MTV games, $500 million. When will the BBC wake up?

In August MTV announced that: “we’re putting well over $500 million behind building our games business across all of the brands in our portfolio.” A sensible move. Ultimately games are going to be far bigger than TV so sooner or later any media company is going to have to make the switch in order to look after the interests of it’s shareholders.

This brings us to the BBC, the largest media company in the world with an annual budget of £4 billion. It has beeen building a storehouse of IP since 1922 and now has many times more than the entire games industry put together. But it has no shareholders.

The BBC is a semi autonomous part of the British state and is financed by our only hypothecated tax. It is run and controlled largely by very intelligent and well educated Oxford and Cambridge graduates. These people have mainly never been in the real world of business and so lean very much to the left politically. Jokers said that the BBC stood for “Blair Broadcasting Corporation” presumably that will now be Brown. The left wing bias of the BBC is hidden because their influence is so all pervading that whatever stance they take is seen to be the middle ground. However they constantly report the American neo conservatives as if they are the devil’s spawn (they could be right!) and they have taken on board man made global warming as some sort of political correctness, not the unproven theory that it is.

The BBC were very internet savvy from a time when Bill Gates was still in denial. They have built a massive and ever growing internet presence that is probably unrivalled by any other content generator and IP owner in the world. They have constantly been at the forefront online and their achievements are outstanding. It is as if they have seen the internet as the replacement for conventional broadcasting and so have invested huge intellectual energy and massive funds to make the switch. It has put them very firmly in the number one position as a global media company of the internet age.

If you have read my article  We are still at the beginning of the industry.  you will know that gaming is set to become bigger than TV, bigger than film, in fact it is set to become the biggest media industry ever. Every existing media organisation needs to be on board to prosper. Many have made their move, MTV being the latest.

So when will the BBC make their move? They have the IP, they have the global marketing presence and they have the brains. But do they have the commercial savvy? Thus far they have lightly scratched the surface of the gaming industry with indifferent results. What is needed is the same strength of purpose that they have applied to the internet. If they used their IP with craft they could open up many whole new genres of gaming and be the catalyst for the industry to finally grow up and realise it’s capabilities.

So, comment away!! What do you think the BBC and other big media companies can and should do?