Productions may have been debilitated by forms, business units and management psychobabble but parcels have been posted instead of taxied; televisions found languishing in corners sent back where they came from and cash recouped, so on with the factor 10 and the flack jackets. 'There's still a lot of crap about Producer Choice,' says another BH producer, 'but it does seem to have made everyone more cost conscious. It's definitely a slightly embarrassing topic of discussion at the moment. People were when Producer Choice came in, the idea that it might be working is even more annoying.'
RUMOURS from BBC Broadcasting House . . . cries of 'Bloody John Birt' drowned by the trundle of enormous suitcases. A year after the 'Stalinesque' new leader incensed his staff with the introduction of Producer Choice - an 'internal market' system where departments charge programmes for services - certain radio producers are looking at the programme accounts and noticing, not savings of course, but a bit of unexpected slack. Who wants to come in under budget at the end of the financial year, when a foreign trip can so enhance the programme output? As one producer put it 'There will be people sitting on a plane somewhere now and thinking, hmmm, maybe it wasn't such a bad idea after all.'