06/06/2014 Newswatch


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Hello and welcome to News watch. What priority should BBC News the


giving to foreign stories such as the activities of Boko Haram in


Nigeria. We are walking into Cabo city. John Simpson, who has covered


the globe for many years gives is his view.


And he looks back at what has changed for better or worse since


BBC television news started, 60 years ago.


The range of the BBC's international journalists is unrivalled amongst


British media organisations. But how often they appear on our screen


reporting from far`flung countries divide viewers. Putting as a top


story as `` and African Union story to eradicate child marriage and


brought brickbats as well as bouquets.


We will be raising that with world affairs editor John Simpson. We will


also be seeking his perspective on some of the changes BBC News has


undergone since its first transmission 60 years ago next


month. This is what it looked like on the 5th of July 1954.


Moving pictures were at a premium and the graphics had a craft table


feel about them. The newsreader, Richard Baker, was a disembodied


voice for fear that his appearance would give away his views and


threaten the appearance of neutrality. After a few weeks, the


BBC did allow a presenter to be seen on screen. It started a process of


personality presenting which has gone too far for some. For some


time, the style remains safe and highly deferential. And now we are


going to show you a film of some of the main stages in this great day.


The relationship between broadcasters and politicians has got


much more spiky since then and not everybody is in favour of that.


Princess Margaret has followed a weekend in Yorkshire... There was


not much visual about television in the 1950s. Now, output is at least


partly differential `` driven by the availability of pictures which for


some has been taken to extremes. What else has changed? To cover


international events like the Hungarian uprising of 1956, a film


crew might have had to disappear for weeks before returning home with out


of date footage. This did not deter foreign correspondents like Martin


Bell from taking considerable risks as he did in Vietnam. The BBC has


just liberated the place! By the time John Simson reported from Cabo,


technological advances have made broadcasting much more immediate if


not necessarily more safe. Developers in transmitting kit made


possible last week's trip to the extreme north`east of Nigeria. The


look of news and the way it engages viewers has come a long way. What


has been gained and lost? John Simpson is with me now.


We do get complaints from those who feel there is too much news from


abroad. Also those who think we don't get enough from regions like


Latin America? How do you think it has changed over the years and is


there more trouble getting some more international stories on? People


always complain about exactly the same things, going back 50 years.


Too much foreign news, as if it has nothing to do with us. Which seems


to me dopey in a world as interconnected as ours. Too much


political news, as though politics doesn't affect us. But I believe in


news, it is my raison d'etre. Some people were very nostalgic for the


old way of news writing, deferential to politicians. I could not bear


that! My first day as a reporter in 1978, I got punched in the stomach


for daring to ask Harold Wilson a question about when you would call


an election. He punched me in the stomach, trying to wrestle the


microphone out of my hand. I was working for radio. The world's press


were there because they were waiting for an announcement and nobody, not


one of the newspapers, not one of the television cameras, used these


pictures. I looked at my watch afterwards, I was gossiping and it


was 10:50 a.m.. I thought, I have lost my job and I have been


assaulted by the Prime Minister and it is only my first morning at work!


What difference has technology made? People used together with a


big film crew and you are out of touch for weeks and then you had to


come back with your footage and edit it. You can now fly in and start


costing immediately, is that better? It is different. There is no doubt


that in terms of the actuality of telling people what is going on,


things are far better now. By the time you have worked your way to a


place that you can get your film processed and sent it back, usually


by plane to London, everything had changed. By the time ago broadcast.


Now, you can be right up with events as they come along. But that means


you don't know where the events are going, you are in as much of a


quandary about what is happening, and what is going to happen, as


everybody else. What have you made of the impact of 24`hour news. It


can put pressure on correspondence to start filing immediately. Perhaps


it is all chatter and no inside? Do you think there is pressure on


journalists to start talking as soon as they land? Yes. I don't do it


because I am old enough and ugly enough to be able to say no, I will


find out what has happened and what the name of the place I am in is,


before I start telling everybody what is going on. Not everybody is


in that position. Yes, I think we have got a lot of games from being


able to have instant news. `` we have a lot of advantages from it. It


has opened up the world, changed our politics. But I'm a little nostalgic


for the days when you could have time to think about what you were


saying. Do you feel that reporters are under pressure and there has


been a cost? Oh, yes. Precisely. They are under huge pressure and


there is a big cost. The cost is simply not being able to think about


you are saying. Just to get it out. That wonderful character in


privatised who is `` in Private Eye who is the 24`hour news


correspondent. We are talking on the anniversary of the massacre in the


square in China. How does that feel for a correspondent like you, who


tries to report what they saw? Would not have been thinking about Taman


Square after 25 years if it were not for reporting. I am proud of mice


colleagues and `` I'm proud of the stuff my colleagues and I did that.


The man standing in front of a tank. It is a reality check which


government is not always enthusiastic about. John Simpson,


thank you very much. Before we go, time for a couple of


other comments. The end has been dominated by commemorations of D`Day


Landings. On Thursday, the eve of the anniversary, there was a


broadcast from the Pegasus Bridge, on the French coast. Not everything


went smoothly with the BBC coverage. What a key moment! You are watching,


disappearing behind intent, and 89`year`old. Later on, the veterans


were parachuted in with the aid of the red Devils.


`` the red arrows. Finally, what are news plugs,


promotions for other programmes on the news? Monday's early evening


programme contained two examples. An item about Jimmy Savile derived from


a Panorama examination which was followed by a Trail free programme


that evening. Then a story about David Beckham's journey into the


annals on. `` into the Amazon. Thank you for all your comments this


week. If you want to share your opinions on BBC news on current


affairs or even appear on the programme, call us. Or e`mail. You


can find us on twitter as well. On our website, you can search for and


view pew `` previous discussions. We will be back to hear your thoughts


on BBC news coverage again next Friday.


A cracking end the day for most areas but tomorrow, a humid day in


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