« Previous | Main | Next »

Your Questions Answered

Post categories:

Adrian Van-Klaveren Adrian Van-Klaveren | 11:14 UK time, Friday, 17 September 2010

On Wednesday when I appeared on Victoria Derbyshire's programme there were lots more questions than I was able to answer on air. So in this post I'll try to talk in a bit more detail about some of the main points you raised, including comments added to the blog.

There were a lot of questions about how we use audience contributions, whether from text, Twitter, email or Facebook. The main concern was that some of the issues we talk about are too trivial and therefore uninteresting. The first thing I'd say is that one of the most distinctive features of 5 live is our two-way relationship with our audience. We want to hear from people about their views, concerns and questions. But beyond that 5 live is a station with light and shade and many of the wittiest comments you hear on air come from our listeners. To get these contributions, you have to ask the right question and that's where the challenge comes. We often get this right but I'd be the first to accept that sometimes we don't.

It tends to work best if there's a clear reason for asking that question that day and if I, as a listener, care about the answer - either because it tells me something I didn't know, it makes me think or it makes me laugh. To an extent it's subjective but those are the contributions we try to use on air and we'll keep on working to try to make sure others don't slip through.

There were a few questions about political balance. Impartiality is central to what the BBC, including 5 live, stands for, and we work hard to make sure we have a fair balance of views and opinions from across the political spectrum. We do this by thinking daily about how we are covering individual subjects or stories and making sure we have a wide range of contributors - for every Kevin Maguire there's an Iain Dale.

There was also a question was about our use of BBC foreign correspondents. We do use them extensively - for instance the pieces this week by Aleem Maqbool on the floods in Pakistan. We try to highlight the most important international stories, the stories which have a direct relevance to Britain and those stories which give you a real insight into life around the world. We do not have a predominantly international agenda but instead try to cover the international stories which matter most to our audience. The BBC's network of foreign correspondents is vital to how we do this.

A few other answers to specific questions:

Gabby Logan will be leaving her lunchtime programme in the spring. The demands of a five-day-a-week show alongside her sport commitments are proving too great to sustain in the long-term. I fully understand this and I'd like to thank Gabby for the great job she's done on establishing the new lunchtime programme. I'll let you know her replacement as soon as I can but there's no decision yet.

We don't have a specific books slot at the moment in the daytime schedule though we do of course talk about individual books and interview their authors a great deal. I certainly wouldn't rule out finding a specific place to talk about books again at some point in the future and I'd be keen to know more about what people would like to hear. The rain clearly disrupted our plans for the coverage of the US Open Final. In the circumstances I thought John Inverdale and the team did a great job and we brought forward the start of Up All Night.

The issue of whether we over-apologise for swearing on air even late at night was raised. This is a very subjective area - what is completely acceptable to one person is offensive to another. I think we can be a little more lenient late at night but these are individual judgments depending on exactly what language is used in what context.

I often get asked about the timings of our news and sport bulletins on the hour and half-hour. Mostly it's about why we don't keep to time but on this occasion it was a concern that we too often cut things short for the news. I do think it is important that listeners know exactly when they can hear the news and sport and I know many people tune in at those specific points. We have to be very flexible around live news and sport events and sometimes around specific interviews but I think these things should be the exception rather than the norm. Again though it's a subject I'm keen to hear more views on.

Related Posts
Questions for the Controller - your questions for Adrian

Related Links
Adrian Van Klaveren takes listeners' questions - listen to the controller's interview with Victoria Derbyshire
Victoria Derbyshire - listen to seven days of programmes


Page 1 of 3

  • Comment number 1.

    Adrian, thank you for so promptly posting here so we can continue the discussion.

    Thank you also for addressing my question about the ratings. I have now heard various poor excuses for why you refuse to release the rating figures for each dayparts across different demographics.

    Victoria was rightly skeptical too.

    The most recent reasons seem to be:

    1. It will take your staff too long to analyze them robustly and provide a thorough and timely analysis and therefore there it is not wise to release 'just the numbers'. This was the excuse when I raised this when the book was out in May.

    2. This week's excuse was that the figures should not be used in isolation but should be compared over quarters and recognition should be given that the calendar will influence ratings also, an election, a major sporting event etc.

    Neither of these are cause not to release the information. You are on the wrong side of this argument.

    Let me address each issue in turn.

    1. You will be aware of the move towards more openness and transparency in the public service and the value from crowd-sourcing analysis. See data.gov.uk for example. We, the licensee fee payers, can analyze this data by ourselves. Rajar.co.uk already provides the mechanism. We just need to BBC to place this data in the public domain.

    2. Your latest excuse, that figures need to be seen over time is woeful. On this basis, as I have repeatedly asked, please release all of the data for each survey since 1/2008 and we can look at trends.

    It is clear you want to hide information from us otherwise you would release this information. It is not commercially sensitive as commercial competitors also have this information and the BBC hold the copyright.

    Victoria was spot on that you choose to use top-line figures, only when they suit, and they are used for publicity reasons. As she said 5Live can spin any numbers to look good.

    It is time for transparency and I hope you will meet with Tim Davie to discuss this.

    I'm going to put in an FoI request as I don't think this will stand up to scrutiny and the Information Commissioner will see your folly.

  • Comment number 2.

    Thank you for posting so quickly Adrian.

    Political imbalance. Ian Dale and who from the Conservatives regularly? Liberals? Kevin Maguire, David English, Chris Addison, many of your presenters making clear reference to their left leanings. It is not balanced.

    Trivia. What is your favourite soup? When did you last expose yourself on public transport? Glad you think it is funny. That is why you have recreated this station in this way, presumably.

    Foreign correspondents. The best programmes are Up All Night, any night. Why can't you repeat some of those world wide reports during the day instead of endless pap about Strictly, X Factor or that terrible music thing on a Monday morning which grates with many listeners as it is out of place and not on the right station. There used to be brilliant reports from round the world on 5Live which informed, now it is as likely to be about how George Michael got through the night despite crying.

    Book reviews. Used to be so much better with Mayo, instead of this style of one author hyping his/her book. Use real critics instead of Heat employees.

    There are far too many football phone ins. You may like Robbie Savage's inane and un-thought through comments but it will come back to bite you, I bet you anything.

    Any promises to make the Rajar figures for individual programmes public in, say, March 2011, whether the presenters are there still or not, it would be good to see the drift for us licence payers to be proved right(or wrong, of course).

  • Comment number 3.

    Thanks for post your and answers, regarding the use if texts you say:

    “To get these contributions, you have to ask the right question and that's where the challenge comes. We often get this right but I'd be the first to accept that sometimes we don't. It tends to work best if there's a clear reason for asking that question that day and if I, as a listener, care about the answer - either because it tells me something I didn't know, it makes me think or it makes me laugh.”

    I’d like to know is there ever a ‘clear reason’ for any of Bacon’s Daily Text ins, and do listeners ever ‘care about the answer’. There are lots of examples posted on this blog of the idiotic and juvenile questions he poses. I can post some more examples if you wish, which are nothing more than lazy fillers.

    Yesterdays was: “Text in why Septemberfest is the greatest event on the festival calendar, better than Glastonbury, V and Reading?”

    Also on Breakfast often the same texts are read out by different presents / travel reporters within minutes of each other.

  • Comment number 4.

    Adrian, I'd also love to hear you tell us that your comedy programmes, Chart of Week, 7Day Sunday are political neutral in tone, content and talent.

    What right wing commentators and/or comedians appear weekly on these programmes?

    The current 'comedians' are all left-wing and/or have a liberal bent.

    I can also write the cuts and anti-Catholic quips for this week's programmes now.

    As you said Sunday mornings need work. You could start with less political partisanship.

  • Comment number 5.

    “We don't have a specific books slot at the moment in the daytime schedule though we do of course talk about individual books and interview their authors a great deal. I certainly wouldn't rule out finding a specific place to talk about books again at some point in the future and I'd be keen to know more about what people would like to hear.”

    There is a big difference between a book panel and an author coming on to plug their book. As I said on a previous thread, much as I like Mayo & Kermode I think their Friday show suffers from being spread over two hours and could be improved by devoting the first half hour to a book panel, second half hour to an interview and the final hour to the top ten and new film reviews.

    Glad you have not ruled out a book review returning but please not Bacon and Boyd Hilton reviewing celebrity autobiographies.

  • Comment number 6.

    Steven Nolan doing the Great North Run???? Shurely Shom mistake.

    Joke Joke Joke

  • Comment number 7.

    Stephen's exercise and weight soap opera is a tiresome bore. Don't tell me we're going to have hours of airtime devoted to that now too Mr Controller?

  • Comment number 8.

    Did Klav answer any questions or just read from the page marked BBC spin

  • Comment number 9.

    Let's say the most creditable performance was from Victoria Derbyshire. A quarter of the interview was about Salford, Mr Controller's job application and his failure to move to Salford full time. I wonder why he choose not to mention that in his follow up post -- as if it never was discussed -- as that received the most interest at the time and subquently in the media and the blog. It's the elephant in the room.

  • Comment number 10.

    I listened to Saturday Edition with Chris Warburton for the first time yesterday and found it to be quite an enjoyable listen with a good mix of stories. I think Warburton has potential and given time he could be the answer to our afternoon woes.

  • Comment number 11.

    It's rare these days that when I am moved to write about 5Live I have positive things to say, but I have to again say that the new Sunday evening lineup is good and 5Live Investigates in particular is excellent. It is a stellar example of the 'old' 5Live. Well researched, intelligent, insightful, robust discussion and non-trival listener submissions.

    Excellent work team. More please.

  • Comment number 12.

    Can we assume that when Logan is replaced, George Riley will no longer be a co-presenter of the lunchtime programme. He seems to have been granted special status not afforded to the other sports news readers. Bob Ballard and Will Perry, today, for example, just come into the studio, read the bulletin and then leave. They don't read out texts and don't take part in the sports panel discussion. Riley is allowed to occupy the Nicky Campbell/Aasmah Mir chair as second presenter for the whole duration of the programme.

  • Comment number 13.

    Adrian, on Richard Bacon today we had the sports news reader say: “You’re not a sports fan though?”

    To which Bacon replied, “I’m not not a sports fan, I quite like going and watching live because I like streakers and think it is funny to boo the oppositions national anthem.”

    I thought he must be joking but he stuck with the argument for the rest of the show that it is not disrespectful and just funny to boo.

    Totally out of order on a news and sports station in my opinion, do you agree?

    Is Richard Bacon going to be anchoring the Ryder Cup coverage?

  • Comment number 14.

    Oh no.

    Thank goodness I can watch it on Sky.

    Bacon is becoming more and more immature. Don't tell me he doesn't know about the criticisms of his programmes and style. Maybe AVK thinks what he said is funny, whereas I think he should be reprimanded for bringing the BBC in to disrepute.

  • Comment number 15.

    This comes down to his judgment.

    Bacon has previously bought the BBC into disrupte and been fired from Blue Peter for his poor judgment. See: https://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/education/specials/drugs/351602.stm

    If this IS a serious radio station then Mr Controller will suggest that this type of cringeworthy unedifying exchange is not worthy of 5Live. It might work on Radio 1 or 6 Music but there is no place for it on 5Live.

  • Comment number 16.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 17.

    Richard Bacon's interview earlier today with Karl Pilkington is a further example of how far Five Live's output has been dumbed down since the start of the year. It was also excruciatingly unfunny, uninteresting and a waste of however long the interview lasted for. Pilkington at one point said something like "Is this what people want to listen to? Is this entertaining?" Well the answer is an absolute no. I also can't think it was a particularly good advert for his show but as it's on Sky 1 probably no one would be watching it anyway.
    How I long for the old days when Five Live was entertaining, intelligent, informative and interesting. But that would require better presenters and better guests. Or maybe we will get this again in the future, maybe when Gabby Logan leaves they could also revamp the whole of the afternoon schedule and get rid of Bacon as well. We can but hope.

  • Comment number 18.

    He has just completed an ill informed and disgraceful interview about the Commonwealth Games, as if Munich never happened, and as if the cricketers were never attacked, and as if there wasn't a huge terrorist outrage in India. He hasn't any idea at all. Now we can look forward to Kevin and his Heat mate talking about Spooks, and Jude Law who apparently is going to get young people interested in volunteering for the Olympics. What? I don't think anyone needs Jude's help actually.

  • Comment number 19.

    I think Adrian needs to haul Richard Bacon in at the earliest opportunity after listening to an air check of these woeful 'interviews'.

    It's hard to know who is most culpable. The producer, the talent or the Controller.

    Mr Controller has told us he wants to grow his audience share but pulling younger listeners in their 30's while not alienated the older demographics.

    I don't think this kind of unedifying trash is not funny and I am in my 30's.

    The problem with this cult of personality is he thinks he is funny when he isn't, the oldies 'chasing cool' like the Controller think he's great.

    Richard Bacon on afternoons was the worst decision of his tenure. The best has been the revitalised Sunday night line up.

    As this is a question thread, Adrian how often do you meet with your talent and production team to discuss the quality and tone of your programmes?

  • Comment number 20.

    Yes Carrie I heard his interview about the Commonwealth Games, unbelievable he seems to be worse than ever this week; I don’t how Bob Ballard kept his cool. Maybe he should concentrate on preparing for his show instead of going on Loose Women to plug his Beer & Pizza Club show?

  • Comment number 21.

    I did enjoy Bacon at night, I thought he was funny and the mix of items was good. Livesey has filled that space pretty well. But I can't understand what has happened to Bacon. I was truly shocked at his content today especially about the Commonwealth Games. He doesn't know anything about sport, the tennis aberrationin the summer fitted well with a need to mix with "celebrities". However he does know about politics and history and that is why I could not see why recent stuff involving sport and terrorism, plus Munich, would not have made him think before opening his mouth. I have to keep reminding myself that this is the BBC, and as such listened to worldwide, and respected for its output. I never thought I would say it but I think AVK needs to cut back on so much of the dross on 5Live and put some quality back in to it.

  • Comment number 22.

    Bacon's done it again! Posts 18 to 21 have got in before me but I used the time to check on I-Player what he said. It was " What security? They're just people that run!"
    Now we see why news and sport are hardly ever covered by him. And when it's sports news he's even worse. The guy is an ignoramous and the Five Live loyal listeners should not have to listen to him any more. Get him off the radio and let him concentrate on his third rate (or as it's ITV 4, fourth rate) TV shows.

  • Comment number 23.

    Sadly these people are fireproof. I can't see anyone taking him aside and having a word with him. Unless he has another dalliance with some of Colombia's finest he can probably stay as long as he likes.

  • Comment number 24.

    Despite (Bacon) only needing to lodge 3 nights in Media City, I can't see hime going. He's almost certainly on a short-term (yearly) renewable contract with 5 and he'll terminate it a little before he has to leave -the BBC3, ITV4 etc commitments

  • Comment number 25.

    That just leaves Derbyshire. Been at the station over 10 years, doing more or less the same thing. Despite her regeneration as a female Jeremy Kyle (not my analogy) I don't think she can offer anything new or fresh. Chance for someone else to make something of that slot.

  • Comment number 26.

    Nigel, are the questions posed in this thread going to be answered?

    If not, can you please rename this thread, Your Questions Unanswered


    Also, we haven't forgotten that you agree to blog about the justification of the overuse of Twitter and other social media sites at the expense of BBC-owned digital platforms.

  • Comment number 27.

    My last post was removed for some reason best known to the moderator.
    I had only expressed what many,many others on this thread and elsewhere think about the talents(or lack of them) of the current afternoon presenter.
    I think what can be said though is that AVK's much trumpeted daytime line up revamp following the departure of the much admired Simon Mayo has been an unmitigated disaster.
    Gabby Logan's going(supposedly because of the pressure of work-but who believes that ?)and it wouldn't surprise me if Mr Bacon follows soon afterwards.
    I would hope to hear much,much more from the likes of John Inverdale and Clare Baldiing both of who can turn their hands to serious journalism and sports coverage alike.

  • Comment number 28.

    I don't like the music review or those terrible interviews - Marlon King, the bloke who was charged with rape, one or two others, but actually I think overall Vicky has improved alot of the content in her programme and she has some authority in her presentations, especially when she is compared to lightweights not suitable for current affairs programmes.

    I think the whole daytime schedule could do with a refit or a rejig.

    Nigel could you answer the questions on here? I notice on the Septemberfest blog you asked someone what he wanted to see on the blog so could you take in to account what regulars from all sides of the viewpoints have said on here and on Questions for the Controller blog?

  • Comment number 29.

    @16 & 27 robbo06, seems they are sensitive to your views on Bacon

  • Comment number 30.

    This is turning into a Baconfest!

    Simon Mayo once wrote something along the lines of "never read the blogs about yourself, they can be quite vicious". I hope Simon has reversed that decision because most of the things written on this blog collection are usually nothing but complimentary about his good self.

    By contrast ... Richard are you reading? Like others I cannot even listen anymore. Hence me checking out the recorded versions. Quite, quite unbelievably poor.

    Considering the bad career moves the guy has made, he seems a very lucky bunny for someone with such poor presentational skills. It says little for the parlous state of presenters available that RB is first, offered and second, retains this blue chip spot on a national radio station.

    AVK will of course dismiss those of us concerned enough to voice our concerns as a small bunch of cranks. May I venture a small bunch yes but speaking up for how much of the audience?

  • Comment number 31.

    Radio5Live are getting increasingly desperate to ensure that we, the paying public, stay "on-message". They have just announced that they will be moderating their Facebook page and that they will not allow any "personal" attacks on presenters. Thus a certain afternoon presenter whose name indicates two slices of white bread and a splodge of Daddies Sauce will no longer be the subject of any criticism. Somebody (AVK?) is getting very twitchy.

  • Comment number 32.

    Your specific questions have been noted but I'm not going to let the comments on this post turn in to a repetitive discussion about 5 live presenters and speculation about future scheduling decisions.

    @ryanw - I have not forgotten about my promised post about Twitter etc. I hope I'll be able to write it next week.

  • Comment number 33.

    Better stop reading the professional radio critics too then Nigel. By the way, ill informed and unprofessional asides are not acceptable on a world broadcaster, whoever it is.

    Did you see what I wrote in the last paragraph @28?

  • Comment number 34.

    Oh dear. The early bright signs are giving way to more of the same...

    First we were told we had to be relentless positive and now we've been told that we can't have discussions about the presenters or what the changes forthcoming despite the new blog being specifically for discussion of "changes and announcements".

    Nigel, you disappoint me.

    One wonders why 5Live are so protective of the overpaid poor dears. No transparency on ratings, no transparency of salaries, criticism forbidden, no discussion on presenters tone and content tolerated either.

    And with no breakfast blogging (despite us paying 5 people who have a responsibility to do it -- another unanswered question) and no blogging from any other programmes, that doesn't leave much to discuss and conversations will easily stray off topic.

    It's probably best that ALL of the radio station websites are closed down, the majority of the Interactive staff given their pink slips, and programme content can be provided by iPlayer. Mr Davie are you listening?

    It would save a lot of our precious money which could be reinvested in QUALITY programming.

  • Comment number 35.

    More than a quarter of the afternoon programme today talking about the ‘Dettol No Touch Soap Dispenser’, is this one of the pressing issues of the day or just something that takes zero preparation and research? My question for the controller is; does somebody have responsibility for reviewing the quality of items and features of the programme or is it just a matter of finding something to fill two hours with?

  • Comment number 36.

    If course the brand name was never mentioned was it!

    I recall the Controller telling us that the remit of 5Live was to bring to the most important issues facing the country to listeners. This really is appalling isn't it.

    My question to the Controller is this the most important issue of the day and did it warrant so much airtime?

    Is there any quality control any more?

  • Comment number 37.

    I would like to return to the subject of your failure to move to Salford with the station Mr A V-K because you did not answer the questions put to you to my satisfaction (and I suspect to the satisfaction of others) during the interview. You said that you would not be moving due to family reasons and implied that it would be impractical to uproot your children. I believe that these were the reasons behind why Simon Mayo was unable to move to the Salford area. Why is it therefore that he was effectively forced to give up what was one of the best programmes on talk radio but you, with exactly the same reasons behind you, are hypocritically not moving and not giving up your post either?

    It was implicit that when the post that you now occupy was advertised that the move up north with the station would be expected and yet you seem to be able to ignore this.

    Yes, I do resent the fact that you will be able to claim up to £1900 per month of licence fee payers money in order to base yourself part-time in the Salford area because you refuse to relocate. I'm positive that I am not the only one. How on earth can you justify claiming such an expense taking into account that you knew that Salford was on the cards? Would you be prepared to justify this claim in the same way that the much pilloried MPs (by your station amongst others plus general public) have had to do so for far less money and also to me personally, a licence fee payer on far less than average earnings per annum?

    I believe your judgement is seriously in doubt and your wisdom way out of line with your listeners and with licence fee payers in general with regard to making such a subsistence claim and also for your double standards in allowing one of your best presenters to leave, who had the same reasons for not wishing to relocate as you are using to justify your own personal decision not to relocate but to retain your job anyway.

  • Comment number 38.

    I couldn't agree more Linda1111. These people seem to be totally unaccountable to us licence fee payers.

    As there is nowhere else to post this, has anyone else been enjoying Giles Dilnot (from The Daily Politics) on Up All Night this week? I am listening to it in the US at the moment, so hear most of it during the evening. He has been so much better than Doton Adebayo.

  • Comment number 39.

    Obviously AVK's mission is to popularise the station, especially during slots that have received complaints, and to create a red top show which has flippancy and superficiality as main themes. If the BBC still holds consumer sessions to get feedback and to help plan for the future, it would be good to know what is said, because I don't believe anyone wants to hear Mirror/Heat/Sun type content on the BBC.

    I suppose everyone who feels strongly can complain to the BBC through the online system, maybe that is the way forward, because it sure as anything doesn't get anywhere writing it on here.

    Any answers soon from anyone about outstanding questions to AVK?

  • Comment number 40.

    The three sailent issues we seem to have when you remove the subjective issues on programming decisions and talent (although this are very valid concerns and have a right to be discussed here) are:

    1. Lack of transparency -- and continued obfuscation over ratings, the Salford move etc.

    2. Lack of accountability -- poor record of answering questions (the interrogation by Victoria Derbyshire was a rare step in the right direction)

    3. Predisposition among 5Live staff towards stifling debate and closing down anyone who dares criticise the output. The blog is clearly seen as a propaganda tool only.

  • Comment number 41.

    Nigel, can you please make sure our questions are answered that we placed here, otherwise this will be ANOTHER example of asking for questions and not answering them. All too common here.

    I would specifically like an answer on the ratings (see post #1) -- the Controllers argument for not releasing the full information is spurious. He tells us he won't release the ratings as they need to be looked at over time, ie. not a single quarter in isolation. No trouble! Release the last 8 quarters. This same excuse will be trotted out next quarter. It is pathetic.

    The other excuse is that 5Live staff are too busy to analyse the numbers. Don't worry. You don't need to. Those of us who are sufficiently interested will do it for you.

    All dayparts and all major demographics please.

    To be crystal clear for Mr Controller:

    If as you say it is wrong to release one ratings periods results as they should be looked at over time, will if you release the previous 4-8 ratings periods data? If not why not? You hold the copyright and this information is not commercial sensitive.

    Thank you.

  • Comment number 42.

    May I wholeheartedly agree with the vast majority of comments about the unpopularity of the afternoon programme without being censored(again) ?
    Also Linda is spot on when she suggests that AVK is guilty of double standards over his refusal to move to Salford while Simon Mayo was effectively forced out of the station.
    Surely as license fee payers we are entitled to an answer and if the contoller is unable or unwilling to provide a proper one then we should take it up at a higher level.

  • Comment number 43.

    OK, so I am going round the bend. Nicky Campbell said this morning that we can contribute to the phone in on the Breakfast Blog. Where is it? Does it exist? PLEASE someone point me in the direction of the Blog or is NC just having one of his little jokes?????

  • Comment number 44.

    I have heard of using selective callers, we all know it happens, but the last few minutes of Vicky's phone in on "What do you want from the BBC?" was the most blatant type of pro-bias I have ever heard. The older people who said what they were dissatisfied with had no comment made after their contribution, one of them was actually laughed at post-call by Vicky and the next contributor.

    If you had a real forum in which you knew you could actually say what you thought it would be great. Until then you are modded or not selected to speak.

    Having another BBC boss on justifying her job and programmes was quite navel gazing in its presentation. Time to have some public forums and invite everyone to write to the Trust, write to the Minister, and complain a bit when a complaint is necessary. Bacon's programme is packed with comics again. Can there never be anything remotely serious on his programme? Could he try a bit?

    BBC is great. 5Live is great. Repeat after me........

  • Comment number 45.

    BBC is great. 5Live is great.

  • Comment number 46.

    Embarrassing to listen to Payne totally out of his depth on anything other than sport. Definitely not a replacement for Logan. Another one also unable to present a programme on his own.

  • Comment number 47.

    I usually quite like Payne, but maybe he has been told to adopt the text and trivia obsession of the new Five Live and zoo format banter with Riley as sidekick. Why does Riley have to hang around as Payne is normally quite capable on his own?

  • Comment number 48.

    You took the words right off my keyboard. As others have noted he still seems "hyper" and is constantly going off at a tangent and laughing hysterically. I was hoping for a change from Logan but its reminiscent of Steve Wright and his possee.

  • Comment number 49.

    Regarding the use of Twitter, and in particular the 5live Twitter page, do you think it's wise to expose your presenters to such personal scrutiny?
    For instance, reading Juliette Ferrington's tweets, would people be able to tell whether she is a)14 b)18 or c)36?

  • Comment number 50.

    This comment is directly linked to the Salford move.

    We can now see a microcosm of life post-move. Listen to Livesey last night had a main feature of anti-social behaviour, and every guest was Manchester based. If you are a national station, as when this programme was based in London, as a listener I should expect producers to trawl a bit further than Acton and Hammersmith for guests to listen to on a major subject. Do you honestly expect us listeners to put up with Manchester experts on subjects of national importance ? Could you not spread your net a bit wider than the postcode M something or other? The rest of the country exists. Does Tony Livesey (I do like his programme in general, by the way) have to have people facing him in the studio as opposed to in studios elsewhere, and because of costs no expenses can be paid to people to travel there? Is this life after the move?

    Please could you tell me how you are not going to isolate and alienate swathes of listeners in the South West, East Anglia, South East and the Midlands? I guess all those Geordies are happy as you gave them their igloo but I think the majority of the population live somewhere else.

  • Comment number 51.

    Actually forgot one other point from last night. In his opening remarks, Livesey said they were celebrating because "we have been recommissioned". This is the first time I have ever heard publicly of this process on 5Live and I wonder whether this is going on with other shows - is that why Gabby is going? Anyone else on notice but keeping it quiet?

    I see Colin Murray is doing his programme next Friday from Celtic Manor. Can you tell me if he is anchoring the whole weekend of Ryder Cup?

  • Comment number 52.

    @51 Carrie on the Guardian website yesterday it said:

    Men's Hour is set to become a fixture of the BBC Radio 5 Live schedule after it was recommissioned for a second, extended run.

  • Comment number 53.

    1 week down and no answers in the "Your Questions Answered" thread.

    Delicious irony.

    Judging by last year's performance we'll be nudging Week 15 before we see any answers.

  • Comment number 54.

    Despite having a webcam for many years there still seems to be no evidence of a dress code. We're not expecting dinner jackets and bow ties but some of the male presenters make no effort whatsoever.

  • Comment number 55.

    Does it really matter what the presenters wear ? Richard Bacon could wear a tuxedo, and his show would still be rubbish ! !

  • Comment number 56.

    I heard Danny Baker say this morning his show won’t be moving to Salford, understandable with his BBC London afternoon show, how many other programmes will continue to be broadcast from London after the move?

    I presume Kermode & Mayo will continue to be from London on Fridays due to Mayo’s R2 Drivetime an hour later. It was such a big loss for 5 Live that the Salford move forced Mayo to quit his afternoon show, shame the exception being made for Friday couldn’t have been made for all five afternoons to allow Mayo to stay and have a better mix of guests on 5 Live by having one of the daytime shows from London.

    Nigel I look forward to your promised Salford update.

  • Comment number 57.

    Nigel turned-up - spitting threats and promises - worked a couple of days and went on holiday. That's the BBC. Expect him back on Monday waving (another) declaration
    from the aircraft's door

  • Comment number 58.

    As if the BBC Radio doesn't spend enough time ignoring the blogs it already has it's a launched another one which it hasn't bothered to publicise either.

    You might be interested in https://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/radio/

    The ever present Mr Bowbrick is running it and Mr Controllers boss Mr Davie has written a blog post.

    This will make you laugh. Mr Bowbrick tells us in the first post of the first blog post "Senior managers at BBC Audio & Music are already keen bloggers."


  • Comment number 59.

    Be fair ryanw, they are keen - keen to avoid answering any of our comments.

  • Comment number 60.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 61.

    And on it goes. Harriet is giving the Opposition some wellie now.

    It really is undeniable that this is not giving equal coverage to any other party that the British electorate support, nor ever has done during this three month campaign.

    Any answers from the blog writers in charge, please, bearing in mind what I said in @60.

  • Comment number 62.

    Carrie, I also complained to Mr Contoller about this. It is appalling.

    Did you read Helen Boaden (she who is paid more than twice as much as the Prime Minister!) Director of BBC News telling us that "impartiality is in BBC genes." see: https://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/theeditors/2010/09/impartiality_is_in_our_genes.html

    I noticed on Andrew Marr that the last week's paper review during the Lib Dem conference has Amanda Platell (Tory) and Charles Kennedy (LibDem) -- both not especially enamoured of the Coalition.

    This week, as part of the Labour love in (on the unbias BBC) they had Polly Tonybee (Labour) and David Aaronovitch (Labour).

  • Comment number 63.

    It's likely that the left wing bias that Mark Thompson spoke about is ingrained and self-perpetuating. It will take years to change, if at all.

  • Comment number 64.

    + Pienaar tonight from the Conference, + Victoria tomorrow with a live broadcast with politicians and supporters of the Labour Party.

    It must be an Awayday for the BBC hierarchy tomorrow then.

  • Comment number 65.

    The purpose of this post was for Adrian to answer the questions asked in the comments here following his appearance on Victoria Derbyshire's programme. There have been questions posted above since then that I will try to get answers for you but I don't think it's reasonable to expect the blog to become a daily Q&A between the 5 live management and our listeners.

    Accountability and listening to our audience is extremely important to BBC. If were are to make that discussion public the challenge is finding the most appropriate way to do so.

    Regarding the recent comments above about various programmes I stand by what I wrote in my first post on this blog, "It's inevitable that not everything on 5 live will appeal to every listener but the blog is not a constructive place to air repetitive grievances about our output."

  • Comment number 66.

    "There were a few questions about political balance. Impartiality is central to what the BBC, including 5 live, stands for, and we work hard to make sure we have a fair balance of views and opinions from across the political spectrum. We do this by thinking daily about how we are covering individual subjects or stories and making sure we have a wide range of contributors - for every Kevin Maguire there's an Iain Dale." Adrian Van Klaveren.

    Nigel, how dare you suggest things are off the head of this topic when quite a few are clearly absolutely on the ball?

    If there was any point in complaining through the complaints procedure, I would, as I expect quite a few others would too. However, it is just tossed in the internet waste bin and the identical denial answer everytime is wheeled out whatever the complaint.

    I am seriously offended and I think you are wrong Nigel - get us a messageboard!

  • Comment number 67.

    I wholeheartedly support Carrie's comments.

    No-one expects this to be a daily Q&A. 5Live repeatedly invites comments, suggestions and questions. You set the expectations. Not us. This thread is an example and there are many more. For days, well actually normally months, we wait for the station's own promises to be fulfilled. Adrian set the expectation that there would be questions answered here, not us, so please forgive us for following instructions and asking questions here.

    "Accountability and listening to our audience is extremely important to BBC.". Does that mean you will be having more Q&A sessions and releasing the survey results? I didn't think so. You're having a laugh.

    The station tells twitter followers more then the readers of its own website. It's a disgrace. The posters here do a better job of informing readers about what is happening on the station then many of the staff contributors!

    "It's inevitable that not everything on 5 live will appeal to every listener but the blog is not a constructive place to air repetitive grievances about our output." -- the BBC's divide and conquer policy doesn't wash. The strategy goes something like this --

    a. make it hard to find where and how to comment
    b. shut down any decenting voices
    c. ensure any negative comments are handed by email to neturalise

    The blog mission is telling ...

    "A blog where 5 live’s programme makers, interactive team, editors and senior managers talk about the station and respond to listeners. Best bits, events, changes and announcements."

    1. Seems like you're allowed to talk about the station but we're not.
    2. You say you'll "respond to listeners". But now we're being told we shouldn't expect answers to questions.
    3. "Best bits", no chance to critique or take issues with the worse bits then.

    I think you should change the blog mission to be:

    "A blog where 5 live’s programme makers, interactive team, editors and senior managers talk about the station occassionally. Only expect the best bits, news of our amazing events, overseas trips and wonderful changes. Best we don't mention Salford often though, bit of a political hot potato."

    The rhetoric might be about "accountability" but the reality is far different, why else would getting answers be like getting blood out of stone and there be continual attempts to shut down any negative comments?

  • Comment number 68.

    Just switched the radio on - what? - a phone in about "Ed".

    Has nothing else happened in the world?

    Israel/Palestine moratorium running out?
    A British aid worker kidnapped in Afghanistan?
    Selling babies in East London?

    No, we haven't had enough of people ringing up to say "well I voted for David but I'm happy about Ed now I have had time to think about it".

    More tomorrow folks, Conference and Vicky still to come!

  • Comment number 69.

    "Look at what we've done, aren't we clever?"
    "Aren't you lucky to have us entertaining you?"
    "Stop criticising us, how dare you!"

    Tristram bursts into tears.

  • Comment number 70.

    Regarding the recent comments above about various programmes I stand by what I wrote in my first post on this blog, "It's inevitable that not everything on 5 live will appeal to every listener but the blog is not a constructive place to air repetitive grievances about our output."

    I’m sure you have noticed that on here and other forums, Richard Bacon generates more criticism than any other radio presenter. There must be a reason for this criticism, I don’t think it can simply be dismissed in the usual BBC way of saying it is not representative and that you are not going to like everything we do. The afternoon show should be a flagship programme that represents the best of the station. Maybe AVK should answer the points made and defend the programme and its content by giving the listening figures which would answer our criticism if they show he has gained listeners or at least maintained Mayo’s figures.

    If here is not the place to air our opinions where is? The message boards have been closed. If I submit comments by email or online complaints form it is simply dismissed with the usual standard email reply, ‘your comments are noted, listener’s views are important and will be added to our audience logs etc.’ then filed in trash. They are ‘repetitive’ as you say, because they go unanswered.

  • Comment number 71.

    To those who are not happy with the labour party leader election and conference being given prominence this week, the lib dems received saturation coverage last week and the tories will do next week. Personally I get fed up with hearing Iain Dale on Five. Are there no other tory bloggers? Why are there never any far left parties represented on the airwaves? Bias in any form is there if you look for it. Sometimes I think people perceive bias when in fact all that is happening is that policies etc are being closely questioned by a particular reporter....the same reporter who 12 months ago was closely questioning the party of government back then.

    Nigel Smith, hang your head in shame Sir. Where else are people supposed to express their opinions on Five but on the blog? Yes the opinions do get a tad repetitive; does this not tell you something? Perhaps questions are not answered? Perhaps your listeners and readers are not happy bunnies? A message board would help!

    Everyone else who has not clicked the 'like' button on Fb for Five Live, you may be interested to know that the blog posting rules here have been posted on that page too. Debate is discouraged on Fb too. Surprise!

    I've been a defender of the BBC for many years but to be honest the action of BBC employees on these blogs and elsewhere are reminiscent of Soviet State broadcasting rules and regulations and bring the corporation into dispute.

  • Comment number 72.

    Linda, I am not against coverage of the Party conferences or even TUC, which I think should receive more attention, as it used to, on BBC2. I have been complaining about the saturation coverage of the last three months for the leadership election, which does not reflect how the BBC covered any previous one of any party, followed by saturation coverage of Ed Miliband winning and what people feel about david losing- there has been barely any mention of the conference since Friday night, it has been all about the candidates for leader, and now Ed and David.

  • Comment number 73.

    //and the tories will do next week...// Not by the BBC though, Linda unless their strike threat (to not cover it) has been called off? ;-)

    Concur with your (and others') comments to Nigel Smith. The situation beggars belief...

  • Comment number 74.

    So when you quote what the Complaints department write to you, your quote is pulled. @60.

    It is Stalinist!

  • Comment number 75.

    I have no confidence in the BBC complaints department. They take ages to respond and then patronise you with a form response.

    During the election when I complained about pro Labour bias I was fobbed off. It was only after a bit of digging that I found out that one of the people handling complaints was in fact a Labour Party council candidate.

    It is that kind of (lack of) response and lack of transparency that encourages me to put the case in public. It would appear I am not the lone ranger.

  • Comment number 76.

    The first article in the Guardian Media Monkey column today exposes a bit of AVK twisting and turning on Victoria's question spike a couple of weeks ago.

  • Comment number 77.

    Hopefully the Rajar figures will act as the fishmonger's knife.
    Idly scrolled down to see that Chris Evans will be at the Ryder Cup. Didn't miss him one bit at this year's Open.

  • Comment number 78.

    Here's the link to the Guardian article Carrie mentioned. https://www.guardian.co.uk/media/mediamonkeyblog/2010/sep/27/media-monkey-diary

    The "Salford question" was the most newsworthy part of the Controllers appearance, the longest time was spent on it, and it was the most contentious. Many media outlets have picked up on it.

    Surprisingly under those circumstances the follow up blog post was silent about it.


  • Comment number 79.

    let us know what you think!

    so we let you know

    no that's not the way were thinking, we can't be wrong it must be them.

  • Comment number 80.

    Thank goodness!
    What a relief!
    I am so glad it wasn't overlooked!

    Livesey is discussing the question we have been waiting for!

    He is asking: Has the Labour electorate chosen the right brother?

    (Only heard this now oh, 76 times.)

  • Comment number 81.

    To Celtic Manor with Nicky Campbell, Gabby Logan, Chris Evans, Colin Murray, old Uncle Tom Cobley and all.
    Travel, accommodation, meals etc.
    Like the MPs the BBC "don't get it".

  • Comment number 82.

    Carrie (post 81) - it'd just so easy though isn't it? No need for research - its all been said before. Consult someone else's notes, job done for the producer.

    It's indicative of a totally inward looking organisation that has forgotten it has a mandate to entertain and inform.

    And when you see the waste of money in giving the so called celeb's a free ride into the golf it just makes you realise how totally out of touch with reality they. Yes, we expect best coverage from informed golf people and presnters. No, we don't expect a freebie for someone like Campbell. What is he possibly going to contribute that Inverdale can't.

    The mind boggles but they don't care.

    (How long before the 'I feel priveleged' jibe that simply riles the listener even more ?)

  • Comment number 83.

    I am disgusted by this constant use of people who have no background in sport. As Breakfast only accounts for two hours on Friday as far as Nicky is concerned, why is he there and not Phil Williams for example?

    Yes we can expect the " I feel so privileged " speech at some point.

    Has Richard Bacon had any serious interviews on his programme this week? Have now stopped listening to it once he says who is going to be featured.

    It is like Heat on the radio. The ITV4 of the BBC radio stations.

  • Comment number 84.

    I've stopped listening to Bacon as well but had to put on my radio yesterday to drown out some drilling (really). I heard Nick Cosgrove being reduced to a pantomime turn. Is this what it's always like? I remember that on Livesey they once got him to sing. Message is that if you want to be taken seriously stay away from 5live.

  • Comment number 85.

    "About to watch the BBC North propaganda DVD"

    Nigel, now you've watched the propaganda are have been indoctrinated could you share more news about Salford with us as that was one of the stated purposes of the blog.

    Could you also pass this on to an Ariel journalist or a 5Live journalist (if they are any, seems to mostly be comedians these days) and find out how much of our money was wasted on this "propaganda" as you called it.


  • Comment number 86.

    What annoys me is that many of these twittering BBC employees, who I pay my licence fee to enable them to be employed and earn more than the PM in some cases, seem to be so disloyal. They are also pretty naive if they think their personal jokey tweets don't become public in the very scenarios they police and patrol on behalf of, presumably, the BBC Trust.

    Having read Media Monkey this week nothing surprises me at all.

  • Comment number 87.

    Oh, that makes a change.

    "Did Labour pick the right brother?"

  • Comment number 88.

    It was so satifisying last night to turn on the radio and hear a football commentary not more tiresome Milliband banter.

    Today I suspect there will be more hysteria when Senior throws his toys out of the cot.

    In the interests of balance I am sure next week will be wall-to-wall Conservative conference talk with live broadcasting from the Conference too. You wouldn't want to give any less coverage to others would you?

    Or are you on strike?

  • Comment number 89.

    "Have you ever appeared on children's television?"
    "Have you ever snorted coke?"
    "Have you ever dropped out of university?"

    Just to complete the full set.

  • Comment number 90.


    That's a big downer on ITV4.

    If they have any staff they will be horrified.

  • Comment number 91.

    Bacon has a series on ITV4!

    Now what I want to know is, how will David's decision affect the new Shadow cabinet? See tomorrow's phone in.

  • Comment number 92.

    Filling a quarter of the programme with ‘what is irritating you about golf?’ How does Bacon get away with it? Money for old rope, this requires zero preparation and research. This type of drivel might have been acceptable during a late night show, but surely management must listen to his afternoon programme and require something a bit more intelligent on a news and sport station?

  • Comment number 93.

    It is funny that negative comments (unhelpful for the host broadcaster of the Ryder Cup) are welcome on air about the programming but critisisms off air about the rubbish that is served up on air are forbidden. Double Standards? I think so.

    This Jeremy Kyle/Loose Women style daytime radio on 5Live seems to be the as good as it gets.

    Lowest common deminator aka making the station more "accessible" as AVK would say.

  • Comment number 94.

    Derbyshire, Logan and Bacon are sleepwalking through these two hour programmes. With frequent interruptions, a sidekick or two to share the load, almost all the content provided by listeners, the only thing they have to do is remember to collect their pay cheque.

  • Comment number 95.

    PLEASE NO MORE MILLIBAND DISCUSSIONS. If Livesey is 'embeded' with another army of Labour lovies in Manchester tonight I will go crazy. It's over. The Older has thrown his toys out the cot. The younger is their man. End of story. Move on. There are other things happening in the world. The BBC is obsessing about this.

  • Comment number 96.

    I too am bored witless with the Milliband saga. Oh gawd - one of them is on the box as I speak.

    This mornings VD show about marriage after bereavement was very Women's Weekly and boring. The station no longer tackles interesting news but seems to be, as someone else has said turning into the Kyle/Loose Women show.

  • Comment number 97.

    5live plumbs new depths.
    Victoria, you can be Jeremy Kyle.

  • Comment number 98.


    I went in another room when the X Factor tape was running, came back and the girl was on the radio talking about her cocaine and 'business' arrangements whilst her child could clearly be heard in the background.

  • Comment number 99.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 100.

    It is one year this week since the old 5live message boards were closed. I wonder if any BBC bods would like to tell us how they feel the blog system is working?


Page 1 of 3

More from this blog...


These are some of the popular topics this blog covers.

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.