Comments for en-gb 30 Fri 22 Aug 2014 18:03:40 GMT+1 A feed of user comments from the page found at Guy Croft Hi EvanI gave up listening to Today years ago because I couldn't stand John Humphries agressive and pro-establishment tone, and I still can't but like many I listen to to it now because I need to. Mainly I want to know what the pound is doing, especially if I have a batch of parts in transit from Calif ordered at 2.05 dollars to the pound and coming in today at 1.56 and due for payment on my charge card tomorrow.I noticed lately how balanced Today likes to be, one bad economic story has to be balanced with a good one. This is no time for protraying success stories, maybe alucky few like to hear that their balanced portfolio is building up a tidy little nestegg, most don't. Those success stories - they don't need the airtime.And when you inteview people from 'industry' note that it costs £600 plus vat to join the CBI and £200 to join the FSB and if you don't join they won't read your emails far less represent your views. I am member of neither, I own a race engine business, no-one speaks for us in our sector and we bridge the manufacturing-retail sectors so neatly most people have never heard of us.If you want balance here's my phone number 01522 705222Think about it next time you interview someone like you did Today from 'Friends 'we_won't be_touched-by_the_recession_at_all Provident'. GC Fri 24 Oct 2008 14:02:07 GMT+1 doctor-gloom Evan, never mind all this stuff, why didn't you give those chancers from the city a good going over? Why didn't you ask for an apology for their part in causing the current misery? Why didn't you challenge them when one of them made what obviously was to him an uncontroversial statement along the lines that: hey it's about time the government pulled their finger out to effectively bail us out? How about you getting your editor to do something along the lines of: Should the government begin an investigation into these rogue bankers these financial scroungers? Maybe even a piece on whether we should seek some sort of public apology from these financial scroungers and neo interventionists? For Gods sake, lets have some debate about these things on the programme. The whole programme seems to have accepted the current 'now's not the time for blame' view, which, frankly, allows these financial scroungers to still appear on the programme and make statements about how we should all bail them out without any severe criticism of their activities. Come on: now 'is' the time to hold these financial scroungers to account, not later, but now. Thu 09 Oct 2008 10:39:39 GMT+1 busby2 EvanCome on, Evan. Why has there been nothing new in weeks from you on this blog during which time the banking and financial markets have gone down the pan? Tue 30 Sep 2008 12:05:22 GMT+1 patskis You should have just let him read out the number.Also could you please change the title of this blog so that it reads: 'Evan Davis's blog'.Unless of course it belongs to more than one person called Evan Davi. Sun 28 Sep 2008 15:00:20 GMT+1 ker-chop Your right.But on a completely unrelated note- please return to your old job as the economics correspondent, or if not at least continue writing your evanomics blog, whoever the new economics correspondent is- they don't seem to have there own blog and i doubt their analysis would be as good as yours, if your not an expert it's difficult to understand all about the financial crisis, your blog was brilliant and analysing and explaining whats happening. Fri 19 Sep 2008 16:06:30 GMT+1 djclondon Brilliant piece of interviewing - all this nonsense about the phone number - Evan was dead right to try to shut the minister up - let's hear more of the "...if you don't know the answer to the question it's ok to just say so..." approach. Encourages honesty.Cracking radio.This is what I pay my licence fee for! Tue 16 Sep 2008 21:43:32 GMT+1 threnodio And what, pray, is wrong with dialing 100 and asking for 'Freefone Energy Efficiency'? Or have neither Mr.Benn nor the BBC heard of this? Fri 12 Sep 2008 17:46:24 GMT+1 erindoors And the telephone number is...? Doesn't seem to be here, Evan. Fri 12 Sep 2008 13:56:47 GMT+1 Tramp I didn't think it was a bad-tempered interview, I've heard far worse from some other Today presenters... That said there was little point in taking up time discussing whether the number should be read out or not. More importantly, Evan did expose the fact that the Govt hadn't really worked out what the effects would be on customers' bills. I thought Evan was excellent in handling this morning's spat between Richard Branson and Willie Walsh. It shows the benefit of having someone who knows something about economics, business and the particular industry under discussion. None of the other presenters could have handled it anywhere near as well. Fri 12 Sep 2008 08:54:34 GMT+1 rodwell101 Years ago, during the 1983 election Robin Day was hosting Election Call. Sir Robin decided that they could save time and get more questions in if he stopped the people phoning in from saying 'Good Morning'. What followed was an hour of bickering between Mr Day and the contributers as he chastised them for 'wasting time'. 'We want to hear your questions - not you saying Good Morning' he grumped adenoidally. Again and again he attacked the hapless listeners as they politely greeted the Minister and wished them well for the day. Sorry Evan, we love you dearly, but your outburst at Mr Benn yesterday reminded me of that tooth grinding hour of radio back in the 80s. There's no point fighting over details that might waste time in your wonderfully ordered mind. Your - and Sir Robin's - attempts to trim the contributors to order are worse than the offence you seek to correct. Relax Evan, it's fine. We want to say Good Morning; we need to hear the phone number... in fact next time, let the minister read it twice, and then we'll have time to write it down. Fri 12 Sep 2008 07:29:18 GMT+1 Harewoodforest Again,I totally agree with the comments made by amfinch. Couldn't have said it in a better way! Fri 12 Sep 2008 07:00:44 GMT+1 smartartz Amfinch is right. Evan should have let Benn read the number instead of having a time wasting fractious argument about it which soured the interview over something trivial, and then offered it again at the end of the interview. That has been standard practice on the BBC for years. I'm extremely disappointed that Evan wastes yet more time in his blog with his slightly lame and over intellectualised defense of his behaviour. He was a bit rude and there isn't really a defense for that. I'm worried about Mr Davies. He gets up at four in the morning. He's racing round doing Today, Dragon's Den, a miscellany of radio documentaries... He seems to do more 'location' reporting than his colleagues. The poor guy must be exhausted. Evan Davies is normally one of the most polite interviewers on the BBC and he's been a breath of fresh air on the Today Programme. Yesterday's outburst is nothing to do with the rights and wrongs of numbers. It's more a warning to Mr Davies that he would be a little more easy going if he got a bit more sleep. Chill Evan. Fri 12 Sep 2008 06:45:05 GMT+1 var42605 I thought you conducted a fair and reasoned interview. The issue over the telephone number was only one of several points at which you tried to enhance the interview and were frustrated by Mr Benn.Clearly to read out a phone number like that is completely crazy, and the substance of the issue you were driving at (particularly, the precise amount of funds available) of far greater importance.Judging from my bedroom, you got it right. Fri 12 Sep 2008 00:43:51 GMT+1 silentstuart Evan, it was fascinating to hear a government minister struggling to answer simple questions that he surely needs to understand regarding the government announcement on energy support. Your persistence during the interview to expose Mr Benn's lack of knowledge on the impact of his new initiative is to be applauded. He should be thoroughly embarrassed by his performance. Thu 11 Sep 2008 22:08:22 GMT+1 kp2627 I really felt for Evan. Hilary Benn was hijacking the interview to spew the government line no matter what question was asked. Like all official spokespersons, they must be reined in by the presenter, otherwise the interview turns into a party political. Please do us all a favour, and don't bring Mr Benn in for interview again ! Thu 11 Sep 2008 21:47:09 GMT+1 peteholly Sounded to me like Evan was rattled a bit. To say more than once "if you don't know the answer minister that's fine" was poor. It is not for the presenter to give such striking interpretaion of politicians answers. That is our job! Benn was "dodging" but I don't need Evan to tell me that. Thu 11 Sep 2008 20:55:24 GMT+1 maddysday I can't see why people are complaining. Are the people who wanted the number complaining themselves or others phoning the programme ostensibly on their behalf? I thought it was possible to ring a general BBC helpline for stuff like that anyway - not sure as I've not used it myself. People can ring all sorts of local and national advice organisations. We've never had so many sources of information. Having a minister to question is far more important. Your interviews on our behalf are the priority - a vital opportunity to take a scalpel to the policies. I thought that was why everybody listened to Today. Thu 11 Sep 2008 14:35:33 GMT+1 busby2 EvanI totally agree with amfinch's message at #6 and trust you will follow this excellent advice in future. Thu 11 Sep 2008 13:12:23 GMT+1 amfinch After reading Evan Davies blog about Hilary Benn and the phone number I'm even more annoyed (if possible) than I was this morning. It would have been quite easy to have allowed Hilary Benn to say the number once during the interview (rather that talking over him and wasting yet more time in reprimanding him) - then to say that if you missed that number, we'll give it to you again at the end of this interview and on our website.The people who really need the information probably don't have a computer at home - and what about all those years before the internet when radio programmes regularly gave out useful numbers?I worked for many years in live radio and I know that situation could easily have been handled far far better - and for the benefit of the listeners! Thu 11 Sep 2008 11:28:26 GMT+1 Blogpolice If the government want to advertise they should do so like any other business.However the EST is a waste of time anyway. I tried to get funding for solar water heating for an 80 year old and was told that all funds were exhausted. Come back next year.This government is all words and no action. Thu 11 Sep 2008 10:33:42 GMT+1 hurrahforShoequeen53 While I agree with not gabbling phone numbers on the radio, more time was definitely wasted arguing with Hilary Benn about it.I also really disliked the bullying, hectoring tone of the interview which I think reflected very badly on you, Evan. The best way of getting people on the side of an interviewee is to treat them in this way.I have considerably more respect for interviewers who treat their interviewees with some respect and take the time to listen to the responses they give to their questions.While John Humphries can (just) get away with the Rottweiler interview style, he's a bit of a one off, nobody else has the gravitas to do it. Thu 11 Sep 2008 10:16:04 GMT+1 glenwillow Quite wrong, Evan. Many of the very people these measures are aimed at - the elderly- may not have internet access and it's wrong of you to assume they do. Of greater concern was your constant interrupting whenever Hillary Benn tried to give an answer to the very questions you had asked. Presumably you actually did want him to answer? You seemed to be more concerned at a) stopping him, and b) getting him to say 'I don't know' to one particular question. Perhaps before being elevated to the dizzy heights of the Today programme you were sent to the BBC News Department's John Humphrys School-of-loving-the-sound-of-your-voice-and-preventing-interviewees-from-answering'? Just why does Ceri Thomas refer to you as 'simply one of the outstanding BBC journalists of his generation'? Thu 11 Sep 2008 09:53:25 GMT+1 Ian_Dudley I suppose it could be argued that more time was wasted arguing with Mr Benn than it would have taken for him to just read the number.But I completely agree with the principle Evan was trying to uphold and its an important one. Hilary spent the entire interview ignoring questions and just trying to read his script (the same one he's used on BBC breakfast half an hour earlier) rather than actcually answer the questions and issues being put to him. This was just another way to pad out his spun statement and thereby avoid being questioned on the actual facts of the issue. Thu 11 Sep 2008 09:52:15 GMT+1 Bernard998 Quite right, Evan. The Today programme should not become some sort of 'aural noticeboard' for ad hoc announcements of contact details for government schemes. A much more important purpose is to put government ministers on the spot over the non-delivery of legal requirements underpinning their own muddled policy - which you sought to do with admirable persistence and tenacity. I suspect, though, that you would have needed much longer than you had this morning to get straight answers out of Hilary Benn. Thu 11 Sep 2008 09:25:34 GMT+1