A photo of Nadine Dorries with a line through her face, with text below reading "hands off our Channel 4"

The government is facing a widespread backlash against its plans to privatise Channel 4. First, a string of public figures came out in opposition to the move – including opposition politicians and figures from the entertainment industry. Then, senior Tories – including Ruth Davidson and Jeremy Hut – said they were opposed to it. Now the public are fighting back too.

In just 24 hours, over 28,000 people have signed campaign group We Own It’s petition calling for the sell-off to be abandoned.

Presently, Channel 4 is publicly owned but receives no public funding. Instead, it is funded through commercial advertising.

Established in 1982, the broadcaster has a public service broadcasting remit built around championing diversity and creativity, and is renowned for producing content distinct from other broadcasters. It has produced a myriad of critically acclaimed TV shows – from Peep Show to It’s a Sin, and from Spaced to Black Mirror. Two thirds of its broadcasting hours are currently produced outside of London.

Speaking on the petition’s growth, We Own It lead campaigner Tom Morton told Bright Green,

The response to our petition launch has been incredible and really makes clear the outrage that people are feeling about the government’s decision to continue with their plan to privatise Channel 4. The response to this plan has been overwhelmingly in opposition to privatisation across the political spectrum, with many high ranking Conservative MPs also making it clear that they believe

Channel 4 should retain its unique publicly owned but commercially funded structure. Selling off Channel 4 would put jobs, small business and popular TV shows at risk. We need to keep it where it belongs – in public hands.

We Own It has previously described the sale as “cultural vandalism”.

You can sign We Own It’s petition here.

PS. We hope you enjoyed this article. Bright Green has got big plans for the future to publish many more articles like this. You can help make that happen. Please donate to Bright Green now.