My god, could channel 4 handle this any worse? Maybe if they invited the BNP onto BBLB to discuss their policies? I am pretty sure when Orwell wrote 1984 he assumed that those in charge in his dystopian future would actually know what they were doing, indeed most dystopian futures seem to assume that the government/dictators/ruling classes are always one step ahead of the proles. Well if there is one thing Channel 4 prove, it’s that there is little chance of this coming true as most people in extreme power appear to be blinded it and tend to make rather silly judgments. I mean how else can you explain the the massive cock-up by channel 4 last night when they declared ‘to save Shilpa text xxxxx’ rather than the correct version ‘to evict Shilpa text xxxxx’. Worse PR evar.
Not to be outdone, Kevin Lygo, director of programmes at Channel 4 declared today that:
“This was in danger of being the most boring BB that we’d had in many years, maybe ever…..
……Lygo admitted wondering “what can we do?” before the race row “erupted into this extraordinary story”.
Wow, nothing like a bit of racism to spice things up eh? I dred top think how they are going to top that.
So might as well wade into the extremely sensitive debate about racism in the Sleb Big Brother house. Although being the leftie pinko liberal that I am, I want to talk about the issues surrounding the subject rather than throwing accusations at certain members of the house (although I must admit I am pretty disgusted and ashamed at the actions of the English contestants, regardless of the semantics).
Whether you believe this is racism or not, covert or overt, direct or non-direct, several of the affected parties are not going to do too well out of this. Channel 4 can continue to pretend there isn’t a problem and act as if 30,000 complaints to Ofcom and the suspension of 3 million pounds worth of advertising revenue, it seems as though C4 think its all far too difficult (or sensitive) a situation to get involved in. I think at it’s core the reason this has arisen is due to people not wanting to open a discussion about racism in case they realise that they may have racist tendencies themselves, much easier to hope it’s all just bullying because that’s easier to pigeon-hole and blame on other factors (difficult childhood etc). But racism is a different matter; it can’t be tolerated so no amount of excusing is going to placate the situation. Yet if Channel 4 had been a little more honest with themselves and others then this could have been dealt with in a much more open manner. Take the Big Brother homepage, hmmm, don’t seem to see much about the ‘r’ word that has coasted 3 million, been commented on by the two Prime Ministers of this country as well as the foreign secretary and the Indian Government. As Jeff Jarvis has said, you must host the conversation, not try and control it as it will just be taken somewhere else where you can’t respond.
I think the only good thing that can come out of this is the instigation of a proper discussion on racism in this country, we have all got a little complacent with Britain being a tolerant society, which in the most part it is. Although it seems that dark elements are behind this facade of tolerance just waiting to come out whenever someone (of a different culture) annoys us.
So what should C4 do? I think it’s a little late now, the point of no return was probably after airing last nights program in which was arguably the episode which cemented peopleâ€™s perception that racism surely exists in the house (the perception that I also share). You know it’s far too late when the Ofcom site crashes due to heavy traffic.
Oh and how about this for a robust defense:
When the Daily Mirror approached the Channel 4 chief executive, Andy Duncan, yesterday, he scowled and stuck his finger up at the photographer and refused to comment.
Channel 4 chairman Luke Johnson avoided commenting on the issue this morning on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.
Mr Johnson was repeatedly asked about Celebrity Big Brother, but said only that Channel 4’s views had already been made known in a written statement.
No-one from Channel 4 defended the programme on the network’s 7pm news last night.
Oh dear, textbook example of how to handle accusations of racism very very badly. Ofcourse as some have suggested this may all be intentional anyway, which really makes you feel sick.
From the Channel 4 Space Cadets website:
Channel 4 is blasting a group of adventurers, ordinary members of the public, off into space to spend five days orbiting the earth. It’s thrilling, it’s exciting, and it’s totally bogus.
Hmm, ordinary members of the public….such as Ryan McBride
Whilst watching the prog the other night my girlfriend mused the idea that the con wasn’t actually on these innocent members of the public but possibly on us and indeed the actors placed in the show. Then today saw an ad on the TV, recognise anyone?
Now of course the National Blood Service TV ad is meant to display said ‘ordinary people’ saving the lives of our more celebrated citizens – however bit of a coincidence eh?
“Never Be Alone Again, Chrissie Hynde’s duet with Russell Crowe & 30 Odd Foot of Grunts”….
Saw this on the T.V. last night, thought I had gone mental…very strange…
I can quite safely say that ‘Never Be Alone Again’ is an apt title, the image of Russ warbling away is still etched on my retinas. In all fairness it was quite a solid performance, however I just wasn’t expecting it damn it, there should have been some form of warning.
Other oddities on T.V. last night was some American ‘sportz’ reporter screaming ‘T.V. theatre’ (???) after some geezer smacked a home run. Odd.
Then BBC1 had a great ‘yooth prog’ on news24 in which loads of right-on teenagers asked people why they don’t just get out of their cars and walk….probably coz some future Tony Blair is outside the car door with a camera crew.