Back On Side With The BBC

Back On Side With The BBC
Image: Treehugger

Got through some decent work last night, and with the Christmas/New Year period coming up it’s a good roll to be on. Otherwise, I feel, I might lost the impetus I’ve managed to build up and we can’t have that!

The December issue of the Ranfurly Review will be out on Christmas Eve! I thought it would be nice to launch one on this special day because I’m a bit of a romantic and it seems like a nice thing to do. Call it an early Christmas present, though you don’t have to read it until Christmas Day if you don’t want.

Slightly delayed will be my newsletter, The Patter. There’s a damn good reason for this so no hassle please, okay? I was trying to think what a good freebie could be and last night it struck me. It’s going to be a free MP3, of what yet I’m not exactly sure, but it will be available only to subscribers to The Patter so get signed up if you aren’t already.

The BBC have responded to my complaint. They had 10 days to get back but it only took them 24 hours, so when I saw the email I assumed it would be a standard form reply. Not so. The reply had been passed to George Ergatoudis, Head Of Music for BBC Radio 1 and BBC Radio 1Xtra. Here’s what he said:

Dear Mr Galbraith,

Thanks for your correspondence regarding Cage Against The Machine’s version of John Cage’s ‘4’ 33″‘.

Please let me assure you that we did carefully consider the option to play the track in full at a production meeting last week. The final decision was that if the track entered the Top 20 we would play it unedited, however it entered at No. 21 and as a result a short extract was played instead.

Please note that we do not guarantee to play each song in the Top 40 in full and we retain the right to make appropriate editorial decisions. In reality only 15,716 people actually paid for the track compared to the audience for the Official Chart Show which is at least 1.4 million. We decided that while most of them would like to know where the single charted they would be significantly less interested in hearing 4 minutes and 33 seconds of near silence. I completely understand your frustration, but in this case the decision was about pleasing the majority of BBC Radio 1’s listeners rather than a minority.

Thank you again for contacting us and while you may disagree with our decision, I hope you continue to enjoy the majority of our output.

My faith in the BBC has been somewhat restored. Although I cannot agree with the format or content of Radio 1, in any form or shape whatsoever, I have to admire both the speed and professionalism shown in handling my complaint. It kind of makes you proud to be British to see the organisation at work like that, and while I might shout at the TV and radio on a regular basis at the shite that comes out of them, somehow I still feel like the license fee is a damn good deal overall.

Back to work. Until tomorrow….

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About Colin Galbraith

Author, poet, music lover, rabbit tamer, fake faller.
This entry was posted in Editorial Comment, Music, Publishing and Marketing, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Back On Side With The BBC

  1. Stevie ward says:

    That seems to be a reasonable standpoint from old Auntie.
    Top 20 we play it, outside it’s a sample.
    Seems fair enough.

  2. I think you should respond to the response and let him know you appreciate it, and then present a counter-argument for them to take under consideration in the future, something he could take in hand and read at a production meeting, with specific ideas for getting what you both want.

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