A polite note to whomever is in charge of overlaying graphics over BBC One programming:

24th April 2010 • Blog Post by Seb Patrick •

You fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking cunt.

Good episode, though.

Seb Patrick once met Paul McGann, who immediately pretended to be Mark McGann. He writes for Den of Geek, BBC America, Film4 and the official Red Dwarf website, among others. He owns over thirty toy Daleks and wishes the Dapol factory tour was still open.

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21 Responses

  1. si

    *applauds*

    I agree in every way.

  2. URP!’s greatest article/editorial/blag/etc.

    I expect more from the BBC.

  3. Agreed 100 percent.

  4. Nick Ridley

    Lets have a screeching competition!

  5. Kris Carter

    What happened?! The BBC Wales showing was perfect?

  6. Kris Carter

    Never mind – that’ll teach me to read most recent first…

  7. Mammalian Verisimilitude

    Well, I submitted a generalised complaint about IPPs (I was spared during DW, but I *did* see one during Total Wipeout). Anyone here see one and yet not complain at all?

  8. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/8642854.stm

    Well, it’s nice to see them admit that they’ve made a mistake but I’d like to know how the error/decision was made in the first place. It can’t be a case of somebody pressing the wrong button because the animation had been commissioned in the knowledge that it would only be shown during Doctor Who. This has been planned for a long time and it worries me that it was allowed to happen at all.

    And I remain unconvinced that they won’t do it again: from the wording of the apology they might just pop it up when nobody is saying anything important.

    Frankly, I’m going all Daily Mail about this and I won’t be happy until the decision is permanently reversed for all BBC programmes and the people responsible are never allowed to work in television again.

  9. Somebody

    The BBC News story’s now been updated – http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/8643684.stm – to say that 5,583 people had complained as of 10:30am this morning.

  10. Somebody

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/complaints/response/2010/04/100426_res_doctorwhograhamnorton.shtml

    Complaint

    Many viewers were unhappy that an on-screen banner for Over the Rainbow appeared during the climax to the Doctor Who episode on 24 April.

    The BBC’s response

    The Over the Rainbow trail in Doctor Who should not have played out on Saturday and we apologise to all Doctor Who fans whose enjoyment of the show was disrupted. We recognise the strength of feeling that has been expressed and are taking steps to ensure that this mistake will not happen again.

    I’ve already submitted a follow-up complaint that this doesn’t go far enough – it not only leaves open the option of using IPPs in general, but ALSO leaves open using it outside the “climax” of the episode.

    Basically, it’s the “timing” quote from the BBC News link reworded to sound a bit more definitive, but when you look closely, it really is just the same apologia over again.

  11. Hendiadys

    At this rate we’ll have Graham Norton’s face on the Doctor’s collar in 2020. And I don’t think we’ll have noticed the transition.

  12. Mammalian Verisimilitude

    Apparently, there’s now been 6369 “comments” (‘of which 6231 are complaints’) to the Beeb over this.

    [Against 41 over a BNP party political.]

  13. Jonathan Capps

    Basically, it’s the “timing” quote from the BBC News link reworded to sound a bit more definitive, but when you look closely, it really is just the same apologia over again.

    I dunno, it does seem to me to be a clarification that they know that no IPPs should be played over Doctor Who (and, presumably, any drama.) Of course, the BBC shouldn’t be using them on any of their programmes so that fight still needs to go on, but I get the impression that this clarification is to show that Doctor Who will not be getting this treatment again, no matter what the timing.

  14. I got their apology. I’m a stubborn bastard and it wasn’t enough.

    I replied:

    Dear BBC,

    Thank-you for the apology. I am pleased that the BBC did not ignore the complaints and responded promptly but I am still concerned by the processes leading to the mistake.

    I think the BBC is a quality public service broadcaster and a role model to other broadcasters around the world. I hope it now realises that it should not be using in-programme promotions at all and that the 5500+ complaints are indicative of the frustration that these distractions cause to viewers of all programmes, not just Doctor Who.

    I do not understand how the trailer could have made it to air without somebody in the organisation realising that it would be detrimental to viewers of the show. This isn’t just a case of somebody in the control room pressing the wrong button – the trailer was commissioned and produced with the intention of showing it during Doctor Who or Total Wipeout. I fear that a pernicious attitude is spreading through the BBC that this type of marketing is acceptable and necessary. It is not.

    I understand that the BBC has to make the public aware of its programmes and services. But there is so much that could be done before resorting to in-programme trailers:

    – an awareness campaign about electronic programme guides
    – scheduling programmes at consistent times each week
    – opt-in reminder services (e.g. text message alerts)

    In order to resolve my complaint, please could you explain in more detail –

    a) Whose decision it was to broadcast the in-programme trailer
    b) What evidence the BBC has that the trailer would benefit viewers watching the programme (an Ofcom report indicates that only 4% of viewers welcome IPPs whilst 39% object – see page 20 of http://www.ofcom.org.uk/research/tv/reports/promotion/viewers/promoviewers.pdf )
    c) What steps are being taken to ensure the mistake will not happen again

  15. si

    That is a good email. Well done. Let us know about any reply.

  16. A reply! I have to say, it’s very nice to get a personal response even if, as they say, it is of little consolation.

    Thank you for contacting us again about Doctor Who broadcast on 24 April and please accept my apologies for the delay in replying.

    I appreciate you still have some concerns about what happened and I’d like to take some time to clarify the issue.

    The decision to use In-Programme-Pointer (and trails) isn’t down to just one person. These programme pointers are created by the relevant marketing teams and then placed in the schedules by our media planning and scheduling teams. While this In-Programme-Pointer (IPP) for Over the Rainbow was commissioned to be shown within Doctor Who, in hindsight we admit it was a mistake to use it in a drama such as Doctor Who and we’re sorry this spoiled your enjoyment of the programme.

    With regards to the general issue of end credit trails, IPPs and announcements, we find they’re often a useful way of letting viewers know about other BBC content they may be interested in and we will only do so if we believe that there is a fundamental audience benefit in doing so.

    I note you mentioned Ofcom’s research findings that that only 4% of viewers welcome IPPs whilst 39% object to their use. However, according to these findings, 15 % don’t notice and 40% of viewers aren’t bothered by IPPs. Also, in general 61% of all viewers claim that they ‘often’ or ‘sometimes’ use promotions to help them decide what to watch on television.

    We have carried out audience research in this area to gauge audience value of promotional material in general. We find that viewers very much respond to end credit squeezes when we try to navigate the audience between channels, particularly so in navigation from BBC One and BBC Two to similar content that viewers may enjoy on BBC Three and BBC Four.

    We’re always mindful of where and when we use IPPs and take into consideration many factors. We always try to avoid using them in sensitive parts of a programme in order to maintain mood where relevant.

    Moving into the future, please be assured that this issue was raised with BBC management and we will take more care when deciding if, when, and where to use In-Programme-Pointers in future.

    I realise this may be of little consolation to you but I hope it does show that there is a great deal of careful consideration and planning that goes into the whole process.

    We appreciate the trouble you’ve taken to contact us.

    Paul Kettle
    Divisional Advisor
    BBC Audience Services

  17. Ploppy

    “I note you mentioned Ofcom’s research findings that that only 4% of viewers welcome IPPs whilst 39% object to their use. However, according to these findings, 15 % don’t notice and 40% of viewers aren’t bothered by IPPs.”

    Great. So if I walk into a town centre and put up a poster saying “Kill all the cut little puppy-dogs” and 39% of people were offended, 40% didn’t care and 15% didn’t see it, I should go into mass-production?

    Did Ofcom ever ask people if people WANTED IPP, or are the BBC just going on the fact that “most” people don’t mind, and “most” people find promotions in general useful.

    Twats.

  18. Jonathan Capps

    I wonder what the figures would be if the question was “Would you care or notice if IPPs were no longer used?”

  19. Ian Symes

    I shat myself for a second – I saw the bottom of Monkeyson’s post and thought someone from the BBC had actually posted here.

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