aimed lower down the paygrades - more about sharing research and working on a joint comms strategy. It's a good idea. But when Global and Bauer rarely work together, what are the chances of it happening?

More information

James Cridland — James is the Managing Director of media.info, and a radio futurologist: a consultant, writer and public speaker who concentrates on the effect that new platforms and technology are having on the radio business. His website is at james.cridland.net, where you can subscribe to his weekly newsletter.
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