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“I believe the price of this very considerable change is the right price to pay to achieve the prize of a strong and independent, creative BBC,” said Director General Michael Thompson when announcing a 10 percent staff reduction, the largest in the corporation’s history. With savings from the massive reorganization, Thompson promised BBC would spend more on high quality drama, comedy, current affairs and children’s programs, according to the Guardian. Reports on the restructuring characterize it as a premptive move to protect BBC financing via television license fees, which comes up for renewal in 2007. In the Financial Times, Thompson said the plan made the case for a renewal of its royal charter more compelling and added: β€œThe BBC has not been badgered or pressured by government to do any of this.” [Additional reporting in the New York Times, and a Q&A from BBC News.]

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