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The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) is the national broadcaster of the United Kingdom, based at Broadcasting House in London, England. It is the world's oldest national broadcaster, and the largest broadcaster in the world by number of employees, employing over 21,000 staff in total, of whom approximately 17,900 are in public-sector broadcasting.

The BBC is established under a royal charter and operates under its agreement with the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport. Its work is funded principally by an annual television licence fee which is charged to all British households, companies, and organisations using any type of equipment to receive or record live television broadcasts or watch using iPlayer. The fee is set by the British Government, agreed by Parliament, and is used to fund the BBC's radio, TV, and online services covering the nations and regions of the UK. Since 1 April 2014, it has also funded the BBC World Service (launched in 1932 as the BBC Empire Service), which broadcasts in 28 languages and provides comprehensive TV, radio, and online services in Arabic and Persian.

Around a quarter of the BBC's revenue comes from its commercial subsidiary BBC Studios (formerly BBC Worldwide), which sells BBC programmes and services internationally and also distributes the BBC's international 24-hour English-language news services BBC World News, and from, provided by BBC Global News Ltd. In 2009, the company was awarded the Queen's Award for Enterprise in recognition of its international achievements. (Full article...)

Selected article

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is a science fiction comedy radio series primarily written by Douglas Adams. It was originally broadcast in the United Kingdom by BBC Radio 4 in 1978, and afterwards the BBC World Service, National Public Radio in the US and CBC Radio in Canada. The series was the first radio comedy programme to be produced in stereo, and was innovative in its use of music and sound effects, winning a number of awards.

The series follows the adventures of hapless Englishman Arthur Dent and his friend Ford Prefect, an alien who writes for The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, a pan-galactic encyclopaedia and travel guide. After Earth is destroyed in the first episode, Arthur and Ford find themselves aboard a stolen spaceship piloted by Zaphod Beeblebrox (Ford's semi-cousin and Galactic President), depressed robot Marvin, and Trillian, the only other human survivor of Earth's destruction. (Full article...)

Selected image

Nicholas Parsons at a recording of BBC Radio 4's Just a Minute

Nicholas Parsons during a recording of BBC Radio 4's Just a Minute. First aired in 1967, the comedy panel game was chaired by Parsons for over 50 years and it won a Gold Sony Radio Academy Award in 2003.

Selected list article

A close-up photograph of Alex Day singing into a microphone, taken from below.
Video blogger Alex Day performing during the ninth episode of Chartjackers.

The British documentary series Chartjackers ran for a single season of eleven weekly episodes during the autumn of 2009. The series documents the lives of four teenage video bloggersAlex Day, Johnny Haggart, Jimmy Hill, and Charlie McDonnell—from the video-sharing website YouTube as they attempt to write, record and release a pop song by crowdsourcing through social media in ten weeks. When initially aired, the first ten episodes of Chartjackers, each five minutes in length, detailed the events of the previous seven days. The final episode, broadcast on 21 November 2009, compiled highlights from the previous ten weeks into one 30-minute episode, which was narrated by British DJ MistaJam. All eleven episodes were produced by Adam King and Jonathan Davenport of the production company Hat Trick Productions.

Chartjackers was devised in 2009 by Davenport and Andy Mettam of Hat Trick Productions, and was commissioned for development by Geoffrey Goodwin and Jo Twist of BBC Switch. Alongside the programmes Off the Hook and The Cut, it was featured as part of a season of multi-platform content designed to appeal to teenagers. The show was also directly linked to the 2009 annual appeal for the British charity Children in Need – profits from sales of the completed pop song were donated to the charity. Chartjackers aired weekly at approximately 1:10 p.m. on Saturday afternoons on BBC Two, with the first episode premiering on 12 September 2009 during the channel's two-hour long BBC Switch segment. The series garnered a viewing figures peak of almost half a million with its final episode and was critically panned by reviewers. Each episode was streamed online through BBC iPlayer to UK residents for seven days after its initial airing. The series was not broadcast outside the UK and, , is not available to buy on DVD. (Full article...)

Related portals

Selected biography

Alan Graham Johnston (born 17 May 1962) is a British journalist working for the BBC. He has been the BBC's correspondent in Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, the Gaza Strip and Italy. He is based in London.

Johnston was kidnapped in the Gaza Strip on 12 March 2007 by the militant group Army of Islam. He was unconditionally released on 4 July, nearly four months later, after much pressure was put on the group by the now-dominant Hamas. (Full article...)

Selected building

BBC Broadcasting House in Belfast

Broadcasting House in Belfast is the headquarters of BBC Northern Ireland and was opened in 1941.

Did you know

Highlights from Wikipedia's Did you know

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  • ... that BBC traffic reporter Sally Traffic has also narrated poetry albums for the blind?
  • ... that it was said that BBC scriptwriter Iain Pattinson's "unique brilliance was his ability to combine the absurd with the plausible"?
  • ... that Eric Anthony Abrahams was the first black TV reporter at the BBC?
  • ... that the programming language Acorn System BASIC was so non-standard that one commenter suggested that using it on the BBC Micro would be a disaster?
  • ... that after the BBC suspended its regular programming following the death of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, the broadcaster received criticism for its continuous coverage of the event?

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