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Radio 4's forum for comments, queries, criticisms and congratulations





In the last programme of the current series, Roger Bolton digs in to controversy about climate change, hears listener response to the BBC's Gay Britannia season and discusses Jim Al-Khalili's broadcasting career. Well known climate sceptic and former Chancellor Lord Nigel Lawson was invited onto Radio 4's Today programme to discuss the economics of climate change recently, following up an earlier interview with climate campaigner Al Gore. But Lord Lawson also took the opportunity to...

Duration: 00:28:11

Science Special

Roger Bolton presents a special edition of the programme, exploring science on the radio. Are BBC science programmes just "jocular froth"? That's the view of one listener, who speaks for many as he puts his point directly to Deborah Cohen, the Editor of Science Radio. Jim Al-Khalili, presenter of The Life Scientific, discusses the scientific consensus around man-made climate change and how that should affect the way the BBC covers the issue. Tom Feilden, Science and Environment Editor of...

Duration: 00:27:42


Roger Bolton asks if Radio 5 Live was right to interview a controversial columnist, discusses BBC plans to reinvent audio, and finds out how to relax a Prom. Kevin Myers was the subject of enormous public backlash after he published a column in the Irish edition of the Sunday Times that many saw as anti-semitic. So should Radio 5 Live have invited him onto Emma Barnett's 5 Live daily for an interview? He apologised, and tried to explain his position, but Feedback listeners are split on...

Duration: 00:27:26


Roger Bolton looks at the BBC's coverage of Donald Trump, the Dead Ringers team reveal what spurred them on in their latest popular series, and listeners react to the news that Saturday Review has been granted a late reprieve. At a press conference shortly after his inauguration, Donald Trump referred to the BBC's Jon Sopel as "Another beauty". On this week's Feedback, the beauty himself joins Roger to consider listener response to his coverage, how the BBC tries to remain impartial in the...

Duration: 00:27:39


As parliament starts the summer recess, the BBC's assistant political editor Norman Smith looks back at a tumultuous few months in Westminster, talking with Roger Bolton about the challenges of working under intense scrutiny and accusations of bias from MPs and on social media. This week, the BBC released its annual report, including the names and wage brackets of 96 of its on-air talent who are all paid over 150 thousand pounds a year. Licence fee payers give us their thoughts on...

Duration: 00:27:27


Roger Bolton investigates audience responses to BBC radio programmes. A number of listeners were shocked to hear description of an act of torture and murder on Radio 4's lunchtime series Cold War: Stories from the Big Freeze and considered it overly graphic for the time of day. Should listeners have been given more warning about the unsettling nature of the story? And was the station right to broadcast it at all? Producer Phil Tinline and Radio 4's Editorial Standards Editor Roger Mahony...

Duration: 00:27:27


In the past two weeks, former party leaders Iain Duncan Smith and Ed Miliband have been taking turns replacing Jeremy Vine on his Radio 2 show. But why did they say yes to this risky venture? And what did they learn from spending time on the other side of the microphone? Ed and Iain join Roger Bolton to look back at their time on air. The BBC has, for the first time, published an annual plan that lays out its commitments for the year ahead. But what does it mean for BBC radio listeners?...

Duration: 00:27:28


As Middle East editor, Jeremy Bowen has one of the BBC's most difficult, and often dangerous, jobs. He sits down with Feedback's Roger Bolton to reflect on his career and his Radio 4 series, Our Man in the Middle East. Last week, Ed Miliband impressed listeners with an assured week sitting in for Jeremy Vine. This week it's been the turn of former conservative leader Iain Duncan Smith. Feedback listeners pass judgment on how he measures up to his predecessor in the Radio 2 hotseat. Over...

Duration: 00:27:35


Ed Miliband has spent the week in an unfamiliar position; sitting in for Jeremy Vine on Radio 2. Iain Duncan Smith, the former conservative leader, has his turn next week. So far, most listeners are loving the experiment. Roger Bolton sits down with programme editor Phil Jones to get his take on how his new presenter has performed, and to ask why Radio 2 felt using politicians instead of more experienced broadcasters was worth the risk. Last week, Andrew Scott came on to explain why the...

Duration: 00:27:29


Roger Bolton explores whether recent major incident coverage has been too graphic and intrusive and why the BBC is making signing in to iPlayer Radio compulsory, and also goes behind the scenes at Dame Hilary Mantel's Reith lectures. In the light of major terror attacks in London and Manchester, followed by the tragic fire in West London, listeners give their reactions to the BBC's coverage. Did the reporting veer too often towards sensationalism or was it upsetting but essential? Roger...

Duration: 00:27:24


On the morning after the night before, Roger Bolton talks to the BBC's Head of Newsgathering, Jonathan Munro, about the corporation's election coverage, responding to audience complaints about bias and over-aggressive interviewers. Also, listener Marcia Hughes gets to the heart of Radio 4's Soul Music with producer Maggie Ayre. And audio addict Anthony Frost explains why his all-consuming passion for radio means he finds it difficult to find time to talk to his wife. Producer: Will Yates A...

Duration: 00:27:32

Westminster attack

Roger Bolton hears listeners' responses to BBC Radio's coverage of the Westminster attack. Also, following a letter from more than 70 - mainly Conservative - MPs to the BBC which called the Corporation's coverage of Brexit pessimistic and skewed, BBC Economics Editor Kamal Ahmed discusses his role in uncertain economic times. This week, a documentary took listeners inside a hospital in northern Israel for 24 hours. Tim Samuels' Sleepover: Inside the Israeli Hospital followed doctors at Ziv...

Duration: 00:27:30

Is it time to re-think the Official Chart show?

Radio 4's forum for audience comment.

Duration: 00:27:38

Keeping it impartial

This week a storm of controversy has surrounded Woman's Hour presenter Jenni Murray. Many listeners feel a newspaper article she wrote breached the BBC's guidelines on impartiality and compromised her presenter role. Others supported her right to free speech. We hear from listeners on both sides of the argument. John Humphrys has also attracted criticism. During a Today programme interview he suggested that referring to MP Jo Cox's murder as an act of terrorism could "muddy the waters"....

Duration: 00:27:25

Dramatising real-life disasters

Roger Bolton hears listener concerns about satirising Donald Trump in a news programme, and considers how far writers can go when dramatising real disasters. Every Friday on the World at One, reporter Jonny Dymond has been documenting the movements of Trump's first 100 days in office with a wry twist. While some listeners have enjoyed the touch of humour, others have said it's out of place in what they say should be an objective news programme. Roger chairs a discussion between two...

Duration: 00:27:35

Radio 2 Schedule Changes

Listeners have been voicing their concerns about a significant shake-up to Radio 2's schedule including time changes, the moving of beloved presenters and an apparent lack of diversity. As the new schedule comes into effect this weekend, Head of BBC Radio 2 Lewis Carnie answers a range of audience questions - from his side of the Brian Matthew story, to ensuring Radio 2 will fill the space left by Desmond Carrington with a similarly eclectic sound. Earlier this month, the new editor of The...

Duration: 00:30:07

Time to re-think Russia?

Roger Bolton asks if journalists are stuck in cold war thinking about Russia, and discovers if Radio 4's interactive drama Hashtag Love was truly interactive. Following National Security Advisor Michael Flynn's resignation this week and stories of alleged Russian involvement in the US elections, some listeners have suggested that reporting about Russia follows only one narrative line - presenting the country as enemy of the West. So are journalists sticking to a one-sided portrayal that...

Duration: 00:27:28

Melvyn Bragg, Feisty Moral Maze, Brexit agriculture

Roger Bolton hears the comments and concerns of listeners on the past week's radio broadcasting and raises their issues with those involved in making the programmes. As In Our Time prepares to celebrate its 750th episode, Roger Bolton talks to the programme's presenter Melvyn Bragg, who reveals how he ramps up the pressure to achieve the best live programme and talks about the programmes that have transformed his thinking. Long-standing BBC Correspondent Hugh Sykes considers the importance...

Duration: 00:30:36

New Editor of Today

Roger Bolton asks if interviews with President Trump supporters require more care - or even censorship. And listeners give their reaction to the announcement of a new Today programme editor. Earlier this week, the Today programme interviewed Frank Gaffney. Introduced as a former government official, Gaffney was invited to discuss his support for Donald Trump's ban on immigration from seven predominantly Muslim countries. But some listeners thought his so-called controversial political stance...

Duration: 00:29:27


Roger Bolton hears from listeners who claim the BBC may be out of step with popular opinion, and staffed by people from privileged middle-class backgrounds. Following Radio 4's recent series The New World, Commissioning Editor Mohit Bakaya and one of the presenters, Jo Fidgen meet some of those listeners to discuss their thoughts about the series and its ideological starting points. GF Newman's The Corrupted has just finished its third series of ten episodes, broadcast across two weeks. It's...

Duration: 00:29:04

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