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Obits during a major event

(April 2016)

DE
deejay Oxford
The establishing of News 24 arguably made overnight news coverage far easier to deal with in terms of getting it on air (although initially World and News 24 were still separate operations overnight). And yes, when they did merge overnight operations, the stuff carried on a World was much more formal in tone, including the wearing of jackets.
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AN
Andrew Founding member Yorkshire Look North (Yorkshire)
In the worst case situation, HRH passes away on a Sunday morning during a Roger Johnson and Steph McGovern cover shift. Would they really leave it to those two?

Bear in mind on a Sunday by the time people wake up, find out and tune in, Breakfast will mostly be over and Andrew Marr will be coming on.

Of course no if it was known in advance they'd draft in someone more senior.
RD
RDJ Central (West) Midlands Today
In the worst case situation, HRH passes away on a Sunday morning during a Roger Johnson and Steph McGovern cover shift. Would they really leave it to those two?


But that scenario would never happen.

There would be an embargo on the news being broadcast until a specific time that day. Therefore all broadcasters will be prepared and can draft in senior presenters and reporters ready.

This happened for the Queen Mother and would happen for any senior royal thereafter, unless it's unexpected like Diana when the Palace would struggle to keep a lid on the latest news.
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RK
Rkolsen World News
RDJ posted:
In the worst case situation, HRH passes away on a Sunday morning during a Roger Johnson and Steph McGovern cover shift. Would they really leave it to those two?


There would be an embargo on the news being broadcast until a specific time that day. Therefore all broadcasters will be prepared and can draft in senior presenters and reporters ready.


In this day and age are embargoes on this type of news followed - except in cases of safety? I seem to remember when Osama Bin Laden died the networks were on air an hour or two before the official word came out. I think they tried to embargo it but somehow it got released on twitter.
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DO
dosxuk Yorkshire Look North (Yorkshire)
Embargos are followed daily for multitudes of reasons. The agencies that break them (or leak them) as a matter of course, tend to quickly find themselves out of the loop.

After all, an embargo is basically a way of alerting someone to a story to allow them to prepare to distribute said story, without causing chaos when the story actually breaks. In most cases, it's in both parties interest to not break it.
SP
Steve in Pudsey Yorkshire Look North (Yorkshire)
In the worst case situation, HRH passes away on a Sunday morning during a Roger Johnson and Steph McGovern cover shift. Would they really leave it to those two?


Well, Roger Johnson has done hundreds of hours of live television, so he's not like someone on work experience. Steph hasn't done so much general presenting but she's clearly highly intelligent - of course she was a producer for many years before becoming a presenter - and they trust her enough to cover serious news. It's no different to if the news breaks at any other time of day and they have a less experienced presenter on.

Besides, no presenter currently working in news today on any channel has experience of reporting the death of the Monarch.


If it was a situation like Diana where the initial reports are of an accident etc Breakfast might do the early reports then hand to London once it is confirmed as an obit. Not because they're not capable of covering it, but because the team in London are the ones who regularly rehearse it.

I wonder what would happen if the same circumstances in which a royal met their death also claimed the lives of hundreds of members of the public? For example, if an event which a senior royal was attending was targetted by terrorists, would the broadcasters stick with the "drop everything and go into obit mode" approach or continue to cover it as rolling news? I could imagine families of the other victims - and potential victims - being unimpressed with the coverage turning into sycophantic fawning over the dead royal with the rising death toll being reduced to a mere footnote in the coverage.

Obviously it goes without saying that I hope we never have any such scenario and never find out how they really do it.
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WH
whoiam989 World News
RDJ posted:
In the worst case situation, HRH passes away on a Sunday morning during a Roger Johnson and Steph McGovern cover shift. Would they really leave it to those two?


There would be an embargo on the news being broadcast until a specific time that day. Therefore all broadcasters will be prepared and can draft in senior presenters and reporters ready.


In this day and age are embargoes on this type of news followed - except in cases of safety? I seem to remember when Osama Bin Laden died the networks were on air an hour or two before the official word came out. I think they tried to embargo it but somehow it got released on twitter.


To be fair, the person (happened to live near the terrorist head's house) who tweeted during that operation didn't know it was the American forces who were shooting Osama Bin Laden.
DE
deejay Oxford

I wonder what would happen if the same circumstances in which a royal met their death also claimed the lives of hundreds of members of the public? For example, if an event which a senior royal was attending was targetted by terrorists, would the broadcasters stick with the "drop everything and go into obit mode" approach or continue to cover it as rolling news? I could imagine families of the other victims - and potential victims - being unimpressed with the coverage turning into sycophantic fawning over the dead royal with the rising death toll being reduced to a mere footnote in the coverage.


Well that really was the original topic of this thread, and yes if a royal obit happened as a result of a bomb or something, then it would be treated very differently to an overnight death at Buckingham Palace, the news carefully released at 9am (but perhaps suspected by the news organisations as being imminent).

As I said a little earlier in the thread, treatment of a major event and obit scenario depends on who has died, what happened and what the link between the two was.
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GE
thegeek Founding member London London
BBCME posted:
If the Queen passes away during the night, her death will not be announced until 8am. It is said that the BBC would suspend any light entertainment or comedy shows between her death and her funeral. If she died during Eurovision, I think it's safe to say it would be pulled.


Would BBC Breakfast handle this or would they switch to someone in London for the announcement? I assume Huw, Fiona, Sophie or George would be top of the bill to handle such an important announcement.

Having seen some of the BBC's obit rehearsals, they've covered many eventualities, including the news breaking during Breakfast and the regular presenters making the announcement. And this was while it was still at TVC: as has been pointed out, the crewing levels at BH are a bit thinner in the mornings now, so there's little choice in the matter.
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JA
JAS84 Yorkshire Look North (E.Yorks & Lincs)
Besides, no presenter currently working in news today on any channel has experience of reporting the death of the Monarch.
Not a British monarch anyway. In fact the last time was so long ago that ITN didn't even exist yet, because ITV's launch was still three years away.
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A former member


Having seen some of the BBC's obit rehearsals, they've covered many eventualities, including the news breaking during Breakfast and the regular presenters making the announcement. And this was while it was still at TVC: as has been pointed out, the crewing levels at BH are a bit thinner in the mornings now, so there's little choice in the matter.


Bingo and there had no choice back when the queen mother died.
ED
ExDSStar Tyne Tees Look North (North East)
In the worst case situation, HRH passes away on a Sunday morning during a Roger Johnson and Steph McGovern cover shift. Would they really leave it to those two?

Bear in mind on a Sunday by the time people wake up, find out and tune in, Breakfast will mostly be over and Andrew Marr will be coming on.

Of course no if it was known in advance they'd draft in someone more senior.


Andrew Marr would be bumped to BBC Two and BBC News channel will take over BBC One.

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