Seeing double 

4 April 2005 tbs.pm/434

ITV faces fine after Central news ’emergency’

Bit of a strange one, this. The director of a late evening Central News East bulletin supposedly had an ’emergency’ to contend with, so an earlier five minute bulletin is repeated instead of either obtaining another director at short notice or relaying the West Midlands bulletin with additional East Midlands stories included (the latter would surely have been acceptable if there was a real emergency).

This raises a number of important issues. If nobody else was genuinely available at the time, then Central News is now seriously understaffed (which isn’t too surprising given the substantial nature of recent cutbacks), but the very nature of the decision made tends to suggest either arrogance (“the viewers won’t notice”) or very low levels of staff morale.

Alternatively it might have been the case that ITV deliberately chose to repeat the bulletin to see if they could get away with doing such a thing – perish the thought.