Live 8

Live 8 In all my Ross-baiting on Saturday, I forgot to mention the supremely subversive moment at teatime on BBC One when Snoop Dog appeared. I'm not a fan (mostly because of certain things he said one night on The Word -- I have a long memory). The conversation in our house went something like.
"I hate Snoop Dog."
"What's he doing on in primetime. With all the swearing."
"There is lots of swearing in his music. They always record a clean version or else dub it out in the mix. It's an odd time to slot him in."
We listen for a while.
"Did he just swear?"
"He just said the f-word ... there it is. And again. Hold on he just said shit. And MF."
We wait for the set to be pulled from broadcast.
"This is crap."
"Yes it is. But listen to that. I can't believe this is going out on Saturday night, primetime."*
"It's become normalised."
"Bad language."
"Yes, but I'm not complaining ... it's just so radical ..."

In the event the BBC received just under 400 complaints. I wonder how many of those were from people who were watching Madonna and Razorlight. Those were the gratuitous -- Snoop Dog's were in the context of his music and actually on audible if you were looking for them. I'm not sure how the beeb could have handled it -- anything from a delay to beeping might have been thought of as censorship. I suppose a strong language guide could have been made before hand, although that has certain other implications. They probably did what they needed to -- let it go and weather the flack using the 'live event -- anything could happen' clause.

The complaint log is peanuts in comparison to the 10 million which tuned in to watch the show (although I suspect if you factor in the radio listenership the overall audience for the show could be considered much higher). Does this mean that swearing is less shocking than it used to be, or that the audience for the event were less sensitive to the effects? It's funny that as soon as it started happening we knew that someone would complain.

* Which is a phrase I've probably used every week since the end of March for some reason.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous10:51 pm

    I'm fed up of this nanny state, Daily Mail reading nation we are producing. Ooo, swearing at a live TV event - kids are more likely to hear swearing down at their local Sainsburys or primary school. What kind of rock stars are we going to produce in the future if this political correctness takes over - where are the Liam Gallaghers, Johnny Rottens etc. gonna come from ? Surely we cant live in a state of mind numbing Coldplay wannabes until we died of boredum ?!