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cityprod1,869 posts since 3 Oct 2005
Westcountry Spotlight
I don’t think anyone’s saying drop the beeps, the globe or the red style but surely they could change or update it. At this point it would be like NBC dropping the peacock or chimes.


At the moment though, they need to change those elements so significantly to attract younger viewers again, that maybe, just maybe, changing the colour from red, or changing the music significantly, would be exactly the kind of thing that could work. They're never gonna drop the globe, unless they replace it with something transmitter-esque, which has also been pretty synonymous with BBC News in the past.


I'm not sure I agree with that line of argument. Changing it brings no guarantee younger viewers would watch. And as a (fairly) young-ish viewer I don't see why viewers like me should be prioritised over other viewers really.

And the current brand is still incredibly recognisable with the beeps and the colour red and the public seem to like it. As for the idea it's not youth-orientated enough, there's clips of the BBC News music being played in clubs for Radio 1 DJs which I can't imagine happening for many other news themes.
If BBC could come up with something as iconic and as versatile as the current theme I say go for it but don't like the idea of change for change's sake. There's a reason you don't see the likes of Apple or Nike for example changing their brand dramatically - and when it does it's evolution rather than revolution.

I imagine too with the limited funds BBC News has, any funds they do use will probably be spent on their day-to-day journalism rather than dramatically changing a still-popular look.


The current look is so stale that the shine is coming off it, and a popular look is slowly losing the battle to stay popular. The sound of BBC News right now is very samey on TV right now, everything sounds almost exactly the same, whether its BBC World News, BBC News Channel or the bulletins on BBC1. Something needs to change significantly. And that's not even including the fact that the day-to-day journalism has significantly dropped in quality and needs to be rectified.
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Rolling News482 posts since 27 Dec 2015
Central (East) East Midlands Today
Irrespective of cosmetic branding, I just wish that the opening headlines of BBC domestic news was tightened up. If BBC World News can still manage it, why the fudge has domestic (NC and One/Six/Ten etc) gradually drifted in the years since the Lambie-Nairn revolution of 1999/2000?
TOTHs etc now seem to last about a fortnight. By the time we actually sodding well get past the "opening" titles (pah!), I'm half-expecting the presenter to say e.g. "Welcome to the BBC News at Quarter-Past-Six"! Or, perhaps even "Now it's time to join the BBC's news teams where you are"! Laughing

I agree. Compare and constrast, first is from 1999 the second is from more recently where the headline sequence is about 6 times longer:



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Alex Plain-Later (previously Austin Tatious) 913 posts since 1 Jan 2016
HTV West Points West
When I pressed play on the 2nd video that Rolling News posted, I was clean-shaven. By the time it reached the title sequence, I had grown a full hipster beard.

The overlong duration was not the only infuriating thing about that 2nd video, though.

Jane Hill began her OB headline with an "And..." said in that certain way which seemed to imply she thought hers was the final headline, only for us to then hear one further headline read by Ben Brown in the studio (beginning with the same kind of "And..." of finality). Which felt like it must've been the 94th headline.

The regions-replacement Sportsday headline insert (sorry, I don't know the presenter's name) then gave us the third consecutive "And..." moment! We were now up to headline #127, I think. It felt like being stuck in a perpetual loop of "endings" for all eternity.

It almost seemed like jokey re-editing from something like Don't Watch That, Watch This. It beggars belief that the genuine actual news headlines are "structured" (pah!) like this.

It makes me zone-out from paying any attention to what the actual stories are, when the sheer number of headlines and/or the length of each one is so dragged out. Thus completely undermining the impact that a given story might/should otherwise have.

My long, waffling post seems strangely apt...
I is well eloquent, innit.
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all new Phil2,874 posts since 12 Feb 2005
Granada North West Today
What I love about the first video there is the serious, no nonsense delivery. It feels important. Probably the best example of this is the headline sequence from the first red and beige look for BBC World (just a shame the titles that followed were so jarring).

Nowadays it feels like they want to cuddle you with headlines. It’s something that over time I haven’t really noticed but comparing those 2 videos makes you realise just how much BBC News has changed.
I love lamp
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itsrobert6,185 posts since 23 Mar 2001
Granada North West Today
I have to agree about the BBC News opening headlines sequence. It is now so ridiculously long and drawn-out that it has almost become a parody. I don't know what they're trying to achieve but it's an absolute turn-off for me. Having to sit through 2 minutes of waffle before the bulletin actually begins means I just completely zone out like Austin Tatious says.

I think the rot started to set in around 2004-ish when I think BBC News started to adopt SpotOn. They obviously took this as their opportunity to add flexibility into the headlines sequence. Yet it still wasn't too bad back then - it's in the past 10 years that it has become ridiculous.

However, I would argue that it wasn't just the fixed bongs structure of the headline vamp back in 1999ish that led to the short, snappy headlines. On network news the headlines had always been tightly written even during the pre-1999 era when there were no "bongs" at all. And look back at News 24 opening sequences from about the same time and I'm sure you would find that they were almost equally as short as network and they had no bongs either. Personally, I put it down to a journalistic shift enhanced by more flexible technology.

That said, I think ITV News is still pretty good at keeping its headlines short and they've been using SpotOn longer than the BBC. They went through a phase of having sensationalist headlines (accompanied by lots of whooshes and zooming in effects) in about 2006 but have thankfully brought it back under control. The current ITV News bongs (and they are proper bongs!) are usually over with pretty quickly. Certainly nowhere near 2 minutes, I'm sure.

---

Regarding branding, I can understand the argument that the red, globe, beeps, music etc are all very recognisable. But that doesn't mean it can't move forward into a new and fresh direction. ITV News has successfully kept the bongs, music, Big Ben branding for decades - but has managed to stay fresh with changing tastes and fashions. I think the current ITV News branding is absolutely terrific - it was introduced at almost the same time as the present incarnation of BBC News branding but I know which one I think has aged the best! Easily ITV News, hands down. In fact, ITN has done well in branding terms with Channel 4 News too - they have been in the same studio since 1999 and the programme has had essentially the same structure and format for decades. But there's no way I would call it stale. In fact, I still after all these years find it quite clean, fresh and contemporary with fantastic camera-work and direction from Martin Collett. So it is possible to keep up to date even on the tiniest of budgets!
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cityprod1,869 posts since 3 Oct 2005
Westcountry Spotlight
In fact, ITN has done well in branding terms with Channel 4 News too - they have been in the same studio since 1999 and the programme has had essentially the same structure and format for decades. But there's no way I would call it stale. In fact, I still after all these years find it quite clean, fresh and contemporary with fantastic camera-work and direction from Martin Collett. So it is possible to keep up to date even on the tiniest of budgets!


They did update the format around about the time the summary presenter was upgraded to become a second presenter, and they have tweaked the studio a number of times. That helps to keep Channel 4 News fresh. The same can't be said for BBC News right now.
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Richard864 posts since 22 Apr 2012
Granada North West Today

That said, I think ITV News is still pretty good at keeping its headlines short and they've been using SpotOn longer than the BBC. They went through a phase of having sensationalist headlines (accompanied by lots of whooshes and zooming in effects) in about 2006 but have thankfully brought it back under control. The current ITV News bongs (and they are proper bongs!) are usually over with pretty quickly. Certainly nowhere near 2 minutes, I'm sure.

---

Regarding branding, I can understand the argument that the red, globe, beeps, music etc are all very recognisable. But that doesn't mean it can't move forward into a new and fresh direction. ITV News has successfully kept the bongs, music, Big Ben branding for decades - but has managed to stay fresh with changing tastes and fashions. I think the current ITV News branding is absolutely terrific - it was introduced at almost the same time as the present incarnation of BBC News branding but I know which one I think has aged the best! Easily ITV News, hands down.

I agree. And although the current look dates from the move to Broadcasting House, it is very similar to the previous look at TVC which had been in use for a while.

The ITV package (including regions) is great.
Rich Tea434 posts since 16 Apr 2017
Anglia (West) Look East
What I love about the first video there is the serious, no nonsense delivery. It feels important. Probably the best example of this is the headline sequence from the first red and beige look for BBC World (just a shame the titles that followed were so jarring).

Nowadays it feels like they want to cuddle you with headlines. It’s something that over time I haven’t really noticed but comparing those 2 videos makes you realise just how much BBC News has changed.


So many great points in this discussion worth getting stuck into but I'll just make one small point for now which came to mind when I read the above I've highlighted....

Very often when watching the start of the 6pm news on BBC1 nowadays it kind of feels less like I'm watching a substantive news bulletin and more like the beginning of a lifestyle magazine show, especially on slow news days.
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