Bewkes urges ITV to keep its content free

Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes believes advertising will soon rebound and that British broadcaster ITV should just hang in there a little longer before moving content behind a pay wall. ITV's Chief Executive Alan Crozier has said that the company has not invested enough in its online business and would need to take some of its more popular over-the-air programming and place it a for-fee on-demand tier.

Bewkes, in an interview with the Telegraph in London said he understood that the financial slowdown has ITV and others worried enough to consider charging for on-demand content but "the recession will end and the ad market will recover."

Even though Crozier downplayed the immediacy of ITV's plans, Bewkes made it clear that he believes there's still time to wrest a viable business plan from free online content. "Don't take the short-term events in advertising and forget the underlying value of your programming or the strength of the model when you put the network or the programming on demand," Bewkes advised.

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