The early evening news is where I tend to get my news, well apart from visiting my favourite blogs combined with a bit of Google drift anyway. Six o’clock is the time I sit down and listen to the BBC. Why the BBC? Habit I suppose and the enjoyment of the incredulousness I feel at some of the articles they feature and some of the propaganda they push.
Following the BBC News from London we have the local Scottish News which is usually fronted by Jackie Bird who is professional and does a good job. The sports chap is okay and has a sense of humour and the weather ladies… well I’ve may have commented on their appropriateness in some detail before.
It’s the people who are out and about that are… well I’m not sure what the word is really. Interesting? First of all they get sent to places and you wonder why. Standing outside a court building in the rain, standing opposite a building where something has happened or standing somewhere with a few young chaps in shot who are showboating their obvious talents and humour. The standard of reporting isn’t great and sometimes the dress sense gets in the way. You have to conclude that some of them should, perhaps, not be doing this sort of work or at least not in front of the camera.
There’s a nice chap who is very uncomfortable with this hand waving style the BBC seems so in love with. He looks very uncomfortable and manages to make the hand-waving look like stylised Wooden Tops. His Mother loves him and he’s probably a really nice and talented journalist but a presenter he isn’t
There’s the guy who is sometimes the anchor back in the studio. He sounds mechanical. Again I’m sure his Mother loves him and he may have a girlie who has him on a pedestal and likens him to Walter Cronkite. But… well… he just isn’t. He’s improved certainly but he still sounds like he’s reading it. Which he is. But Jackie doesn’t sound like that.
To be fair to everyone involved the material they are asked to cover doesn’t help. Court cases are dull. Do we really need to hear about it line by line? There used to be magazines and papers, which devoted acres of space to that sort of thing for those that were interested.
We always have a “the Scots are the worst in the world at… eating rubbish, drinking too much mans beer, consuming copious amounts of hard drugs, dying younger than anyone else on the planet, We also have a fluffy wee animal story … oh here’s an Eagle which can’t fly. Then we have the global warming guff, sectarianism and the “we’re going to be the first country in the world to adopt… add a really silly, pointless attention seeking bit of nonsense here. There may also be a talking head from the Polis, Fire Brigade or a health expert ranting about something we are rubbish at too.
Sport is Andy Murray either winning and sort of but not quite smiling or being beaten and being very, very grumpy (but not as grumpy as his Mum who is grumpier than a very funny thing. Then it’s the national football team getting gubbed by a country with a population of 50, a football team sacking their manager for the third time this season, or having so much debt the IMF wouldn’t even consider them for a loan or getting gubbed by a European team no one has ever heard of and who took up football playing three months ago.
We can do better than this. First of all get the BBC and STV to have plush Edinburgh studios, which reflect the capital city’s status. Staff the news teams with good presenters and have them report on important topics, drop the gossip to a Scottish version of the One Show maybe called the Yin or the Wan Show.
Make the news dynamic. Don’t repeat news we’ve just heard on the national news. Maybe they should just ditch the national news altogether and let us have Scottish News which covers global stories. But please not those that cover a disaster in a foreign country which someone in Scotland’s next door neighbours, cousins pal in the pub knows someone who stays twenty miles away from where it happened and they’re on a dodgy phone line to tell us about what it may well be like.
Let’s have some quality.
However, on no account should the weather ladies be changed. Oh no. We’ve got Judith (Miss Whiplash) and “thon wee Cubie lassie” at the moment and they are spot on. There may be room to add a couple more nice ladies who would allow the ill-fitting shiny suited chaps to seek more gainful employment as… well who cares really.