All entries for Tuesday 28 October 2008

October 28, 2008

Positively daft

This is Commander Ali Dizaei. He’s the President of the National Black Police Association. And today he called for positive discrimination to boost the number of black police officers.

This is dangerous ground – he admitted his comments could cause division among white officers.

He said that extremism called for the “right people” to be fast-tracked into the job.

But if a serious argument is going to be had about this issue, then Mr Dizaei is not the best person to start it. He’s currently suspended from the Met Police. In fact, he’s being investigated on three separate counts of misconduct.

Shouldn’t he be quiet for a while, rather than stoke up an issue which he admits is going to divide the force he works for?


Should Brand and Ross be sacked?

No.

Well, sort of no.

Brand and RossThe ill-advised broadcast of rude messages left on Andrew Sachs’ answer machine was the fault of the programme’s producers, not its presenters.

The faceless people will probably get the boot.

But Sachs-gate is about more than all of that really.

The whole story has become a media circus (the lead story on yesterday’s PM for goodness sake) because no-one’s sure why these two presenters are on Radio 2 in the first place.

If Chris Moyles had done this on Radio 1, it would have been shrugged off and forgotten about within a day or two, with no real suggestion of sackings.

But Radio 2 is supposed to be the more mature sibling. This incident just proved that the pair are in the wrong place – any non-Daily Mail reader who heard the show would have found it to be pretty entertaining, despite the occasionally offensive content (which was actually no worse than a typical episode of Have I Got News For You).

They shouldn’t be sacked – they should be given a pay cut and put somewhere else.

They’re too old for Radio 1 (which already has an ‘age’ problem – it attracts too many parents), so maybe they should become the main attractions on the already edgy 6Music?


RSS comes of age

My RSS reader became much more useful yesterday.

The Guardian became the first major newspaper in the world to include its full articles in RSS feeds.

Sounds technical, but what it means is you can read the whole paper without going anywhere near the paper – and for free.

The best bit is the ability to filter things out. My blog reader is now getting updated any time Simon Hoggart (RSS) writes one of his brilliant parliamentary sketches. It gets George Monbiot’s (RSS) environmental polemics, and it gets Charlie Brooker’s (RSS) screenwipes and rants. You can also filter by subject.

I suspect this is unlikely to make The Guardian much money from advertising. Instead, I think they’re probably doing this to boost their international standing. It’s always been the pioneer among newspapers online, although I think others will be reluctant to follow suit on this one.


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