Posts Tagged ‘Scottish Media’
The Fall of BBC’s ‘Sportscene’ and Why It Matters
Scottish Review, April 18th 2013
Scottish football matters to lots of us. Its images and halcyon images define many of our lives – the Lisbon Lions in 67, Rangers in Barcelona in 72, Aberdeen in Gothenburg in 83, the Jim Baxter keepie-up and the Archie Gemmell run.
When you think of English football one of the many images that might spring to mind is ‘Match of the Day’ and this may include its current opening credits. You would not say the same of the current BBC Scotland version of ‘Sportscene’.
Once upon a time ‘Sportscene’ and STV’s ‘Scotsport’ were part of our national fabric. There was Archie Macpherson anchoring one and Arthur Montford the other. They became national icons, figures of respect, learnedness and even in some strange way, of a Scottish sense of male style. Read the rest of this entry »
The UKIP Policy Nigel Farage Doesn’t Want to Talk About
Open Democracy, March 8th 2013
UKIP are suddenly everywhere in the aftermath of their second place and 28% in the Eastleigh by-election. Nigel Farage, their irascible leader, is even more omnipotent with even more appearances on BBC ‘Question Time’ to look forward too.
North of the border UKIP have always had a perception, identity and popularity problem. They are widely seen as an English nationalist party, one whose idea of Britain is narrowly centred on a time when the two terms could be used interchangeably. It is a mindset stuck in a timewarp situated between the 1950s and 1970s, between the beginning and end of the Empire, and which yearns for an England which began to completely disappear in the decade of ‘The Rise and Fall of Reginald Perrin’ and ‘The Good Life’.
Nevertheless Scottish politics is not immune to people harking back to better yesterdays, and certainly there is a similar popular sentiment and aura of anti-politics, which dismisses all mainstream politics and politicians, in Scotland as elsewhere in the UK. Read the rest of this entry »
The Scots and Power:
The Cardinal, John Haldane and Glasgow Rangers FC
Scottish Review, March 5th 2013
Scotland has a strange relationship with those in power and authority. We tend to buy into the romantic stories that we are a radical, restless nation, who fear no one and question and challenge everything.
The truth is very different. To some there is a suspicion of those in power; but across society, the political spectrum, and mainstream media, there has consistently been in Scotland a lack of curiosity about who has power, and a near-complete absence of a culture and practice of investigative journalism or activism.
This isn’t just about the media, but about public culture, life and attitudes. If we look briefly at the experience of the media, we can see a very different set of patterns from England. The established Scottish papers, ‘The Scotsman’, ‘The Herald’, ‘The Scottish Daily Express’ and ‘Scottish Daily Mail’ were all products of the once-powerful liberal establishment – a pattern that could be said to dominate until the late 1960s and early 1970s. None until then or since became beacons of investigative journalism, despite numerous talented editors and staff passing through their doors. Read the rest of this entry »
Time for a Different BBC Scotland (and STV Too!)
The Scotsman, November 24th 2012
The BBC is in crisis. BBC Scotland faces significant job cuts, a strike ballot of staff, and the prospect of industrial action.
At a UK level, the BBC has hardly been out of the news in the last few weeks. There has been the Jimmy Savile scandal, a substantial payout to Lord McAlpine, and George Entwistle having to resign as Director General.
The BBC’s problems go much deeper than these immediate problems north and south of the border, and touch on what it is and how it sees itself, and crucially how it understands (and misunderstands) the nature of the UK.
The BBC in Scotland ever since it first began broadcasting here has had controversies over limited autonomy, the quality of programmes, and a management which has to face two ways at the same time: to London and Scotland. Read the rest of this entry »
The Story the Media Should Have Told You About Glasgow
May 7th 2012
The story of the recent Scottish elections was clear and unambiguous: voters are returning home to Labour and the SNP honeymoon is over. All of this is magnified in the Glasgow result: Labour holding or as most of the media interpreted it ‘gaining’ back the city it had briefly lost.
All of this ‘analysis’ was done with no breakdown of the Scottish local election party share of the vote; no doubt we will have to wait until David Denver’s research several months down the line for this.
Despite the preponderance of Glasgow in political and media spin there has also been no detailed breakdown of vote changes in Scotland’s biggest city. This short piece provides that analysis and is done not to claim that the city speaks for Scotland but merely to offer the actual figures for debate and wider understanding.
First lets take party share of vote (Table One). Labour won 47.91% of the vote to the SNP’s 31.76%. This represents an increase in the Labour vote of 4.6% and for the Nationalists of 7.18%: amounting to a swing of 1.29% from Labour to the SNP. Read the rest of this entry »