Read this: Ian Hislop's review of the year in media
Summary: PodcastDownload MP3 www.bbc.co.ukIan Hislop's review of the year in media…
BBC sounds music Radio podcasts from BBC Radio 4 Wednesday this year which means no place for the media show in the Radio 4 schedule, but I'm not going to leave you empty-handed because I'm sending you a Christmas present down the BBC sounds chimney, Ian Hislop has been editor of Private Eye since 986.
He's turning magazine into one of the UK's most popular news titles selling a very respectable 233000 copies every fortnight in his Soho office 2019 in use and the media are we started our chat with Ian yearly dilemma choosing which of the scariest front pages have made it into the Private Eye annual from this year surfaced for my favourite.
Just thinking this was when Theresa May who do you remember her she was supposed to be?
Anyway, she left and we have to think what was the only way to memorialize her and then I thought maybe a blank page would be good and so we have the Theresa May memorial issue her Legacy in full thank you.
Seems quite cruel.
That was quite funny.
Do you have a keep tabs on how each other's sell yeah? Yeah, that was a seller that was popular and Nigel Farage he's always good partly because he he always does photo opportunities so having been accused of having a party for the cakes.
He does a photo of eating a fruit cake and it is fantastic.
I mean he does the joke for us feature with this is they keep it from him underneath? You never appears on private eye covers which was just a period when he was complaining that he wasn't on the BBC 24-hours a day instead of 23 which I think he probably is Boris Johnson
Private life is frequently furnish you with cover ideas and this time you had a pretty busy, when was Jennifer Curie yes, this was essentially a smart special.
I mean there was a proper public interest in the story in the public money had gone to this woman who dances around the lap dancing pole, but essentially the joke was the have yet again been caught out so and this was the period of him saying that he needed some technology lessons and she's asking floppy disk or hard drive issues with a pole saying fancy a laptop dance which you get its technology with a thing to his new girlfriend carry out like to win more and she's saying except the Queen obviously that's not a legal problem.
That's that's the supreme court judgement.
So this is our job reporting and you sometimes jump on anniversaries to yes.
This is when Boris became prime minister, which many people equate with an event as unlikely as landing on the moon but he did and there's this brilliant picture of him.
Just going into number 10 so we did it as the moon landing at souvenir issue one small step for man and a giant leap in the dark for mankind and put it in black and white and it's when you got a year to get through the many of these animals course when you got a Curate a year should you say about what your starting point was thinking about how we do this? Do you think that's get the best jokes? Do you think we need to really reflect I try and get the best jokes and if we binned all about particular subject or haven't covered it.
I'll try and leave it out.
I mean were exhausted, but the ideas to be entertaining matches starting this annual with a species.
That is essentially what newspapers are which is an enormous headline saying what happens next and it's one we're on head.
Saying what happens next to something happens that we didn't predict 3 we run more headlines and saying ok, so what happens next and that's what it's like.
That's the new cycle at the moment.
You've been personally committed haven't you to try to reverse the decline of the English cartoonist? Why have you in private? I kept up your investment in Cartoons because people like them in the bag sells now.
Obviously too much more elevated reason that no, I love cartoons and I think the one of the things that print is reproduced sort of beautiful drawings that are funny and English cutting tradition is very old and I think absolutely remarkable so I'm basically I doubled and cartoons and people said well.
You know there aren't you know young cartoonist.
You won't get me one is funny.
If you offer money people become farted and we've got a brilliant.
I mean, this is a genuine skill and a lot of people doing really well, when you look at Private Eye covers through history quite often in a 12-month a huge range of subjects this year.
There's a lot of brexit and a lot of domestic politics.
Why is I think I know it's slightly depressing having the the bandwidths if you like Other People's Republic Focus has just been brexit brexit and a bit more brexit and there's a bit of trump as a breather from brexit and then it's back to brexit.
So it has been sort of full-on and odd jobs.
Been essentially to try and make what is very repetitive and seen you are you into the politics with a couple of royal covers in particular and before we go onto this is been a tricky year for the royal family well.
This is one of the many and her ability whatever.
It's slightly lost their grip and there's a new policy which seems to be and the Old Guard and it was raised and explain just wave go to Somewhere boring on holiday and ever and I'll leave you alone as soon as the roads traffic and glamourous the public gets interested and said I'm quite good-looking Dave seem to have gotten still lives and then people get injured in their lives and then it becomes tricky.
I mean obviously I'm in this year Megan decided to take on the press which again is never particularly good idea if you're a constitutional monarchy who needs public approval to remain in the position.
You're in so that that hasn't got what you say to Prince Harry's argument which is that basically a Vendetta by the press ended up accounting for his mother's life and he says tragedies happy again with his wife Megan is.
Case for the prosecution advisor Prince Harry and Meghan concerned that actually press has been treating you badly.
I don't think so obviously he's going to feel like cos that's his life story, but that isn't the narrative the narrative of this year.
I mean there was a the baby was born and then they went on the turn it on and then right at the end of the term ended up standing in front of one of the poorest unhappiest regions in the world talking about their own personal suffering and that suffering seem to be not liking pieces about you and that's that's not going to play I mean obviously I'm party free because you know but generally I don't think they started my sympathy with Prince Andrew taking a selfie of a backward roll or to a retreating from public Life after the television history this remarkable interview with Emily
BBC news that it's not over the years have a talk to you and talk to private I tell you the inside.
Sorry what's happening in the royal family Prince Andrew which was a public relations disaster, was it a forensic analysis of character by television which is the thing it does is why on the whole royal documentary about wandering around gardeners all eating biscuits.
I mean that's that's much safer territory dogs horses.
Just stick to that as soon as we start getting into how do I feel? What's my personal life line to match with journalism you mean? Yes, so no, I mean it's idiotic and he's not the brightest not even the brightest member of the royal family, so it's it wasn't a great decision and
He came across the sudden all the things that the the modern royal family is trying not to come across as privileged and out of touch and hopelessly inept duplicitous a lot of things.
He said don't really stand up and again immediately the press waiting because that's what they do American politics which is what most your covers about politics seemed in the last few years to a lot of people within the news industry leads to a dramatically speed up to Little psycho.
Love you lots and lots of election in this film.
Is this more politics is ever been or is it the case that actually no single? I think it's the new cycle which is sped up and I think it's both accelerated which Frost for a fortnight magazine.
You think that's terrible and we're always going to be out of date, but actually it's so frenetic that when you stand back from it.
Nothing much has happened at all and so you get more of a perch.
Fortnite essentially and the last 3-years is the same story and that story is the story of brexit and again.
It's very fun and Boris takes over and you think this is going to be a different story and then you think I know it doesn't he goes to Brussels in much the same way that they went to Brussels and then we have a deal which looks like they came back with an the same people object to the same deal on the same grounds and then we have another child and now got another election and then we start the election and he says it's just endlessly telling the same story and yet.
It's the last 3 years in a way the last 3 years have been quite different from the previous two decades because not long ago.
It was it is reasonable to say that politics in this country and the consequential or other and adversarial that the centre ground Israel elections were won by that reasoning the Coalition was new labour - 2 spare change.
Seem to be in an age of polarization that me and genuine differences.
Why is that happen due to delayed effects of a financial crash? I think the the referendum was a question about whether you're essentially happy with the way Britney's already.
Think is two unequal whether you think you've been left behind by the international world that has am coming to business whether you would rather your life was acting different ways in the end for me.
It wasn't really about Europe at all.
I'm in the question that people answered was a question about themselves especially reasonable, but he didn't have anything do it you so we managed to politicize essentially a cultural divide and which is why we've ended up with 3 years of shouting at each other essentially a trading arrangement which most of them weren't interested in at all and the number for normally well versed on you know.
Play the border is Harry on Northern Ireland and whether you have to pay or whether there any checks on good.
I mean things they would genuinely have thought were boring and have no interest before and interestingly the last three years has furnished your colours with some very little characters and by similar logic was saying earlier.
You could argue years ago that politicians like Blair Cameron Osborne Clarke what kind of all of a similar schooling of all of a similar kind of composition and get you couldn't say that about Boris Johnson or Jeremy Corbyn or Donald Trump actually you only have to go further back and you got Mrs Thatcher Michael Foot or Denis Healey or John Major all of these was very strange larger-than-life characters harder when you have these days, they live character does two things one is everybody says to you all the staff as over now because you've got such a strong and he's doing it to himself for you know Boris is it's funny you know.
Nothing more to add which isn't true that after work because you have to find areas where the vulnerable areas where they genuinely are funny and where you get under their skin.
Obviously incredibly flattering wear and we done some joke about trump, which turned up in her tweet saying this was and funny and I'm not clever and not funny and that's the ultimate prize and to find that Morris is Furious buy something that's what you want.
I know your every two weeks you answer this question I asked you what is satire satire is the use of comedy to criticize and hamburger has been the same in this country for 3 years and probably even longer than that I mean that that is what I was meant to do people say is it meant to bring down the government and I say willy in and do you know you're meant to Bridgetown
What women to do is crystallized opinion comment suggest a way of looking at something that maybe you haven't thought of and do it with the joke over the course your career is editor decade-long now.
You've had to answer many questions difficult questions about the role of satire in Dark Times and after the the twin towers for instance that you received some criticism that came back.
How did the role of satire change when the world in the mood is darkening? I think it's people do go into a mode of saying this is funny even if they thought it was funny before or you know if they thought this is acceptable comment they suddenly decided.
No this is too sensitive and we are in times.
Where people do get very very offended by.
Quite a lot and in political terms people are very very offended if you don't agree with them, so they're very happy with that are about the other side.
They don't see the joke when it comes anywhere near them and you have to be resilient you have to go on making the jokes.
What's your technique for dealing with people who are readily offended online well.
I'm not online which helps you find that hard to sustain the causes of the internet.
You've got two children in their 20s and we would think about the dad's not online but I've no idea because I haven't looked online.
I know it's very restful.
I do recommend it.
I think I could get used to this Media to may not be allowed to do that when the things about and the agents belief is that the truth seems up for a long time maybe not your career.
These days the penalty or sanction faced by those caught lying as always disappear.
There are people getting away with lying as never before I mean.
I do think it's a real problem that on the idea of fake news.
That's one of the things.
That is why I don't have a lot of time online because I'm infuriated by you know probably reasonable people who say to me.
I noticed you didn't run that story about Hillary murdering everybody likes it isn't true already online and needs of people who they say to you the mainstream Media is just nice and then they believe the biggest and stupid is life.
There's someone in a bedroom has written up on the internet and sent out.
There's a blog.
I mean there's a real to buy between a sort of supposedly son of scepticism a sort of fierce refusal to believe everything you read in the normal media and the believing almost anything you read online and this is weird.
The idea of truth to Luton which you know as we know from the history of fake news, this is what the original Putin doctrine was and this is what trump wants he doesn't want you to believe this rubbish it comes out.
He wants you to believe nothing and I know it been watching this on the BBC listening to this via a BBC podcast That actually the BBC's part of the problem.
There is you know these days if you want to go at viral you say there's a conspiracy to the BBC to believe conspiracy theories about a cover-up by journalists in other words.
Why is trust in journalism solo mean we haven't distinguished strictly it wasn't good, but there is a reason for people to be sceptical about but it is in much the same way as they know the expenses scandal made people very scared about politicians.
Is the and I have said this before but being sceptical is not the same as being cynical it doesn't mean you believe in nothing you try and assess and evaluate and there is plenty of really good journalism and the alternative is literally sitting at home thinking I wonder what I believe and I'm always delighted now to address the young journalist who say what we've discovered is that there's this thing called curated news and I said that mean anything news and more yes, yes, it does it end someone's got to choose that someone's got a filter in someone's girlfriend Kate it and that's what journalism end up with wait until these guys.
Have a newspapers you lots of worries over the past 4 years as you say about fake news in particular this idea that people like trump people like boot in the word disseminating stuff online.
Think about the election campaign that we saw at the end of 2019 a lot of fake news was actually pumped out by official channels that really weird uses and isn't that just old-fashioned political spin.
I think the thing that really shocked everyone in that this campaign was not the idea that hidden on the internet somewhere.
They were messages going out that we've been paid for and that's the reason it was the fact that political parties were pretending.
They were fact-checking output all were pretending.
They were rather outfit in order.
Just a pump out there now old-fashioned political spin where the Tory Party we're going to promise you 18000 more trees houses vs.
Whatever, it is where the Labour Party know you've got a 2000 another 80000 nurses trees etc.
I mean that's old fashioned.
That's what people know about the fake message.
And then when you get caught out you say it was a joke before you just looking for a lot of people listening to this looking at switch off funny which I do try to use as you said comedy to enlighten us about the work that the people looking around with you actually that I'm quite a bad place.
You've got to move dystopian things going on in election campaigns.
We've got the rosewood taxi around the world you said in the past you you don't talk much about your voting Democrat you believe in democracy and you look around the world.
Do you think the way in a period of democratic recession which is just a correction where things be readjusted, but the box it will survive would you actually think that starts something darker which is a post democratic age? No I don't mean I don't believe that but then on whole quite optimistic.
I mean we are in in in the middle of a cult of the strongman and a lot of leadership round the world is very autocratic.
Populist movements have I think done them oxydo favours in forgetting the the normal checks and balances and the structures and boring and sets the standards and values that allow is very encouraging, but I think most periods it's one of the good things about getting old.
I think this is a terrible time and British politics has never been so divisive and then I think poll tax riots remember that brings a cohesive period in British politics and my mother-in-law who said to me and I've been so worried as I am now about the world and I said you're a teenager in 1939 and she said oh, yes, I was I do you have to.
Set an alarm for spective and as we look ahead then and think about your covers next year.
Do you suspect that they will branch out a bit beyond the Politics of British politics is so surreal so in the grip of this strange phenomenon that we had over the last 3-years that actually are going to still be quite a mess up your focus is that we will still be obsessed by the maze of brexit with because it's getting it done seems like a good idea, but it may take a very long time and no one is quite sure what it is part 1 part 2 and then what does done mean so this could go on a long time? I mean I think what will change is that I think there is an appetite for larger issue.
The big issue of this year was climate change and that was huge and having been a sort of marginal issued which everyone said oh yeah we know that.
Into the middle and the figure was extraordinary in terms of polarizing opinion I mean quite how irritated old people found the 15th anything was really funny that was the case.
Why does the rise of Greta tumblr tell us about where we are in 2019.
It means you need a voice to do things from the outside.
That's what people like that is not an authoritative voice bit of a sort of authentic voice her age gives a licence to speak truth to power and I mean you just slightly odd girl who says herself you know I've only been focused on one thing so I can say this stuff but also I think it was directions to her is a fig a sort of Joan of Arc bleeding a children's crusade historical that rang bell but also list of European people's best interests.
Yeah, just made people very very cross and that was very funny and has it been useful do you think we're moving? It's like Extinction rebellion Greta thunberg.
Just razor Horizons have it within the news industry to subject beyond brexit and Jeremy Corbyn and Boris Johnson because there is a danger isn't there that becomes slightly Parochial place is dominated by this one bit of political gridlock actually as you say you look around the world were talking on a day.
When is shocking scientific data about carbon in the skies bush fires raging all around the world actually there are bigger things and maybe you're covered in 2020 or think that I hope so I'm in one of them the great things for me as we talked earlier about we talked about the news cycle getting faster and faster means that privatiser magazine can cover the machinations of Westminster at that speed almost not at all.
So what we've spent a lot of the year.
I'm writing about is housing social care.
You know the failings in the NHS a huge amount of stuff that isn't brexit and after humour of the magazine is pretty obsessed by brexit, but we're covering and I think that's one of the reasons that we still surviving are his other stuff because the great because you say of getting completely obsessed with one subject is we forget everything else and people say you know what what's Parliament been doing they haven't been a lot of bills going through the haven't been a lot of things being addressed and just Amelia she listens finally your security is our up your circulation is up your digital strategy since we not have what should we infer what do we infer from privatise commercial success about the future health of Jones
It's very optimistic.
I think if you say to people.
I'm sorry got to pay for this you pay for everything else.
You may not like it that much but you know it's quite difficult and some people have to pay them and in the end.
It's a couple of quid and you've got 80 stories about things you didn't know and you've got a pages jokes about things you do know might make you think differently and that that is worth paying for and we say to people there's all sorts of things you can get online you can't get this that's all you can't have this so I'm afraid you'll have to get it off.
I just conscious as I say is that I have not talked about the fact that behind un descenders letters in the threats that you've had this year yet legal and otherwise you've had many illegal leftover courses in terms of the threats to ruin your and your family's welfare interesting.
I think that's another thing about brexit people.
You know a bit a bit more depressed.
We've had quite a lot of very very rich people suing weed under mostly Russian or there abouts about money and why it in London and where it's going to say we've had quite a lot of that these cases are going to sing you in private.
I have a wooden table favour of our readers and that's where I'm coming from and you know most of the stories unexplained wealth.
You know where are from.
We don't know where that is so that's the difference.
Thank you very much indeed.
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Friday, 27 December 2019
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