Articles by Stephen Hopkins

Packing them in

Published 23 October 2009

Griffin complaint over BBC ‘mob’ It’s hard to feel much sympathy for Nick Griffin, the leader of the right-wing British National Party, whose controversial appearance on Question Time last night…

The right to know

Published 16 October 2009

Parliament and free speech: The right to know The Minton report If ever anyone were still sanguine about the right of free speech in this country, the débâcle this week…

Safe in their hands?

Published 29 August 2009

David Elstein: Murdoch “riled” by Ofcom According to David Elstein, formerly of, inter alia, the BBC, Thames and Channel 5, Ofcom’s “devastating” and “unanswerable” report of a couple of months…

Can pay, won’t pay

Published 19 July 2009

Dear BBC: No, you can’t have my £142.50. Will I see you in court? There are really only two ways to view Mr Moore’s outburst of civil disobedience. It is…

Wither the weather?

Published 17 June 2009

I don’t know if anyone else has noticed, but the treatment of the weather bulletins on Today is getting increasingly shabby. This morning just before eight was breathtaking, even by…

Wrong target

Published 31 March 2009

BBC funding should be cut, report says We will restore science to its rightful place, roll back the spectre of a warming planet. We will harness the sun and the…

Head in the Sky

Published 26 January 2009

Sky Won’t Screen Gaza Aid Appeal So Sky News has joined the BBC in deciding not to screen the Gaza appeal. Given that ITV, Channel 4 and Five, which have…

Uncompromizing insanity

Published 24 January 2009

Apologies, people of Gaza – the BBC is a bit jumpy lately It is sometimes said, rightly or wrongly, that the BBC and the Guardian newspaper are a good fit….


Published 19 January 2009

“Here comes counsel for the picaninny.” You wouldn’t get away with such language today. Not even a public servant – and even the most obnoxious guard of the cells below…

Who runs Britain?

Published 8 December 2008

BBC News: Baby P official fired without pay So it’s happened again. A scandal, a press hullabaloo, the demanding of heads, the swish of the metaphorical axe and said heads…

Wiser counsels prevail

Published 8 December 2008

BBC News: Clarkson joke cleared by watchdog Joking about truck… sorry, lorry drivers killing prostitutes was bound to offend some people. The murder by Steve Wright, a lorry driver, of…

Don’t throw out the baby

Published 30 November 2008

Re-regulation mustn’t go too far

Former home of the Shock Jocks

Published 27 November 2008

A past more interesting than the present

Family values?

Published 10 November 2008

Mail editor accuses Mosley judge As other EMC writers will confirm, I sometimes get into trouble for championing (some) Daily Mail values and the rules of polite society in an…

A harsh lesson

Published 30 October 2008

Brand quits BBC over prank calls The resignation of Russell Brand from the BBC can hardly be good for the Corporation. He is – I’ll try not to choke on…

They would say that, wouldn’t they?

Published 26 October 2008

The main story occupying the attentions of the Westminster village, if not the wider public, this week was that of George Osborne, and his escapades on the yacht of a…

Response: Reports of capitalism’s death are exaggerated

Published 26 October 2008

The Economist: Capitalism at bay Richard G Elen wrote recently on this blog about the financial crisis sweeping the world. The Thatcher/Reagan economic experiment was a disaster; it is time…

One Born Every Minute (or ‘The premium rate phone scandal, continued.’)

Published 20 July 2008

The premium rate phone scandal, continued

More troubles at Talk Sport

Published 6 May 2008

It’s not been a good few years for Talk Sport, the station that former Sun editor Kelvin MacKenzie fashioned in his old newspaper’s image after buying Talk Radio in 1998…

The premium rate phone scandal, cont.

Published 11 April 2008

Here’s a question for you: What is Google best known for? Is it a) Web services b) Industrial manufacturing c) Food recipies If you think you know the answer (ha!)…

Back-door privatization?

Published 8 April 2008

Selling off bits of Beeb

How to make the BBC fit for the twenty-first century?

Published 22 January 2008

A top-sliced licence fee will trigger the BBC’s destruction Whether de-coupling the licence fee from the BBC is the way forward or not (and I personally have my doubts), I…

We interrupt this programme…

Published 16 December 2007

In-Programme Pointers are here to stay.

Thought for the day

Published 11 November 2007

40% of adults pray, says survey “Britain is the most atheistic country on earth, thank God.” Thus Nick Cohen – capital “G” and all, quoted in “Pretty Straight Guys” some…

Will they never shut up?

Published 21 October 2007

I know the MediaBlog usually concerns itself with the broadcast variety, but technically the media includes the press, so I’ll chance it. It was hilarious listening to Trevor Kavanagh on…

Inform, educate, entertain

Published 3 October 2007

Radio 4: a personal history

Bias at the Beeb?

Published 2 September 2007

Has the BBC lost its way?

Creative editing

Published 8 August 2007

Channel 4 accused of ‘distortion’ Not for the first time, we have a broadcaster using events out of sequence and out of context to create the impression it wanted. The…

Some might prefer blank screens

Published 2 August 2007

BBC corrupted by Microsoft In its defence, it’s not exactly the BBC’s fault that a) it’s faced with a choice between DRM-protected downloads and no downloads at all, and b)…

A catalogue of errors

Published 13 July 2007

BBC error ‘no reason to resign’ Oh no, not again. It’s not been a good few years for the BBC. WMD; “sexing up” claims; David Kelly; Hutton; resignations at the…

A dangerous profession

Published 5 July 2007 Following on from the very welcome news that the BBC reporter Alan Johnston has been released, I think this would be a good time to reflect on the dangerous…

Report gives BBC News a (reasonably) clean bill of health

Published 24 June 2007 On the way home Friday evening, The Now Show, among its other targets, took a pot-shot at ITV. One of the comics spoke about a visit he’d made in…

Media on Mars

Published 1 June 2007

Life and the media – then and now

The folly of flogging BBC Broadcast

Published 7 May 2007

Regular readers of EMC MediaBlog will recall that the BBC decided to spin off BBC Broadcast, its broadcast arm, as a self-contained company. Now called Red Bee Media, the former…

Funding the BBC

Published 1 April 2007

The end of the BBC as we know it?

The good ol’ days

Published 6 March 2007

Life on Mars Apart from the retro continuity, mucking about with Test Card F and other trivia of interest to us pres geeks, Life on Mars offers a fascinating look…

Press freedom

Published 9 February 2007

Joy at direct hit turns to horror Until The Sun published the DVD at the centre of the inquest into the death of Corporal Matty Hull, the Pentagon was still…

A storm in a tea-cup

Published 22 January 2007

Anyone who, having just arrived back from a visit abroad, switched on Radio 4’s The World Tonight last Friday (19 January 2007) would have been forgiven for thinking that a…

The great “digital is better” myth, part 641594827

Published 31 December 2006

Wave farewell to AM radio, say experts The Telegraph talks of “the higher quality of digital broadcasts”. Compared with? FM? Erm… potentially, yes; unfortunately, most stations on DAB are streamed…

Regionalism: A spent force?

Published 31 March 2006

Regional federalism was the foundation of ITV. Should we mourn its passing? Maybe not.

ITV sophisticates

Published 3 September 2005

Reality television, talent shows and the reality of television talent


Published 3 September 2005

How the unions ruined Thames and destroyed themselves

Know future

Published 1 June 2002

Stephen Hopkins on the mess ITV has made for itself

Never Mind The Quality

Published 1 January 2002

The ruination of ITV, seen by Stephen Hopkins