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BBC launches massively parallel Tweet-in

Speak Your Brains... we'll translate

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The BBC is hosting a "six hour snapshot of a global conversation as it unfolds" today, simultaneously translating Web2.0rhea contributions into several languages including Chinese, Arabic and Persian.

Producer Mark Sandell told us there would be as few barriers to topics as he could get away with. Sandell produces World Have Your Say, a weekly participation show on BBC World Service. The event will be filmed and recorded. Other languages for the massively parallel Tweet-in are Indonesian, Spanish and Portuguese.

It's part of the BBC's no-expenses-spared Superpower season. You can get a flavour of it here:

Mark seemed very enthusiastic. We felt quite the party-poopers asking whether he thought that the BBC, which is in a unique position to tell us stuff we didn't know, was copping out of its duties by hosting what was in effect a giant bulletin board? How about, um... telling us something new? Was this the future of news, then?

"I'm not disagreeing with that," said Sandell. "I wouldn't dream of turning World Service into 24 hours of World Have Your Say ... the two go hand in glove."

Two years ago BBC Current Affairs obsession with Speak-Your-Brains feedback earned it fierce criticism here at El Reg from one of its own, film maker Adam Curtis. Charges of elitism had led to a critical loss of confidence in TV journalism, said Curtis, and instead of trying to tell us what was going on, it handed the microphone to "the people".

As a result nobody knows what's going on. ®

Bootnote

Before you complain, BBC World Service is funded by the Foreign Office, not from the TV License Fee. Different tax, please note.

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