05 September 2008

Media Diet Week 36

Press: it's not long since I had a pop at The Sun's redesign. I still find it clunky and slow, but earlier in the week I dropped in to The Mirror's website and was reminded all over again why I hate it. It looks good - I love the mosaic of full-colour pix on the home page - but when I click on News, why does it take me to a page that offers only 3 main stories followed by 2 secondary splashes? There's another link that says "More News" so I have to click again to read all the headlines at a glance and see what stories I actually want to delve into. This is stupid, useless design - forcing readers to make extra click-throughs endears you to no one. Not even your most loyal readers. And I'm not one of those - the Mirror will remain a site I will only ever dip into when absolutely necessary because of its user-unfriendliness. Thanks are due to The Guardian today for the funniest film review I have read in years. Peter Bradshaw's linguistic tongue twistas had me in stitches. All reviews should be this entertaining. More please. And, lest I forget, R.I.P. Eve.

Blogs: I was pointed towards The Gentlemen Ranters a few days ago, which is an amusing collection of hack anecdotes and spoof features. Love it. More please! Fleet Street Blues has been strangely quiet for weeks but has broken its silence to let us know it's going to be even quieter for a couple of months - intriguing! Talking of quiet, the Churnalists also seem to have chucked the towel in (or should that be hung the towel over the beer pump?). Shame.

TV/radio: It's been a good week for telly. After watching Jerry Springer last week on Who Do You Think You Are, I felt it would be hard to top that for compelling TV but I was wrong. God On Trial was, quite simply, brilliant. It shone. Even as it shone a light into dark corners. Anthony Sher led a fantastic cast reflecting the cream of British actors. I leave it to Andrew Collins for a proper review, and I agree with his parting comment about the licence fee... God on Trial clashed, of course, with WDYTYA, which fortunately has a next-day repeat, so I was able to catch up with Esther Rantzen's trip into her past. Forget about it being a good week for telly, this was a great week for Holocaust TV. But how could the BBC film Rantzen standing in the centre of the long-razed Warsaw Ghetto and fail to place her at the stunning memorial to the ghetto uprising just around the corner?

Books: I am a failure. I've read none of Alistair Campbell's diary this week at all. Not even paragraph. I did pick up something lighter (relatively speaking - it depends if you like serial killer thrillers or not. I do). I started Michael Morley's Spider and have managed about 40 pages over the last nights. Not much has happened yet.

And finally... I can't leave this week without a reference to BBC News Online's Magazine, which published 20 examples of grammar misuse on Wednesday. They were all sent in by readers and what tickled me most was the number of complaints against the BBC itself for slack use of language on the website. Aunty, consider your wrist slapped.


Anne Brooke said...

I've videoed both the Sher and the Esther - can't wait to watch them. Important viewing both.


The Slow Smoulder said...

Esther's learning her family history is an excellent illustration of how important these investigations really are. Every time I find out more about Those Who Came Before Me, little twinklings emerge from the past as to why I behave/do/think as I do. It has to be Ditto for our national psyche: anyone got info on Polish popularity in the UK at the end of the 19th C?