18 June 2009

BBC Television News slideshow Quiz

Regular readers will know that I’m getting increasingly worried about the way BBC Television News shows us more and more PowerPoint style presentations.

Whether or not anyone at the BBC has ever bothered to ask viewers what they really think about it, I do not know, but I can’t think of any reason why television audiences would differ much from other audiences – which raises the question of why would they be any more favourably inclined towards slidomania than the hundreds of audience members who’ve told me how much they detest it when listening to PowerPoint dependent presentations.

However, after a lifetime in research, one thing I know for sure is that I might be wrong. Maybe information overload isn’t as big a problem for people as I think it is. Maybe viewers really do like to see pictures and printed words popping up on the screen behind reporters in the studio. Maybe it really does make it easier for people to understand and take in things in.

Here's another exhibit from the BBC’s 10 o’clock news (a couple of nights ago) and an invitation to see how it works for you. Watch it once – which is, of course, all that viewers get to do – and don’t read any further until you’ve seen the whole thing.

Then have a go at answering the questions below the video – and let us know how many you got right.

If the result is 'all' or 'most of them', the BBC's nightly slideshows must be doing a good job.

If it's 'none' or 'hardly any of them', I rest my case.


1. What are the 4 essentials of modern life?
2. What did the Prime Minister say today?
3. What would be hugely expensive?
4. How many of us are already in reach of superfast broadband?
5. What will be hugely expensive?
6. How much a year would the annual levy be?
7. What prices have been falling in recent years?
8. What is the government's clever wheeze?
9. How much a year is raised from television license fee payers?
10. How much is it going to cost to help old people to cope with the digital switch over?
11. How much of that might be left over by 2012?
12. How much do local news programmes cost ITV?


Appealing of Ealing said...

Yep. Very confusing. I'm usually quite good at absorbing information, but I only managed five correct answers here. Since Dickie Baker left the stage, I've found BBC News increasingly either very gimmicky or incredibly patronising. The delivery is full of unnatural emphasis, like they think we don't understand words. Weather forecasters have been doing it for years: showers will be moving in from the south west....

BTW, I enjoy your blog.

Max Atkinson said...

I reckon your score of 42% is pretty good going, certainly more than I'd have managed - even after watching it twice in order to write the questions!

And I agree that 'gimmicky' and 'patronising' just about sums it all up.

pintosal said...

Max, why not repeat the quiz with another news item, but this time only play the sound - and see what retention results.