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DCMS Committee Chair sets out priorities

January 31, 2020

By Colin Mann

Following his election as Chair of the UK House of Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, Julian Knight MP has set out three areas he sees as priorities during his tenure.

He said he was “delighted” to have secured the support of the House to lead the DCMS Committee in the new Parliament. “Having served as one of its members for three years, I plan to build on what we achieved and take on issues that matter beyond Westminster,” he advised.

“Under my chairmanship I’m setting out three priorities which I’ll be putting to new Members for discussion and approval.

“The Government has committed to getting broadband done. I’d like to see the DCMS Committee calling in the bosses of Internet providers and holding them to account for the failures in their services that blight communities across the country. Warm words wouldn’t be enough – we’d get them back three months down the line and ask what they’ve done.

“The BBC marks its centenary two years from now, although its future is far from assured. As we head towards the midpoint of the Charter, I want to start an open conversation about how the BBC can be funded, to act as a ‘critical friend’ with a duty to ask difficult questions of the Corporation as it seeks a new and sustainable funding model.

“I am keen that the DCMS Committee looks again at online harms, particularly as we head towards statutory regulation. In the last parliament we considered the addictive nature of immersive technologies and our dependency on social media. We need to make sure that dangers are properly understood and protections put in place,” he asserted.

Knight will formally take up position as Chair of the DCMS Committee once the remaining members have been named by the House. The House will formally appoint the members of the DCMS Committee in due course.

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