Scottish Labour’s 2019 Manifesto – Culture, Media and Digital

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DIGITAL, CULTURE,MEDIA AND SPORT

Culture

Those living in more deprived areas and those with a lower income are less likely to attend cultural events and participate in cultural activities. It is therefore essential that local culture is open to as many people as possible, so that those who do not have the means to travel further afield are able to access it. However, the SNP Government’s underfunding of our communities has resulted in massive cuts to cultural services across Scotland. The next Scottish Labour government will properly fund councils and ensure arts and culture are open and available to everyone. We will also require organisations in receipt of public funding to pay proper trade union rates for the job and allow workers the opportunity to join a recognised trade union.

Media

A Labour government will ensure a healthy future for our all public service broadcasters, including BBC Alba and S4C.

  • We will protect free TV licences for over-75s.
  • A free and fair press is vital to protecting democracy and holding the powerful to account.
  • We will address misconduct and the unresolved failures of corporate governance raised by the second stage of the abandoned Leveson Inquiry.
  • We will take steps to ensure that Ofcom is better able to safeguard a healthy plurality of media ownership and to put in place clearer rules on who is fit and proper to own or run TV and radio stations.
  • We will take action to address the monopolistic hold the tech giants have on advertising revenues and will support vital local newspapers and media outlets.
  • We will consult media sector workers and trade unions to establish an inquiry into the fake news undermining trust in media, democracy and public debate.

Digital

Digital and technological advancements bring challenges, but also huge opportunities. In the age of AI and automation, digital connectivity will underpin our future economy.

  • We will need world-class digital infrastructure in which everyone can share.Labour will deliver free full-fibre broadband to all by 2030.
  • We will establish British Broadband, with two arms: British Digital Infrastructure (BDI) and the British Broadband Service (BBS).
  • We will bring the broadband-relevant parts of BT into public ownership and guarantee the jobs of all workers in existing broadband infrastructure and retail broadband work.
  • BDI will roll out the remaining 90-92% of the full-fibre network, and acquire necessary access rights to existing assets.
  • BBS will coordinate the delivery of free broadband in tranches as the full-fibre network is rolled out, beginning with communities least well-served by existing broadband networks.
  • Unitary taxation of multinationals, including tech giants will pay for the operating costs of the public full-fibre network.
  • The plan will boost jobs, tackle regional inequality, and improve quality of life as part of a mission to connect the country.
  • We will enforce a legal duty of care to protect our children online, impose fines on companies that fail on online abuse and empower the public with a Chart