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Peter Barron | 17:07 UK time, Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Ok then, I'm off.

Newsnight logoAfter four years at Newsnight this is my final editor's blog. I'm off to Google, which has provoked some head scratching in the blogosphere.

My reasoning was pretty straightforward - I was looking for something at least as interesting, eventful and as much fun as Newsnight. That leaves a short list of options.

Experimenting with new media has been one of the joys of running Newsnight. There have been new products and possibilities almost every week. We've piled into many of them although so far, unlike Downing Street, we've resisted Twitter.

Some of our wheezes proved controversial but four years on I don't think anyone - and certainly not Jeremy - would argue that Newsnight should be simply a TV programme shown once at 10.30pm.

The digital revolution means I've been the first Newsnight editor to look after a programme which can be accessed at any time of the day or night anywhere in the world. You can engage us in conversation and we can - and should - explain our inner thinking.

So I'd like to take this chance to thank publicly the brilliant, creative and committed team who put together Newsnight five nights a week. To thank the six million or so viewers who stick with Newsnight week in week out despite the proliferation of competing demands for their eyeballs.

And to say thanks and farewell to those diehard Newsnight fans who subscribe to the e-mail, read blogs like this one and visit the website every day to catch up on the programme and have fun picking holes in it.

From Friday I'll be joining your number.


  • Comment number 1.

    Why head scratching? Google has bean bags, food, reasonably SOTA tech - the BBC has stuffy chairs, a canteen that's legendary in its own lunchtime, and technologically is still stuck somewhere between a C64 and a Speccie.

    Makes perfect sense to me.

  • Comment number 2.


    We all missed you, when you left the BBC to join GOOGLE....

    Why are doing the head scratching?

    Again, We all will missed you....

  • Comment number 3.


    I disagree with you on 99% of your posts, however, as one of the very few Editors who bothered to respond to comments, I for one will miss your musings on this site.

    Good luck, and happy googling!.

  • Comment number 4.

    Best of luck in your endeavours - as another poster said, you were always willing to take a few risks, be willing to defend your team, and take time to discuss and defend your decisions.

    Will Caroline Spelman be coming to your leaving drinks ?!

  • Comment number 5.

    A Newsnight leading editorial light who will be greatly missed. Hopefully the replacement editor will have similar skills and will emulate Peter's perseverance and editorial skills. Being the cream of the cream is a difficult act to follow. Congratulations Mr Barron and good luck at your new job with Google. Excellence is your trade-mark.

  • Comment number 6.

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

  • Comment number 7.

    The big difference I've seen at Newsnight under Peter's editorship is that it's loosened up a bit, become less stuffy and more, well, fun. That doesn't mean its compromised its editorial strengths - watching Dean Godson come badly unstuck on live tv, and the journalism which created that moment, was one of the great tv moments of the last year. It's just that the whole Newsnight package now delivers serious journalism in a much more engaging way. It seems a lot less middle aged.

  • Comment number 8.

    Best of luck in the future ... shame you got rid of the weather: I quite enjoyed Jeremy's humour as he presented it.

    I'm sure Google will treat you well.

  • Comment number 9.

    i would like to echo the comments of post 3,

    While i disagree with nearly all your output, you are at least willing to face up to the questions and stand your ground on the answers.

    Peter, even invited me in so i could speak to him face to face, which i have to say was above and beyond what any other editor would do.

    Enjoy google and when you get there could you find out if it is true that if you type 'google' into google you can break the internet.

  • Comment number 10.

    Re #9. Nice story Hank. It speaks volumes. Like some of the tales about Charles Wheeler.
    Clearly these people can't respond to every individual, but good to know the intent is there, when time allows.

    Have fun and continued success, even if you somehow managed to struggle through without feeling the need to take-up my brilliant ideas for 'Newsnight', you muppet Barron.
    Love from Grumpy Jon.

  • Comment number 11.

    Re #10.
    PS. Who are we getting next?

  • Comment number 12. up the BBC for what seems rapidly to be turning into an off-shoot of the CIA!

    Good Move...


  • Comment number 13.

    'Do no evil' ..... unless your the Chinese government etc.

  • Comment number 14.

    Does anyone have a update on Peter and how Google has been working out for him? I can imagine that they must be doing he more than right, I would love to know how it is over there !

    [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]


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