Archives for August 2011

Celebrating Click: Ten years of technology

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Rajan Datar | 09:28 UK time, Friday, 26 August 2011

It used to be called Digital Planet, it's now called Click - either way it celebrates ten years on air this week, a fleeting moment in human history, but in terms of technology and new media, generations.

You only have to look at some of the most significant trends and geopolitical events to realise just how influential technology has been in the last decade.

The programme's presenter for the past five years has been Gareth Mitchell, and I ask him if he thinks it's a momentous anniversary.

Gareth agrees that so much has happened in those ten years and explaines that for many years Digital Planet had been working with colleagues on Click, for BBC World and that it made sense when the schedules were changed earlier this year to join forces in a more formalised way.

Gareth explains how both Click TV and Radio programmes are very plugged into social media.

With just about any story which might have global significance, they have their own humanitarian or political components, and they also often have a technological angle.

For instance, how are people crowd sourcing through social media to assist people who have been affected by a natural disaster?

I also ask him about the Arab Spring and he explaines that they have been asking some tough questions about the role of social media in the Arab Spring.

Over the last six months, views have changed from it being 'the Facebook revolution' to doubts that social media caused the Arab Spring.

Gareth says a fascinating discussion on this had been playing out over the past six months.

By looking at the blogs and feeds, Click can assess the key role that technology plays - and also put it into context.

If you have views on technology and Click, we'd like to hear from you in the usual way.

Rajan Datar is the presenter of Over To You.

Over To You is your chance to have your say about the BBC World Service and its programmes.

Broadcast times can be found by clicking here

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Send the team your feedback by email (overtoyou@bbc.co.uk), telephone (44 144 960 9000), SMS (447786 202006) or by leaving comments on this blog

How are women in South Sudan being portrayed in the media?

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Rajan Datar | 11:05 UK time, Friday, 19 August 2011

This week we explore an issue about a new nation, born earlier this year and which still has some pretty traditional patriarchal attitudes.

How are women in South Sudan being portrayed in the media?

Does this herald a new dawn for this invisible group?

This is a problem that spans the globe. If a sector of society is all but invisible, how do you go about representing them in the media?

This is a particular pertinent issue with the portrayal of women in recently created South Sudan. And its related to the everyday difficulties that women working in the media face globally.

I speak to Asha Arabi, a contributor to a new book called Pain, Hope and Patience: The Lives of Women in South Sudan which examines the issue of female representation in South Sudan.

I am also joined by Lyse Doucet, BBC presenter and correspondent, who explained how she approaches this issue.

In our mailbag, we have questions from listeners about the BBC's coverage of the recent riots in England. Erik Kao is concerned about potential double standards when it comes to reporting.

Erik wrote, "I couldn't help drawing a parallel with the Tibetan riots before the Beijing Olympics. It's disconcerting that the way the BBC is covering London riots is so different from that in Tibetan riots.

BBC news branded the looting, smashing and arson in London as riots while when the same happened in Tibet, your news reports had so much reservation in using the word riot, not to mention that seldom did you call those Tibetan extremists setting fires and attacking non-Tibetans as rioters. You used the word 'protesters' which implied a sort of justification in their violence".

What do you think? Are there double standards in the way BBC is covering domestic disturbances?

Should we pay extra attention to the tone of this coverage in the run up to the London Olympics?

Is the World service replicating the news agenda of every other broadcaster?

And is it missing a trick to be different?

We want to hear from you so get in touch.

Rajan Datar is the presenter of Over To You.

Over To You is your chance to have your say about the BBC World Service and its programmes.

Broadcast times can be found by clicking here

Listen to previous episodes of Over To You

Subscribe to the podcast

Send the team your feedback by email (overtoyou@bbc.co.uk), telephone (44 144 960 9000), SMS (447786 202006) or by leaving comments on this blog

Reporting the financial world


With the world's stock markets in turmoil and concerns about the global economy escalating, this week on Over to You we have been looking at the challenges that face those who report on the financial world.

How do reporters cover these developments without influencing the state of the markets and exacerbating the situation?

Martin Webber, editor of World Business Report, joined me in the studio to discuss the dilemmas that face reporters at a time of economic turbulence.

Martin explained that language is very important when describing the state of the markets and provided an insight into the guidance he has given about covering the story.

He explained that for a fall of two percent, moderate words like 'falling back' should be used, whereas describing markets as 'plunging' should only be used for falls of five or six percent - and 'crash' only for falls of 18-20 percent, which happen only once in a generation.

Social media in Egypt

Elsewhere in the world, Egypt's former president Mubarak appears on trial in Cairo, bringing the country's revolution back into the headlines.

Earlier in the year social media was credited with bringing down his regime, and we wanted to know if it is still playing such an important role today, so I discussed the subject with blogger and activist Wael Abbas and Sam Farrah, presenter of Talking Point on BBC Arabic.

We explored whether the balance has changed in the relationship between new social media, like Twitter, and the more conventional traditional media.

Wael explained that social media has been having a harder time recently as people have been listening more to the state media.

Sam thought that mainstream media has a role in cooperationg with social media, and while it may be facing a tough time, it is a temporary phase.

If you have anything you want to comment about that you hear on the World Service, we are always pleased to hear from you, so do contact us.

Rajan Datar is the presenter of Over To You.

Over To You is your chance to have your say about the BBC World Service and its programmes.

Broadcast times can be found by clicking here

Listen to previous episodes of Over To You

Subscribe to the podcast

Send the team your feedback by email (overtoyou@bbc.co.uk), telephone (44 144 960 9000), SMS (447786 202006) or by leaving comments on this blog

Journalists and the law

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Rajan Datar | 10:06 UK time, Friday, 5 August 2011

This week on Over to You we ask if it ever acceptable for journalists to break the law in the name of a story

Inspired by both your emails and the recent revelations surrounding the News of the World phone hacking scandal in the UK, I speak to two journalists and discuss crossing legal boundaries.

I'm joined in the studio for a spirited discussion, by Jon Williams, BBC World News Editor and Sakima Datoo, former Managing Editor of the Tanzanian Guardain.

Sakima has done extensive investigative work, but puts forth a staunch critique of the BBC entering country's illegally, questioning if there ever be can a truly objective public interest.

Whereas, Jon makes a strong case for the BBC's entrance to countries such as Syria in order to get a true, unbiased picture of events unfolding there.

World Service cuts

There's also time for your emails, with Margaret More O'Farrel writing in to offer further reaction to World Service cuts and its future direction.

Gordon Carney shares some fond memories of listening to the World Service in his youth.

As always please keep writing and sending in your thoughts on the World Service.

Rajan Datar is the presenter of Over To You.

Over To You is your chance to have your say about the BBC World Service and its programmes.

Broadcast times can be found by clicking here.

Listen to previous episodes of Over To You

Subscribe to the podcast

Send the team your feedback by email (overtoyou@bbc.co.uk), telephone (44 144 960 9000), SMS (447786 202006) or by leaving comments on this blog

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