Tony hall

The BBC’s future is hanging by a thread

Reading the speech Tony Hall gave to the Edinburgh Television Festival, I was struck by his upbeat, confident tone. The outgoing director-general of the BBC talked about how its reporting of the coronavirus crisis had brought its core mission as a public service broadcaster into sharper focus and boosted its popularity, particularly among 16- to 34-year-olds. He said his goal when he arrived at the BBC was to reach a global audience of 500 million by 2022, its centenary year, and this target has now been revised upwards to a billion by the end of the decade. ‘But it needs extra investment from government and that bid is with them