Google is ded
Long liv Goolwe …
The maggots have got into the rotating corpse of everyone's favourite search engine again. I sometimes wonder what is to become of us. Google is turning into an internet version of Microsoft.
And talking about alternatives, I joined a couple of writer's groups recently. One of them gave us some homework, a critique of a TV programme any programme of choice. I don't have a TV and this is why:
1. A great British institution.
In the 1920's the BBC was used as a political foil because of the Miner's Strike. Following this propaganda debacle, Lord Reith was installed as head to oversee a bipartisan, liberal regimen. One of the first things he did was to install an educational arm to the service.
Whilst people in the county -even now, a lifetime later, would say he did a good job; it has to be said that the BBC suffered from a lack of competition. What it had a few hours a day, in the early evening was Radio Luxemburg. This tiny, free radio station broadcast "pop" in the English language and was the only viable alternative to Mahler and Elgar for a youth of booming babies.
Then someone kitted out a trawler with a radio transmitter and set up the first of the pirate radio stations outside Britain's 3 mile limit. The nation responded to this threat to its security by moving the boundaries.
But this promoted a league of disc jockies to the rank of loose canons.
The BBC readjusted itself to accomodate them. The three previous stations became four new ones.
Channel 1. Banal pop and getting Stoopid-duh.
Channel 2. Anal pop and getting old-duh.
Channel 3. Old school, unendurable rendering of the more durable.
Channel 4. A repetitive tape of the news, changing daily as depression moves in.
Why, in this day and age, are we served so poorly?
One of the first major steps towards educating us Lord Reith initiated was the staging of a play by Shakespeare.
In the 1920's radio reception was parlous, elctronic engineering was in its infancy and expecting the traditional British family to sit for hours in front of crackling, tenuously connected, valve set was asking a lot -even in those days.
And at the broadcasting end, a play running for several hours posed a challenge. Reith was urged to compromise… and he did.
He cut out a chunk of Hamlet.
To national acclaim.