In October 2011, the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport asked Ofcom to provide advice on the feasibility of measuring media plurality across platforms. On 19 June 2012, Ofcom published a report giving an answer to the five questions raised by Jeremy Hunt.
In answering the questions, Ofcom considered the underlying goals of plurality, its definition and scope. According to Ofcom, an effective framework for measuring media plurality is likely to be based on quantitative evidence and analysis wherever practical. However, there are also areas where a high degree of judgement is required. The appropriate approach to exercising such judgement is ultimately for Parliament to debate and determine.
A recurrent theme in the report is the need to ensure a sustainable regulatory approach to plurality against the background of a media market that is increasingly converged, with distinctions between platforms blurring, and online growing in importance.
The five questions that Ofcom had to provide an answer to were the following:
Ofcom’s report on measuring media plurality