Media: The Word on the Street
Tuesday 29 September 1998
Step forward young Matthew Bannister, last week elevated to head of BBC production, the top job in television. Sir Christopher has made it known that he sees Mr Bannister's appointment as part of the management structure that will take the BBC into the new millennium.
Channel 4's Michael Jackson may be the stronger candidate, but Mr Bannister is bagging the inside lane.
ADVERTISING EXECUTIVES, it turns out, are just too funny for ordinary people. At least, their humour is often above the heads of their female audiences.
New research by ad agency J Walter Thompson shows that women love the simple humour of Gary Lineker refusing to share his Walkers crisps with schoolboys, but they are perplexed by a Salon Selectives shampoo ad which parodies traditional shampoo commercials.
"The women took it literally," says an insider, "they didn't realise that the absurd big hair was a joke."
UNION EFFORTS to blame last week's mass redundancies at The Observer on former editor, the brainbox Will Hutton, are not being accepted gratefully by his replacement, Roger Alton. Pinning the responsibility on one individual is most unfair, he says - and Mr Hutton, above, has been a very positive force for the paper. The bottom line is that Mr Hutton stays as editor- in-chief but must feel somewhat uncomfortable on the newsroom floor knowing that the staff resent his presence.
IT'S ONLY a week or so until the BBC launches its "News Review", a strategy document that has been an age in the making. It's dominant message, we understand, is that viewers should brace themselves for a dose of "seriousness" as, in the digital age, it is the Beeb's gravity which distinguishes it from its rivals. Sobriety alone, though, is not enough. Each BBC outlet from Radio 1 to BBC 2 will be asked to customise the serious message to suit its audience. Grim faces all round.
THE WHITE Dot anti-television lobby group has a new theme campaign - the idea that Rupert Murdoch's Sky digital television should be renamed "Spy", as it will prey on young children. Once interactivity arrives, parents should tell their offspring "if someone on TV tells you they're your friend, or they want to know everything about you because they like you, or they missed you the other day when you didn't watch the show - you tell me. They shouldn't say things like that." It's a whole new variation on "don't talk to strangers".
ADVERTISING agencies say they are somewhat unimpressed by the first wave of promotion for digital television. "By selling the technology, the BBC and others are selling something they don't need to sell," says Simon Parker of STS research.
"People don't want to know about the technology, they only need to know what's on it. It's a bit like when microwaves were launched. They were sold on the basis that you could cook a five course meal in 20 minutes, but no one ever used them for that." Quite.
ARE THE Barclay brothers genuinely trying to sell the troubled European newspaper, or do they just want to close it down? Staff last week were struggling to make sense of their situation after a sale to Time Warner collapsed, and wondered whether they should just give up. In the end they decided to put the paper out, spurred on by editor, and former MP, Gerry Malone. "Malone scored his first brownie points with staff since he's been here," says an insider. "He was at least around during the redundancy announcements." Unlike editor-in-chief Andrew Neil who was nowhere to be seen.
MusicThe band accidentally called Londoners the C-word
Film 'I've never been comfortable on-screen', she says
Review: One Direction, Fourmusic
Review: The World of Ice and Firebooks
Film More romcom than S&M
Review: The Imitation Gamefilm
Comedy...to show her mastectomy scars
TVNetflix gets cryptic
TV review A moving film showing kids too busy to enjoy their youth
Books Not even a Man Booker prize could save Richard Flanagan from a nomination
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Lee Evans announces his retirement from comedy on The Jonathan Ross Show
- 2 Iggy Azalea responds to Eminem rape lyrics: 'I'm bored of old men threatening young women'
- 3 These grandmas smoking weed for the first time are wonderful
- 4 Pastafarian former porn star Asia Lemmon allowed to wear colander in driving licence photo
- 5 Woman opens professional cuddling shop – gets 10,000 customers in first week
Lee Evans announces his retirement from comedy on The Jonathan Ross Show
Better Call Saul: Breaking Bad spin-off gets release date, logo and ominous new trailer
Iggy Azalea responds to Eminem rape lyrics: 'I'm bored of old men threatening young women'
Angelina Jolie confirms retirement from acting: 'I've never been comfortable on-screen'
Willow and Jaden Smith talk duality of apples, holographic realities and the melancholia of the ocean in incredible New York Times interview
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Muslims pre-date Columbus in discovering America,' says Turkish president Erdogan
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
France 'blocks' Russian sailors from boarding a warship
Former Tory PM Sir John Major says 'we would not have an NHS without migrants'
G20 summit: David Cameron warns Vladimir Putin that Russia's relationship with the West is at a 'fork in the road' over Ukraine