Visualisation at the expense of quality control?


I just listened to the normally excellent Sounds of the 80s on BBC Radio 2 whilst in the car. And I’m not quite sure what I heard. It sounded like the normally chatty Sara Cox was doing a TV show to camera rather than a radio show.

An hour of the show was “simulcast” on the BBC Red Button.

I particularly enjoyed the unprocessed roughly mixed TV sound – on the radio. 

And the instructions to enjoy “watching this song” on the radio. 

And having to turn the interview section up because it was so poorly recorded. 

And seemingly the soundtrack of the TV Olympics trailer – on the radio (the music track and VO tag line with no script to lead me through it).

I’m sure it looked pretty good to the Red Button TV audience, but to the main radio audience it lacked the normal warmth. Although maybe I’m biased and proper listeners wouldn’t notice it that much..?

I don’t have a problem with visualised content – the Radio 1 Live Lounge, LBC interviews or Chris Moyles Show show clips work well – some fully shot and some through semi automated studio camera systems. And it’s nice that shows like this can have a multi platform element – particularly if you’ve never seen the videos of the songs.

But shows that are essentially very cheap TV shows for the Red Button where the soundtrack is a radio programme are neither one thing nor the other. 

Visualise – yes – but if you make radio, stick to making great radio shows – or make a TV show. 

Or at least think about each of the audiences and check it works equally well for both of them..

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