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Piaras Kelly

Good post, Stephen Price had a similar article in the Sunday Times a few weeks back which also talked about how RTE Player would further amplify the problem.

Have you read Alan Rusbridger's speech as part of the Hugh Cudlipp lecture? http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2010/jan/25/cudlipp-lecture-alan-rusbridger It touches on this also. The only criticism of your post which I would make is similar to a point that Rusbridger makes about the Sky News website and the BBC website. As broadcasters put more focus on their websites, they will have the same advantage and won't be paying advertising either. Just look at the increased focus TV3 have put on the web over the past few years.

You are correct though, RTE is a different kettle of fish as it's taxpayers money which is giving the commercial RTE site free advertising. Even if the playing fields were leveled, long term print media sites are going to face serious competition from TV outlets primarily.

Dave Molloy

Came here from Piaras's blog. Deeply interesting stuff- I, like many others, would not have been aware of the distinction between the public service broadcaster and the web operation.

Simon Fullam

Good post Adrian. I wasn't aware of the extent of the degree of commercial separation between the RTÉ Newsroom and the rte.ie "newsroom".

Surely that web service was put out to tender at some stage to someone as with all publilc service contracts. Therefore surely this contract will be available for other providers in the future as with any new business pitch? Is this then not just a judicious use of public money in the same way that RTÉ use any of their suppliers? If not, then why not? Taking that on a bit, surely then the commercial entity you say the rte.ie section is is making money FOR RTÉ, and by extension, the public purse?

Adam

I might be mistaken but I'm pretty sure the recent changes in regulation and legislation allow RTE to use some of the licence fee on the website.

Either way, your piece makes a very good point however out of the two future scenarios only a merge with RTE HQ is likely to happen.

In reality this has no impact on the "unfair" advantage RTE.ie has over its rivals. It would still get all the free perks it gets now and - like RTE One, Two, Radio 1 etc. - would still be able to generate revenue from advertising and sponsorship.

Then we move onto the argument taking place in the UK today - should the [National PSB] be allowed to have a news website?

I think 'yes', in the same way that RTE should be allowed to cover the news on TV and Radio even if that stops people from tuning into other stations or picking up a newspaper.

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Laura

And I'd really prefer to live with nothing but Madam Editor O Carrol-Kelly and Mr O Reilly for my news.

Or just go and live in a one-party police state, why not?

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i like this part of the post:"Because it creates a crucial difference between a public service broadcasting ethic, which is the purpose of RTE and the BBC, and just another private company trying to make as much money as it can. RTE's website arguably falls into the latter category." is very good

Angela

In reality this has no impact on the "unfair" advantage RTE.ie has over its rivals. It would still get all the free perks it gets now and - like RTE One, Two, Radio 1 etc. - would still be able to generate revenue from advertising and sponsorship. http://www.rapidskunk.com

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Me too I came here from Piaras's blog.
Nice article.

John

You are totally off target. There is room for 100 newspapers and 100 news websites in Ireland if they actually have good quality content. Also the opportunities on niche or segmented news have only just begun to be developed.
I don't want a mono bloc Internet as I'm sure you don't, give the net time, demand and supply will work.

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a punter, I like RTE's website. I use it fairly regularly. I'm delighted that there is a free, well-resourced, authoritative news and sport website up there for me to look at.
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RTE's website it pretty much alright, I visit it from time to time for the news. I don't really see what's wrong with them making extra money with it ^^

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Adrian has put up a very interesting topic in front of us. As RTE advertise there website during there news bulletin is not good. I am fully agree with Adrian.

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Well this would work if all we spent our money on would be TV..but it's not...I mean if we cut the TV expenses we would find some other ways to spend that money..ok some of us would try it..and might even make it..but ask yourself is money all that matters...what does it matter if you even have a billion $$ if you're 70...I mean enjoy it while you're young...at least that is my opinion...

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Adrian has put up a very interesting topic in front of us. As RTE advertise there website during there news bulletin is not good. I am fully agree with Adrian.

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This article raises some interesting questions. One thing that's clear though is that free news sources will predominate in the years ahead.

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Been having trouble with the RTE news website. When i watch the news on the website, it sometimes gets stuck and repeats itself like a broken record. Its a pain in the ass cos i then have to go to Task Manager to cancel it, cos the window won't respond to be closed down. Anyone else having this trouble? Any possible solutions?

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all notes RTE must improve. no free perks henceforth!

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