Must-Listen Podcast Episode: The Media Show


What is the podcast?

The Media Show is a weekly current affairs radio show and podcast produced by BBC Radio 4 and presented by BBC’s Media Editor Amol Rajan. The Media Show examines the current state of the media in weekly segments with guests from different aspects of the industry joining Amol Rajan to discuss their take on the topic. The first episode aired on October 1, 2008, with Amol Rajan taking over as presenter in May 2017. The podcast provides insight from media professionals into the way the media works. This podcast is essential listening for PR professionals as it provides valuable behind the scenes insight into the industry and features journalists you should know.


Where will you find it?

You will find the link here in the resources blog post for this newsletter.


Why should you listen to this episode?

In this episode, Amol Rajan interviews a variety of figures from different media organisations in the UK about the coverage of the recent UK election. Amol’s guests include ITV presenter Piers Morgan,’s Head of News and Politics Oli Dugmore, Editor of the Northern Echo Hannah Chapman, Senior Politics Writer at The Herald, Glasgow, Alison Rowat and Loughborough University Professor Dominic Wring. The guests hail from various strands of the media, each of which represented different perspectives of the election throughout the campaign process.


Professor Dominic Wring conducted scientific monitoring of the coverage of politics in the mass media for the 2019 General Election. Dominic discovered that compared to 2017, there was a doubling of negative Labour party coverage across the national paid for daily papers. In comparison to this, negative coverage of conservatives was halved for this election, compared to 2017. This leads to the discussion of the job of the mass media. Is it intended to influence the reader, or to reflect the best interest of the reader? Alison Rowat of The Herald, Glasgow discusses the importance of The Herald maintaining political neutrality while encouraging readers to make up their own mind.


Piers discusses the lack of integrity of some political journalists throughout the course of the 2019 general election. With the emergence of real-time reporting on Twitter, journalists made many mistakes by not fact-checking that a story which they were breaking was 100% correct. The story of a Tory politician being punched by a Labour activist was reported by a BBC reporter through Twitter, and was proven false soon after with video footage emerging of the reality of the situation. 


Oli Dugmore speaks about how politicians have been dehumanised by the trend of hostile grilling on national talk shows ‘being made to look silly’. ‘Something we can do to remedy that, which I think digital is great for, is exploring deeper wells of people’s personalities, their politics and their philosophy’. Oli argues that digital media provides more space for discussion, as it does not limit time. Youtube videos and podcasts can run for hours, which gives a host and guest more time to explore deeper issues, removing the constraints of a broadcast regime.


Some of the things that they say:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            

‘I make no apology for being forceful with politicians, but I will say this. People like Nicola Sturgeon, Nigel Farage, John Ashworth on the Labour side, they come on Good Morning Britain a lot. We have very robust conversations and they always come back.’ – Piers Morgan defending harsh grilling of politicians 


‘There was a cover of nature magazine last year that said lies and fake news go around the world and go viral at six times the rate of the truth… It would be much more interesting if the moon were made of cheese.’ – Amol Rajan

At MediaHQ, we are passionate about helping people maximise their media coverage. We have the contact details of every journalist, media outlet, producer and editor. If you’d like a demo on how to use the platform, email Gaye Gleeson on [email protected] or request your demo here.