Posts Tagged ‘The Generation Game’

Internet Site Votes Alex Belfield 85 Per Cent Gay

September 15, 2022

The collapse of Alex Belfield continues. I don’t mean this to sound homophobic, but I do find it funny considering the innuendo and sneers Belfield makes about various camp TV presenters and celebs. He describes them as being ‘light on their feet’, and the various remarks about his off-camera assistant, Tarquin. It seems to be based on some of the camp humour of the 1970s, and particularly Larry Grayson’s, and his jokes about Everard and Slack Alice and his punchline ‘seems like a nice boy’. There’s a big difference between him and Grayson though, quite apart from the fact that the humour itself is 40 or so years out of date. It’s that Grayson was genuinely funny and seemed to be a genuinely nice person. He never stalked or harassed anyone, did not con people out of money by claiming that he was going to sue the BBC or police, or that he needed it to pay a barrister and then defended himself. He was a gentlemanly host on the Generation Game, and my parents preferred him to his predecessor on the game show, Bruce Forsythe. And when Grayson made those camp jokes, it was genuinely meant in fun. Looking at Belfield’s sneers, it seems like a touch of real homophobia combined with jealousy that they have jobs with the Beeb and he doesn’t.

This is why this little snippet of news is quite ironic.

There is, apparently, a site on the net called ‘Gay or Straight’, where people go to vote about the sexuality of particular celebs. According to the utterly scurrilous Sir Jimmy Savile channel on YouTube, 77 people went on there to vote on the issue of Belfield’s sexual orientation. And they voted that Belfield, who will be sentenced tomorrow for his crimes, was 85 per cent gay. As the average percentage for people voted gay seems to be 69 per cent, this means that, by the standards of the site, he is very gay indeed.

And this is about a man who constantly criticised Pride parades and other gay stories, largely taken from the Daily Heil.

Well, as the genuinely nice and great Larry Grayson would say, ‘seems like a nice boy.’

But Belfield only seemed to be.

BBC Director of News Warns Young Turning Away from Beeb

June 18, 2018

Last Friday, 15th June 2018, the I newspaper carried an article reporting a warning about the Beeb’s future given by Fran Unsworth, the Corporation’s Director of News and Current Affairs, at the Women on Air conference. Young people are increasingly turning away from the Beeb, and if this continues, it will threaten the Beeb’s future as it no longer has an audience.

The article, under the title, Youth Exodus from News ‘Threatening BBC’s Survival stated

The BBC’s existence is under threat if it cannot encourage more younger viewers to watch its news services, a senior executive warned.

Fran Unsworth, BBC director of news and current affairs, said the corporation was playing a “deadly serious” version of The Generation Game. She told the Women On Air conference: “The most significant challenge facing the BBC is how we reach younger audiences. Less and less are under 35. Our very existence might be called into question.”

Recent BBC figures showed that 16-24 year-old spend more time watching Netflix in a week than with all of BBC TV, including the BBC iPlayer. The sizes of audiences tuning in for scheduled news bulletins is declining rapidly, the Digital News Report, published yesterday, found. (P. 9)

The remainder of the article dealt with the issue of getting more female experts on television news. Unsworth stated this was right, but they couldn’t just sack people.

Okay, I’m not the best person to explain why young people under 35 aren’t watching the Beeb, as it’s well over a decade since I was that age. I can’t really talk about changes in entertainment tastes, as I don’t share many of them. Or at least, I’m not interested in some of the programmes that excite the reviewers in the media, like the various TV dramas about detectives hunting down deranged serial killers, and uncovering a web of lies and corruption. Or equally tense dramas about child abuse. My taste in detective television basically extended to Columbo and Van Der Valk, when he was last on back in the 1990s.

But I can make a good guess why young – and older – people aren’t tuning into BBC news. And it’s because of the Beeb’s appalling pro-Tory bias. Young people are the section of the British public in which support for Jeremy Corbyn is strongest. And the Beeb’s coverage of Corbyn and his supporters in the Labour party has been overwhelmingly, and very blatantly biased. And it’s become very, very obvious. The Corporation no longer has the same strong position as Britain’s trusted news broadcaster it once had. People are able to get their news now from a wider variety of sources through the internet, as well as the Corporation’s competitors on the commercial channels. And these news shows, such as RT, Democracy Now, Telesur English, Al-Jazeera, and in America The Young Turks, Secular Talk, Sam Seder’s Majority Report, the David Pakman Show and so, present a very different picture of what’s going on in the world. While the Beeb runs the establishment propaganda that our invasions and interventions in the Middle East and elsewhere are all for humanitarian reasons, these show how the real motivation is simply western corporate imperialism. They will also show just how the Israeli state is oppressing and viciously persecuting the Palestinians, and how the US – and Britain- has sponsored coups in Latin America, Iran and elsewhere, which have overthrown liberal and socialist regimes and installed Fascist dictators. All to protect US and British corporate interests, of course.

The Beeb, however, is very much part of the establishment, and its broadcasting is very much aimed at the corporate and political elite on the one hand, where it reflects their interests and concerns, and on the other aimed at getting the rest of us to accept it. There isn’t anything particularly unique about this. The Corporation’s bias against Labour is shared by the rest of the lamestream media and press. But they’re also increasingly under pressure from these alternative news sources.

If the Beeb really wants to get young people, and a large part of the older generation, back watching the news, then they should change their bias and start reporting Corbyn and the Labour party objectively and truthfully, as well as stop repeating flag-waving establishment propaganda about the wars in the Middle East. But this would be too radical a change, I fear. It would mean clearing out all the various Tories in the Beeb’s news teams, like Laura Kuenssberg and Nick Robinson, or telling them to do their job properly. And so the Beeb is stuck as the voice of a right-wing, Tory, imperialist establishment, while more and more people take their news from elsewhere.