The Royal Television Society’s Cambridge Convention this month is dramatically titled “Riding Out the Storm”, which might be apposite except it is being planned by the BBC director general, Mark Thompson, who, with his pot of public funding, is immune from the advertising downturn that besets the rest of the media.
Thompson’s key speakers are Eric Schmidt of Google (whose company made £901m in the three months to June and has a cash pile of £12bn), and the Culture Secretary, Ben Bradshaw, also publicly funded, at least until next summer. Perhaps the storm they will ride out will be created by angry delegates struggling to make ends meet in the market.
Poacher finds net
James Murdoch highlighted the danger the BBC website poses to written media in Britain. That threat was illustrated by a story on bbc.co.uk last week describing how Jermain Defoe used football to cope with the death of his half-brother. The story was lifted from an interview the England striker gave exclusively to newspaper journalists at a press conference intended to give them different material from broadcast media, who interviewed Defoe separately. Having missed the story, the BBC simply hoovered up the quotes and put out its own text-based version, angering the football press corps. No sources were mentioned, though the BBC always demands credit for its own stories. Murdoch’s case, though, was not helped by the Sky News website putting out its own text version.
Comedian and Mock The Week panellist Russell Howard will undertake a groundbreaking marketing ruse to launch the new British movie Three Miles North of Molkom later this month. A live and bespoke 30-minute Howard routine, introducing the film, will be beamed by satellite to 40 cinemas on 16 September.