Why diversity makes business sense for TV

14 Apr 2015
Reflecting the whole nation makes business sense for broadcasters. But will the BBC’s lack of a commercial imperative derail its diversity targets? Matthew Bell reports

Picture by Paul Hampartsoumian
Picture by Paul Hampartsoumian
The economic arguments for diversity came under the microscope at a lively joint RTS/BBC session held at New Broadcasting House last month. The panellists agreed that, following years of inaction, broadcasters are finally making an effort to boost black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) represen­tation in television.

Sackings, secrecy and sex: Pinkoes and Traitors

14 Apr 2015
A new history of the BBC during the Thatcher era by its official historian has it all. But Maggie Brown wonders if the approach lacks genuine focus

Margaret ThatcherWriters of contemporary media history need to be brave. They also, of course, want to be read. Professor Jean Seaton, the official BBC historian, has a crisp style, a fine grasp of the period 1974-87 and has authored an absorbing book, with the power to annoy and stimulate debate.

As the title, Pinkoes and Traitors (taken from the Dear Bill letters of Private Eye), announces, the prose is leavened by light touches.

Our Friend in the North

14 Apr 2015
Graeme Thompson shows how studying media in North East England trumps North East China

Here in the North East, it doesn't take long to detect a growing appetite for culture and the creativeindustries. After years of eye-watering investment in regeneration, manufacturing and infrastructure, civic leaders are prioritising design, content production and interactive digital media.

Tony Hall: On a Rescue Mission

14 Apr 2015
As Tony Hall prepares for an epic Charter battle, Anne McElvoy detects an upbeat mood at Broadcasting House. Can he win over the BBC’s critics?

Tony HallFor an insight into the day job of the BBC Director-General two years into his role, I pop into Tony Hall's plate-glass eyrie at New Broadcasting House. I arrive in the aftermath of one of the regular encyclicals that DGs dispense.

He's sung the praises of the BBC's place in a "thriving, free and competitive market", an alternative to what a colleague terms the "Joni Mitchell" school of heartstring-tugging about the Beeb's innate brilliance.

Profile: Lucinda Hicks, COO at Endemol Shine

14 Apr 2015
Lucinda Hicks, COO of newly merged Endemol Shine UK, has never made a programme in her life. But that hasn’t stopped her rapid rise, says Tara Conlan

Lucinda HicksThe world of television production can, to quote Digital UK Chief Executive Jonathan Thompson, "sometimes be somewhat sniffy about strategy folk".

With this in mind, he says Lucinda Hicks' success in becoming Endemol Shine UK's Chief Operating Officer is doubly impressive.

He hired Hicks to work with his team at Channel 4 in 2008, when he was its Strategy Director.

Jed Mercurio: the Drama Doctor

14 Apr 2015
Boyd Hilton interviews Jed Mercurio, whose edgy approach to his craft has transformed storytelling on TV

Jed Mercurio, Critical
Jed Mercurio (right) with actor Catherine Walker (centre) on the set of Critical (Credit: John Rogers/Sky)
Jed Mercurio doesn't make it easy for himself. His current show, Sky 1's Critical, is a 13-part drama set in a state-of-the-art trauma centre. Every week, it focuses on a different and gruesome medical emergency while also telling the intertwined personal stories of its large cast. Oh, and it's told in real time, too.

Armando Iannucci on his 20 years at the top

14 Apr 2015
Armando Iannucci looks back on more than two decades of TV laughter and reveals his love for Morecambe and Wise. Steve Clarke takes a front row seat

Armando Iannucci RTSBy many people's reckoning, Armando Iannucci is one of our greatest and funniest TV satirists. The political classes and the grammar and conceits of television have proved fertile ground for Iannucci's wit and his team of gifted collaborators, notably Steve Coogan, Rebecca Front and Chris Morris.

Muriel Gray’s TV diary

14 Apr 2015
Muriel Gray goes on the trail of some prized restoration architecture – and ends up scooping a jackpot at the RTS Programme Awards

I've been travelling the country with the heavenly task of looking at restoration architecture, in connection with our daunting project at Glasgow School of Art (GSA) to rebuild the iconic Charles Rennie Mackintosh building, damaged by fire last May.

Miraculously, most of the building was saved by the incredible quick thinking, bravery and professionalism of the Scottish Fire and Rescue ­Service.

April 2015

RTS Young Technologist Award open for 2015 applicants

07 Apr 2015

The RTS Young Technologist Award 2015 is open for applications.

Bobby Moss, 2014 Winner and Graduate Software Engineer, BT Group Plc
Bobby Moss, 2014 Winner and Graduate Software Engineer, BT Group Plc
Anyone with less than three years experience in the technical side of broadcast or its related industries is encouraged to put themselves forward for recognition in one of  television's fastest-growing sectors.

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