You are currently browsing the daily archive for August 29, 2013.

A brief post in which to thank RMC (French radio) for not going on holiday during July and August.

Indeed, ‘RMC takes no holiday’ (‘RMC ne prend pas de vacances’) was their summer slogan, and one hopes that their strategy paid off. Their ratings went up between April and June 2013, placing them just behind public radio station France Inter in greater Paris (Île de France). It will be interesting to see what the next set of ratings says.

I have no interest commercially or promotionally in the station other than to say that RTL, Europe1 and the rest produced dire programmes over the past several weeks. I’m merely a daily listener of RMC — sometimes other commercial French stations.

With all that happens in the news, especially domestically, is taking a broadcast holiday a wise one? RMC kept up with all its regular programming and introduced replacement guest hosts where necessary. Shouldn’t all the other stations?

La Lettre, which concentrates on French radio, notes that holidaymakers prefer lighter programming to the usual cut and thrust of news analysis or socio-psychological discussions. That said, whilst La Lettre advises lighter shows they warn against going too far in this vein. They base this on increased radio audiences last summer for the 2012 London Olympics, despite people being on holiday. Incidentally, men between the ages of 35 and 49 years of age are still the principal audience during July and August. This explains why talk radio and interview shows are male-dominated. Men also tend to listen to most of a show whereas women wander off to do other things.

Happily, this week, regular programmes are back with la rentrée — the return to school and work.

I am delighted to see that RMC’s Eric Brunet is back, continuing with his series on the waste of public money: ‘Thank you, French men and women. Thank you, taxpayers’.

Even if you do not live in France but are an EU ‘citizen’, you are most likely paying for such things as the following:

Eric Brunet RMC Facebook 1173868_10151805273713094_1784349877_nWatching La Vuelta a Espana (cycling tour) this week, SpouseMouse and I are wondering how many British pounds have contributed to the resurfacing of their roads. The commentary has noted the Spanish efforts, but what about the rest of us in the EU? Certainly, one can make the same argument for the Tour de France.

And, yes, presumably, some of our taxes have paid for the aforementioned regional information centre in Lille. How many Britons, Germans, Spaniards, et al, have any appreciation of and access to that?

The good burghers of Lille would counter, ‘Oui, but we are paying for your projects, too!’ Swings and roundabouts. The issue is — where does it all end? Furthermore, is this worthwhile for our respective countries and taxpayers?

Merci beaucoup, RMC, for your continuing summer coverage. (Yes, Brunet did go on holiday but Christophe Bourdet filled in with the same style and quality.)

You can read and listen to more about ill-spent taxpayers’ money on RMC’s Carrément (‘Frankly’) Brunet page. For France alone, this totals over €1.5bn.

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