Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I agree with you wholeheartedly on this; except that I think the rightward shift happened a fair while back,  people only noticed it after Kelly/Gilligan.

When John Birt was first in charge I think he wanted to return to the era of Weekend World with Peter Jay and the "Mission to Explain". However, I felt that this was already running counter to the infiltration of CNN 24-hour news standards of infotainment: First with news and bugger context.

Editors are notoriously "industry-fashion conscious" and all want to be seen to be the first to do things. eg, within months of Kirsty Young standing up on channel 5 news, practically every news programme featured correspondents marching around studios pointing at graphs on walls. So the idea that BBC News were going to do something dated and laughably 70s like explaining things was a total non-starter.

This is what is meant by dumbing down, and why News resists the idea so strongly. Yes, they feature correspondents reporting from all over the world, they get the best stories (ie sexy blood-soaked action of real-life people dying), but they would never dare depart from the conventional wisdom. Never explain something and allow the viewer a different viewpoint.

That's why they have the "Big Beast" interviews on News programmes. You allow a politician in to say his thing, you have another politican to say they're talking rubbish and then you tell everybody what they said. At no point will the BBC challenge the paradigm of their thinking. Don't confuse the audience, they're too stupid to think.

That's why Channel 4 News is the best on the box. They almost never do big beast interviews, but get knowledgeable experts in to discuss, dissect and ridicule the politicians lies and mis-directions. The BBC no longer has the courage to do that.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Jun 5th, 2007 at 08:13:48 AM EST
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