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Re: Howl of outrage!!
Posted by: geg (
Date: February 24, 2009 09:00AM

I think we can be fairly sure that since Mr Paxman knows everything, Thursday Last will appear in the next Thursday Next book - perhaps we should hold fire until then?

Re: Howl of outrage!!
Posted by: MilesHawke (
Date: February 24, 2009 05:58PM

To answer Roberts first point - my real surname is Whyte - as I said I edited the response before posting it to protect the guilty (in which I include myself) but I missed that no BBC mistake there but the rest are all their own!

BTW last night's final of University Challenge was a corker. For those who haven't seen the show, anyone buzzing in to answer a starter question is announced by their team followed by their surname e.g. 'Manchester,Bradshaw'. As the end of the show approaches everyone, including the announcer starts speaking more rapidly to make better use of the time. The announcer's attempts to say 'Corpus Christi, Trimble' as fast as possible becam increasingly hilarious - especially as he could have abbreviated it to 'Corpus'.

It amused me but then I'm get a kick out of teh BBC complaints department...

Miles Hawke

Re: Howl of outrage!!
Posted by: bunyip (
Date: February 25, 2009 03:52AM

Do you mean to tell us that the BBC hasn't outsourced its complaints department to a low priced bidder in the Orient or Bradford?

Howl of outrage!!
Posted by: zendao42 (
Date: February 27, 2009 11:03AM

I don't even know Mr. XXXX but I have this sudden urge to use him for target practice-
or maybe, if I had an angry thunder god nearby, turn him into a vending machine...

Signature or shameless self-promotion?
You decide:



Re: Howl of outrage!!
Posted by: geg (
Date: March 02, 2009 10:39PM

University Quiz Show Sabotaged!
Fingers Point to Mysterious MilesHawke Figure

Re: Howl of outrage!!
Posted by: MilesHawke (
Date: March 05, 2009 01:11PM

Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap

Re: Howl of outrage!!
Posted by: geg (
Date: March 05, 2009 10:09PM

and the scores at the end of that round are 1 to Karma and 0 to the BBC.

Re: Howl of outrage!!
Posted by: bunyip (
Date: March 07, 2009 04:20AM

The best way to needle the BBC is to get ITV to mention the mistake on one of their shows. Gratuitous bitchy backbiting is all the rage, you know.

Re: Howl of outrage!!
Posted by: MilesHawke (
Date: May 08, 2009 09:27PM

Well who would have thought it - I have now had a response from my second complaint (only about three months after I made it). If you can't remember where we had got to (and who can blame you) why don't you flick back up the thread?

Refreshed you memory? then carry on reading (names again changed to protect the guilty) :-

Dear Mr Hawke

Thank you for your comments on a bonus question in the Corpus Christi Oxford vs Exeter match, broadcast on 26 January 2009. The question read as follows: Q: Thursday Last, the literary detective who features in the novels ‘Lostin a Good Book’ and ‘First Among Sequels’, was created by which author? A: Jasper Fforde As you point out, the detective’s name is indeed ‘Thursday Next’ and not ‘Thursday Last’. We got it wrong. Presumably the two titles mentioned in the question helped Corpus Christi to a correct answer: it is unlikely that our error handicapped them. Please understand that it is the production team that bears the responsibility for such errors, not Jeremy Paxman himself.

Similarly, it is an editorial decision on our part that the presenter may from time to time appear ‘rude’ to teams that give incorrect answers. Such an editorial decision in no way implies omniscience or omnicompetence on our part. We merely feel that this aspect of the presenter’s style adds occasional spice to the programme. However, as you suggest, it does imply that we must aspire to yet higher standards in the checking and proof-reading of questions. If we get things wrong and then permit the presenter to sneer at the contestants, more fool us and all credit to viewers who point out our errors.

The frustration of not fully hearing questions interrupted by the gong is a point that viewers regularly raise. At the moment, we feel that a pause to explain an incomplete or unanswered question would be an overly jarring and unnecessary change of pace in the atmosphere of speed and excitement that regularly characterises the final minutes of a match. Should we review this approach, please consider your criticism to have been vindicated.

Questions Editor
University Challenge

Now Mr YYYY's answer is an improvement on the first response from Mr XXXX. He acknowledged and apologised for the mistake and explained the logic behind Jeremy not completing and answering questions interrupted by the gong.

But - joy of joys - he opens far more intriguing areas of debate.

Mr YYYY states that it is editorial policy for Jeremy to appear rude from time-to-time! This means it is not Jeremy's personality that is to blame but the production team and that my licence fee has paid for the BBC to coarsen our national life. What kind of message does this send to our kids? I wonder if it is an editorial policy when Jeremy is nice to people? I wonder if Jeremy thinks for himself at all?

Then we come to not answering questions at the gong.

Firstly I would point out that the first response three months ago said it was up to Jeremy whether he finished the question or not, the second answer says it is deliberate policy that he doesn't finish.

But what I really love is the fact that apparently many other viewers have complained about the same thing but they've done nothing about it! I wonder how many people thay have had write in and say how much they love the speeded up ending and the fact that nothing now is done to detract from that? My geuess is zero.

The reponse also ignores the fact that Jeremy could answer the question after the scores have been announced but before the goodbyes when the atmosphere has calmed down. Alternatively in this day and age why not post the question and answer on the internet or allow digital viewers to find out by pressing the red button?

I suspect that the real answer is a combination of them being too lazy/unimaginative to do anything and not wanting to draw attention to the problem they've created.

My other point about how long it took to deal with the original complaint so poorly has not been adddressed at all.

I am beginning to suspect that I have been possesed by the spirit of Mary Whitehouse! but I feel tempted to continue the correspondence as, God love'em, they have actually replied which I didn't think they were going to do!

What do you guys think?


World is crazier and more of it than we think

Re: Howl of outrage!!
Posted by: robert (
Date: May 09, 2009 04:29PM


You have already surpassed the superhuman and got a media bureaucracy to admit that is only really intent on manipulating the audience.

What do you want? Blood? They won't give you that because they don't have it.

Retire with victory. There are many other battles than this one.

Re: Howl of outrage!!
Posted by: bunyip (
Date: May 11, 2009 01:53AM

Regarding Mary Whitehouse:

Does anyone else remember the Two Ronnies comment that when a car mounted the pavement outside Mary Whitehouse's dwelling she went and threw a bucket of water over it?


It's lonesome down memory lane!

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/11/2009 01:53AM by bunyip.

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