Friday, August 27, 2010

Kick Out The Video Praetorians

There isn't a country on earth that spends more public money on producing video content than the UK.

Our largest TV company is owned - ostensibly - by the nation, and then we have huge institutions like the BFI, another self-serving quango that wraps itself in the cloak of virtue, but is nothing more than a dreadful quango.

For example, the UK taxpayer contributes millions a year to the BFI to preserve old movies, but can we then access and watch them? Well, yes we can in bits, or we can buy the DVD... But God forbid that anyone apart from a PhD student in Ancient Film Studies should actually watch this stuff we've paid a fortune to maintain.

The UK spends billions on museums, who also desperately try and avoid outreach and doing anything beyond their hermetic, hallowed walls. Some of them have significant film collections, but we, as poor taxpayers that fund these institutions must never be let close to their hallowed content. We are the plebs, they are the, er....

With our new Octavian order there comes an opportunity to sort out this situation. Whilst we're sacking the millions of people who do nothing except say 'no' for a living, we should liberate our national archive.