Ask anyone anywhere on this planet what institutions Britain is famous for, and they are old enough and or educated enough to understand what institution means and the context in which the question is framed , they will be likely to give three – The Royal Family, a Democratic Parliament, and the BBC.
You will probably not even need to spell out the full title of the British Broadcasting Corporation as the acronym will suffice. So what is going wrong with Auntie or certainly its once renowned channel Radio 4?
It has been losing listeners for years. In the last year over a million and some 800,000 of those from the flagship news and current affairs programme TODAY.
There are some that say the cause of the loss is a left wing bias, others that the programme is simply old hat, and many others who are infuriated by John Humphrys and the rest of the team constantly butting in on an interviewee’s attempted response to a question with:”We are running out of time”.
So what about the loss of listeners to the BBC in general. Well, continuing the theme of spelling out 3 reasons, how about 3 names just as examples? What about Jo Brand, Julian Clary, and Neil Nunes?
Jo Brand is the foul mouthed old woman who is a so called comic. In her very first stand up gig in a London pub a heckler shouted, and continued to shout throughout her performance:”Fuck off you fat cow” according to her biog in Wikipedia. There was no applause at the end of her session. Was this because of her obscenities? Probably. Fast forward a few decades.
Chairing an episode of HAVE I GOT NEWS FOR YOU recently, she had, within two minutes of the start of the show, steered the subject round to male ejaculation whereas the subject under discussion had nothing to do with this. Shortly after that she told a story about her dog “crapping on the local bowling green.”
Julian Clary is the infamous. simpering queer whose favourite topic is his homosexuality. In a recent episode of JUST A MINUTE he made a comment about a sexual perversion that was so totally disgusting it is not going to be repeated here. And then there’s Neil Nunes.
This is the Radio 4 continuity announcer whose actual voice has led to thousands of complaints over many years. Why? Whilst the essential prerequisite of continuity announcing is to have a non-intrusive voice, his accent is about as intrusive as you can get. To hear his strangulated gargle: “And now the Radio Four appeal” is to have your Sunday morning ruined whilst rushing for the “off” switch.
Just 3 of the people on Radio 4, all of them totally unsuited as regular broadcasters, but despite the ongoing complaints about them and many others, the BBC does nothing. So what happens?
Listeners use the last weapon they have to show their anger. They turn off.