Tag Archives: BBC Radio

BBC Radio 4: ‘Electric Ink’ – when old hacks meet new media

If you’ve got a spare half an hour this morning and you can get BBC Radio 4, Journalism.co.uk thinks Alistair Beaton’s new satirical comedy ‘Electric Ink’ will be well worth a listen.

Led by Robert Lindsay, the six-part series is described as: “Old hacks meet new media in the newspaper industry.”

[We’ll try to get a snippet to embed here]

Full programme details at this link…

Meanwhile Sam Shepherd asks over on Subbed Out whether the BBC will be able to avoide the cliches about the web and reporting.

Amnesty International Media Awards winners in full

Here are the winners from last night’s Amnesty International Media Awards; nominees and judges were reported here. The awards, designed to recognise ‘excellence in human rights reporting’, feature ten categories spread across print, broadcast and online journalism.

Gaby Rado Memorial Award
Aleem Maqbool, BBC News

International Television & Radio
World’s Untold Stories:  The Forgotten People, CNN, Dan Rivers and Mary Rogers

Nations & Regions
The Fight for Justice, The Herald Magazine by Lucy Adams

National newspapers
MI5 and the Torture Chambers of Pakistan, The Guardian by Ian Cobain

New media
Kenya: The Cry of Blood – Extra Judicial Killings and Disappearances, Wikileaks, Julian Assange

Periodicals – consumer magazines
The ‘No Place for Children’ campaign, New Statesman, Sir Al Aynsley Green, and Gillian Slovo

Periodicals – newspaper supplements
Why do the Italians Hate Us? The Observer Magazine, Dan McDougall and Robin Hammond

Photojournalism
No One Much Cares, Newsweek, Eugene Richards

Radio
Forgotten: The Central African Republic, BBC Radio 4 – Today Programme, Edward Main, Ceri Thomas, Mike Thomson

Television documentary and docu-drama
Dispatches: Saving Africa’s Witch Children, Channel 4 / Red Rebel Films / Southern Star Factual, Mags Gavan, Joost Van der Valk, Alice Keens-Soper, Paul Woolwich

Television news
Kiwanja Massacre: Congo, Channel 4 News / ITN, Ben De Pear, Jonathan Miller, Stuart Webb and Robert Chamwami

Special award
This year’s Special Award for Journalism Under Threat was awarded to Eynulla Fәtullayev, from Azerbaijan.

How Westminster students covered last week’s Journalism in Crisis conference

I got a peek behind the stage curtain last week, at the University of Westminster / British Journalism Review Journalism in Crisis conference (May 19/20). Geoffrey Davies, head of the Journalism and Mass Communications department, gave me a mini-guided tour of the equipment borrowed for the event – it allowed the live-streaming of the conference throughout; a real bonus for those at home or in the office.

Jump to video list here (includes: Mark Thompson / Nick Davies / Paul Lashmar / Boris Johnson and a host of academics and journalists from around the world)

The Journalism.co.uk beat means that we cover a fair few industry and academic conferences, and so we get to compare the technology efforts of the hosts themselves. While Twitter conversation didn’t flow as much as at some events (not necessarily a negative thing – see some discussion on that point at this link) the students’ own coverage certainly made use of their multimedia skills. I contacted a few of the students and lecturers afterwards to find out a few more specifics, and how they felt it went.

“We streamed to the web via a system we borrowed from NewTek Europe, but might purchase, called Tricaster. It’s a useful piece of equipment that is a television studio in a box,” explained Rob Benfield, a senior lecturer at the University, who produced the students’ coverage.

“In this case it allowed us to add graphics and captions downstream of a vision-mixer. It also stores all the material we shot in its copious memory and allowed us to store and stream student work, messages and advertising material of various sorts without resorting to other sources.

“Some of our third year undergraduates quickly mastered the technology which proved to be largely intuitive. We streamed for two solid days without interruption.”

Conference participants might also have seen students extremely diligently grabbing each speaker to ask them some questions on camera  (making Journalism.co.uk’s cornering of people a little bit more competitive). The videos are linked at the end of this post.

Marianne Bouchart, a second year at the University, blogged and tweeted (via @WestminComment) along with postgraduate student, Alberto Furlan.

“We all were delighted to get involved in such an important event,” Bourchart told Journalism.co.uk afterwards. “It was an incredible opportunity for us to practice our journalistic skills and gave to most of us a first taste of working in journalism. I couldn’t dream of anything better than to interview BBC director general Mark Thompson.

“We worked very hard on this project and we are all very happy it went on that well. My experience as an editor managing a team of journalists to cover the event was fantastic. We encountered a few scary moments, some panic attacks, but handled the whole thing quite brilliantly in the end – for inexperienced journalists. I can’t wait to be working with this team again.”

A sample of the Westminster students’ coverage:

If you missed the Journalism.co.uk own coverage, here’s a round-up:

Videos from the Westminster University students at this link. Interviewees included:

  • Paul Lashmar, Is investigative journalism in the UK dying or can a ‘Fifth Estate’ model revitalise it? An examination of whether the American subscription and donation models such as Pro Publica, Spot.US and Truthout are the way
  • Haiyan Wang, Investigative journalism and political power in China —A case study of three major newspapers’ investigative reporting over Chenzhou corruption between April 2006 and November 2008
  • Maria Edström, The workplace and education of journalists – myths and facts
  • Shan Wu, Can East Asia produce its own “Al-Jazeera”? Unravelling the challenges that face channel NewsAsia as a global media contra-flow
  • Yael .M. de Haan, Media under Fire: criticism and response in The Netherlands, 1987-2007
  • Esra Arsan, Hopelessly devoted? Turkish journalism students’ perception of the profession
  • Professor James Curran, ‘Journalism in Crisis,’ Goldsmiths College
  • Marina Ghersetti, Swedish journalists’ views on news values
  • Igor Vobic, Multimedia news of Slovenian print media organisations: Multimedia on news Websites of delo and žurnal media
  • Anya Luscombe, The future of radio journalism: the continued optimism in BBC Radio News
  • Tamara Witschge,The tyranny of technology? Examining the role of new media in news journalism
  • Juliette De Maeyer, Journalism practices in an online environment
  • Colette Brin, Journalism’s paradigm shifts: a model for understanding long-term change
  • Dimitra Dimitrakopoulou, Crisis equals crisis: How did the panic spread by the Greek media accelerate the economy crisis in the country?
  • Matthew Fraser, Why business journalism failed to see the coming economic crisis
  • Michael Bromley, Citizen journalism: ‘citizen’ or ‘journalism’ – or both?
  • Vincent Campbell, ‘Citizen Journalism’: A crisis in journalism studies?
  • Martin Nkosi Ndlela, The impact of technology on Norwegian print journalism
  • James S McLean, The future of journalism: Rethinking the basics
  • Mathieu Simonson, The Belgian governmental crisis through the eye of political blogging
  • Nick Davies, freelance journalist and author of Flat Earth News
  • Boris Johnson, Mayor of London
  • Jonathan Coad, partner at Swan Turton solicitors
  • Mark Thompson, BBC director-general
  • All-day interview tips from @NewsLeader – Wednesday 27th May

    Tomorrow, from 8am to 8pm, @NewsLeader aka Justin Kings, will be tweeting tips from BBC and commercial broadcasters as ‘a day of advice aimed at producing better interviews’.

    “Journalists from BBC Radio 1 and the World Service, editors from Sony nominated Beacon Radio and Jack FM, and BBC local radio are amongst the contributors,” Kings, who runs the media consultancy NewsLeader, told Journalism.co.uk.

    “I think it’s exciting because it’s rare that people from BBC and commercial sectors get to share best practice with each other,” Kings said. “It’s not too late to share tips via @newsleader,” he added.

    Jenni Murray: the white chihuahua, her love of Crocs, and a long-lost Barnsley accent

    The alternative highlights from Jenni Murray’s visit to Brighton yesterday evening:

    (see the story on the Journalism.co.uk for the broadcasting-related quotes)

    Murray, who turned 59 this week, and has presented BBC Radio 4 Woman’s Hour since 1987, read from her autobiography (‘Memoirs of a Not So Dutiful Daughter’) and answered questions from interviewer Simon Fanshawe and the audience for the Brighton Festival event.

    Many of her anecdotes and references from the evening featured in this piece in the Brighton Argus, ahead of the event.

    • Her apology for her ‘dishevelled’ (she wasn’t) appearance, and dog-hair adorned outfit  – the result of a long car journey with her white chihuahua, Butch, on her lap. The chihuahua then sat on her publisher’s lap at the back of the theatre throughout the event.
    • The quick put-down to interviewer Simon Fanshawe when he mocked her Crocs (she swears by them): “I can change my shoes, you can never grow your hair.”
    • On her mother: Murray’s mother was quicker to criticise her daughter’s outfit than her abilities on TV. “I’d come off the programme [Newsnight] and the phone would ring. I’d say ‘what did you think of the interview with Norman Tebbit…'” Her mother would not have noticed the interview but say, ‘You know that red top you had on? You’ve quite high colour. Your eyes are your best feature, and your fringe is a bit long…’
    • On becoming her mother [at times]: “If I hadn’t pushed him [eldest son, Edward] to do the chemistry, the physics, the biology, he wouldn’t have made it [as a vet], would he?”
    • On her father: “No-one I have ever met has ever quite lived up to him.”
    • On elocution lessons: With a Barnsley accent ‘I wouldn’t have had a chance of being a broadcaster [at that time].’
    • On John Humphrys: “I taught him everything he knows. He had never done radio [before the Today programme].”
    • On not being a boy: “Really she [Murray’s mother] would have been much happier if I had been a boy.” Murray’s mother told her: ‘until you were born you were David Robert’. When Murray’s first son was born, she says, the proud grandmother arrived at the house, scooped the baby up and exclaimed, ‘at last my boy!’
    • On her changed taste in fashion: As a teenager, “my eye make-up [was] like Dusty Springfield’s, but I did take it off [at night]; she [Springfield] didn’t – she confirmed that when I met her.”

    Paul Gambaccini: BBC Radio 1 fails to recognise its ‘incredible responsibility’ by keeping Moyles in a job

    Former BBC Radio 1 broadcaster, Paul Gambaccini, has once again emphasised the ethical implications of public broadcasting to an audience at Coventry University.

    ‘Broadcasters have an incredible responsibility,’ said Gambaccini, who currently presents on BBC Radio 2, BBC Radio 4 and Classic FM. Back on the ‘Sack Chris Moyles’ beat, he said he was deeply offended by the current BBC 1 breakfast host’s comments about, and parody of, the singer Will Young.

    “Had I been the head of Radio 1 I would have sacked him for that, because I know everything that we do will be remembered by, and have an influence on, some people,” he said.

    Gambaccini first called for Moyles’ sacking in February, in his Oxford University lecture series, in his role as this year’s News International professor of broadcast media.

    It was the second time he repeated the message this week. Speaking at the Media Guardian Radio Reborn conference on Monday, he said that Moyles was ‘a bully who causes human suffering’.

    Gambaccini told that audience that young boys were beaten up in the playground for their sexuality. Moyles’ parody encouraged that, he claimed.

    He claimed that the BBC had failed to recognise its ‘incredible responsibility’. “Radio 1 hasn’t been aware of that [responsibility] or willing to act on it. Personally, I would have dropped Chris Moyles. For someone like Chris to throw the word gay around with abandonment, does, I’m afraid, show a sense of irresponsibility.”

    Moyles’ job has attracted attention of late: the Sun recently devoted a front page story to his alleged imminent ‘sacking’ from the pole position on Radio 1. Moyles responded with a rant on his show denying the story.

    Radio 1 deputy head, Ben Cooper, also questioned the veracity of the Sun story this week, in a somewhat lukewarm endorsement of Moyles and his show.

    John Mair is senior lecturer in broadcasting at Coventry University and organiser of the Coventry Conversations, a series of events featuring high-profile media figures.

    Bad Science: Ben Goldacre on scientists and the media

    Ben Goldacre links to his interview for the Today Programme on BBC Radio 4 – ‘talking about dumbing down science’. He joins Kathy Sykes, who has just written a piece in New Scientist on the topic, to discuss scientists and their participation in the media.

    Full post at this link…

    JamesCridland: BBC Radio 4 reaching out

    James Cridland takes a look at BBC Radio 4’s blogging efforts.

    “[…] the clever and charming Mark Damazer, controller of the radio station, has caught the blogging bug,” he writes.

    “Why does Radio 4 repeat a fair bit of their schedule? He [Damazer] tells us frankly:

    “We simply can’t make more programmes with the money we have. We have several ideas for new programmes/formats – but I can’t afford to take out repeats and replace them with these news ideas. We’d go broke.”

    Full post at this link…

    Meyer slams Media Standards Trust report – it’s ‘statistics of the madhouse’

    Speaking on the Radio 4 Today programme, chair of the Press Complaints Commission [PCC], Sir Christopher Meyer, has disputed the Media Standards Trust’s new published research, labelling it a  ‘shoddy report’. (Click through end link for full transcript)

    The report has found that the PCC [as reported in Guardian, for example] lacks transparency and ‘commercially significant sanctions’.

    Interviewed this morning, Sir Christopher Meyer defended the work of the PCC: ‘the way we organise ourselves is transparent,’ he said.

    “They [the MST] don’t come to PCC and they don’t take evidence directly,” Meyer said.

    Sir David Bell, who chairs the MST, said “We are more expert on their website than they [PCC] are themselves.”

    Bell said the MST will consult the PCC in the second stage of the research.

    “There’s a revolution going on in newspapers, the PCC needs to be reformed,” Bell added.

    Meyer labelled the report’s findings as ‘statistics of the madhouse’. “We now have record numbers of people coming for advice,” Meyer said. “This has to be seen as a vote of confidence,” he said.

    Full audio linked here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/today/hi/today/newsid_7878000/7878472.stm

    0845 (Today Programme) from the website:
    “Newspapers are regulated by the Press Complaints Commission, a body set up and run by the papers themselves. A report by the Media Standards Trust, an independent charity, says existing press self-regulation is not working. Sir David Bell, chairman of the trust, and Sir Christopher Meyer, chairman of the PCC, discuss the report.”

    Continue reading

    Ofcom’s PSB review – a round-up

    In its public service broadcasting (PSB) blueprint, UK industry regulator Ofcom made a series of recommendations for Channel 4, the BBC and ITV – there’s a video explaining the report on Ofcom’s YouTube channel, but for those of you wanting something more textual here’s our round-up:

    Key points:

    • There needs to be alternative public services to the BBC – echoing Lord Carter’s comments last week
    • More choice for regional news consumers
    • Retention of the licence fee and no top-slicing
    • News content for ITV and Five, but limit level of public service commitments

    Recommendations were given for each of the UK’s broadcasters in turn, but given news this week of potential mergers with Five or the BBC and yesterday’s pledge to invest £500 million in regional production and programming, here’s a synopsis of the points directed at Channel 4:

    • “A new organisation, with public purposes at its heart, should be established; Channel 4 is well-placed to be central to this.” This could potentially be funded by a chunk of the £130m-a-year BBC licence fee digital switchover surplus.
    • Full range of digital content and news and programmes from outside of London needed
    • Merger with BBC Worldwide, Five or other organisations not ruled out, but “[P]artnerships should complement market provision and ensure economic sustainability, accountability, choice and competition. New governance and accountability arrangements would be essential.” (Report from Telegraph.co.uk, says Ofcom chief executive Ed Richards said there is ‘more of a tension’ surrounding a possible deal with Five)

    Following the regulator’s market impact assessment late last year, which formed part of the BBC Trust’s decision to reject local online video plans, the report also reviewed PSB in the nations and regions:

    • Potentially good news for local newspapers in England (welcomed by the Newspaper Society) – “Ofcom believes that the Government should plan for an alternative way of securing regional news for the devolved nations and English regions from 2011”.
    • Plans for ITV and BBC to share some resources and infrastructure in England will be reviewed – in particular, how sustainable this model is.

    The National Union of Journalists (NUJ) has expressed concerns over Ofcom’s recommendations for ITV Local – suggesting a deal had already been agreed between the channel and regulator rendering a consultation on cuts to its local news provision meaningless.

    “Ofcom has presented its proposals as a framework for saving public service broadcasting, but the reality is that this report has given ITV the go-ahead to cut its local output. It means fewer local news programmes and fewer local stories. As hundreds of editorial staff walk out of the door, they’ll be taking the links between ITV and local communities with them. That’s hardly in the interests of citizens and viewers,” said a statement by the union.

    Ed Richards, Ofcom chief executive, gives his thoughts on the review in this Comment is Free article and on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.