Please click here for more information about who I am and why I do this.
The text shown after 1), 2), 3) and 4) is copied exactly from the BBC's daily JV Show web page and I acknowledge their copyright of this text.
The "Find out more..." links to web pages referred to by the JV Show web page are available by clicking on the text following 1), 2), 3) and 4).
"Find out more..." text is only included here when it refers to a non-BBC web page link.
You can follow my occasional postings on Twitter at @JVineBlogMan although @TheJeremyVine has blocked me from following him.
I am subject to the BBC's "expedited complaints handling process" (meaning I'll be ignored) for two years from 25/01/12.

Friday, 31 December 2010

New Year Resolutions

Hi Jeremy,

It is time to take stock of who and where we are, what we are doing and see if there are any ways to improve our own lives and those around us. May I suggest the following New Year resolutions for you?:

1) I resolve to watch every edition of NewsWipe that Charlie Brooker produces this year, as it is the only TV programme that shows news reporting for what it really is.

2) I resolve to obtain and check the facts for topics discussed on my radio show this year, and not discuss a story until I have done so.

3) I resolve to do some of my own research and not rely on the rapidly declining Dead Tree Press for the majority of my stories.

4) I resolve to not do any unwarranted and unjustified character assassinations, even if the person concerned is growing a giant hedge in Plymouth.

5) I resolve to look at both sides of every story before discussing it on air and finally realise that just one side is really not enough, even if I agree with one side more than the other.

6) I resolve to learn how to use the microphone fader to keep my contributors under control, rather than have discussions descend in to an unlistenable free-for-all.

7) I resolve to listen to and read the criticism of my show and acknowledge that it exists by mentioning it on air.

8) I resolve to try making a difference by championing a cause, rather than just talking about somebody else trying to make a difference.

9) I resolve to remember that not everybody lives in London and the South East of England.

10) I resolve to accept that I am not always right.

Excluding the first one, I'll try and let you know as each one is broken. Do you think any will still be intact at the end of January?

Happy New Year!

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Christmas 2010

The last Jeremy Vine Show of 2010 was broadcast on Thursday 23rd December. He will not be on Radio 2 again until early Janurary, and this despite Radio 2's and the BBC Trust's claims that the JV Show is important and essential to the station and stops it sounding like a commercial all-music station. How convenient that news stops while JV is away. Or does it?

I have started writing scripts for JV to use on Ken Bruce's show for some of the stories that I would like to see discussed, but he is yet to use any of them.

Here are my suggestions from the past few days:

Friday 24th December:
No news on Christmas Eve then? Will the country survive? Can Alan Carr cope with the responsibilty of taking Radio 2 through the lunch time period? Oh well, if nobody is there to do it I suppose that I will have to...

Today BBC Radio 4's Today programme featured a radio address by The Pope. We'll discuss his broadcast and ask: Is the The Pope a Catholic?

Monday 27th December:
Still no news? How about this...

We read in the papers today - well, the Daily Mail anyway - that Nick Clegg is struggling to cope with coalition government and may be on the verge of a breakdown. With absolutely no evidence to support this, we'll try and guess the Deputy PM's mental state and perform some kind of totally unjustified character assassination on him, so join us today at 12.


Tuesday 28th December:
What? Still no news? I've found some. Here's today's script...

We read in the papers that newspaper circulation is dropping rapidly, with less than one sixth of the UK population now buying a daily newspaper. Most surprising is the Daily Mirror which has lost 1 million readers in the last 10 years, while the Daily Star has managed a small increase in that same time period - I wonder what that says about the newspaper buying public! (Pause for laughter at Ken's witty comment here) We'll discuss whether The Dead Tree Press is still a credible and sensible way of distributing the hype and untruths published in the name of "news" (which is my job!), and ask how much longer will I be able to say "We read in the papers today..." and who the hell is this "we" that I keep referring to.

Ref: and

Wednesday 29th December:
The world is waking up, and the Jeremy Vine show slumbers on in blissful ignorance of the world's news. I'm sure I read somewhere in a charter or some other nonsense that the JV show was essential to Radio 2's repertoire in order to distinguish it from an all-music commericial station. I've either got that wrong, or it is simply not the case. Anyway, on with today's show...

We read in the papers today that the water supply problems caused by cold weather in Northern Ireland are continuing. We won't even be mentioning it today because (a) it does not affect London and the South East of England, (b) it is ABROAD for God's sake, and because of this (c) programme editor Phil will decide it is not a topic worthy of national debate.


Moving on then...

We read in the papers today that UK Border Agency staff mistakenly sent an email stating that drug searches were to be relaxed over the Christmas period due to staff shortages. This reduction particularly referred to the staff who have to deal with smugglers who have ingested drug packages and rely on nature to take its course before they reappear. We look at the work of these staff and ask if they are performing a useful process or are they simply going through the motions?


From the archives - 2

In August 2010 I had an email from JV following a whole load of "this is of no interest to me" emails that I had sent. He asked me to suggest a topic for discussion on his show. At first I suggested "Nothing at all" but I asked for time to think about it. I sent him this:

Dear Jeremy,

I have given your invitation considerable thought over the past 24 hours, and although I could suggest several topics for discussion there is a bigger issue here. That issue is, of course, the placing of your show (a) on Radio 2, and (b) in the middle of the day.

As you know, I am self-employed and work at home. Our day starts just before 8am when the radio alarm wakes us and we listen to Radio 2's 8am news bulletin. My wife leaves for work at 8:40 and I am then on my own until she returns during the afternoon. Radio 2 is my companion and my contact with the outside world as it provides entertainment, humour and brief news bulletins. I find Chris's show listenable but bordering on irritating, Ken's is superb, Steve's is excellent, and I have been a huge fan of Simon Mayo since his days on the Radio 1 breakfast show. They all provide what I want, and what I expect, from Radio 2.

In the middle lies your show, which I find the radio equivalent of fingernails scraping down a blackboard. There are a number of reasons for this...

I generally do not trust news bulletins and reporters as I feel that they now focus too much on ratings and less on detailed and accurate reporting. This opinion is based on their reporting of news stories relating to a subject in which I have considerable interest. Events are reported as fact but are full of huge inaccuracies, despite the availability of the correct information if only somebody could be bothered to do their job and ask! I figure that if reporters can get these stories so wrong then what else are they getting wrong? How can they be trusted to tell me the truth? The answer, in my mind, is that they cannot, so why should I listen to what they tell me? If I hear an interesting story on the news (and that is a rare occurence) then my immediate reaction is to say to myself, "OK, that is what they want me to think, but what has really happened?". It is then time to disect the story, remove the inaccuracies and form my own opinion. I really, really object to being told what to think by journalists and reporters, whose main aim seems to be to sensationalise a story for maximum effect and conveniently forget that not all of us will be spoon-fed their diatribes. Unfortunately, I include your goodself in this.

My major issue with your show is that, frankly, I do not see the point of it. The old saying is "talk is cheap" but it is actions that matter. What is the point of discussing topic xyz if nothing then changes? Sure, a few people have had a rant, raised their blood pressure and knocked a few days off of their lives, but it achieves precisely nothing. I was in full-time employment when Jimmy Young hosted the lunchtime show so I rarely heard him, but I believe that he used to champion causes (pensions?) close to his heart and make a difference. I would give your show more credence if you did the same and it actually changed something for the better, whether I agree with it or not. Your show would then serve a purpose, other than filling two hours with twaddle.

It comes down to the fact, I suppose, that I am not your target audience (who is?) and I simply do not care or have the time to form an opinion on the stories that you discuss.

For the past few weeks I have been sending you a daily email explaining why I won't be listening to today's show. I do this so that you and your team know that your show repeatedly fails to meet my expectations of Radio 2. My experience is that I am not alone in my disliking for your programme, and yes I know that you have x million listeners, but I am wondering if those x million are people who can't be bothered to turn off rather than those who choose to listen. I guess we will never know.

Have a great weekend!

JV's response was to send another topic invitation. A couple of weeks later while reading a book I found the topic that I wanted to be discussed...


Here is one for you...

In his book "Adventures on the High Teas" published in 2009 your fellow Radio 2 presenter Stuart Maconie writes (on page 335):

"Every day, hours of the output of supposed news programmes is given over to phone-ins in which the dim and the bigoted, the ill-informed bore who nonetheless is 'entitled to his own opinion', the single-issue nutter and the monomaniac fundamentalist vie to see who can shout the loudest."

Is the Jeremy Vine show an exception to Mr Maconie's broad statement, or does it fit his description exactly?

Your studio guest would be, of course, Stuart Maconie.

Now that I would listen to, and I would stop doing everything else while I did so. A topic worthy of a full two hours, maybe?

JV's response this time was to dismiss my suggestion as "preposterous" that listeners should not be able to air their views. My view is that I could not care less what Beryl from Scunthorpe thinks about the price of tinned peas.

From the archives - 1

On 14th August 2009 JV talked about the customer satisfaction surveys that some companies send to their customers. I decided to do my own survey for his show:

Customer Satisfaction Survey - The Jeremy Vine Show (BBC Radio 2)


The show's introductory jingle claims that it includes "the latest news and the best music", but do you think that this description is accurate? : No

Has the Jeremy Vine show ever let the real facts get in the way of a good story? : No

Are you ever surprised when George Galloway appears on the programme? : No

Are you ever surprised when George Monbiot appears on the programme? : No

Why do you think these two people appear so frequently? : Because they are cheap, and nobody with any credibility will contribute to the show.

Other than filling two hours of prime Radio 2 air time, does the Jeremy Vine show actually achieve anything? : No

Can you name one single cause that the Jeremy Vine show has championed and actually made a difference to peoples' lives? : No

Does the Jeremy Vine show devote time to topics that are of absolutely no consequence to a huge majority of the UK population? : Yes, frequently, such as a shortage of school books in California

Does the Jeremy Vine show devote time to topics that are of consequence to only a miniscule minority of the UK population? : Yes, frequently, such as The Vulcan pub in Cardiff.

Do you feel that the topics being discussed are fully researched before broadcast? : No

Do you feel that the topics being discussed are fully understood by Jeremy before broadcast? : No

What is the point of the Friday visit to the allotment? : None at all

Do you feel that the show attempts to breathe life back in to subjects that should have been pronounced dead? : Yes

What is Cincinnati, is it (A) a US state, (B) a US city, or (C) beyond the comprehension of a JV show reporter? : B and C

How many listeners does Radio 2 gain or lose during the Jeremy Vine show, is it (A) gains 750,000, (B) stays the same, or (C) loses 750,000? : C

Why do you think this may be? Because the show is rubbish and people turn off in droves.


Do you feel that putting pictures of JV in a Cardiff pub on the web site was a good idea? : Yes, for those people who have never seen a bloke in a pub before (another miniscule minority)

Do you feel that Paul Weller is thinking "Get this idiot away from me!" in the picture on the web site? : Yes, definitely


Do you feel that Jeremy Vine has a patronising or condescending attitude towards his listeners? : Yes

Do you feel that Jeremy Vine has a patronising or condescending attitude towards many of the people who contribute to the programme? : Yes

Do you feel that Jeremy Vine has pre-conceived views on the subjects he is discussing, detectable by the inflections in his voice? : Yes

Do you feel that Jeremy Vine fails to appreciate the other side of any subject with which he personally disagrees? : Yes

Do you feel that Jeremy Vine speculates unnecessarily rather than check the actual facts of what he is attempting to report? : Yes

Do you feel that it would be better to say nothing (with a suitable explanation) than attempt to guess what is happening? : Yes

Do you think that Jeremy Vine can find Liechtenstein on a map? : No

Do you feel that Jeremy Vine exaggerates to make a weak story sound better? : Yes, he has arms three feet long (the same size as a Chinese lantern apparently)

Which of these items of clothing is most suitable for a news broadcaster to wear, is it (A) tie, or (B) stetson? : A as it shows they have credibility

Which of these items of clothing is most suitable for Jeremy Vine to wear, is it (A) tie, or (B) stetson? : B as it shows he has no credibility and is not to be taken seriously

Do you think Jeremy Vine should resign out of shame and let somebody else attempt to rebuild Radio 2's damaged reputation? : Yes

Somewhat surprisingly JV himself sent me an email about this. He said "brilliant tony i love it!!". I think his Caps and comma keys weren't working that day.

Please allow me to introduce myself....

Welcome, and I hope you find something of interest and amusement here!

I am a 50-something child-free married English man living in Wales. I am self-employed, I work from home and have a passion for all kinds of popular music, so my main form of company during the day is Radio 2. I listen from 8am to 6pm most days and I love what they do, except for one thing: The Jeremy Vine Show.

In my opinion, Jeremy is a master of what he does. He turns the most insignificant story into something sensational that the tabloid press would be proud to publish. He contributes absolutely nothing to Radio 2 or life in general, other than filling two hours of airtime with verbal diarrhoea that does nothing other than to raise the blood pressure of his listeners. It would not be so bad if he actually championed a cause and tried to get something changed, but all he does is talk about it. He is too fond of the sound of his own voice and approaches each subject with his own pre-conceived biased views. He ignores and refutes any criticism of his show (we have exchanged many emails and he has even called me at home twice) claiming that if he were so bad he would not have so many listeners. I have it on good authority that he loses Radio 2 half a million listeners between Ken Bruce and Steve Wright.

I listen to his trail on Ken Bruce's show most days, and also check his BBC web page. I then compose an email that lists each of the four topics to be discussed that day and why they are irrelevant or of no interest to me. I always include my full name and telephone number should he or a member of his team wish to contact me. Very rarely I will get a personal reply from Jeremy himself, and I thank him for taking the time to communicate with me. We do not and cannot agree on what makes good lunchtime radio but I think we do have a mutual respect for each other's viewpoint.

I occasionally listen to a little of his show, but a finger is usually hovering above my radio ready to cut the power or switch to another station when it all gets too much. Listening for too long usually causes me to send a message to the BBC's complaints department about bias or some factual error.

My Jeremy Vine Show pet hates include:

 - Jeremy's lack of research and knowledge about the topics he plans to discuss.
 - Jeremy's broadcasting of speculative information when lacking actual facts.
 - Jeremy's attempts to tell me - us! - what to think.
 - Jeremy's obvious and pre-concieved bias on topics that are of interest to him.
 - Jeremy's obvious "I'm getting bored now" attitude for topics that are of no interest to him.
 - Jeremy's hypocritical criticism of The Media while conveniently forgetting that he is part of The Media himself.
 - Jeremy's use of "we read in the papers today" as the basis of a story. Less than one sixth of the UK population buy a newspaper, and their readership drops every month. Who are "we"? Not me!
 - Jeremy's use of "talking heads" such as George Galloway, who seem to be dragged in to discuss all manner of topics of which they have no knowledge or interest.
 - Jeremy's inability to control an in-studio discussion, which usually ends up as a free-for-all of people talking over the top of each other.
 - Jeremy's inconsistency of topic geography. I have been told by the show's Programme Editor and the BBC Complaints Department that topics have to be worthy of national debate, but this policy goes conveniently out of the window whenever it suits. He is more likely to cover a non-news topic relating to the USA than a news story that relates to Northern Ireland or Wales, but a story that relates only to England (and then usually only to London and the South East) will be debated at length.
 - Terry Walton's allotment: I am sure that Mr Walton is a fine horticulturalist but his Friday appearance on the JV Show reduces him to nothing more than a sound-effects man.

I know that some people do like his show. They are the ones who call in and finish their conversation with "Love the show Jeremy" or some other tosh. While I would accept that there is an audience for a show of this kind I remain resolute in my belief that it should not be on Radio 2 between 12pm and 2pm Monday to Friday. IF, and these are big IFs, he chose to discuss something that was of interest or relevance to me or IF there was the smallest chance that his discussions would actually change something then I would listen, but for week after week and month after month this just does not happen.

The question often asked of me is: "If you hate the programme so much, why don't you listen to something else?". My answer is: "I do". Digital station 6 Music have recently improved their coverage of this area, and this is now my radio station of choice for afternoon listening from 12 o'clock onwards.

The other question I am asked is: "If you hate the programme so much, why do you write about it?". My answer is that I want Jeremy to be fully aware that his discussion topics simply do not make radio to which I would listen. I feel that he needs to know that by trivialising Radio 2's only news-based programme he treats his listeners as idiots in a vain attempt to make it "entertaining". It would be fine if he talked about real news, but how many times do we need to hear another discussion on wheelie bins originating from a story culled from the Daily Mail?

I will post my messages to Jeremy here when I can mainly for my own benefit, but I hope that you, Dear Reader, find something of interest and possible amusement within them.

Updated 20/11/11