Your radio station bores me

I don’t wish to be rude, but I think your radio station is pretty boring.

I can be pretty broad with that comment because there’s very little on-air at the moment that makes me excited as a listener and especially very little that would encourage me to change radio station more permanently.

Perhaps my miserableness comes from the fact I’ve just finished my (er, 5th?) re-read of The Nation’s Favourite by Simon Garfield. Easily the best book about radio. It follows Radio 1 when Matthew Bannister came in and shook it up – and all hell broke lose. It covers the end of the dinosaur DJs (DLT etc), the Chris Evans/Jo Wiley/Pete Tongs joining through to the early days of Moyles.

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British Podcast Awards Wrap Up

On Saturday it was the ceremony for the British Podcast Awards. This year we did it live as a massive outdoor festival in Brockwell Park. This is the fifth year of the Awards and it’s been an interesting journey from deciding in a pub with Matt Hill that maybe we should put on some awards for podcasting, to standing in a park with a team of 70 making busy preparations, as I looked up hoping for no rain.

There wasn’t any rain, which was fortunate as 650 people showed up to celebrate a sector that’s seen huge growth.

We decided to do the Awards mainly because no one else was, and we felt it would be a good way for the general public to discover new podcasts. Even then we knew that everyone loves a good list.

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Regulating the media

I’ve just finished a few books that look at the challenges broadcasters have faced – The Remarkable Tale of Radio 1 by Robert Sellers and Maggie Brown’s Channel 4: A History: from Big Brother to The Great British Bake Off (the sequel to the equally excellent A Licence to be Different – The Story of Channel 4 which covers the channel’s early years).

In retrospect the problems Radio 1 and Channel 4 faced were pretty prosaic – from being the challenger (to the pirates and BBC/ITV respectively) to being the challenged (the rise of commercial radio and the growth of multi-platform television). They were both trying to maintain as much of the status quo as possible – broadly audience share and revenue (for C4) – without having to change too much.

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