25/01/2013 Newswatch


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Now on BBC News, it's time for Newswatch, with Samira Ahmed.


Welcome to The Nolan Show. This week: -- news watch.


Why is he talking while she is singing?


It is very hard... Did this discussion get out of control?


And so cut -- and stuck in the snow, does his reporter not watch the


news? Monday saw a big set-piece occasion


in Washington, the inauguration of Barack Obama for his second term as


President. It was a serious speech without some of the lofty idealism


of his original address. He will be dealing dramatically with domestic


policy. Scores of view was contacted the BBC object into the


commentary and interviews you heard going on during the ceremony. The


I am joined by two of the viewers who contacted us. Richard Gerver


and Maureen Phillips. Richard, first sum up what you did not like


about the coverage? I think the tone was set right at the start. I


sat down with my 16-year-old daughter who is really interested


in American history at the moment, to watch the inauguration. We were


greeted by an interview with a Barack Obama impersonator, which


kind of summed up when things were going I think. As the inauguration


ceremony began there seemed to be and over a mound of commentary and


punditry. It was not about the inauguration and what was happening


but more about the challenges Barack Obama would face in his


second term and the fact that this punditry was going on over the


beautiful sound of a choir, over the introductions from the chair of


the inauguration ceremony, and most of what was being said was really


repeated commentary from all of the coverage we had heard before the


election, during the election and after the election. Maureen, the


BBC have said they tried to get a balance between analysis to inform


the audience and letting the event it right. The ceremony itself was a


relatively small part of all of the coverage and the talking over key


events, the choir, James Taylor... It is very interesting. America the


beautiful is a very short song and to talk over its seems to miss the


point. Absolutely. I would really like to know from the BBC who made


the decision that the British viewer was not going to be privy to


that celebration. Because I was so dismayed by it and so embarrassed I


channel hop to and I found that Sky News were not doing that and, to my


horror, when I channel hop and saw that Sky News were taking the


viewer into the president's rumour for the signing of the oath, the


BBC had not captured that at all which I think is a very important


historic occasion. She did not get anything out of the analysis?


Richard said, it was repetitive. It was repeating a lot of what had


gone on through the election coverage anyway and I think it is


important to have the context actually for the moment of the


inauguration you should have been allowed to see that in a full, a


relatively short ceremony, and I think the contextual punditry, as


Richard calls it, should have been confined to moments when generally


something - that nothing was going on and it was intrusive and rude.


What would you say, Richard, if you can advise the BBC on coverage of


events like this in the future? I agree totally with what has just


been said. What concerns me most about the BBC's coverage of these


kinds of events, I have to say it reminded me a little bit of the


criticisms that were levelled at the BBC during the river pageant


during the Queen's Jubilee. That does not seem to be enough faith in


that history of the moment and the quality of the production of these


ceremonies in themselves. Also, I wonder whether they think that the


attention span of the viewer, they miscalculate there. They must have


quite a patronising perception of the viewers of these moments in


history. Thank you very much. There has been a bit of a storm brewing


in Northern Ireland over last week's edition of The Nolan Show.


It is known for its provocative tome. This particular edition got


livelier than most. Do you agree? did not say that. Let me say this,


in fairness to you it is very hard... Those are the photographs.


I want to get a lot out of this programme tonight. Listen to him.


will answer the question. Before I go any further, what ever equality


impact was done, that was the audience. The programme, shown only


in Northern Ireland, created a volume of reaction, much of it


along the lines of this e-mail we To discuss this I am joined from


Belfast by Jeremy Adams, editor of their programme and head of current


affairs at BBC Northern Ireland. What happened, it clearly went


wrong and you had an audience that were overwhelmingly Unionist and


quite disruptive. Absolutely and from a media watch point of view


the thing is important to say and others disappointed you did not say


was that what happened here is that we had a very large demonstration


outside the BBC. A lot of people did not feel able to come in


because they were deterred by the protesters outside. We had known


beforehand there would be a demonstration and we knew some


people did not want the debate to go ahead. But you'd made the


decision to let the programme go ahead when you had an audience that


was biased and you have their knowledge that. No, I am sorry, let


me finish, I did not acknowledge the audience was biased. What I


acknowledged was that the normal audience for the programme was


organised and people came to the programme and there was a balanced


panel to discuss this but unfortunately people were


organising a demonstration outside which deterred a set number of


people from coming in. What we achieved in this programme, and it


is important to understand this, is that we took the dispute that is


taking place on the streets, which has been spilling over into


violence, we took it into the studio and for all the shouting in


the clip, what happened is that we change the wall to talk. That has


had a salmon packed a lot of people. People complained and we know that


have felt intimidated and B Platt aim could have felt intimidated.


Why did you not rethink the decision to go ahead with the


audience when people were intimidated from walking into the


studio. The question I asked was could be safely go ahead with a


discussion to discuss these issues and they would be discussed in a


way that people could hear the issues rather than allowing


demonstrations and violence to stop the discussion. I concluded we


could do and we could do so safely. The key question is a whether the


tone of the programme is appropriate for an issue like this,


given the violence that was going on in the streets, the Nolan show


is known for being provocative and it sets itself up as somewhere with


a bit of argy-bargy and perhaps it was wrong to go ahead with what she


did. I think that all the evidence is a, and it was set the following


day by a number of commentators, that the programme acts as a bit of


a safety valve. They did not escalate into violence. It would be


wrong, you are talking about the atmosphere of the programme, nobody


has been interviewed as much -- interrupted as much as you are


interrupting me! It was a discussion in which people felt


very strongly. The question was did we stop the debate or have the


debate? We had the debate and there has been an exchange of views but


the programme had a huge audience amongst the people of Northern


Ireland and almost half of the television audience washed it and


the vast majority of them, according to our figures, in terms


of their appreciation of the programme, the appreciation was


high. Tunnel for speaking to us. Finally, viewers sometimes complain


about irresponsible reporters take risks when covering severe weather.


This week Jon Kay got into a pickle. When reporting on heavy snow in


Bristol he and his crew got stuck there for the night and they were


put up by a local family the we spoke to the next morning.


Good morning, did you not hear the forecast? That so for sounds very


comfortable this morning. Be honest, what do you think of idiots like us


who get stuck and make foolish mistakes like this and you have to


help them out? I suppose it is your job but, if you don't need to


travel, it is quite mad, really. Jeremy Bolton was equally


Thank you for all of your comments this week. If you want to share


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