Author Topic: BBC Four Under Threat  (Read 1893 times)

Small Man Big Horse

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BBC Four Under Threat
« on: May 14, 2020, 10:46:25 AM »
The Telegraph are claiming that the channel may be closed down by the end of the year - https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2020/05/13/save-bbc-four-presenters-say-channel-must-not-axed-corporation/ - though the BBC themselves are currently denying this. A few other shitty sources (The Sun, Mail, Metro) have picked up on it as well, but hopefully this is a preemptive leak so that some sort of campaign can be organised to save it.

Norton Canes

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Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2020, 11:51:13 AM »
First they came for BBC3, and I did not speak out -
Because it mostly showed shit sitcoms

Then they came for BBC Four, and I did not speak out -
Because it mostly showed dull history documentaries and interminable Scandi-noir thrillers (though there was the Top Of The Pops repeats, obviously)

Then they came for BBC1, and I did not speak out -
Because I only really watched The One Show, anyway

BlodwynPig

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Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2020, 12:05:27 PM »
First they came for BBC3, and I did not speak out -
Because it mostly showed shit sitcoms

Then they came for BBC Four, and I did not speak out -
Because it mostly showed dull history documentaries and interminable Scandi-noir thrillers (though there was the Top Of The Pops repeats, obviously)

Then they came for BBC1, and I did not speak out -
Because I only really watched The One Show, anyway

What are you!?

pigamus

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Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2020, 12:19:56 PM »
More likely to make it online-only I would have thought.

I've always liked BBC4 while kind of thinking that if BBC2 were doing its job properly you wouldn't need it in the first place.

Small Man Big Horse

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Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #4 on: May 14, 2020, 01:16:32 PM »
More likely to make it online-only I would have thought.

I guess, but that tends to mean only new shows get an airing online, and then eventually show up on BBC1 or 2, that seems to be the case with BBC Three anyhow.

Quote
I've always liked BBC4 while kind of thinking that if BBC2 were doing its job properly you wouldn't need it in the first place.

Absolutely, it's definitely declined in quality since BBC4 came along.

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2020, 01:25:30 PM »
More likely to make it online-only I would have thought.

I've always liked BBC4 while kind of thinking that if BBC2 were doing its job properly you wouldn't need it in the first place.

I'm not sure about that. BBC3 was shifted online only not just to 'save cost' it was to make room for longer hours on the CBBC channel, as they timeshared the slot in the multiplex. BBC4 timeshares with CBEEBIES which probably wouldn't have a reason to broadcast later. So unless they relinquished the slot they wouldn't save costs, and if they're doing that I think they'd can the production costs of programming as well.

The idea of linear channels when you're going online-only does make less sense, there's no reason they can't put things in iplayer that aren't associated with a channel. BBC Three now is just a very broad 'youth' umbrella for categorizing a group of commissioned programming.

That said I hope it doesn't go because I think this exactly the sort of thing that doesn't get made in commercial ventures because it's of not much commercial value, and if the bbc aren't making programming of limited commercial value but high artistic or cultural value then they may as well start getting paid for by ads like every other cunt.

I think this has been threatened before though. Usually stirring the pot with 'thinking about binning bbc4 and using the money to make programming for ETHNICS' which then prompts a mixture of anger that BBC4 exists (who watches it? I only watch strictly!) and general xenophobia.

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2020, 12:50:59 AM »
Jonathan Meades gets an hour every 18 months or so.
Other than that, how many over-scored documentaries about steam engines or periwigs fronted by non-entities 'on a journey' do we need?


Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2020, 12:54:24 PM »
Jonathan Meades gets an hour every 18 months or so.
Other than that, how many over-scored documentaries about steam engines or periwigs fronted by non-entities 'on a journey' do we need?



It's got some good maths and science stuff on there from time to time, the Hannah Fry stuff is good. Mark Kermode's Secrets of Cinema was great too.

Not to forget it also bought us The Thick of It and Brooker.

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2020, 12:02:03 PM »
They do the best music coverage of any tv channel. Wasn't Detectorists a BBC 4 thing too?

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2020, 12:26:43 PM »
They do the best music coverage of any tv channel. Wasn't Detectorists a BBC 4 thing too?

Yes. Good list here of its original programmes, some good ones I forgot about in there.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BBC_Four#Original_programmes

Rev+

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Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2020, 10:28:59 PM »
Not that they produced it, but they showed Curb your Enthusiasm at the point when it was 'BBC Knowledge having a bit of an identity crisis'.  That was a bit controversial at the time, but staked it out as its own channel doing its own thing.  Years later it's properly become its own thing, and it'll be a sad loss.  BBC1 could more pleasingly fuck off - I watch absolutely nothing on that channel apart from Doctor Who, and even that's gone to shit.

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #11 on: May 18, 2020, 10:30:29 PM »
Not that they produced it, but they showed Curb your Enthusiasm at the point when it was 'BBC Knowledge having a bit of an identity crisis'.  That was a bit controversial at the time, but staked it out as its own channel doing its own thing.  Years later it's properly become its own thing, and it'll be a sad loss.  BBC1 could more pleasingly fuck off - I watch absolutely nothing on that channel apart from Doctor Who, and even that's gone to shit.

Fuuck I hadn't even considered imports. Flight of the Conchords as well. All the Scandi-Noirs and a personal favourite, Spiral.

Was Arrested Development on there or was that BBC2?

Dewt

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Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #12 on: May 19, 2020, 01:34:00 AM »
If the BBC Four department is smart they'll be doing the same thing 6 Music did to save itself.

Ballad of Ballard Berkley

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Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #13 on: May 19, 2020, 03:29:48 AM »
If the BBC Four department is smart they'll be doing the same thing 6 Music did to save itself.

I suspect/hope that this is what will happen.

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #14 on: May 19, 2020, 09:22:41 AM »
I'm skeptical it's that because I think it's narrowly missed the swinging axe before. More they want to bin it but it keeps getting pushed back to the next road because it'd prove a bit too unpopular.

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #15 on: May 19, 2020, 02:38:23 PM »
I think bbc 4 showed Arcadia, there was also an interesting one I saw not long ago about Franco's victims which is still on iplayer.
It may be worth keeping overall for the occasional stuff but ultimately there's a chasm of difference in quality between external docs like these and their in-house stuff. Comedy is probably the only decent thing the BBC can still do.

pigamus

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Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #16 on: May 19, 2020, 02:46:04 PM »
I think bbc 4 showed Arcadia, there was also an interesting one I saw not long ago about Franco's victims which is still on iplayer.
It may be worth keeping overall for the occasional stuff but ultimately there's a chasm of difference in quality between external docs like these and their in-house stuff. Comedy is probably the only decent thing the BBC can still do.

What, their in-house stuff isn't any good? Really?

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #17 on: May 19, 2020, 02:46:30 PM »
There's been some great stuff that's up there long term, like Jim Moir's doc about video art.

And although I think they just funded production, the American Epic documentary series where they restored and recreated some early recordings from the Western Electric system were bloody great.

pigamus

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Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #19 on: May 20, 2020, 09:41:13 AM »
Reported that the new BBC plan says it won't be closing BBC 4 but it's exploring returning BBC 3 as a broadcast channel and with its budget doubling to £80M as it needs more younger viewers. With BBC 4's budget cuts and the loss of its dedicated controller it looks like there will be a lot more repeats.

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #20 on: May 20, 2020, 09:46:53 AM »
When they made BBC 3 online only they extended the hours of cbbc because they timeshared a slot on the mux. Unless they found another slot they'd have to either shorten cbbc's hours over it swap it with bbc4 and broadcast 4 later (I think cbbc shuts at 9pm?).

Either way, they were too busy competing with the other stations over boomers and this is shutting the door after the horse has bolted.

notjosh

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Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #21 on: May 20, 2020, 11:27:05 AM »
Quote from: https://twitter.com/scottygb/status/1263052313012436993
BBC Four will increase focus on bringing together collections of the most distinctive content from the BBC’s rich archive. Arts will continue to be a centrepiece of Four as we carry on showcasing Culture in Quarantine through this period.

More TOTP repeats it is then.

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #22 on: May 20, 2020, 11:40:05 AM »
From the annual plan:

Quote
- As the nation’s favourite channel, BBC One will remain the centrepiece of our live broadcast offer –a strong mainstream channel that continues to take creative risks

- BBC Two will become the home of the BBC’s specialist programming with a renewed focus on premium and distinctive factual content from documentaries, science and history to the arts, music and religion –helping audiences to discover and understand the world in all its complexity. It will remain a mixed-genre channel that will provide a vital creative pipeline to BBC One for scripted and factual entertainment content in order to grow the hits of the future and continue that strong and successful tradition.BBC Two will be enriched by taking the best of BBC Four’s originations, giving these programmes a bigger shop window

- BBC Three has demonstrated an extraordinary track record of originality. It has grown new talent, created huge global hits and has been named Channel Of The Year three times. We are now backing this success, more than doubling its budget and maximising its reach across broadcast and online. We will expand the range of content that it commissions, but retain its focus on new talent, compelling drama (like Normal People, Killing Eve, Thirteen and Killed by my Debt), life-changing current affairs and factual (like Stacey Dooley’s investigations and Love and Hate Crime), entertainment (like RuPaul's Drag Race UK and Glow Up) and comedy (like This Country, Fleabag and Famalam).

We are exploring how we can maximise the impact of this new young adult content. Our research evidence shows that there is a big available audience on linear television and the BBC could reach them if we move decisively. So there is potentially a strong case for restoring BBC Three as a linear channel as well as an online destination.But in the course of this year we will need to explore how viewing habits develop during the Covid-19crisis

- BBC Four will increase focus on bringing together collections of the most distinctive content from the BBC’s rich archive.Arts will continue to be a centrepiece of Four as we carry on showcasing Culture in Quarantine through this period. Outside the UK, we are exploring potential commercial opportunities for BBC Four to become a new global subscription service that takes our strengths in specialist factual to the world stage.

http://downloads.bbc.co.uk/aboutthebbc/reports/annualplan/annual-plan-2020-21.pdf

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #23 on: May 20, 2020, 01:04:11 PM »
If they made BBC 2 more like what it used to be (I guess BBC 4 is where a lot of that got hived off to) that isn't that bad, but I fear it really means a watering down to fit the bbc2 audience.

They're basically admitting that marginalising BBC 3 was a misstep.

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #24 on: May 20, 2020, 06:04:00 PM »
What, their in-house stuff isn't any good? Really?

Don't rate them. Complacent, superficial, predictable, uncreative, uninformative, unadventurous.
Anyway I expect any decent stuff will end up on BBC2.
Still, Stuart Maconie knows the score: https://twitter.com/StuartMaconie/status/1263096589364715520

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #25 on: May 20, 2020, 06:16:23 PM »
That's egregious hypocrisy from a man who did a shitload of 'I love the 80's' talking head pieces.

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #26 on: May 20, 2020, 07:33:47 PM »
BBC4 gave us Only Connect, that should be enough justification to keep it going for another 25 years minimum.

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #27 on: May 21, 2020, 06:16:37 PM »
Really enjoy BBC4, like the "slow" stuff they've been doing where nothing much happens.

the

Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #28 on: May 21, 2020, 07:58:57 PM »
Really enjoy BBC4, like the "slow" stuff they've been doing where nothing much happens.

Very relaxing. The best one is where it says it'll be back at 7pm

KennyMonster

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Re: BBC Four Under Threat
« Reply #29 on: May 28, 2020, 01:07:51 PM »
They do the best music coverage of any tv channel. Wasn't Detectorists a BBC 4 thing too?

Holy fuck NO!,

It's very Orwellian to think that, they've succeeded in re-writing history that you think this.

We are all Maconie's babkins now.

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