Newsroom2020-11-01T18:19:26+00:00

THE NEWSROOM

Media Training Update w/c 4th December

Geek Speak

“Newsnight is our Hotel California. All of us who checked out never really left. We lived through extraordinary times with the most incredible team spirit.”

Emily Maitlis 

“If as many people who have voiced an opinion about Newsnight actually watched the show then they might not have had to change things,” 

BBC staffer, quoted in The Times

As we sprint/limp (choose your mood) into December, good morning – it’s Monday 4th.

The week ahead…

ASLEF train drivers undertake a series of one-day strikes at different train operating companies across the week.

Covid-19 inquiry – Boris Johnson (Wednesday and Thursday) 

Monday: Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan is expected in Qatar

Tuesday: Turner Prize winner announced

Wednesday: TIME Magazine Person of the Year

Challengers to Donald Trump for the Republican presidential nomination head to Alabama for the fourth debate

Thursday: EU-China Summit

Saturday: TUC hosts a special congress in London, the first such gathering since the height of the labour movement’s battles with the Thatcher government in the 1980s.

Sunday: Egypt presidential election

The brutal cuts to BBC News had been in the offing for a while. Last week’s announcement went further than many expected.

  • Newsnight to become a 30-minute “interview, debate and discussion show”

  • Our World is axed

  • An extended hour-long edition of BBC News at One relocated to Salford

  • BBC Breakfast, also broadcast from Salford, extended by 15 minutes

  • A restructure of the BBC News story teams in the UK, less TV packaging and more of a “focus on digital storytelling and live coverage”

Ahead of COP, Climate Science Breakthrough released a film with UCL’s Professor of Earth System Sciences Mark Maslin and comedian Jo Brand. 

It’s worth a watch. Classily produced, genuinely funny in bits, and its ambition – to bring the climate emergency to a new audience – is to be applauded. 

My issue is with how the concept is being framed. Firstly look at Good Morning Britain’s strapline…

On Professor Maslin’s Twitter/X post he writes, “Jo Brand translates my climate science for real people.” 

Hang on. “Real people?” “Clearing up scientist Geek Speak?” 

Watch the film. I don’t think there’s a single line Maslin says that so-called “real people” wouldn’t understand. Yes, they may be fatigued by the subject. Yes, translating the science into witty 1-liners is a good tactic. But the implication here seems to be that scientists need to simplify to be accessible. 

Part of our campaign next year is going to encourage experts to re-claim complexity. Not in a way that baffles or alienates. But the idea that simplicity is the only way to communicate effectively is a trope that needs to be called out. 

The extraordinary grip of The Rest Is… brand on the podcast landscape in the UK tightens.

The latest addition to the stables is The Rest Is Entertainment with Richard Osman and Marina Hyde.

READ MORE

On the Inside Edge website – Tony’s A-Z of media training: 

D is for Deadpan:

An over-mobile face can lead you into trouble. What you think is simply an animated expression can morph into revealing too much of what you’re thinking or feeling.The grimace that signals “that went badly” the smile at something contentious: “oh here we go – I was nervous that might pop up” are just two unnecessary and unhelpful give aways. Instead focus on energy and animation coming through your voice. Aim for stillness in how you look.

Footnotes:

The birth control pill was made available to all on the NHS on this day in… (answer below the dogs)

Highs today of 3 degrees in Bradford and 4 degrees in Aberdeen.

That’s it. Just time for the obligatory dog photo. Sorry for stealing that biscuit.

…1961

Be part of the MMB. Thoughts on this week’s content, or interviews you’ve seen, heard, or (best of all) done. We’re @insideedgemedia or just reply to this email. 

Have a brilliant week.

All at Inside Edge

LinkedIn  Twitter

By |5 December 2023|

Media Training Update w/c 27th November

Draw Me An Expert

2024 will be the Year Of The Expert

What does a scientist look like?

Children are drawing more women than ever before.

When asked to draw a scientist, kids in the United States are increasingly sketching women. A new study compiled information about over 20,000 pictures drawn by 5 to 18 year olds over 5 decades.

READ MORE

Good morning, it’s Monday 27th November.

The week ahead…

Monday: Global Investment Summit, London

Tuesday: Deadline for bids in Telegraph sale 

Wednesday: UN Security Council Middle East debate

Thursday: Matt Hancock gives evidence to the Covid-19 inquiry (and Friday)

The world’s leaders convene in Dubai for COP28

Friday: King Charles delivers the summit’s opening address

Brazil assumes G20 presidency 

Saturday: Pope Francis becomes the first pontiff to attend a COP summit

Sunday: ASLEF train drivers strike action on four lines

“The first month of the Israel-Gaza war is now the deadliest month for journalists since we began documenting fatalities in 1992

Since October 7th at least 53 journalists and media workers have been killed in the Israel-Gaza war.

READ MORE

According to numerous reports over the weekend Huw Edwards is set to step down from the BBC after an internal inquiry.

READ MORE

BBC Radio 4 Today programme’s Christmas guest editors this year will include:

Andrew Malkinson, wrongly jailed for 17 years

Ellie Goulding

GSK boss Dame Emma Walmsley

James May

NASA Head of Science Dr Nicky Fox

READ MORE

It’s rare the Daily Star gets much of a mention in the MMB, but the paper’s bizarre and long-running obsession with the word boffin has reached dizzy new heights...

On the Inside Edge website – Tony’s A-Z of media training: 

C is for Collateral Damage:

A term to drop in the file marked “sanitising language” and then leave it there. People use bland language to cover up the messy, the nasty and the worrying. The audience immediately are sceptical of any spokesperson who peppers their sentences with such phrases and the interviewer feels entitled to dig deeper and challenge the guest on what they really mean. “Efficiency savings” should be filed too.

Footnotes:

John Major won the Conservatives’ leadership elections, becoming Britain’s new prime minister on this day in… (answer below the dogs)

Highs today of 9 degrees in Southampton and 1 degree in Berlin.

That’s it. Just time for the obligatory dog photo. Spooning Part 2:

…1990

Be part of the MMB. Thoughts on this week’s content, or interviews you’ve seen, heard, or (best of all) done. We’re @insideedgemedia or just reply to this email. 

Have a brilliant week.

All at Inside Edge

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By |27 November 2023|

Media Training Update w/c 20th November

The Year Of The Expert

2023. Polarised voices have enjoyed pushing debates to extremes. Misinformation is rife.

Enough is enough. We’ve decided 2024 will be the Year Of The Expert. 

In the year that countries with more than half the world’s population send their citizens to the polls, we’ll be championing media contributors that bring evidence, complexity, nuance, doubt and balance. 

We’ve been coaching experts for over a decade. It’s time to celebrate how good they are.

So buckle up. From January we muster an army of confident media-savvy experts to reclaim the airwaves from those that don’t deserve it. 

We have a slogan:

“Control. Connect. Never dumb down.”

We have artwork by young Ukrainian artist Vladimir Gasai…

We’re all set. Watch this space…

Good morning, it’s Monday 20th November.

The week ahead…

Monday: Covid-19 Inquiry: Sir Patrick Vallance (Tuesday: Sir Chris Whitty, Wednesday: Jonathan Van Tam/Dame Angela McLean)

Shakira due to appear in a Spanish court on tax fraud charges

Tuesday: President of South Korea Yoon Suk Yeol address to Parliament

Wednesday: The Chancellor delivers his Autumn Statement

Elections in the Netherlands

Thursday: Quarterly migration and immigration figures are released

Friday: Release of Leonard Bernstein film Maestro starring Bradley Cooper

Saturday: National March for Palestine in London

Sunday: Booker prize winner announced

“It spends too much of its time dealing with questions of race and gender and trans rights.”

Former Channel 4 News and Newsnight correspondent Michael Crick has a pop at Radio 4…

(…plus Jon Snow, Newsnight, Victoria Derbyshire and BBC News…)

READ MORE

“It’s always the cover-up. The cliché, born of Watergate, applies equally to the clumsy attempt by people around Boris Johnson, who should have known better, to “fix” who got to be the head of Ofcom, the UK’s supposedly independent media regulator.”

Regular readers will know we’ve been following the Ofcom saga with interest. This, from Alan Rusbridger (via Nadine Dorries) in Prospect is worth a read.

READ MORE

Thoroughly enjoyed the Sky News Breakfast team’s reaction to David Cameron’s surprise appearance at the end of Downing Street on reshuffle day.

WATCH HERE (via Twitter/X)

On the Inside Edge website – Tony’s A-Z of media training: 

B is for Briskness:

We’re talking a trot here; a canter in a conversation is just too fast …and a gallop? Nothing will sink in. But a sense of purpose, the drive to shortcut to the important stuff and an urgency in tone can all make the audience sit up and take notice. Remember variety is engaging, so walk through unfamiliar concepts and be careful not to speed over what’s familiar to you but is likely to be new to the viewer or listener.

Footnotes:

A fierce blaze raged through Windsor Castle on this day in 1992.

Highs today of 12 degrees in Newcastle (UK) and 23 degrees in Newcastle (Australia).

That’s it. Just time for the obligatory dog photo. Spooning Part 1:

(Part 2 next week)

Be part of the MMB. Thoughts on this week’s content, or interviews you’ve seen, heard, or (best of all) done. We’re @insideedgemedia or just reply to this email. 

Have a brilliant week.

All at Inside Edge

LinkedIn  Twitter

By |20 November 2023|

Media Training Update w/c 13th November

Background squealing

Good morning, it’s Monday 13th November.

The week ahead…

Inter Faith Week 2023 takes place from Sunday 12th – Sunday 19th

Monday: Rishi Sunak speech to the Lord Mayor’s Banquet

Sir Bobby Charlton’s funeral

Tuesday: Labour market statistics

Parole hearing for Jon Venables

Wednesday: Supreme Court issues judgment in the Home Office’s challenge to the ruling which blocked the government’s Rwanda immigration policy

US President Joe Biden holds summit with Chinese President Xi

Rupert Murdoch steps down from News Corp

Thursday: The Crown final series airs (part one)

Friday: Kurt Cobain’s ‘Skystang I’ guitar auctioned

Saturday: US Government federal shutdown may begin

Sunday: Argentinian presidential election run-off

“Over the past decade, Silicon Valley has learned that news is a messy, expensive, low-margin business—the kind that, if you’re not careful, can turn a milquetoast CEO into an international villain and get you dragged in front of Congress.”

A killer opening paragraph from Charlie Warzel in The Atlantic who brings us a fascinating deep-dive into the complex relationship between Big Tech and journalism. It’s behind a paywall unfortunately, but worth taking up the free trial offer to have a read.

READ MORE

Main winners at the Society of Editors Media Freedom Awards:

Bob Satchwell Award: Gary Younge 

Commentator of the year: Marina Hyde

Broadcast Journalist of the year: Piers Morgan

Foreign Correspondent of the year: Stuart Ramsey

Political Journalist of the year: Pippa Crerar

And speaking of awards…

“Ritula Shah, former BBC Radio 4 presenter of the World Tonight on overpaid news presenters, BBC cuts and news centralisation.”

Roger Bolton’s Beebwatch podcast is worth a listen.

LISTEN HERE 

On the Inside Edge website – Tony’s A-Z of media training: 

A is for Ambition:

It can be easier to talk about your work when you’ve got outcomes, fully formed analysis and results. It’s true that starting points – though vital to you – can leave the audience underwhelmed. Similarily aspirations may be a bit woolly. But an ambition -matched with the follow through of what your work could achieve – can really hit home. Exploration can be exciting. And it’s not about over-promising, instead it’s opening up a sense of the potential.

Footnotes:

The Times newspaper was published for the first time in nearly a year on this day in 1979 (READ MORE).

Highs today of 14 degrees in Norwich and 15 in Tokyo.

That’s it. Just time for the obligatory dog photo. Stan stifling a yawn during the King’s Speech…

Be part of the MMB. Thoughts on this week’s content, or interviews you’ve seen, heard, or (best of all) done. We’re @insideedgemedia or just reply to this email. 

Have a brilliant week.

All at Inside Edge

LinkedIn  Twitter

By |20 November 2023|

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