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Read this: 30/10/2020 Radio 4 Feedback

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30/10/2020 Radio 4 Feedback…

BBC sounds music Radio podcasts hello US Presidential campaigns are almost over most Americans seem to have voted and the last bus will be cast on Tuesday has the BBC's coverage been sufficiently rigorous and analytical or has it been dominated by soundbite inspector? It's rock and television with Donald Trump his supporters outspoken and fabulously colourful and I think that does presenters a problem the BBC North America editor answers your questions about campaign coverage and describes attempt to remain impartial and not be manipulated by Twitter and photo opportunities and in our out of comfort zone feature this week.

What's the purpose of the BBC Asian Network and is it fulfilling it to of its target audience cast of crystalline on some of it output?

People face from South Asia you do sometimes have to say these are their needs and diesel need to be off to meet as best we can and I'm not sure that the agent Rob and I listen to that does needs does his colleague agree find out later in feedback.

John Silver became the BBC's North America editor in 2014 when not even Donald Trump thought he could become president since then trump the consummate media manipulates has dominated the headlines his tweet setting the Daily News agenda in the presidential campaign.

He's using his rallies to try to do the same thing his opponent Joe Biden has been less invisible, but on Tuesday Jon Sopel set off in pursuit of the Democratic Challenger I caught up with John around lunchtime far from Washington John where are you talking to me from this phone? I am in warm Springs Georgia and I think no one will take offence if I said this is him but have you got on there because it's one of the few occasions when you buy them has left whilst I say his bunker and you have a real problem.

Don't you certainly in Visual terms for your television reports in that you got on the surface of Donald Trump and virtually no.

Opportunities which I buy it's a very good point and Joe Biden is making a virtual this is not trying to be with Donald Trump about getting thousands of people's to rallies and frankly if we did try and compete.

I don't think thousands would turn up for a Joe Biden rally partly because Joe Biden ain't that exciting a character and secondly because you know you look at all the polling data and Democrats and much more careful about coronavirus and the risks than Republicans are and so it is a real problem.

How do you make the television piece about the Biden campaign where you've got 12 minutes 45 of moving pictures and what have you got? You've got Joe Biden maybe getting on a plane and getting off a plane and talking in a socially distance to Arena which looks really Donald Trump gives you pictures Galore it's rock and roll television with Donald Trump his supporters outspoken and fabulously colourful and I think that does presenters.

And of course you have to be impartial and that's the one the first issues all listeners have picked up and here's what some of them had to say Stephen pumfrey Jon Sopel reporting is excellent.

I follow it mainly via the BBC News app.

It is concise and balanced by Kevin's Johnny's so obviously anti-trump.

You should have his own trump out program spits venom from a pointed tongue when he relates to trump and anything trump does one of the most biased commentator in the BBC drama isn't difficult to be impartial the allegations that some of these so-called liberal Media that's CNN for example.

I just have to get trump.

Are you out to get trump absolutely not I couldn't have anything further from the truth.

I don't know whether you could pick up anything about the way I've just spoken about covering the trump campaign.

It is a joy to cover.

We are there to hold power to account.

I think that's part of.

The BBC have not sent me to be Donald Trump's press officer or Barack Obama's press officer of Joe Biden wins Joe Biden press officer you're there to ask tough questions about the things that I'm waiting things go right and you know when Donald Trump signed a peace treaty that Israel into peaceful relations with the UAE and Bahrain I said this was a huge for policy victory and very significant and something for the ages.

That's my job to call it as I see it and sometimes when things go badly wrong.

It is your job to say things go badly wrong if Trump is going to be impeached.

It's not my job to say it is a witch hunt.

It's a hoax Donald Trump says that we report that but I am not part of the trump campaign but you need a lot of people don't understand but in conservative terms Donald Trump has been successful in many ways and has delivered some at least of those things he promised and that bridge sold into somehow missed.

I just don't get it.

I mean we go back 4 years.

It was so easy to report on the trump campaign because his messages were absolutely clear.

I thought you had a brilliant campaign for years and I thought that Hillary Clinton was an awful candidate.

I never thought she'd marshalled an argument to the American people clearly about what it was she wanted to do Donald Trump said I want to build a wall.

I want to keep Muslims out of the country or watery negotiate trade deals and I want to bring back manufacturing.

It was very clear what he wanted to do that you need not like it.

I thought you was a far better candidate.

I think you know you go trump rally.

It is far more entertaining than it is being a bad really and I try to convey some of that excitement as well, but you also have to say how well are things going and can I have a question about other candidate? It's something that Stephen pennells has written to us about here.

It's depicted as Democrats vs.

Republicans but they're also third party and independent candidates with the exception of

West we had nothing about them couldn't the BBC give us some information on them and their indirect influence on the election and government we will see I think we mustn't over these things because ultimately there are going to be very few states that will hinge on a third-party candidate, but it is true to point out that at the last election in mission where you had something like 5 million voters Donald Trump won the state with a majority of 10000 the Green Party candidate got 50000 votes so if the Green Party candidate hadn't been there then maybe Hillary Clinton would have won Michigan so on the margins.

They do have an impact.

I would say that for us to focus on third-party candidates is probably not where we should be because I don't it's very hard pre-election to say how significant the gays bill.

Turn on has a question on political interviewer my perception of political interview in the US is it Germany struggle to deal with the Bombastic noise from politicians who were several the interview.

I really just speaking to their supporters rather than engaging in serious topics of debate or even listening to the journalist.

It makes watching or listening to his into his pointless.

How do you say journalist combat it and it actually just as bad in the UK Johnny study purpose now in the political interview in the election campaign.

Do you know what if you don't ask me this question 3 months ago.

I might have said no because I think that most of the political interviews that take place in the US tend to be sterile.

Everyone is trying to be so polite.

No one picks up and says what do you mean by that incredulity where you're listening to what the person who says anything that doesn't make any sense you just said but you've promised why I think.

The last few months there have been some really good interviews done.

I think the last televised debate where there is a woman Kristen Welker from MBC cheering it.

I thought you did magnificent job.

They've been some fantastic interviews done with Donald Trump in particular, so I think that people are finding ways to reinvent the political interview.

It might not be going back years and years robin day or Jeremy Paxman or John Humphrys but they are thorough and searching in a more conversational manner, and I think people like that, so I think there is a role political interview and I think that some of the things that I've been at the white house where I had the chance to ask questions of the president and you ask thorough searching questions.

I think we still going to role2play there.


I wonder how representative President Trump is of America now.

This is what listeners Sean Hogan has to say any has a prediction as well.

Don't you Trump is very

America generally which is why trump will win again.

Do you think is more representative of America then we have acknowledged particularly on this side of the water.

I'm going to give a very nuanced answer to that because I think it's a really interesting question.

I think he is more representative of a section of America that historically maybe mainstream media has not reported and that is why I got it wrong in 2016.

We didn't understand what people felt in rural America about the way the country was going we didn't understand enough North industrial States where maybe the steel industry or the Motor Industry of the coal.

Industry has been in terminal Decline and people have watched their jobs being offshored to places in Asia and I think that was absolutely true and there is a mood in the country that Donald Trump being a saviour where I'm speaking to you from now.

I keep seeing trucks going up and down with trump flags.

I adore Donald Trump but there is also a big section of America that thinks he has poisoned American culture American Society has been divisive and has turned American against American and Innocence that is what this election is about it's a referendum on Donald Trump Joe Biden has almost been complicit in Keeping a low profile because he wants this election to be about Donald Trump vs.

Donald Trump not so much Donald Trump vs.

Joe Biden and so when Donald Trump has got the stage a lot of Democrats strategies thing that Donald Trump is turning off as many people as he's turning on and if he's doing himself harm with say whatever the latest thing is going to say about coronavirus or wearing ask then let him do it don't interrupt him while he's doing that if it's going to do him Home Advantage on the section of our interview listener, Graham Stevenson as this question what would Amazon

Make-up 2-days US political scene language essay reflecting on the differences in American Culture in the glorious way that he did I hope that with are reporting and I'm not just about my report about myself and Nick brown and others here in the US we give a flavour of the country of the colour of the country in a way that maybe we could never match Alastair cooks loquaciousness that we are giving a sense of modern America today with all the warts with the divisions with the arguments, but also the joy of America cos it's country.

I love the people at great and it's wonderful to travel in but there are issues and I hope that we do that and will be back with Jon Sopel later in the programme.

When will be discussing his americast podcast.

And please do let us know what you think about that discussion and about anything else to do with BBC Radio this is how you could get in touch you can send an email to feedback at alright.

Let the address is feedback PO Box 67234 London se1p 4ax you can activity on Twitter by using at BBC R4 feedback or you can call us and leave a phone message on 03345 standard landline charges apply, but it could cost more on some mobile network all these details are on our website each week.

We're asking to BBC Radio listeners to step out of their comfort zones and listen to a program that wouldn't normally be on their radar this week.

We have relaxing originally from Walsall now living in law.

And cameras for Connie from Nottingham thank you very much for joniesta.

Black we want to get a sense of what your taste like.

What would be your top 3 programs if you were stranded on a desert island, it would have to be start week.

I could read and finally p.m.

About you can live to be in a time.

Just a minute with Nicholas Parsons and Life Scientific with dinner clearly right well.

We've asked you to listen to none of this program is something that we hope will put you out of your comfort zone although the Asian Network which we going to talk about this targeted at people of Heritage and at 15 to 35 year-old.

I won't of course ask you your age they both british-born of Salvation heritage, but you haven't listened to the Asian Network so we are listen to the big debate on the channel.

This is a daily mid-morning magazine show presented by Casa alarm is more than just a debate the show is 3 hours long and we asked you to listen to.

Features an interview with the actors who is appearing in the movie Mogul Mowgli and a discussion about the release of the video game FIFA 21 before we start describe the program explain what it's all about it into space with lots of music popular Asian music and interspersed with discussions on topics relevant to the Asian community current topics but like to do to the titles fancy strange the big debate when the debates only part of how did indeed I must admit.

I just thought it's more the magazine program really that's got live music pre-recorded features and punch at was surprised you about the programme something you weren't expecting for me.

I was actually I wanted to like the programme was surprised how much I didn't like it really I was surprised that something like this could have been made so much better but with a little bit of tweaking and I'm

Program maker 8-weeks, what sort of thinking let's talk about the interview it so first it was a long 10-minutes interview with the actress and she was talking about a film does no context lies ation of it, there's no this is he actually having a studio let's play little bit of what she's done in the past.

Maybe you could have played a bit her the actor hurt in the film.

We never actually her to her in the film got a little bit the front of the trailer, but it's the 10th of May it's just two people talking.

I'll find a very difficult thing to listen to a camera you dick really disappointed by the interviewing and I thought the interview the presenter was very good.

I thought his voice was very good is that infection is washers good and is interviewers wasn't just focus on the film did try to bring in a wider issues and Asian community as well.

Did you learn anything that you didn't know about your own community?

Yes, I think because I don't know that regard myself as Asian and put myself under that identity label, and what did you call yourself British Asian oldest British British spirit Hindu Indian and I don't normally engage with Asian issues as such that the more I think it's quite tricky to put everything under one label.

She's got a big ask so I can I just put in there that I mean I do consider myself a British Asian my parents are first generation or 2nd generation, but the point about this Asian Network is it has to come at the issues from an Asian point of you for example listen to item on as a woman's heart as compared it that would approach these issues from a woman's point of view the issues of people face from South Asia you do sometimes have to say these Are Leeds and diesel need to be after me to the best we can and I'm not sure that the agent problems.

I listen to that does need what about the search about FIFA 21 the gaming industry which seems to be very.

Well a lot of young people but perhaps particularly young Asians I mean that was a revelation to me was it to you probably not because you got no definitely actually not into these games and that's a complete revelation had no idea that this existed and people who can earn a living from it was fascinating those range.

Do this like serious money 100-percent price balls that started off at about 100000 but then but now don't you looking at a million dollars and stuff every tournament.

It's improved a lot and it's just growing really still in the early stages to start that is really quickly cut pre-recorded pieces almost like something is here on Radio 1 Newsbeat or something very quick bang bang bang and in that peace day then discuss sex with in the video game industry in any way back to the studio and you got three men talking about football not import from women and I'm not sure they're getting addressed issues cause issues are FIFA 21 in order to get very good you have to apply for 4?

How good is that for your health ugliest? Where is mental health to be playing that game that long I can't have didn't know what why we covering this if we're not be Pacific as the what is this game mean to the Asian community that was just again a piece of radio that comes on any channel and or particular talk to that particular target audience of British Asian well.

It was funny about the present who has the council the live show lasting 1/2 hours and he has to cover a massive numbers.

There is and and the Debate that we haven't talked about Casa alarm at did you think he did a professional kamlesh unattractive job is your present to you want to hear more of yes, I was quite surprised and I did like his started probing.

Obviously it's a different level to a Radio 4 programme like that intellectual bed.

I thought he was very good so thumbs up from you at how about 2 lakh I think I had a very good voice radio is very easy on the ear you determine.

Give opinions all the time and the times I've just didn't want his opinion.

I wanted to hear what the actor in the questions one those things where is asking a question, but when the answering the question was going the person answer the question.

I want to go so that's the kind of things.

I think you need to show preponderate that sometimes however magic competition.

Are you going to listen again? How about you lack of my comfort zone? But I don't think I'll listen again now and camlet.

I wasn't outside my comfort zone.

I didn't find it challenging or upsetting.

I wouldn't listen to it again basically.

There's not enough hours in the day to listen to this sort of thing.

Thank you very much for your Frank admissions that you were in fact.

I think pretty much are due to lack saying from London and kamlesh lakhani from Nottingham and do let us know if you would like to be put out of your comfort zone.

To America America America from BBC news in erotical compass in future, we had to US-based BBC Radio listeners sample the Americas podcast which of course is presented by Jon Sopel still with us by Emily maitlis and buy zocor.

What am I listening to it was a bit too lightweight.

This is how some of you responded in North London I Have Nothing But praise for the Americas podcast on sounds we get in-depth comment and analysis on the lead up to the election from different locations in the US and from London and from many different political perspectives.

I just love this program and have listened to all of them.

I do hope after the election you will continue I am 85 years old.

This because the program is obviously aimed at a younger audience, but I think the 3% is a great love the human rapport between them well done soaps and lisnacurran lipsitch asks if you can Bay and discuss the election differently in the podcast Yuko present with Emily maitlis, and you'll see news reports well soaps at Jon Sopel of course is still with us and that last question to you.

Do you think it's very different from your normal America's yeah? I think it is different if I'm going live on the 6:00 news from Georgia I've got the director in my ear saying you've got 20 seconds before you get into your video tape.

So you got to be incredibly concise 20 seconds goes very fast we have got a 35-minute 40 Minute podcast we can be expensive.

Conversational we can tease each other we can have banter and we can also go into real detail and which is what I hope.

We do about some of the issues surrounding the US election so yeah, broadcast I'll it is very different and hopefully sure bit more of ourselves in a way that maybe we feel constrained to do when we're doing Fanshawe TV news bulletins a danger that some people might think you're taking yourself too seriously and the audience is more interested in you than actually in what you're talking about you've got to be very careful about how do you create a sense of intimacy, but you want the other hand got to keep the politics in the foreground.

Yeah, it's not about us and I think if there is any genius or alchemy to the cast and goodness knows I get a lot of abuse on Twitter by and large maitlis and I've had nothing but book about what we doing with America

The people made fair points about where we in-depth enough, but if there is alchemy it is the fact that the producers have thought quite a lot and discuss about what the conversation should be but when you're listening to it.

Hopefully you don't think I am listening to a big production the invisible Hand of the Producers is absolutely vital in this respect to make the conversation flow freely, but there a clips to illustrate the point that were trying to make but I suppose as you're on radio, you don't worry that much about how you're dressed in fact.

You might possibly dressed down for it, but now America is going on television and suddenly you'll have to be spruced up a little bit Wonder and doing that has an impact on the intimacy of yeah.

There's a very good points doing the podcast it is more relaxed and that's what we're aiming for yeah.

We are trying to educate a bit and entertain a bit and inform.

How do you make one of the plug why I think the podcast as work the producers of work unbelievably hard to find that rarest breed in America's divided the undecided voter so I think hearing those voices brings the American election alive to a British audience in a way that if it was just meatless and just me it would and what audience do you have in mind? I'm polymer Shelly's 85.

She loves it but she says sure you're after your younger audience aren't you? Do you know we've never had a conversation about who we are trying to target in the sense of is there a demographic.

We think we need to go after I think we want it to be informative and we want it to be accessible.

We don't want to skim lightly over the surface but equally we're not going to do a treaty Swiss seeking the widest possible audience and the indications are so far in terms.

That it's doing pretty well at the moment America's carry on after the election so Roger you're asking me questions that a way above my paygrade like I have a slightly well.

You must do when I mean you're not going to take a long holiday after the 4th of November are you on in the anticipation that once that is all over but I wish I could take a long holiday on the 4th of November I suspect the news God's will decide otherwise for me.

It's perfectly possible they'll be a period of uncertainty after this election.

I think that whilst there is uncertainty will be there to talk about it.

I interpreted as meaning that if asked to serve you will I would love to I think you know 560 who was talking about podcast it's a whole new audience.

It's a whole new way of reaching an audience.

It's a way of doing using a very much more accessible in-depth way where you spend 30 minutes, babe.

One subject at the US elections and you try to carry people with you.

I think it's a really important thing that we are doing and I'm an absolute convert to podcast on podcast my thanks again to Jon Sopel the BBC is North America editor who will not be taking the weekend off and next week will be talking to the editor of Radio 4 up Britain programme so do let us know if you have any questions you like us to put to him and just before we finish with recently received this heartfelt email from listener Naomi I'm an old lady lives alone.

So thankfully not having to shield so I can go out for shopping exercise occasionally meeting up with socially distance friends in the park etc, but every time you say keep separate.

I feel a distant pang because what I've noticed during the pandemic is that well married couples pairs of Friends etc have always quite understand.

Send it to stick together in public places anyone walking past him now is giving an exaggeratedly wide berth as a possible barrier of infection, so that one ends up feeling pariah.


Could you just stick to keep safe in future, of course near me until next week keep safe goodbye.

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