Close of the show – updated

10 Responses to “Close of the show – updated”

  1. 1 Linda from Italy
    January 14, 2010 at 23:30

    Having just watched the you-tube horror , I hope I read you right Ros and that you were truly disgusted by this abomination.
    My post again, at thr risk of gettign banned from the Beeb forever, I have to make a stand.
    I don’t know whether this post will make it onto the blog, but I have to have my say, regardless.
    I feel that this evening’s programme was exploitative in the extreme, the audio version of voyeurism. That poor women reduced to tears at the news that everyone in her town was dead for example, why on earth didn’t someone have the common decency to shut off the microphone to preserve her dignity?
    I am aware of the argument about bringing the human scale of this tragedy to the notice of listeners in happier situations and encouraging us all to make a donation and to promote a sense of solidarity, but I really do think the normal BBC reports are doing that to the full, and actually rather better. Do we not possess an imagination?
    The topic for discussion this evening was all well and good, as it should have been a debate about the role of religion and how people reconcile their belief in a loving God with such an apparently pointless massacre of the innocents, although of course, if you belong to certain branches of Christianity there is no such thing as innocence, thanks to the doctrine of original sin.
    Listening to some of those Haitians and their unshakeable faith was heartbreaking and I felt it would be utterly inhuman to embark on some sort of intellectual argument about how logical, or otherwise, such beliefs can be when hope is running out for the people they love.
    I think it is time WHYS had a good look at what the programme is there for – at this moment, I would suggest that some navel gazing is in order – at the moment though, all I have to say is shame on you.

  2. 2 Linda from Italy
    January 15, 2010 at 00:05

    PS this is supposed to be RADIO – why do we have to watch substandard tele?
    The best programme ever on BBC WS is From Our Own Correspondent -eloquence beyond anything that grotty camcorder stuf can convey.

  3. 3 Lynn
    January 15, 2010 at 10:22

    The tragedy in Haiti is enormous and all of us are deeply concerned about the situation but I wonder if three days of live radio with people who are deeply worried or grieving is the best way to run this broadcast. Yesterday felt wrong to me in so many ways. I believe it is insensitive and not helping anyone to go over and over the plight of so many in this situation. How does it help someone to have them collapse in floods of tears on live, international radio? Talk to aid workers or your own reporters but please let’s not have more of this desperate aimless talk that does nothing to help anyone. I really don’t think I can even bring myself to listen today.

  4. 4 Mark Sandell
    January 15, 2010 at 11:41

    Dear Linda and Lynn,

    I’m sorry you were unhappy with our response to the disaster in Haiti.
    You won’t be surprised to know that i disagree with you but that’s not to say that i don’t take what you say seriously.
    Of course WHYS is part of a bigger landscape – we are not From Our Own Correspondent or Newshour and we would never claim to be.
    Our aim is to link people up around the world to talk to each other about what matters to them. This subject clearly matters to our audience and in particular to the Haitians in the audience in Florida. They wanted to hear news from their country and had been trying in vain to get any- our programme gave them that opportunity. Most of our guests had taken part in the show the day before- and specifically asked to return yesterday.
    Of course we had no intention to add to anyone’s distress and to answer one of your specific points Linda, Ros took the mic away when it was clear the lady was getting more upset.
    We are constantly looking at what we do – we take the privilege of hearing the conversations you provide very seriously but i believe what we have done the over the last few days has been sensitively handled and yes, even valuable judging by many of your responses.
    That doesn’t include you and once again i’m sorry that you felt we got it wrong. Long term members of the WHYS community will know that i regularly appear on this blog to explain – and if necessary, apologise for- things we’ve got wrong.I really don’t feel we have here.
    I hope despite your concerns you will give us another chance.

  5. 5 Mark Sandell
    January 15, 2010 at 13:24

    We had this tweet agreeing with Linda :
    @BBC_WHYS Same instinct that made Ros say “take the mic away” maybe should have prevented posting the video. Hard call though.

    I think this is a fair point. It is one thing for something to happen on a live radio show, but another to post the video later. It’s a reasonable criticism and i’m sorry of that has upset people.

  6. 6 patti in cape coral
    January 15, 2010 at 14:07

    Yesterday’s show was painful to listen to, especially at the end. I haven’t watched the video, nor do I plan to, listening to that poor woman was heartbreaking enough. In my opinion, the video should not have been posted, but I’m not in journalism and I’m sure there are a lot of opposing instincts when covering this kind of story. It’s obvious that as painful as this show was for the participants on the show, they did want to bring their stories to the public forum.

    I did find myself somewhat impatient with the participant’s religious fervor, but in such a terrible time I was reluctant to argue against anything that brings them comfort under such horrific circumstances. I tried to make my points as kindly as I could, but I didn’t really say what I wanted to, the way I wanted to.

  7. 7 sheetalparmar
    January 15, 2010 at 14:36

    Dear all,
    I’m writing this on behalf of Mark. The WHYS team had a discussion about some of your comments in relation to this video earlier this morning.

    I know Mark has already posted his thoughts, but he’s asked me to take the video down after careful consideration of your views. We know that some of you felt it was wrong to show someone who was so obviously grief stricken at this time.

    Apologies to those of you who were offended,

    Thanks, Sheetal.

  8. 8 Dennis
    January 15, 2010 at 16:02

    Sheetal & Mark~

    I have to support the decision of Ros’ and, for the purpose of full disclosure…i will not listen to the video……


  9. 9 Curtis Whitton
    January 15, 2010 at 18:47

    Several Years ago, I saw a documemntary about the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. I believe that there was a mid-level military official who in essence took leadership control. I have seen no report showing a Hatian politician or public safety official stepping forward.

    Is anyone in charge of the rational and equitble distribution of medical teams,food, and water?

  10. 10 Tom D Ford
    January 15, 2010 at 18:58

    Offended by tears of grief?


    It brought me into empathy and compassion with and for a woman who I had been impatient with because of her religious fervor.

    I am anti-religion but yesterday was not a time and day for that, it was a time to feel compassion for one who has been deeply hurt by things out of her control.

    I wish that I had waited for another day and time to write the things that I wrote yesterday about religion, I regret my timing.

    I thank her for sharing her tears and letting us all know that it really really hurts to lose her loved ones.

    Sharing tears and laughter help make us human, unlike the inhuman condemnations and mis-judgements of people like Pat Robertson.

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