Sunday, 6 January 2008

Anti-News: "Idiots Are Misled Easily" Reports Daily Mail

Here's a new riff for us - trying to find the most pathetic example of non-news about television. Kicking things off, it's the good old Daily Mail.

Complaints have poured into the BBC over Jools Holland's New Year countdown television show - because the apparently "live" programme was recorded 11 days before December 31.

It meant the Hootenanny was riddled with anomalies that left many people baffled and angry.

And it came at the end of year in which the BBC was embroiled in controversy over faked programmes misleading the public.

The most glaring hoot on the Hootenanny, screened on BBC2, was the presence of Kylie Minogue - who in fact was seeing in the New Year in her native Australia.

Others gaffes included guest Lenny Henry getting the year wrong and the midnight countdown apparently being out of synch with the actual time.

Scores of viewers posted complaints on the BBC's official Points of View website. "In an era where the BBC and television in general is continually accused of conning the public, it amazes me that this sort of pretence of what the date is still goes on all the time," wrote one.
After all, it's not as if this is what's always happened with New Year's Eve specials featuring lots of really famous guests, is it? Really, how dim would you need to be to become "baffled and angry" that Sir Paul McCartney, David Tennant, John Simm and Kylie Minogue actually aren't working at midnight on December 31st, but more likely with their families at home?

Near the end of the article, the paper pointed out how:
Readers of the Radio Times were warned that the Hootenanny show was recorded before December 31.
Inappropriate use of the word 'warned', there. "Don't touch that fence - it has fifty thousand volts running through it" would qualify as a warning, as would "come any closer and I'm going to shoot you in the face with my gun". Stating that a television programme has been pre-recorded, as would be clear to anyone who isn't just looking for a stick to beat the BBC with, wouldn't.

But perhaps we're jumping the gun, here. Maybe the Mail is going to apply the same set of standards it expects from the BBC to every aspect of the media, and will treat them all equally. Just maybe, we'll see the following on our news-stands on Monday morning.

That's right. Someone with a blog on the internet criticising the Daily Mail. We went there. Tomorrow's big revelation: the RIAA - They're Not Very Nice.

3 .:

Steve Williams said...

What I like about this is the complaint Lenny Henry said it was 2007, which gave the whole game away. Doesn't everyone keep accidentally writing the old year on cheques and forms until at least mid-February?

Mark X said...

Quite so. I do, anyway.

The story in the Mail - - even includes an Onion-style infographic detailing the charges. Even including:

"According to one viewer - whose clock was set by the official speaking clock - the countdown to midnight was more than two minutes premature"

What I like about that is the fact that if there's anyone left in the UK who still phones the speaking clock in order to set their clocks, they're absolutely certain to be avid readers of the Mail or Express. After all, all those unofficial time-proclaiming outfits are probably staffed by foreigners with a secret liberal agenda.

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