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Read this: GB News: One Year On

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GB News: One Year On…



BBC sounds music Radio podcasts hello, this is the media show from BBC Radio 4 at 8 p.m.

On June 13th last year GB news launched.

It promise to disrupt to hear people places and issues that other media outlets weren't paying attention to the first shown here that June night Andrew Neil's were the biggest broadcasting beasts now is the time to do news differently he told us we're committed to covering the People's agenda.

Not the medias agenda.

The design was certainly different the monologue came from a studio that was almost entirely black pumas noticed that there were also no sings sound is used to that was the start of a range of technical issues for the network as a whole within weeks engineer was on holiday.

Never to return within months Nigel Farage has been installed with a prime Time show of his own in its review of the opening night the Guardian called it.

Sully deadly staff and added I Give It a Year well a year on I've come to GB news in central London it's definitely still on here outside the room where I'm sitting are a big group of journalists test producing its output right now, let's get the Story the full story of a tumultuous 12-months Angela for god bless chief executive of GB news welcome to the movie show thank you very much for having a walk on the TV news.

Would they moments in that first week you thought you might not make it to a year.

We never dad with makeup to a year and beyond it was too much was start but also one which we learnt a lot from very very quickly and we quickly put all of those issues that behind us and we are now in really great shape and looking forward to further growth.

They were probably other words being used as well with a moments in that first week that first.

Are you thought maybe this isn't going to hang together.

Lol lol lol lol typical of a start-up that some things go right some things go wrong some people come through some people don't and the reality is that you almost need to go through some of that pain or live medley.

I will never launch another news channel again on the 13th of any month, but the reality that is where you learn and that is when you really develop the skills and you you take that next year about and what the channel is now absolutely unrecognisable from from that launch on the 13th of June last year learning away from the Republic Blair it felt like you were crashing out things that normally get looked at in piloting but actually on the TV to understand that there's a context of the environment which GB news launched.

We hide and launched during effectively a pandemic.

We had 120 people hired over zoom many.

Work together they were certainly a lot of pressures around new technology people learning had had a work and some of the sum of the training that we had done and the resources that we were in pretty good shape a lot of the transmission problems that we had on the night middle came because the full transmission chain hadn't been tested all the way through broadcast partner and that's where some of those audio issues in the sink problems came in you would think so and if we do it again.

It's definitely a little more about the launch night the launch weekend what the networks gone on to become but I'd like to go back to earlier years and your career to understand what you brought from Australia to this British News Network I saw one article about you saying you've been credited with owning the art of cheap but compelling panel style conservative television that is a good time and Sky News Australia where you were.

For a long time is that a description is that your expertise? That is not my expertise, but I think my expertise goes back to some of the earlier part of my career where I started my career in regional television in New South Wales and a lot of the fundamentals that went into Sky News Australia where really about connecting with Communities Titan programmes on the road visiting towns and out of Queensland and western New South Wales that hadn't been visited by metropolitan media and that's really very much the skill set and the full price is the news that Sky News Australia it's not the primary bedrock of the success that that network had at connecting with an audience in 2014 at a conference in Hong Kong the key thing is audience we identified opinion as a massive driver opinion-based shows are biggest shows they deliver the numbers and with the numbers comes revenue.

That's what you were doing wasn't placing.

Then often controversial opinion at the heart of the schedule opinion is not really about being controversial.

It's about debating subjects and topics and not all the opinion that was done on Sky News Australia controversial in fact one of the first things we invested English opinion around politics and proper proper coverage for the first time of Australian politics on television and in fact the panel debate show on Sky News Australia was hosted by the former prime minister of Australia Tony Abbott and the current Prime Minister of Australia Anthony albanese, so you know it really it's not just about exploring issues for the sake of being controversial.

It's about actually having a proper conversation Australia did get controversial frequently for example.

There was a an interview which you express regret about when I write nationalist came on to one of your programs to talk about immigration and in the end.

You took a range of decisions around the fact that happen now.

I'm not questioning your response to that because you please said it shouldn't have.

Do you think there's a risk when there is a business model that broadcasting model based around opinion driving your numbers that in the end you start speaking more and more controversial or eye-catching opinions to normal normal and in fact the secret of successful any opinion channel like Sky News Australia is making sure that you actually do have that breadth of opinion because actually a broader audience course there are times when things go wrong.

I like the wrong guess.

We'll be booked through the medication and and I've been very vocal about having great regret about that.

So you were looking for a point of difference for Sky News Australia you're definitely looking for a point of difference 4 GB news up against Sky News BBC News and TV now Angela's subsequently said of his involvement is mistake was putting his name on the tin without understanding.

What would be in sided? What did you want this net?

Be when you sat down with him when you sat down with others, what was the what was the plan the plan has never changed and in fact.

I think that when Andrew made that comment was more probably around the fact that he found the Startup environment difficult rather than that.

There's no shift or not lead to any Direction left right up down whatever what we are delivering today is exactly what we promised right from the start broad opinion based programming.

We talk about things that often a not talked about in the broader media landscape, but if I look at the programming the the you're putting out and the subject of discussing from the Royal family to immigration to cancel culture.

This is hardly the only place I can go to get those things they probably the only place you can get those things in a television environment certainly are you have a breadth of subject matter and viewpoints exist in print Media here and United Kingdom that really have not being part of a culture abroad.

Certainly in my experience journalism generally comes from the left Centre and you.co.uk pressure example has many more newspapers that skewed to the right then well, but I think it's important to remember that we are talking about broadcast hear that I think the distinction between ITV ytn Sky and BBC is very much.

Have a certain viewpoint.

We saw an opportunity to broaden that conversation to have conversations that really are if you like a centre-right perspective but also including viewpoints and from the left.

We have nearly got his many labour MPs coming on GB news now as we have our conservative MP's and that is because we want this to be a town hall with people can come actually have a conversation we are regulated by Ofcom seeking to play by their rules but do you regret the fact that?

You are being regulated in terms of the balance of your not all we have embraced it from day one and that is an important part of our positioning and launch GB news over the top on Now TV or on YouTube on our own website.

We we chose to operate in an Ofcom regulatory environment because quite frankly it gives you kudos.

It means that you actually have got credibility in the marketplace and it also means that we play on the little playing field with BBC sky numbers, so you'll have to be regulated by grabbing a little while ago you want to hear all perspectives in fact.

I think the parent company is called or perspectives but for example.

I was watching Dan working at a few days ago.

There was a lengthy segment.

Nigel Farage swear Dan wooden agreed with everything that Nigel Farage said on immigration he then interviewed Jim Davidson way agreed with almost everything Jim Davidson said about cancel culture another few like that, but it's not it's not it's not a balanced discussion, it's not a impartial discussion because the presenter is agreeing with the DL time, but that is not a News Bulletin as such and I think you need to understand that actually there is a breadth of Voices across the schedule on the channel and that is an important part of any rolling news channel the impartiality exist in its purest form within the News Bulletin switch actually are straight down the middle name Paschal traditional news for today, but the reality is that you do have a variety of Voices through the day if I was 6:00 you have a panel that actually has got a breadth of viewpoints Dan Wootton show does mostly.

Have a break the viewpoints.

It's got his name on the show right so it is.

Then wouldn't tonight so it is important that you know it is part of his perspective that is weaved through the shower and he has a variety of gifts that they actually do the key issues of the day and a good night back to Ofcom you know where 12 months in and we haven't come across as you say and that is because we do work very closely within.com rules the Ofcom rules, but you set your own rules as well.

You've got editorial standards, which which people can can read on your website and one of your presenters.

Go to Harry is now part of the prime minister's operation but presenter for a while his time on GB news came to an end after he took the knee is a a stance against racism and in a letter that he sent GB news after that.

He said how what I do break the rules.

Can you explain how he broke your room so I think in that case you have to draw distinction between someone who?

List and someone who is a host would you take the knee on your show no for the BBC's rules are not necessarily the same as GB news as well.

I think if the rules are a pretty clear in terms of making sure that things are not politicised and insuring the Nigel Farage on Dan Wootton talk about immigration be more cover Nigel Farage is a politician.

There was no difference between what he was saying on down with and show and the things he said when he was holding you from the brexit party, but I think you know actually taking her taking the knee was something but we feel just went too far for a presenter on the reality is that he was not sick in the end.

He did resign and and that was actually his choice.

We were very happy to have him back but now we're talking about something happened.

Desire to pursue and you type of broadcasting in to be disruptive to set your presenters free in the way you say they would be under the network.

I'm trying to understand where the line is so for example Dan Wootton Twitter the picture of a couple of people in a park wearing a mask and the point was why on earth day wearing Mars but in your charter you talk at protecting privacy unless.

There's a compelling public interest which that tweet some would I give definitely didn't mean I'm not aware there.

He was in any way sanction for that.

So I'm just trying to understand how you draw the line for all of your on our presenters and reporters.

What can they do? What can't they do? What is important? I think that we always stick to edit royal charter and everything's a slip through the net and this is nature of the beast of men the BBC itself has sanctions and the issues will happen with Sky News all the time but I think in the mind considering producing 6000 hours of

The year with done a really good job of ensuring that we stay within the bounds of about editorial charter and it's something that we do take very seriously also you talk about putting fact first and we've already discussed where opinion fits into reporting and how those two things interact.

Would you consider what Nigel Farage and Dan wouldn't be doing as news journalism.

I think I would I would more appropriately characterised as opinion.

It is ultimately and we're journalism business, but we have to be able to talk about issues in a very free and open way and we do that again.

There are facts involved and the effects of checked and they do for a process and if we get something wrong.

We say we've got it wrong.

Just like any good journalism business a couple of examples on there on the 30th of May and Michelle Dewberry is program.

Talking about climate change you said the sea levels weren't really rising sea levels are rising the facts are out there and yet.

You didn't have a scientist on with that guests to corrected to take Mark Stein another of your presenters.

He's of the Evening Michelle Dewberry a little bit earlier on full fact the fact check the operation found that he was wrong to state that the increases your chances of hospitalisation and death is it a concern to you that these kind of statements which aren't true I getting through the net well.

I think it's very important to remember that we answer to regulator not a full fat full fact is not the regulator and and in that case which I'm aware of there has been certainly from our perspective and the program produces perspective some contention around the way full fact that actually put together it's it's suggestions that it was wrong not the thing is.

Ultimately you have a lot of guests on you.

Have a lot of content to go through and that is the nature of of a rolling new service we put a lot of effort in making sure that we get it right one example there to do with climate and climate has been a particular Focus both of some of the discussions you have on GB news, but it's also been the focus of some terms that particular perspectives are not just part of reasonable debate, but a venturing into something that potentially less fat based Jenny King from The Institute for Strategic dialogue which is a think tank says that you've become a central hub for climate scepticism.

Are you making a conscious effort to put people on there? Who are outside of the regular climate change the regular discussions, so why can't they be broader discussions about all subjects?

Including climate change there is nothing wrong with actually be able to bring a broader discussion to the population around all the shoes and yes when it comes to climate change there is contention and we do have multiple sides of the climate change to go there are multiple sides to whether the Seas rise in the Seas simply rising and I suppose the question some people have is whether there is an adequate line on GB news between reasonable discussion across any issue and something that veers into your opinion without the necessary facts attacked some sort of a gender is absolutely wrong so that that is fact about where you've got to from the start.

You're always clear that TV ratings were not the only metric of success.

You were very open about your digital ambitions to things like.

1 what's your definition of success in the digital Arena and then how do you make money off it so the fundamentals of GB news as a as a business is daddy's a digital business at school that has a TV station and a radio station attached to it.

So it's gonna be opposite to the traditional establishment Media landscape.

We told freezing different ways to suit different demographic so we have story to do we will on tiktok with a certain way.

We treat stories in a different way on Facebook Instagram the different environment and last time I checked I think we will over 5 billion impressions 4 GB news content online on energy research that includes a random operator lights as well as social media so you're pleased with the numbers, but as we look through the window here all of this TV is infrastructure doesn't come to be spending an awful.

Lot of money on your staff on the all the

What are the cons of running a a TV network? How do you funder even in part via pre roll ads on YouTube or whatever it might be you can have to do enormous numbers much bigger than you're doing at the moment to help run a place like this.

So the business is early is skewed towards television Revenue and radio Revenue and that is something that will more more into the digital side of things which is still a meaningful number over time that is a big Challenge for us though in the we are still suffering A5 the advertising agencies when it comes to our particular linear television product and that is a massive challenge his business.

What can you do about that?

Well, we have to keep doing what we're doing.

We have to ensure that we address the perception issue, the existing out there the GB news actually is a mainstream channel.

It's not establishment channel, but it is actually a mainstream channel that reaches mass audiences in in the United Kingdom across all different platforms and that does have a value better advertises me the what you're becoming is perhaps a bit more establishment than was first advertised when the network was announced you join the Royal television Society you join the pool will look after our politics is covered in Westminster some of your programming see your breakfast programme with Eamonn Holmes it's not a million miles away from other breakfast programmes that we've seen on TV now.

Have you realised that to make money to create a successful business you actually got to be a bit less of a rebel than you first or you'll never get out of GB news.

I've got to say the reality is that a programs like breakfast.

We're never ever controversial leaving in the first iteration and you know we have to have a range of programming so during the day we politics heavy in the evening with opinion heavy an appointment to view heavy and a breakfast.

It is a mess reach breakfast programme but actually if you if you actually look at the overall strategic it it's a breakfast show made importantly for a radio Williams as well, because GB News radio launched on 4th of January this year, but you certainly have been watching recently and there's plenty of Westminster coverage, but it can I thought the whole picture of GB news was that you were getting away from the Hall Westminster Village story that you were having reporters out and about.

Embedding incommunities.

I I don't see that on there as much as I felt I was promised and you're not watching another I'm watching the one market.

Is is Manchester in London and which was your whole picture to your actual reporters your news coverage would be rooted in communities who are normally not paid a lot of your car registering the Westminster soap opera where I have we do super surveys audiences.

We take it shows on the road.

We've got a Tamar video journalist around the country and presenting stories every single day that you know they are news national news done on a local level what struck me watching GB news a lot in the run-up to this interview is that a lot of your train was the US very similar language the language Nigel Farage use they say things that we won't talk down to you.

This is the People's news channel, but own the language is familiar to me is someone who's covered Nigel Farage as a

Petition and I just wondered the more successful.

You are at connecting with Nigel Farage is base.

Do you missed me here channel which is for that section of the UK wrong with that but might struggle to reach beyond that section of the UK that language used in the trial that you mentioned actually GB news language and I know it's Jimmy use language because it's language that we've been working on for a very long time even before Nigel is almost completely disagree.

I really disagree and I think that language applies across the British also price to Eamonn Holmes I mean you know that breakfast show is in every single sense of what TV news ears is really about the people channel is really about talking about issues that others don't really rise.

And it's done in in in a very GB news Nigel is only 4 hours a week and is very successful.

He's a extraordinary broadcaster and again and one of the things that frustrates me the most is that this is characterisation by others that this is a channel built around one or two people know how risky? It is anyone who runs the TV business to be successful.

You need to have a breath of tau and breadth of appointment of you and if you have one single time that you based tyre Media venture over it's not really going to work out now.

You're talking about presenters.

There.

Don't rest the network on on are Talent but I've spoken to some people think.

Dress on you, but you're not just the chief executive but you're very much the editor-in-chief in effect and that you are involved in small decisions big decisions and everything in between is that true is that how you run the business? Is it is your vision is this something that couldn't really flourish without you right in the middle of my finger startup relies on a very small group of people to really maintain Focus I'm part of a small group of people including editorial director who live in braids this place every single day and yes of course you need to get involved in my new show with as myself for a cheap running director or others of their decisions that need to be made every single that because this is a complex business is it appropriate to get regularly involved in editorial decisions you think to be a dividing line.

I'm a journalist.

This is a journalism business that needs that rigour business that focus on the last word because of course in the end, you want this to be a company that that makes money and analysis which produces lots of analysis of the media says that at the moment a year and you are a long long way below where you said he wants to be after a year.

Did you accept that I think that weird tracking really well clearly.

It's been a tough 12-months the boycott by the agencies hasn't in terms of audience levels though.

We are really happy.

We are right now and some of that shows right 1/100000 and that doesn't sound like much if you talking lie TV BBC One numbers, but particularly we are you got to remember this business is less than 12 months old as we speak and it's gone from a big launch to.

Period where had to rebuild and as now come to the back to the point where it's numbers are a really strong.

We've got shows that I can painting and beating other shows on platform existed for decades and I think that's quite achievement by the time but when you sit down with the board as I'm sure you do routinely and you look through the numbers and you look through your projections and where you are.

Are they happy to keep packing this because I'm reliably informed by a number of sources that your budget now is significantly upon your budget when you launch, so you're putting serious money into this at the moment.

Serious money is not flowing in the other direction.

So they are they comfortable with that we are tracking to our business plan in terms of audience with tracking on a business plan dinner time's the revenue we are right now.

Yes costs have increased.

There's another comparatives.

Come on the Landscape trying to achieve a similar outcome.

And always things are inflationary the pandemic while longer than we had planned and that's only the Red Cross precious, but that's no different to any Media business ultimately, what do you make your new competitor Talk TV Piers Morgan Piers Morgan going on to where you used to work Sky News Australia you must have been following this very closely how you were assessing their effort or tubing is Randalstown race and David 212 News Corporation to run it is really important that there's more plurality and more choice in the media landscape here launching those channels is tough take it from me building audiences is tough but we are very different to what News Corporation is launched.

We are uniquely British product with focus on the United Kingdom

I think you'll find that there's less showbiz on us than there is on on that other channel but ultimately it's a good thing choice is good and how much to join us on the media show thank you very much.


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Comments
Wednesday, 22 June 2022
M
mike
11:15 AM

IF the person who wrote the above calls himself a journalist, the he needs to go back to school.. The English abysmal.

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mike's 1 post RO
S
StevensOnln1
sentiment_very_satisfiedPlatinum

1:53 PM

mike: It's a podcast which has been automatically transcribed by voice recognition software, nobody wrote it.

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StevensOnln1's 3,327 posts GB

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