News Reel & Blog

Did Television Come to the Aid of the Party?

Written by James Cheetham on 27th May 2015

                                                      RTS Legends Lunch Jeremy Paxman

As May comes to a close and we all get to grips with the election results, Jeremy Paxman, far from the shy and retiring type, made his thoughts perfectly clear at The Royal Television Society’s Legends Lunch on the 19th May, which we were lucky enough to attend.

Paxman was joined by Alastair Stewart with the two discussing Did Television Come To The Aid of the Party? Media Show presenter Steve Hewlett had the lucky job of trying his best to placate the two as they often bumped heads, in what was an incredibly interesting debate.

Paxman jumped in claiming opinion polls “were for idiots” while Stewart said the opinion polls still made a difference with "the truth of the matter was that there was no other narrative in town so we fell foul of what turned out to be a wrong narrative.”

Paxman pointed out that such a heavy focus was put upon opinion polls by networks due to 2015’s election being “monumentally dull,” going onto say that "there was not really a great narrative, even about the narrative of the economy." Something that Stewart vehemently disagreed with.

Paxman also called out the TV debates, saying they had no impact and simply confirmed prejudices "I think the broadcasters behaved ludicrously about the debates."

And when quizzed about the license fee which they initially tried to skit around, Paxman eventually said that he doesn’t think the current BBC license fee model can last much longer and is becoming harder to justify. Get those Netflix subscriptions at the ready…

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