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Read this: Spies, lies and videotape

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Spies, lies and videotape…

BBC sounds music Radio podcasts from BBC Radio 4 spies lies and videotape as Europe go to the polls A-Class excellence candle with a 21st century twist has brought down austria's government a secret recording the vice-chancellor cutting a deal in an Ibiza Villa with the woman.

He thought was the niece of a Russian oligarch.

You still with me somehow made its way to German publications, but they won't say where it came from in Austria there a cause for the source to be revealed all sorts of wild deer is a flying around was it a famous German TV satirist a government spy agency.

That's what we do know is that whoever did the leaking presumably did say to damage the chances of Austrian far right Freedom Party at this week's European elections and the media has gone along with it mean when the UK Channel 4 news and the brexit party so there today result a very public dispute.

How have journalists ended up becoming part of the story talk about all this and more in the next 28 minutes or so Adam Boulton the presenter of all that politics on Sky News Amir 25 years is guys.

Please lives as well atom and an electoral law means a broadcast I can't come any of the issues pertinent to an election on polling day itself, so what's going to be on your show tomorrow? Cos you got 2 hours to fill where we going to talk about the Indian elections and we going to talk about Game of Thrones are we going to have a go to talk about voting system.

There's going to be fascinated.

You can't you are allowed to actually I think it's ok.

Yes, I'll tell you what happens now if you'll either unit or is he don't vote in election is part of your commitment to impartiality.

What do you say to a journalist, Do it's just what works for you and me now.

I started doing it weird when I was working as a beautiful David Frost and then he said to me.

I don't know at all because they're all my friends and you said they will your enemies yeah pretty.

Against that right Stefanie bolzen is here the UK correspond of the German newspaper die welt another old friend of the media show Stephanie good to see you again, which British candidates needs election so your reader's most interested in the in the European election obviously Nigel Farage Wi-Fi because he is intriguing is very kind of magic people in Germany are quite fascinated that he can basically down and then get up again and there is again and who's going to win the elections so and of course many Germans think it's actually the right way to leave the European Union I mean there are some so they like my love for you is splattered with a milkshake last week.

We're going to talk about that later in the show Stephanie very very good to see you and we're going to talk first of all about the radio in street, because the radio industry faces elections four times that kind of anyway.

These are the radars the stats that come out every Quarter and reveal which stations are getting the most listeners and the big story from the latest results is how Chris Evans has been doing at his new home.

Virgin Radio part of Rupert Murdoch's UK operation was posted calls from the BBC Radio 2 Miranda Sawyer is here radio critic for the Observer Miranda has been doing pretty well.

I mean no surprise really he's incredibly popular and wherever he goes people will following but before I have to say the radios always a bit tedious and hard to understand but essentially work before he arrived.

There was a 44 sorry 447000 people listening to that show when he got there there was over a million, but they kind of they use different ways of measuring it.

So what they say is initially it was 427000 weeks and now it's 1.3 million reached and the total hours work 1.6 million now.

They're 7.7 million.

They can't say he's brought seven seven times more.

This is the fattest he's done well completely fine.

Zoe Ball has a mean.

There's hardly any difference at all to her listenership, so when Chris Evans was there it was him and say hi, it's around 9 million and it's still around my new 9 million.

I think she's lost 18000 people which is not very much a look at the result.

Would they tell you about the health of Radio in the UK what? I think they're just doing pretty.


I have to say read it always goes well with aurora kind of a medium that doesn't really get loads and loads of curry is a lesson be like Chris Evans move it just really well most people listen to the radio.

That is a fact most people in Britain listen to the radio and there's been a lot of investment from the commercial sides of radio so global has invested a lot in all its different stations and it's also kind of solidifying its brand so it's it's changing its breakfast shows a lot of people are losing their job sadly across the country and they can making it just One Breakfast Show and national breakfast show on heart with Jamie Theakston and Amanda Holden he's also incredibly popular so there's a lot of investment and actually doing really really well.

It's also a technology courses 50.

Presenter Radio listening is now done digitally of that 11% of listening to online radio streams and there's been a massive growth in the popularity of smart speakers feel bad thing for the radio industry.

Generally pretty good, but I think it can explains why they're bumping up their brands, so what happens if not speak is essentially you not you ask your smart speaker to do what you want.

So whatever that is worthy ordering food or listen to the radio, but you're very like to do is go for a person that you know she would say Chris Evans I want to listen to Chris Evans now or I will I want to listen to a particular show I want to listen to kiss so you need have a really really strong brand of the word your kind of babbling on about you know I'd like to listen to BBC local radio Southport or something you know that's not going to keep her own without think nothing wrong with that, but it's very it's less likely to cut through all the noise really and what's happened as with all new technology.

Is it starts that those kind of little smart speaker started off a little bit rubbish.

I have to say we had one it couldn't understand my husband's accent is Northern Irish and he

Respond to my daughter told because her voice is too high pitched, but things have actually got a lot better and all those kind of little investment special young people that because they're kind of 30 quid a lot of these speakers have gotten for Christmas and I started using me know.

It's great, but if it's worth getting will pewter list of the radio.

Obviously one of the masterminds behind Chris Evans move to Virgin is also here Francis Currie is he content director of wireless group which is virgins parent company and Francis thanks for coming in Virgin is a digital station to smartthings going to be a key part of your future strategy.

Just before we talk about the Chris Evans show are you approaching smart speakers with the noise that Googling Amazon the companies that control them increasingly could one day decide to change the relationship.

They have with you.

I think when we're talking about distribution mean DAB is doing extremely well, but as a radio business.

I think we're more more aware that our primary job is about content and I need is to be anywhere or listeners are only if we seen for example smart speakers double in terms of tea.

Gap in the last year and their predicting 435 40% increase in smart speakers again this year, but if people are using them in some ways to display say radio set in the kitchen and then use them very much as a radio station to say play Virgin Radio or listen to Chris Evans then we need to make sure where where our listeners want us to be so the primary Focus is absolutely about are we generating high-quality content the people want to listen to and then the second job is to make sure that is everywhere.

I was asked ok.

Miranda mentioned the cold numbers for Chris Evans new show if they've not comfortable the radio to where they come from Rachel's not the simplest thing in the world.

Sees me but Chris now has over a million listeners a week on Virgin which anyway you slice.


Is it just a great number permits increased Breakfast Show five times quarter on quarter seven times year-on-year but what happens and I think especially at the moment where you've got probably significant churn in the radio market because there have been a number of.

Paseo changes beyond just Chris and Zoe is the people will be something lots of different shows so if you listen to 3 or 4 shows in a week, then you will reach your listening.

It's attributed to all those radio stations, so I think the other measure is how long are people listening so for example typically according to radar people listen to round about two-and-a-half 3 registrations a week on average during a period of term where people are deciding where they would just stay with the new presenter or move.

You might see that goes slightly higher and the the clue would be in the average hours are people listening to the radio station for less time while so listen to Moor services, which is why it does get complicated you have listening and you have listeners ok for Virgin The Listening has gone up from just over 3 hours to 6 Wychwood digital platform.

Only radio station is a really significant number.

It is very upset with on this.

Show is the business and the business case for different investments within the media stream.

I asked your boss got Taunton on this show and what you're paying said was he won't say I'm your

You're very welcome to Tesco Crescent get paid if you received me wait.

Can you tell us what news UK and Spencer's group event marketing this show without and papers and all the rest response content rather than marketing know I know baby what I don't want is for you showed me somewhere where you can come and talk about how amazing is radios are without us finding out with not you was the savvy way of spending money because the thing is we don't know where they're not the huge amount.

They might be pay Chris Evans is a savvy vestment or not.

We do know that he's getting lots lots listens, but what I want to get sent to his whether you've made the right better A3 Realty dynamic supply think it is the 3 PC got the product is the output really strong.

I think we've had one of the best Talents so you can get a tick for that then you got the platform and obviously with on DAB which is a growing platform wireless is a business has kind of bet on digital and I think we're leading international brands and their digital presents and then the third piece promotion and you have to be able to get the word out.

I think one of the joys of being part of the wider news family is that we've got Fellows

Stablemates like the sun so for example on day one of the Chris Evans launched, we're able to have a cover wrap which men do we have Christmas face on the front of all the news Prairie handy as I have now got data for how many more people know about the existence of Virgin Radio heard from severe well-placed people that basis The Big Issue that he had was making sure the Virgin Radio was known to people lots of a just didn't know it existed as station one of the reasons you invested in him was the hope that it would get word out the do you know now how much that awareness is increased as a result of her because I haven't got a number very hard to isolate.

What did Chris Evans contribution to the overall awareness increase would be the one I'm absolutely sure about is that we still have a story to tell a lot of people still won't know where Chris is a lot of people still won't know the Virgin Radio at been relaunched people think of it as because Chris and version of have such a long relationship historic Lee it's quite muddy storiqa get so I think I communication strategy is still to remind people Virgin his back and Chris evans's back.

I get onto the contour nose.

You're an expertise is no spot ads on the Chris Evans show it's a partnership with Sky but is the plan to continue with that way velvetizer will sore boobs but as maker Returns save a year or so from now.

I think I'm proud of many things about the show the Chris Evans breakfast show with Sky and one of them is relationship with Sky because it goes beyond content and that's important so for example tomorrow.

They're doing Formula 1 and Riviera outside broadcast is asking to stay so they we work within three ways and I think based on the first of radio we exceeded our expectations though sky I know were thrilled and I think we're very keen to keep the party going back a call later and I still got it as a critic.

What's your assessment that so it's great.

I mean if you like Chris Evans you're going to love this show.

He's a really really good forecast I have to say he's not quite for me which I have said in in kind of in my reviews.

It's Complicated wires and quite for me, but I do think that he is honestly.

He's a really.

You can argue against him.

He's really good at is it to you to your critical is it essentially the Radio 2 show transplanted face essentially it's the same but it's more you know because sky has a kind of Reach so you might get a little bit more sports you get a little bit.

You know the celebs are quite good this of the always pretty good on on them on Radio 2 as well, but I think it's slightly more fizzy is what I call it slightly more fizzy through the post last night at the other blogs beautiful true that talk radio is going to come Talk TV what plans.

Have you got for my content point of view is it about returning that radio station to a more visual medium with something we wrestle with a lot and I think where we've got two.

Is that we are radio and it has to be audio first and then like you've got cameras in here.

You know to be able to tell people about Chris Evans tell people Virgin Radio then using social media for example you can website for example pudding clips of his really important but every.

Single step through every conversation we have it's always always audio first.

It will be having TV channel somewhere you live on YouTube we do produce a weekly video other sits on Sky Q's platform where you can see your compilation is not 24/7 and I think the challenge where people have tried that in other countries for example in in Italy you do end up with a very curious hybrid where there's no single Focus and I think for us and particular Chris is very talented TV presenter as well as radio presenter.

This is about radio first.

I can we want to visualise it as well as we can and if you look at all radio for example part of a family they move Studios yesterday and the quality of the videos are producing is exceptional but the value of that really is in reminding people driving people to come back and listen to radio Danny Baker use everchosen talkSPORT you going to hire in Danny's a real Talent no no no no no no

Sagging as I'm happy to say that's not part of my responsibility has there been a conversation between you and Danny Baker since he was I have not talked to anyone that you're coming to talk to her.

I wouldn't know you wouldn't know if you're going to hide an eBay contact your missus turning on you can't take all the credit for her and Chris Evans radio so you're not saying your organisation has a has contacted Danny Baker sensuous.

I think it's possible possible, but I think you're putting words in my mouth and beautiful through last night sources have been telling you there for months that Rupert Murdoch now showing of Lost making Sky News is convinced that way he went wrong with the channel was it was too many of the road and boring why did lose 20 million year with Sky News UK and make billions of year with fox in the USA with a murder quite well and Sky News is obviously a world-class product, but do you think that murder which is it being free to be more like fox?

So that to me and he always accepted that there was a television ecology in the United Kingdom just as there is a different one in the United States and he was very happy with our competition.

So I think you know let's remember that Fox News Channel did come over onto the platform in this country and it wasn't a runaway success and you know just as we hearing about in a big radio being true to radio and television being true to rated television.

I think you know that if you like has been the genius of Rupert Murdoch that he has been able to operate in different Media environments in different countries and see what I see.

What's appropriate so that you don't I really don't think this sense that there's regret is really there because you know frankly we in this country the big competition has always been the BBC and you know someone said to me very early on if you went and did a channel with a distinct political.

Bias the other parties would stop talking to you which would mean that BBC one off you the whole package and this notional of internal wood would just be you know Tory or labour news, which may carry boy let's hold that thought for a second I want to come back to in the context of this populist wave poppies politicians across Europe starting show with its extraordinary tale from Austria the secret video that has brought down the government Bethany bell is the BBC correspondent in Vienna and joins Us Now better take some sort of time just tell us what has happened if you would an extraordinary thing it's a video sting that is brought down austria's coalition government of the the Conservatives centre right and the far right.

It's a video that shows the disgraced former head of the far-right party heinz-christian, Shahid being secretly filmed in a villa in Ibiza he's drinking clearly a great deal of alcohol and Redbull

Speaking to a woman who is posing as the niece of a Russian oligarch and why he talks to her she you know talks about ways that she might try and take hold of austria's largest circulation tabloid newspaper to help push the Freedom Party in the election campaign this is all this whole video was done in 2017 and also promising her big public construction contracts in return for political and financial support and the result of it the government's the Freedom Party is now out of government and new elections have been called absolutely and it's very very murky when he resigned Heights Christians trucker call the video honey trap that have been staged managed by intelligence agencies, but he also.

Alluded to a controversial Israeli spin doctor Who has links to austria's opposition centre-left social Democrats and he even alluded to the German satirist John Bonham and those are just the things that Stata refer to I've heard other speculation some people suggesting.

Maybe this was an internal party intrigue some that it could have been a mafia sting it's curious because this video has been out there since 2017 when it was filmed.

Why is it come out now you very much for giving us of the DJ Stephanie Bolton from Andy bell.

Why would it be that this has been leaked to German newspapers not Austria London and can we assume that the time you the leak was designed to influence the European Parliament elections where why was it a leak to German papers really have a much bigger impact than an Austrian platform would have simply speaker claims that they simply had the information.

Research and secured and they were absolutely positive that this was all authentic and that was now the moment.

Why they publish did they also said well some people now say we're trying to influence the outcome of the European election which by the way takes place or position on Sunday in Austria and Germany but they said if we had published it afterwards knowing that we had the information ready.

We would have been playing for not giving out information that might have been essential for the decision of the voters is the German equivalent of the information commissioner in this country is said that it was wrong to publish the video which team from Michael giving you got a politicians resigned 7:45 something wrong and the regulator saying he's got a right to privacy.

It was one of the regulators to be fed was the one from bandon.

Darkest only one of them because it's federal so it's not that the big the big boss, but you're right is quite an interesting discussion going on now between data protection.

What channel is should be entitled to use with this.

What is this private sphere that in in court decisions as match on.

German level lesson European level at the end of the day it's publishing information is essential in the public interest interest and this is it more important than their private spheres of a person and would it is been off to develop? Would you have had a think very hard about the motivations of the leak before publishing journal published an op-ed by the former mayor of Hamburg was about influential SPD politician and he asked the question well if this had happened to the head of the Green Party would there be the same old cry because in a way the story for feel something that the mainstream Media you could maybe think it's wishing for so showing that the populist are gangsters and therefore you shouldn't vote for them and this just a couple of days before the end portal election.

Let's look at the European Parliament should be reported here in the UK and Adam list start with this dispute between Channel 4 news in the brexit party the brace of party band Channel 4 news from attending events nickname.

Boy tricked its way into a secure zone at a rally Channel 4 News dispute that both sides they say the police resolved at the matter.

You will see him in a personal capacity, but you tweeted Adam I fully support Channel 4 News condemn the brakes parties action however.

I don't think extending boycotts helps anybody especially election X Y about this Channel 4 news in my view behaviour correctly throughout this and they did not at any point requests that are the broadcasters joining a boycott this was something as so often these days.

That was got up on on social media the principle of Supporting other journeys.

I think the principle of the other journalists you know I believe it or not have had arguments saying that Newsnight all to be given an interview with the Chancellor at G7 and G8 meeting I mean I do I do think that we do have to stand up for each other and actually I think compared to at the United States for example.

We have been quite bad at doing that but you know what worries me and you know someone else coming to the way it's alright when someone says you know I

Typesun and someone bands us and everyone said yeah great they found the sun but when is Channel 4 News which has a certain sort of niche appeal to Uno dare I say at the Metropolitan elite.

Everyone gets up in arms and and starts demanding that the rest of the media go on strike get it in support of it in the most beautiful and you know because on the one hand it's brexit nasty as far as being console commentators on the other hand.

It's Channel 4 News suddenly everyone was trying to turn this into a kind of national moral issue on which broadcast is text size fact of the matter is politicians in my view regretfully frequently a bargain at access against the coverage and if they don't like the coverage then they shut you out.

I mean I'm insured that on many occasions by Tories by.

Labour mean you know when Sky News.

It will be shown on principle by The Snooty gentleman in Whitehall but didn't get interviews at unless we literally went bang the door down.

So you know I think Channel 4 News go look after themselves as indeed.

They have around the Janine Gibson the Financial Times tweeted Media standing by while their peers get banned in the US is how the US because has got myself some such a mess.

It's so obvious with hindsight that it's never once back.

Would you think whether we should be supporting well? Yes, generally I think of course you just thought I'd the journalist and actually you know I'm I have my own political views, but I personally would rather see everybody on the news it seems ridiculous to me that you would ban one side just because you don't like them so of course.

I would like to see our range of use and then you just you know if you don't agree with those use you knock them down and in the best way that you can I think it's a ludicrous situation.

I want to finish show I talk about something which I've always wanted to talk about which is milk shaking but this ethics of how you cover.

This is creme important issue actually a man has been charged.

Nigel Farage in Newcastle city centre is on Monday actually rather than last week violin course all over newspaper front pages and TV bulletin Adam what is that news because people want to see it.

That's why I was on the front pages.

That's why the video video at Auntie Lynn stadium from living room.


I think are you know there are degrees of this and an apology argument about how the whole milk shaking thing has been I will look what happened to Jo Cox's is the thin end of the wedge and all that I do such a thing really I mean you know I've over the years I film you know dignitaries having custard pies putting their face that people having eggs thrown at them and you know haps we just leaving it is there an I with this agent about 303 to line up a bit you know I've got to do a democratic scrutiny.


It shows that there is at least some public feeling and I think it's all what's always more interesting is the response to.

It's just as I was saying that in this case because it's Nigel Farage people in more relaxed about it.

You know when at had it been you know I don't know someone their presenting Channel 4 News people might have got more upset about a politician afraid to get a bit wet hunan agricultural.

Is it noise below the front pages splat? It's always been reported so many of the titles reported sort of what flavour shake it was I didn't understand the level of detail that people went into the question is there is there is one sizes which is that now following Donald Trump we are in an era where the media is been constantly scruton.

Hi Stan just reporting something as we've just heard you know you're accused of taking sides.

You know because you show pictures of Nigel for against Nigel Farage and you know Mr Farage it has to be said contributes that Mr Farage at his rallies has developed a meme of talking about the mainstream media and how their part of the elite and they're all part of the plot against democracy and I think it's dangerous.

I mean I think people do I have to realise it? Just cos we report things doesn't mean we taking position on them Stephanie is in is there an element to this were actually eats.

I get to use for the opponent near you know the populist get to rail against the mainstream Media the mainstream Media have people to cover is there a slight and own way to phone you or do you think they have to think about whether I was going to write about this milkshake a tactile mean I decided not to do it because I'm bored actually that the space.

I mean this printing press of course.

I understand why you do it on telly and it's good pictures and sound so forth but if I have to be side.

If I only have a limited space to write if I write about the milkshake, I actually what's the brexit party is about Anna rather right about brexit party wife, it's not a story for print.

I mean pictures to show pictures really what determines an editorial decisions, where is not something gets on it.

I know it sounds obvious but if you don't think it would make it into your space.

Why should make it onto TV bulletins.

Just cos I have to feel 24hrs pages in this country are not in Germany is reporting that immediate reports of agreement with Mum thank you very much this group.

We're back at the same time next week.

Thanks so much for listening and goodbye.

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