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Ricky Gervais speaks out against Channel 4 sale proposals

Ricky Gervais speaks out against Channel 4 sale proposals
© Reuters
The Office creator Ricky Gervais criticises the government's proposals to privatise Channel 4.

Ricky Gervais has hit out at the government's proposals to privatise Channel 4 in the near future.

The broadcaster launched in 1982 with a unique structure whereby it is publicly owned but commercially funded, with all profits reinvested into programming.

Earlier this month culture secretary Oliver Dowden launched a consultation on the future of Channel 4 and revealed that the government is minded to sell it off in order to allow it to better compete in the streaming era.

In a post on Twitter, however, Gervais, who got his TV break on C4 in the late '90s, argued that a sale would 'destroy' the network's reputation for creativity and risk-taking.

"For almost 40 years, Channel 4 has been a launch pad for new ideas and new talent," he wrote.

"It's been able to do that because of its remit and not-for-profit structure and it would be a real shame if that was destroyed by selling off the channel."

The government is expected to outline the next steps of the process later this year.

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· Comeback queen and super-mum Helen Glover goes for her third Olympic gold alongside Polly Swann in the women's pair final (1.30am)
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· It is a Great Britain vs. Netherlands double-header, with the men up first in Pool B (4.15am)
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