‘To Make Good Content, You Have To Spend Money’


RTE Director General Dee Forbes


Director General of RTÉ Dee Forbes appeared before the Joint Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment.

Ms Forbes’ appearance follows the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland saying RTÉ should get an immediate injection of €30million in funding.

In The Times Ireland edition, Catherine Sanz and Kate O’Neill report:

It was suggested to Ms Forbes by Hildegarde Naughton, the committee’s chairwoman, that with a licence evasion rate of 14.6 per cent, if the revenue from unpaid licence fees were recouped it would generate €40 million, surpassing the BAI’s recommendation.

However, Ms Forbes said that efforts were already being made to collect fees from households claiming not to have a television and watching programmes online, but that the broadcaster needed funding now because it was in crisis.

…Ms O’Keeffe said that RTÉ’s operating costs were reduced by 30 per cent between 2008 and 2013, which was achieved through pay cuts averaging between 2.5 per cent and 12.5 per cent, in addition to a suspension of bonuses that has not yet been restored. Pay cuts had been reversed.

She told the committee that the cuts were not sustainable with maintaining quality. “In order to make good content, you have to spend money; our competitors are. For very high quality programming you have to invest.”

Ms Forbes also said:

“Our urgency is also reflected in the industry…Our commissioning levels to Irish production companies have halved over the last number of years. We were spending €80million on commissioned programmes. We’re now spending €40million.”


In response to a question about RTÉ’s workers’ different salaries, and pay grades, and transparency about the same

Director of Human Resources Eimear Cusack said:

“Again, much of it is down to legacy issues, in terms of how grades have built up over time and how different roles have morphed into different roles.

“You know we have an employee base of almost 1,800 employees, most of whom are governed by grades. So I think in the new model – because grades are tied to union agreements, etc, so in the new model, we would have, I suppose greater simplification and, I suppose, greater transparency because there will be less to look at.”

You can say that again.

Watch back in full here

RTÉ crisis ‘can’t be solved just by catching licence cheats’ (The Times Ireland edition)

Yesterday: Staying In This Afternoon?

A Shabby Sense Of Entitlement

Sponsored Link

17 thoughts on “‘To Make Good Content, You Have To Spend Money’

  1. BS

    Then what are they spending the hundreds of millions of euro they’ve gotten on? It’s certainly not quality output.

    Buying uk/us shows
    Sports coverage
    Tubs etc wages

    Now the sports coverage is good, olympics, World Cup etc were all good quality. But it’s what is expected of a national broadcaster, it shouldn’t be a surprise when they do something well.

    The crap out weighs the good by at least 90%

  2. Kirkbadaz

    Blindboy made a great point on his podcast a few weeks back, that people are out there crafting great content on a shoestring and the likes of RTÉ over manage all productions, creating rushed over middle of the road garbage that appeals to no one.

      1. Brother Barnabas

        yeah, loads of people:

        “Amy Huberman will certainly be celebrating this evening as the first episode of her new series, Finding Joy, drew an impressive average audience of 378,000.

        Kicking off straight after the main Nine O’Clock News on RTE One on Wednesday night, the show had a 30 per cent share of the total Irish audience during broadcast.

        Finding Joy proved particularly popular with women aged 35 to 54 with a 36 per cent share. The show also had a reach of 604,000 over the episode and was the highest-rating comedy debut of the year on RTÉ, with a bigger debut than The Young Offenders”


      2. Hansel

        I watched it. I very much dislike the woman, and I dislike the usual “local pal of RTE employees gets yet another pay cheque from RTE” aspect of things, but I’ll also be big enough to say that the show isn’t absolutely awful. I would watch it again. It was OK: I didn’t switch it off.

        1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

          I’m waiting for season 2 of Mr Mercedes on Monday night. It’s great. MANKY, but great.

  3. Rob

    “Ms Forbes said that efforts were already being made to collect fees from households claiming not to have a television and watching programmes online, but that the broadcaster needed funding now because it was in crisis.”

    Will someone challenge Ms Forbes on the fact that you don’t need a license to use catch up services online?
    According to http://www.citizensinformation.ie/en/consumer_affairs/media/tv_licences.html
    You do not require a television licence to watch television on your computer or mobile phone. However, the computer must not be able to receive a signal distributed by conventional television broadcasting networks, for example, cable, satellite or aerial.

    Or directly from the Broadcasting Act 2009.
    140 “television set” means any electronic apparatus capable of receiving
    and exhibiting television broadcasting services broadcast for general
    reception (whether or not its use for that purpose is dependent on
    the use of anything else in conjunction with it) and any software or
    assembly comprising such apparatus and other apparatus;

    1. BS

      Maybe she knows something we don’t. That the “broadcast” charge is coming in. Which is essentially a tax on having an internet connection. You couldn’t make it up.

      1. Rob

        Sure we already pay tax on our internet connections.
        Why don’t they take a portion of the VAT that the telcos collect and use that for the public service broadcasting fund. take an average of VAT collected on those services for the last 5 years, average the TV License fees collected for the same 5 years, and come up with the percentage that is equivalent. then that’s the percentage of VAT that is to be allocated to the public service broadcasting fund. Then you allocate the percentage for RTE, TG4, TV3, radio etc. If RTE cant by on the majority of the license fee, along with their commercial marketing, then they need to cut costs, like every other private company in the same industry. Let key staff ply their skills elsewhere and see what their real world value is.

  4. phil

    Why wont FG ˈprʌɪvətʌɪz it ? FG love privatizing state assets , and most of the local programming is made my private contractors anyways ….

    I think I know the answer, but had to ask anyhow

      1. Rob_G

        You need to reread Eamo’s article a bit more closely, Cian – FG privatised British Railways and shut down the coal mines.

  5. Mr Obvious

    @ RTÉ
    To justify spending that much money you have to create content, but you seldom do… and when you do it always seems like a cheaper version of something on a better channel.
    Panel shows are your forté. Cheaper to make, easier to appease whoever’s in government and holding the purse strings.
    That’s what you do.

    Sports coverage and News are your obligation, and you don’t deliver on either front.
    You distort the News and ignore female sport.

    ‘Spending money’ does NOT equate to ‘creating content’, unless you or a relative works for RTÉ.

  6. Panty Christ

    It only costs €5000 an hour to buy in a tv show. Each episode of fair city costs €50000 to make.
    Drop fair city and import more tv.

    1. Tubbs aka enda D. reynolds

      As one of the Admins of TV licence resistanceIreland, I’ll glady show up and tell the Doyle committee for safeguarding faRTE’s SQUANDERING of loot just how things REALLY are…

      Why do’nt U have a read of this mz forbes and respond…ESPECIALLY to Ur ‘arttemeped’ justification of the amount stolen FROM social Welfare…or social PROTECTION, as it’s now called, each year??Only thing being being protected is salaries of theTurd, hughJarcy, Slow Scruffy and co..and of course, the patron saints of single figure IQ’s, Sharrin theBlowLawn.
      to help put things into PERSPECTIVE,
      the UK has a population of 40 million people , and it’s top TV star, Chris Evans, is paid roughly €3 million a year,while here, with a population of 4 million, we pay the Turd €495,000
      Either Evans is being UNDERPAID by 90% or Turdbody is being OVERPAID by 90%…..and the BEEB don’t have ads,…
      Next time U get Ur goons to moan to a paper about us, could we have some notice?? Our membership has INCREASED BY 50% in 3 days, but best of all, U bunch of moronic clowns have helped make people aware of their RIGHTS, regarding privacy, so
      “The next time there’s a knock on Ur door, it doesn’t MATTER WHO it is and if it’s a commission paid tv licence salesman or not……..we’re training people to IGNORE it!!!
      in an article in today’s Sunday Times,anPist /faRTE have complained to fb about our page (so THANK U EVERYONE, the ba$tards must be feeling the pinch!!)All we’d ask is that U educate Urself about Ur RIGHTS and don’t be afraid to stand up for them…we’ll inform U how to LEGALLY treat this filth.

      Nothing in their ‘complaint’ however, was said about about
      * Turdbody or their ‘stars’ being paid salary into Companies to avoid payment of income tax
      * A refusal to allow elderly/disabled a Social Welfare package UNLESS they accept a TV licence as part of it. In Financial Services, that’s referred to as ‘BUNDLING’ and is ILLEGAL
      * Failure to enclose PROOF or EVIDENCE with a SUMMONS renders it VOID ,yet they don’t in 99% of their Court cases… and the judges proceed assuming due process HAS been followed
      * Why is not deemed ‘representing the best interests of Ur Client’ if a solicitor just stands up in Court and pleads guilty – and not demanding to see PROOF of the alleged offence?
      * Trying to get U into Court without going through due legal PROCESS is an attempt to get U to SELF PROSECUTE
      * Breach of confidentiality/invasion of privacy
      * Bully boy coercion, attempted usually by MEN targetting what are usually Ladies, often Mums with children,
      * “implied” right of admission when they have as much RIGHT to enter, or ask to enter as as the jehovah’s poxy witnesses
      * Advising people of their rights is NOT illegal.but trying to pretend Ur thugs have rights they don’t IS
      * Encouraging people to discover their RIGHTS and to stand up for themselves is a good thing..it’ll never happen with our ‘national broadcaster’ with it’s clearly defined and stipulated ‘Selective News’…it’s going back to the times of Dr.Joseph Goebbels and the Nazi propaganda
      * There is no law which says U MUST answer Ur door
      * There is no law which says U MUST engage with a caller to Ur door…slam the door shut in their faces if it’s anPist tv sales

      There wasn’t a WORD from them on the AMOUNTS REMOVED from Social Welfare each YEAR for each of the past 11 years, under the “FREE” TV LICENCE SCAM , WHO decides on them the month before the year starts and why neither the same monthly amount or the total annual deducted under the scam is NOT EQUALLY DIVISIBLE BY €160, the price of a licence,
      YEAR ….. Deduction in €’s …… EACH Month
      2008 ……….53,700,925 ………. 4,475,077
      2009………. 55,703,654 ………. 4,641,971.1
      2010………..57,184,565………… 4,765,380
      2011………..57,184,560…………. 4,765,380
      2012 ……….57,184,560………… 4,765,380
      2013………. 57,184,560………… 4,756,380
      2014. ………52,184,556………. .. 4,348,713
      2015………..52,184,556………… 4,348,713
      2016………. 52,184,556………… 4,348,713
      2017………..53,184,660………… 4,432,055
      10 yrs TOTAL € 547,781,152 half a BILLION €’s

      * Nothing about their ability to UNDERCUT other stations who depend on advertising revenue, due to licence fee ‘subsidy’
      * No reponse to members emails TO THE MINISTER (which were acknowledged as having been received) requesting information concerning the number of NOTICE for search warrant letters sent out ,numbers of warrants applied for, number actually received AND number of warrants EXECUTED each year, for each of the past 10 years….

      1.8 million licences sold each year…95% of that goes to faRTE, that’s a third of a BILLION €’s A YEAR, yet all we get is ads, faRTE City, repeats, ‘Best of/ Remember? rehashes of stuff that went out with the square wheel, SELECTIVE and government dicatated selective ‘NEWS’???’ , ads for anPist, (the lottery owner and tv licence salespeople) ‘disguised ‘ as ‘game shows’ at peak viewing time on a Saturday…and an increasing number of buy a licence or else threats disguised as ”ads’…and of course,Ratt Turdbody’s Dead Dead show

      WHERE DOES ALL THE MONEY GO ??U’ve let staff go, flogged off land, increased ad time per hour, yet like the Health Service, the more loot that’s fired INTO faRTE, the less actual PRODUCT

      MAKE faRTE PAY PER VIEW ….NOW.!!!!!
      If U do all Ur shopping in ALDI, Centra, Dunnes,LIDL and SuperValu and the government DEMAND U have to give Tesco €160 a year,would YOU pay it? Me neither!!!

      As U can imagine, interest in the page went bananas today, but despite receiving 300+ application a WEEK to join, unless applicants complete all THREE questions, they are deleted in the interests of our members , so by all means inform friends, family and pages U’re on NOT TO PAY THE Turdbody Tax,and let’s make faRTE the media Irish Water …and finally KEEP all letters the ba$tards send out to U!!
      Thank U all again,and an Pist? go piss in Ur hats, W⚓’s
      Please share and get others to REFUSE TO BUY A LICENCE, crush this farce once and for all, thank U.
      ps roll on letter #28!!!

Comments are closed.

Sponsored Link