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BBC asks top writer to take course on drama

edited November 2009 in - Reading
This is ridiculous...in fact unbelievable.



  • Lol that is brilliant. If anything was going to show the new overaught compliance culture for what it really is this is it.

    I think it is time we scrapped the BBC trust. I'm sick amnd tired of paying £12 a month to be told what I can and cannot tolerate on my screen. I find it insulting that I can watch a show at 11pm and they have to bleep out swearing to 'protect' me. Before long there will be no comedy on BBC and all drama will be stifled by conformist scaredy cats.

    As Frankie Boyle said about them this week, there is a real division between the people who make things now, to those who actually watch them.

    I think he's right. I also think he's right wen he said they won't be happy until it is all boiled down to cookery and property shows because there is no fear of upsetting anybody with them and it takes no creativity to make them.
  • http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/tv_and_radio/article6898149.ece

    this is slightly longer on the subject.

    The BBC has just gone too far.
    I wonder if they have a Mary Whitehouse clone looking for anything that shows any spark of originality, anything challenging or contentious; and if it is found sirens blare and the suits start running around like headless chicken.

    Where the hell has common sense gone?
  • I don't think the BBC should be scrapped, at its best its programming is still way ahead of the competition.

    It'll swing back the other way in time.
  • I like your vision of what it must be like Carol. Funny thing is I bet it isn't too far from the truth. It's no wonder more and more people are choosing other formats of television now.

    I like what Phil Redmond was saying about splitting it up with Channel 4. Scrapping BBC 3 and 4 and having dedicated channels for content. So BBC 3 is a new media channel run by young people with diverse interests that have free reign to allow creativity. The board is changed every few months and so are the program makers. Anything promising in content or talent is switched to the other channels and nurtured. We have a truly original film company and modern arts channel with Channel 4. BBC 4 becomes the Art channel and BBC 1 remains but HAS to take content and talent that comes through the ranks of the other channels.

    All four channels have a split of the license fee, as well as using it for internet and other new media outlets run by the BBC. Using the iPlayer as a global platform for all BBC content and new talent to showcase their stuff.

    Look at the pay channel HBO in America. It is renowned for its quality of shows as well as finding and nurturing new talent. These people are taught by Hollywood film makers and writers who chose this channel because it is the only true creative force on American TV. They are left to make shows they want to make and nearly all of them are worldwide successes. So why can't we use the license fee to have that and be rid of the trust and the board of the BBC?
  • edited November 2009
    The worry to me is that the production companies- who provide the BBC with the UK based programmes-are going to take their work (including those writers that need experience and nurturing) to the satelite and cable companies first (if they don't already) because they won't have these stifling strictures to conform to, and the licence payer loses out on good television.
    I'm finding I'm watching more commercial channels now than the BBC.

    As writers we all know what is pushing the boundary, and what is going ten steps too far over the line.

    You cannot apply the same rules to drama, comedy and current affairs- they are each different and each have different boundaries.
  • It’s just a knee jerk reaction from the BBC, but I’m confident that common sense will kick in before too long. Something needed to be done to stem the excesses of a minority, who believed that boundaries didn't apply to them. However bureaucrats always go too far, as indeed do the liberalizers.
  • I agree with you PaulT.
    There will always be a few who overstep the line and need to be reigned in (but like a lot of government policies) they clamp down on everyone- including the responsible majority.
    The only ones to suffer are the viewers.
  • edited November 2009
    [quote=Carol]Where the hell has common sense gone? [/quote]

    I can supply the answer to that CArol:

    Tuesday, December 04, 2007
    London Times Obituary of the late Mr. Common Sense

    'Today we mourn the passing of a beloved old friend, Common Sense, who has been with us for many years. No one knows for sure how old he was, since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape. He will be remembered as having cultivated such valuable lessons as: Knowing when to come in out of the rain; why the early bird gets theworm; Life isn't always fair; and maybe it was my fault.

    Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policies (don't spend morethan you can earn) and reliable strategies (adults, not children, are incharge). His health began to deteriorate rapidly when well-intentioned but overbearing regulations were set in place. Reports of a 6-year-old boy charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate; teens suspended from school for using mouthwash after lunch; and a teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student, only worsened his condition.

    Common Sense lost ground when parents attacked teachers for doing the job that they themselves had failed to do in disciplining their unruly children. It declined even further when schools were required to get parental consent to administer sun lotion or an Elastoplast to a student; but could not inform parents when a student became pregnant and wanted to have an abortion.

    Common Sense lost the will to live as the Ten Commandments became contraband; churches became businesses; and criminals received better treatment than their victims.

    Common Sense took a beating when you couldn't defend yourself from a burglar in your own home and the burglar could sue you for assault. Common Sense finally gave up the will to live, after a woman failed to realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot. She spilled a little in her lap, and was promptly awarded a huge settlement.

    Common Sense was preceded in death by his parents, Truth and Trust; his wife, Discretion; his daughter, Responsibility; and his son, Reason. He is survived by his 4 stepbrothers; I Know My Rights, I Want It Now, Someone Else Is To Blame, and I'm A Victim.
    Not many attended his funeral because so few realized he was gone. If you still remember him, pass this on. If not, join the majority and do nothing.

    I couldn't resist posting this, as I have say to my husband, doesn't anyone have common sense anymore? :o) Anne Whitfield

    2009 update: At the orginal time fof posting this article I didn't know who wrote it and simply found it online. Since then I have found the writer. She deseves the kudos for writing it. A.W.

    Note from Lori Borgman: This piece was first published March 15, 1998 in the Indianapolis Star. It has been "modified" and "edited" by others and circulated on the Internet, even sent to me several times. Imagine my surprise to see it attributed to some guy named Anonymous. If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, I take having my work circulated on the web as a compliment.
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