The Rule of Law

This is interesting:

BSkyB\’s 17.9pc stake in ITV may have offended many people\’s sense of what\’s fair but it didn\’t appear to offend the Government\’s very own 2003 Communications Act which allows BSkyB to own up to 20pc in ITV – it became known as the Murdoch clause after all. That was introduced under the more Murdoch-friendly Tony Blair.

The law says that BSkyB can own 20 pc of ITV. The Minister has said that it must sell half of its 17.9% stake.

What was that about being a country ruled by the law?

TV Producers, Listen!

My secret fantasy is that one day the two genres should collide, and Jeremy Clarkson be filmed as the tall, sneering Regency hero in the tight pantalons, test-driving his four-in-hand racing curricle at high speed. I know, only 4bhp. Not a patch on a Bugatti Veyron. But think of the viewing figures, boys, think of the viewing figures.

Selina Scott Speaks Out!

In a thinly-veiled swipe against some younger women presenters, Miss Scott told The Daily Telegraph that the BBC and other news operations were more interested in "presentation over substance".

"So often you see people coming through the system without a strong journalistic background, who haven\’t covered a wide range of stories," she said.

"Women are taken on because they are intelligent and good-looking but not because of the experience they\’ve had in breaking or covering stories."

Highly snigger worthy. Hands up everyone who thinks that Selina Scott would have been employed as a newsreader if she had looked like Margaret Beckett?

Can the Leopard Change His Shorts?

The Olympic Games\’ ability to attract controversy is enjoying a new twist after China\’s equivalent of Des Lynam was humiliated at a television ceremony by his wife storming onstage and accusing him of conducting an affair.

Opinion was divided. While many enjoyed the humiliation doled out to the CCTV anchor – a breed held in much contempt by internet users – others pointed out that Mrs Hu should not have been surprised at her treatment.

After all, Zhang was already married to his first wife when he met her.

Perhaps not, eh?

Silly, Silly Idea

What are these people thinking of?

A plan to end the BBC’s sole claim on the £3.2 billion licence fee and parcel it out to other broadcasters is being considered by David Cameron, The Times has learnt.

I\’m told that this is the sytem here in Portugal. You don\’t buy a licence, there\’s a tax on your electricity bill. That tax is then apportionedto hte various broadcasters based upon a mixture of audience size and lobbying ability.

Jeremy Hunt, the Shadow Culture Secretary, said that in future the BBC might not be the sole recipient of the licence fee. “That’s one option because we want to make sure we aren’t exclusively dependent on the BBC for high-quality television. We want choice for consumers, and the BBC is not the only silo of good-quality television.”

Good lord, and this man is in the Tory party? "High-quality" something can only be provided by handouts from the taxation system? That would be why Eaton Square is such a slum as compared to Tower Hamlets then?

There\’s actually a very strong argument that rather than subsidizing the BBC (or any other broadcasters) we should be taxing them. They use a scarce resource, spectrum, and they don\’t pay for it (the ITV channels do, in a minor way). They should be forced to pay for it, in the same way that the 3G telecoms companies were.

Something of a problem though given that we don\’t in fact have an economically literate political party in the UK.

Unplug the Proles

Not for aesthetic reasons I think:

The President of Turkmenistan has ordered “ugly” satellite dishes to be removed from people\’s homes in the capital, in a flamboyant gesture reminiscent of his eccentric predecessor.

Can\’t have the proles seeing what the outside world is like now, can we?

Aiding an Exile

So, err, what was this programme then?

It must have been in the mid seventies, 74-77 ish. There was a kid’s drama, it must have been BBC – we were a beeb house, not an ITV house, oh, yes, there was a big difference – and I think it was a series.

It was set in industrial England, the midlands or Manc or somewhere. And something apocolyptic had happened, but it wasn’t obvious… something to do with the electricity… pylons were heavily featured… something in the same vain as the Triffids where nothing really looked different at first, except for the mad blind people all stumbling around the place and a few big pot plants.

And there was a kid who was trying to get home.

And he/she joined a group of Sikhs (at least the men in the group were eastern, bearded and be-turbanned) who were either also trying to get somewhere or trying to leave somewhere and they walked across England trying to get… there. And that’s all I remember now.

Maybe the Housing Market Will Fall?

I don\’t normally see much TV but just caught 10 minutes or so of something on Sky while fleaing (or is that defleaing?) the dogs. No idea what it was called mind.

But it was about how to sell your house.

I thought all the shows were about how to buy a house, or how to do one up? Something\’s changed if they\’re telling you about how to sell it, hasn\’t it?

Is this what they call a tipping point?

Or am I simply laughably ill informed about popular culture (or TV, to taste)?


An Explanation of Question Time

Finally, we find out why they\’re all like that:


While preparing for my first Question Time last night, talking to former panellists, I discovered a strata of politics I didn’t know existed. With five million viewers it’s the most-watched political TV programme and is taken incredibly seriously by all parties. Blair expected his Cabinet to do it, and face the public (although one G. Brown never did). “Clear the whole day for it,” one Shadow Cabinet member advised me. “No lunch, no nothing, just prepare”. Some of the advice was chemical (half a beta blocker to calm the nerves, it turns out, is a trick of the trade).

Yup, they\’re all on drugs.

One View, Certainly

As he says:

And what’s wrong with sleaze on TV, if that’s what people want to watch? BBC stands for British Broadcasting Corporation, and if a particular program gets high ratings, it’s because that’s what British people like to watch. If Beyer doesn’t approve of the tastes of British people, he’s welcome to fuck off out of our country. Personally I think it’s absolutely disgusting the amount of filth, depravity and lesbian sex on TV; there’s nowhere near enough.


Maybe I Should Learn More Portuguese

I don\’t watch  any TV really, (apart from the rugby) and my Portuguese isn\’t up to scratch either.

first there was "morangos com caca" full of pathetic attempts at being radical (i.e. bad haircuts and abortions).

But is there really a Portuguese TV show called "strawberrys with shit"?