Sunday, October 07, 2007

22.5 minutes

I love the BBC. I love sport. But when it comes to football, I can't stand the commentary on five live. It is true that one particular BBC commentator makes me green with rage and I turn off the radio whenever he is on. But this is a blog for common sense, not for personal dislike.

The BBC is constantly under cost pressure. They have claimed they cannot bid for sporting events because they do not have enough money. They are relocating to cheaper offices. They are making staff redundant. So why, unlike virtually every other radio station on the planet, do they feel that they must switch commentators halfway through a half?
I'm not talking about the co-commentator, the guy who provides a foil for the main speaker throughout the game. I'm talking about the crazy switch that happens 23 minutes into the action.

It is ridiculous. Don't pretend that "it's radio so they need to talk more than TV guys, what if one guy loses his voice, there are no commercial breaks during a half, what if one guy gets eaten by an alien" ... other radio stations across the world manage fine. And if you've listened across the world, other commentators talk much much more than BBC ones.

But the thing that takes this scenario from wasteful (of which there are plenty of examples everywhere) to downright ridiculous (hence this note) is that adding the extra costs actually provides a worse service. While listening to a game, changing the main voice breaks up the flow. It spoils the game. A ninety minute football match is not a five day test match, one professional should be able to manage it.

By losing the second commentator, they would reduce costs and also provide a better listening experience. It's win-win. It's common sense.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

And something else. There are many games played each day, the BBC can only cover a few. Taking the redundant commentator from the first match could mean that the BBC could also cover another match - again providing a better service.