Radio 4 opens up programme content on blog

BBC Radio Four has launched a blog to allow its audience to decide on the content of new programme iPM – an interactive counterpart to the existing news and current affairs show PM.

A post to the BBC Editors’ Blog by Peter Rippon, editor of PM, describes the project as ‘more like an ongoing conversation on the web that will have a programme attached to it once a week.’

Rippon says the aim is to be as transparent as possible about the ideas for the show and potential guests, with the blog explaining ‘why some ideas and stories get dropped or squeezed out.’

“…by posting our rough ideas in front of the audience, we’re also inviting the well-informed and blog-savvy to help us develop a particular idea,” he writes.

Not everyone is happy, however, about bloggers having such an input. As Allie comments on the post:

You’re the BBC. What ends up on the air should be shaped by journalists and producers, not listeners or (god help us) bloggers.

Others see it as a useful means of letting broadcasters know what their audiences want, while Rippon remains philosophical on the matter:

“There have been many attempts to find the missing link between old and new media. Think of iPM as a small contribution to that debate. If it fails I can always blame the presenter.”

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