Friday, 27 November 2009

Will it be a white Christmas?

If you have poked your head out of the door recently, I am sure you would have felt the extreme chill in the air. Just a week ago it would have seemed extremely unlikely that we would be talking about a possible white Christmas, however with conditions this week being reported at 5-6 degrees Celsius, a lot of people are predicting snow.

Snow can be an exciting time for a lot of people, especially the young; a lot of people will also be hoping for snow in order to make their own Christmas experience that extra bit special. After all, in England all we usually experience is soggy leaves and puddles. Even though this is the case, people who are travelling around the Christmas period in order to spend this time with family or friends could face the hardships of delays and cancellations in public transport, and the impossibilities of driving; we all remember the immense problems caused by the snowfall in the early parts of this year! One thing that stands out for me about that time was seeing cars abandoned at the side of the road; if we do have a repeat performance I would advise steering clear of road use!

The temperatures for the beginning of the year that prompted those major snowfalls ranged between -18.4 degrees to 15.4 degrees, so if you are hoping for a white Christmas you could well be in luck, be sure to keep an eye on those weather updates.

The Daily Telegraph/BBC Radio One - News Agenda

The Daily Telegraph is the ‘UK’s best selling quality daily newspaper, outselling its nearest competitor by a massive 255,840 copies a day’. Out of all of these readers 87.4%, on average, read it every day and 72% read no other papers.

The Daily Telegraph is mainly aimed at people who fall under the ABC1 bracket, 1.2 million of which are AB. It can also be said that it is more aimed at the male population, as recent figures show around 56% of all readers are male. In recent times The Telegraph has been nick-named ‘The Torygraph’, and from this we can see that it has right wing beliefs and reaches out to a Conservative audience.

Close analysis of ‘The Telegraph’ supports the fact that it is aimed at the ABC1 audience; advertisements used range from eco friendly cars, to business flights. One major comparison you can make between The Telegraph and a general tabloid newspaper is the use of car advertising: in The Telegraph you will find a Saab automobile being advertised for its ‘eco power engine’, whereas in a tabloid you will find a Volkswagen being advertised for its sleek design and high performance. The reason for this is that you will find a lot more ABC1’s who will have a high drive for saving the planet and the ‘Act on CO2’ policy. On the other hand C2DE’s, who are lower down the social spectrum will not be influenced to buy a car for these such reasons; they are more likely to be persuaded by an advert that promotes the cars attributes in speed, power and sex appeal.

The stories in The Telegraph are always consistent in content. Front page news is usually made up of political activities or War efforts: ‘Back pedalling on MP’s expenses’, this being an example of a recent headline. The ABC1 audience will be much more inclined to read about this type of story as oppose to a headline found in The Sun: ‘Katie’s not rushing home to kids’, which would appeal to the C2DE audience as it is about television, something that ABC1’s generally have little time to enjoy. In The Telegraph the stories have a lot more text and fewer photographs, on the contrary tabloid newspapers tend to have little text, but huge headlines and photographs. Having much larger size pages, The Telegraph has an advantage for appealing to advertisers in that it gives the adverts more exposure as readers tend to take longer on the page.

BBC Radio One is one of the most popular radio stations in the whole of the UK. It plays all the current popular music and chart hits, and after 7pm it also plays alternative music, such as dance. This makes the station extremely popular to the younger audience and the more C2DE social classes. It is broadcasted via different methods such as internet, TV and radio itself.

This music is reflected in the news bulletins that are broadcasted: One of the main stories this week for example has been about the cannabis health risk not rising, and police tackling internet knife crime. These types of stories would appeal a lot more to a younger audience and therefore mirrors the music played. Other stories would also appeal to many young people, especially those at school: one of the main ones that have stood out to me was ‘bulimia was my escape from bullying’, this not only would help young school children with the same problem, but also offers great advice and support lines.

On the other hand, a radio station such as BBC Radio Four which is the second most popular domestic radio station in the UK which deals with news, drama, science and history. One of the more recent programmes is called ‘farming today’, and this gives an example of what is likely to be broadcasted. Unlike BBC Radio One, the news is directed more at the ABC1 audience, news concerning trades unions and banks are more commonplace.

Friday, 20 November 2009

Handy Henry

The age old question in modern day football: Is it time for the introduction of the video referee? The mid-week World Cup Qualifier between France and The Republic ofIreland has sparked the grand debate once again.

So it's the first half of extra time in this epic match up between a brave Ireland, and a under-par France. The Irish had overturned a 1-0 home defeat in Paris when Thierry Henry handled the ball to set up William Gallas to snatch a winner and break the hearts of an entire nation. Now we have all seen a 'cheeky' handball before, but this one, it has to be said was absoloutely blatant. Despite Irish appeals the goal stood.

The after match debates have ranged from the Barcelona striker being labelled a 'cheat', to demands for a replay. Many argue, however, that a decision as important as this one could have easily been rectified with the aid of a video referee. Does a video ref take the unpredictability and passion out of the game? Or is football lacking the technology that other sports such as Rugby, Tennis and Cricket have adapted?

Henry has come out and defended himself against the claims he is a cheat and has told that he reacted with instincts. He even went as far as telling the officials of his 'mishap', and he backs the pleads of the Irish for a replay. Fifa have however ruled out this possibility.

Some may say that the Irish were unlucky, but it could also be argued that they should have finished off the French in normal time. Still the debate will go on to whether or not video technology should be introduced, and there will no doubt be more events in the future that will contribute to it.