5 reasons for you to join the fight to save Channel 4

20 January 2022

The government has announced that they plan to continue with their plan to privatise Channel 4. But it isn't over yet!

Here are 5 good reasons why the campaign to keep it working for people not profit deserves your support. The last one is maybe the best - this is a fight you can win!

1. Channel 4 doesn’t cost you a penny

Many people do not realise that Channel 4 is in public ownership. It’s a commercially run, publicly owned organisation that funds itself through advertising and doesn’t cost us a penny. What’s not to like?

There is no problem for which the privatisation of Channel 4 is the solution. Channel 4 has always been ahead of the game on digital. It was one of the first broadcasters to set up an online streaming service. It made a profit for the public purse of £74 million last year.

2. You like good TV and films

Channel 4 is a Great British success story that has been entertaining and informing us since 1982. Have you seen or enjoyed any of its world-famous, much-loved TV programmes, or the films from Film4?

  • Father Ted?

  • IT Crowd?

  • Peep Show?

  • Come Dine with Me?

  • Countdown?

  • Gogglebox?

  • First Dates?

  • Derry Girls?

  • Slumdog Millionaire?

  • Four Weddings and a Funeral?

  • Dispatches?

Without Channel 4, these wouldn’t have happened! Channel 4 has a unique business model and has commissioned huge amounts of innovative content.

Why would we throw this away? Privatisation would mean shareholders coming first instead of innovation – Channel 4 would be downgraded. 

3. You care about holding this government accountable- for example at the next election

Channel 4 News often holds this government to account, on everything from the NHS to the environment. 

For example, in the 2019 election, Channel 4 held a debate on climate crisis. Boris Johnson failed to attend and the channel replaced him with a melting ice sculpture. In fact, that might be part of why he’s been pushing for privatisation…

Channel 4 has a mandate to stimulate public debate, reflect the UK’s cultural diversity and champion alternative points of view. It is very popular with young people and minority audiences.

If you want decent news coverage at the next general election, now is the time to save Channel 4.

4. You care about jobs, opportunities and levelling up

Channel 4 boosts the economy, creates jobs across the UK, helps young people get into the creative sector and works with more independent producers than any other broadcaster. There’s a lot to lose:

  • Around 140 small businesses rely on Channel 4 for more than half of their production revenue. 60 independent production companies are likely to be lost if privatisation goes ahead.

  • Channel 4 helps the government’s levelling up agenda with its headquarters in Leeds and creative hubs in Glasgow and Bristol.

  • Ernst and Young have found that privatisation risks a 35% drop in regional jobs dependent on Channel 4. In 2020, Channel 4 produced 58% of its content in the nations and regions outside London.

  • Privatising Channel 4 would cost the economy as a whole £1 billion.

  • Channel 4 has a skills and training programme, creating career opportunities for 15,000 young people, targeted at those in the poorest areas.

5. We can win this one!

Do you want Channel 4 to stay in public hands? Polling in the Times shows 82% of us believe that’s where it belongs. 76% of Conservative voters agree.

The number one factor for people who want public ownership is that Channel 4 creates jobs for the UK economy. Not being owned by a foreign company and being independent are the next two most important factors.

60,000 people (including thousands of We Own It supporters) responded to the government’s consultation. 10,000 of you wrote to your MP to ask them to stop the sell off. Celebrities, production companies and advertisers have come out against privatisation.

Share this blog and sign our petition to send the government a clear message - Channel 4 belongs to us, in public ownership. We don’t want to lose it. 

Do you believe in public services for people not profit?

Win campaigns for public ownership by subscribing to our mailing list! We'll hold your data in accordance with our privacy policy and send you carefully chosen information about current and future campaigns, projects and appeals. You can unsubscribe at any time.


Susan Powell replied on Permalink

Stop the sell off of Channel 4

david greenall replied on Permalink

If it's ours whose selling it?

Peter Cannon replied on Permalink

Totally agree with no sell off of c4 but why are they spending money on the waste of space Katie Price.

Jo replied on Permalink

C4 has more than earned it's existence. Love the films, the documentaries the news the light entertainment. Watch something most days on C4. It deserves to stay.

Jon Beedell replied on Permalink

Channel Four produces brilliant & original work, provides excellent documentaries, incisive reprorting, honest jouralism, and independent news - what's not to like ? The model works perfectly well. If it ain't broke don't fix it ! DON'T PRIVATISE the nations assets. C4 belongs to us , not the Government.

82% of UK public don't want it privatised. Listen to the people. Leave C4 alone ! You should WELCOME truly independent voices - not stifle them. What are you afraid of ? The truth ? Stop messing with our best loved channels. And lay off the BBC as well. Don't be philistine. It ill becomes a Culture Secretary..

Lee Maybin replied on Permalink

The Tories would privatise their own Kids if they could make a Pound note out of it! Leave Channel 4 alone!

John Bulley replied on Permalink

keep the free marketeers away from my telly

William William... replied on Permalink

Channel 4 has the best news reporting service of all the UK TV channels this is probably why Boris and his band want rid of it.

Irena barden replied on Permalink

I totally object to channel 4 being removed from public ownership. It creates thousands of jobs for our economy.

Christina Skidmore replied on Permalink

save this wonderful channel please

Tanya Rocks replied on Permalink

BBC4 is an excellent channel funded with public money. How many more services are going to be “taken without owners’ consent”? It’s called “twocking” in criminal parlance.

Bridget replied on Permalink

Channel 4 provides such a variety of great programmes and has the best news programme - although I wish Jon Snow a great retirement he is a big miss.

Elizabeth Masla... replied on Permalink

It's time the Government dealt with the staff shortages in the hotel, care and farming services rather than taking away something else. Disgraceful.

douglas pearl replied on Permalink

We all know that the government want to control all our TV stations on what they broadcast ,rather like Russia ,China & North Korea . We need an independent broadcasters who are not owned by the government

Anne Wareing replied on Permalink

Governments don't want us to have a voice, or choice at all. All our democratic and constitutional rights have been eroded and dismantled for decades by both parties. This entire island was sold off by Thatcher. Banks which were deregulated caused the crash, councils forced to sell housing stock and transport, taking vital funds from them because governments do what they want, not what we need. We do not pay them to destroy or dismantle our publicly owned services, so hands off our independent broadcasters, C4 and BBC, all of you!!

Geoff Loveman replied on Permalink

Leave Channel 4 alone - it is ours, not yours, Dorries!

Susan Dintinger replied on Permalink

This should be a bigger scandal than it is. Public has been brainwashed for years on a far right diet from Mail, Express and Telegraph. Reform our newspapers not BBC and Channel 4.

Rob Carter replied on Permalink

Someone has to stand up against this terrible government and the manner in which it behave's

Gail Arden replied on Permalink

It’s some of best television snd the most honest news reporting

It’s a channel to be proud of

Susan Reilly replied on Permalink

Channel 4 is brilliant & most definitely should not be sold off.

Justin Philpott replied on Permalink

Some of the best documentaries from C4 form part of the foundation of the inspiration and fascination for science I had as a kid.

Teresa Bridget ... replied on Permalink

''If it ain't broke don't fix it'' A good motto to live by.....Channel 4 is not a problem. We should be getting on with things that DO need fixing and are in need of attention.....the list is endless but major concentration must be given to Health Services, Policing, Housing, Education.....please do the jobs that need doing instead of attacking areas that are functioning well.

Pam Lee replied on Permalink

The success of C4 and its excellent, varied output is practically down to it being in the public domain. This is something we can be proud of, so why would any government needlessly hand over this flagship of publicly-owned commercial tv to the private sector - it should be unthinkable.

Henry T. Spence replied on Permalink

Leave C4 in Public Ownership - stop "Asset Stripping" the BBC / the Public purse.

E. Lacey replied on Permalink

Why interfere with C4? Fix all the the public services you have messed up and leave the others alone. Is this another ‘get at the BBC ‘ move.

Julie Saunders replied on Permalink

Why is this government hell bent on destroying everything l hold dear? Channel 4 is something to be proud off with its excellent quality broadcasting. Leave it alone and focus on the important stuff like cost of living crisis, the housing crisis, NHS, the care crisis ,the damage to our business sectors caused by Covid and Brexit, the lack of investment in education and transport the list is endless. Try listening to what the people of this country want for a change. Hands off our Channel 4

Tom Cunningham replied on Permalink

Leave channel 4 alone

Yvonne charles replied on Permalink

Leave. Chanel 4 to. The public no. Privation !!!

John Malcolm Graham replied on Permalink

The current government are clearly determined to sell of everything of any value, including channel 4 AND THE BBC.


Anonymous replied on Permalink

Stop privatizing the channel 4, it's doing fine without making it private.

Sonia Fox replied on Permalink

Why? Why ruin a successful enterprise that the public love?

Phoebe Ravenhall replied on Permalink

This Tory government is intent on getting rid of opposition: taking away the money (the licence fee) which keeps the BBC afloat, and now selling off Channel Four. Totally agree with previous comment: there are innumerable problems to be solved: are the Tories expecting pay for the NHS with the money they hope to make from selling Channel Four? As if!

Pauline Gibson replied on Permalink

I watch Channel 4 News every evening. It is of a very high standard and always fair. I am shocked and dismayed that this government, as if it hasn’t done enough harm, wants to privatise it. There is no rationale for this action, just pure spite because the C4 News has rightLy called the government to account on occasion.

Sandy reid replied on Permalink

We must do everything to stop this fascist government.

John Harwood replied on Permalink

We have an infestation of vultures and they need to be culled.

Stop profiting from all of our public services and return them to us.

Pauline Bacon replied on Permalink

This again like many other privatisations will make a short-term profit for this Government and lose money for the country in all future years. Anyone with any sense knows that does not make economic sense.

Caroline Officer replied on Permalink

This appalling Government fail to understand they are custodians, not masters. They have no plan beyond destroying for their own interests. Channel 4 is a vital and much loved part of our media and cultural landscape; it nurtures new talent and supports our independent television production sector. If we allow this Government to get their hands on Channel 4, it will have far reaching consequences for many and will join the growing list of treasures we as a nation value but are in danger of losing.

Tony Kennedt replied on Permalink

Hands off channel 4

Carol Talbo replied on Permalink

Leave Channel 4 alone, it it ain't broke so doesn't need you interfering!!!

Saxon Barrie replied on Permalink

Already expressed. Save Channel 4.

Sonia Fox replied on Permalink

What is the government going to sell off next?? I dread to think!!

Melissa Thompson replied on Permalink

I want to keep public service broadcasting. Hands off Channel Four. Let's keep a range of views, choice and diversity.

Alyson replied on Permalink

Please stop selling off everything we want to keep in we . the publics hands . We don’t want anything else sold off to the highest bidder and then belong to masters of profit instead of truth

Hugh Brown replied on Permalink

Not everything is about profit

Simon Sherry replied on Permalink

if it ain't broke, and it doesn't cost the public purse, why fix it?

Penny Wilde replied on Permalink

Stop selling our stuff. No privatised service has given any improvement. Private companies make rubbish decisions all the time. Channel 4 is not yours to sell.

Alan Pembleton replied on Permalink

Why not set up a charitable trust to purchase Channel 4 from the government ?

K J Beasley replied on Permalink

The Conservative's once again want to stifle any form of criticism against their policies. How many times have Channel 4 asked for a Government representative to answer questions put forward on our behalf. For which we want answers and no one is available. Remember this is the only party I can remember in my lifetime of 74 years who wanted to prologue parliament. A disgrace to democracy.

Anonymous replied on Permalink

Leave us alone! We don’t want to let Channel 4 be privatised !

Lester Jones replied on Permalink

Channel 4 is the BEST!

Paul Richards replied on Permalink

Clueless culture secretary Nadine Dorries thought that Chanel 4 was funded by the public purse which appeared to be her initial reason to privatise it

Add new comment