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Last Updated: Monday, 9 May 2005, 12:20 GMT 13:20 UK
From the editor's desktop: Your response

Pete Clifton, editor of the BBC News website, looks back at a week in the newsroom and lobs in a few intriguing ideas about the way ahead. Read a selection of your comments below.


Your comments:

The "From the editor's desktop" is so trite and trivial that it is embarrassing to read
Chris McKay, San Francisco
As an ex-pat living in the US, I am usually so proud and grateful for the BBC. So much so that I have converted all my American friends and they now rely on the BBC as the only reliable source of info in this messed up world. I have to say though, that the "From the editor's desktop" is so trite and trivial that it is embarrassing to read. Come on BBC, you've got to find someone better than that!
Chris McKay, San Francisco

They're all so harsh on you! Keep going with the column, it's excellent to hear what's going on at the top every week! Where else do you get that?
Kirk Northrop, Manchester

Boredom with the election caused me to really enjoy playing "hunt the poll-tracker" every time you changed its place in the pages.
Alan Bridgewater, Oxford

Well, well - Pete is the big boo-man. What a surprise! Of course the editor says waffly things. Of course the editor is an idiot. Right, that said, what about all those whinging about waffling and idiocy? Have they read their own stuff lately? Of course not. Good work, editor, and keep waffling. At least your waffle offers a reasonable perspective! Cheers.
D Fear, Heidelberg, Germany

To add to the highs of your election coverage: It looked great! When I logged-on on Friday morning I was really impressed at how well presented it all was, an instant overview of what was going on results wise, accompanied by articles which picked up the highlights (well you know what I mean). The results map was excellent. Who decides on the layouts of your site, would love to hear a bit more about the people who build and layout the site, your journalists seem like a very multi-talented bunch?
Patrick, Manchester

Top notch column as always. I broke my digital camera two days ago (a combination of alcohol, carelessness and, well, sitting on it) but if you can supply the photographic equipment, I'll be happy to take that spare seat to New York off your hands.
Tom Calvert, Hamstreet, UK

What I was not happy about was that we did not get the opportunity to criticise your colleagues who presented the news... Paxman's constant reference to the PM not being trusted got beyond a joke
Brian, Melksham

I thought your web page was excellent. Though what I was not happy about was that we did not get the opportunity to criticise your colleagues who presented the news amid their constant bantering of their own views... I did not vote for Tony Blair but Paxman's constant reference to the PM not being trusted got beyond a joke.
Brian, Melksham

The problem with BBC coverage... isn't that you wake up in the morning and think, "How can we make Tony Blair look good today?" The problem is that the BBC has an inherently left-wing culture which you don't even recognise because you are so used to it. You get away with it, partly because left-wing beliefs are currently the dominant political culture anyway, and partly because the BBC has such a high reputation for other reasons; but those are only explanations, not justifications.
Alex Swanson, Milton Keynes, UK

If the pro smudgers are good enough, they'll keep getting work. It's only those who deep down know they're not good enough who should be worried. Personally, as a licence fee payer, I'd resent to a single penny of it going to such a rude, objectionable, arrogant American. Oh, and don't flatter yourself, Gene. Next to no-one's heard of you, and even fewer care.
Ian, London

I'm with the editor on this one... Come on you Cobblers! Election? What election?
Martyn, Northampton

Personally, I prefer to be addressed as a user. Short and clear. How can I join the Reproduce-Jarrod's-Message-In-Full Campaign, please?
Alex, Sofia, Bulgaria

That postcode search was pure genius
Pat B, London
I love the idea of keeping Fact Check going to hold politicians accountable! And that postcode search was pure genius, thank you. Web user is the standard term, I find consumer more offensive and surfer is so 94 it's untrue, please don't call us that.

As for photographers, surely the best and most suitable photo should win out, the days when photography was an elite high art died out when digital cameras and Photoshop hit the mass market, too bad the pros have just woken up to that.
Pat B, London, UK

For a journalist, your column is brilliant. We, at our news desk, will be referring to it a lot now! Lots of good information, understandably boring to those not into journalism, but valuable to me.

Election coverage was not as exciting as BBC News 24 (with Paxman versus Galloway) but useful - again - to us journalists! Regarding user or surfer, I agree with Dom M... I'd be a BBC Newsreader any day... so Mr Clifton, bring it on!
Clark Kent, London

I have lost count of the number of times I have attempted to contribute to the website. I feel on occasion, I am quick off the mark but I have never had anything published! I try and make my comments interesting without being abusive.

I think your coverage of the lead up to elections brilliant. I just wish the EU was part of the coverage as it is pivotal to the UK. Not least of which is our 13bn annual contribution. By the way, does anyone know what we get for that sort of money?
Andrew Gardner, Grantham, UK

About the coverage: It was pretty good, but I couldn't work out how ITV seemed to have several more results than the BBC in the first few hours
Robert Varley, Trowbridge
About the coverage: It was pretty good, but I couldn't work out how ITV seemed to have several more results than the BBC in the first few hours. For example, when you had four results they seemed to have about seven, although they never listed what all of them were.
Robert Varley, Trowbridge, Wilts

Use visitor instead of user.
Marc Grossman, Purley, London, UK

I love the labrador in the photo, so please don't get rid of him just yet. In fact, use him in an obscure story and set a challenge to your readers to find him!
Paul Bedford, Thetford, Norfolk

I work as an English teacher for one of the secondary schools of the ministry of education of Oman, in a town called Rustaq. The students are Islamic and strictly Arabic in culture, religion and every respect. English is very, very difficult for them but now accepted purely from academic points of view and for getting jobs, updating info on computers, etc.

Is it possible to cover some aspects of this world in your magazine? Do you have a correspondent in this area? Well, the capital is Muscat. Maybe you have someone out there. It would be very, very interesting to explore this side of the world. Think about it!
Caroline MK, Rustaq, Sultanate of Oman

The column's a delight as ever. But I'd like to spearhead a campaign to have Jarrod's message (column, 6/5/05) reproduced in full.
Ian Ratcliffe, Walsall, UK

"And it looks as though, after a few quiet years, the Webbys are having a fully fledged awards do in New York in June. Sigh, someone will have to go. Any photographers fancy coming with me?" Sure, as a non-professional photographer who thinks readers should be able to submit photos to BBC News and who hasn't send you any abusive mail on the subject, I think I'm just the person you need!
James, Reading, UK

Thanks for the blog. It was fantastic. Lots of chuckles to brighten up a dull campaign. I often found myself sending blog URLs to people. On election night, I found a couple of things lacking. You could have had a constantly updated prediction (after a suitable number of results had come in). There was also no analysis of the sort "The Tories are doing well in London; but in the North of England, lots of Labour votes are going to the Lib Dems".
Stephen Turner, Cambridge, England

Apologies for continuing the issue of photographic submissions well beyond the point where anyone is still interested, but my take on this is that your site has a duty to use the best and most suitable images for any story. And if said images just happen to be from a "user" rather than a professional photographer then where is the logic in ignoring them just to keep a photographer in a job? You would hope that professional photographers would be producing the majority of the best images anyway.
Andrew Cameron, Aberdeen, UK

As for the idea of an "editors choice" page, or something similar, it's a great idea. There is so much content on the site, people never see everything
Mark, Swindon
In case the negative comments have been piling up: keep up the good work. It's great to read about how the site is run and how decisions are made. This is precisely what the web can bring over and above traditional media. As for the idea of an "editors choice" page, or something similar, it's a great idea. There is so much content on the site, people never see everything. It's nice to be presented with a selection. I find I then read things I wouldn't otherwise have clicked through to, and may well continue to read similar articles next time they appear - Choice may well be in fashion, but sometimes it's nice to have some guidance!
Mark, Swindon

Surfers sounds terribly dated now in terms of using the web; I don't see what's so derogatory about user. I'd describe myself as a reader of BBC News online - please let us all identify ourselves as BBC newsreaders. Lots of childhood fantasies come true! I found the Election Monitor dreadfully dull. I enjoy the column; I like hearing the rationale behind some of the things that you do or are considering. Getting the newsreaders involved more is a great idea; let's face it, using the odd amateur shot isn't going to bankrupt professional photographers.
Dom M, London, UK



 



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