diamond geezer

 Tuesday, February 24, 2004

The BBC is flagging

Remember those 12 regional flags I posted here last week? Go on, scroll down to last Monday and remind yourself - it'll be important later. The regional flag idea came from Tony Wilson's campaign for a North West identity, and was picked up by Radio 4's Today programme and BBC Online's Magazine. They invited people to email in their designs, in jpeg format, so I did. And they promised to publish some of them this week, which they have.

At 7:15 yesterday morning the Today programme discussed regional flags again. Or rather John Humphries was lectured by some bloke who believes in England but not in regions. Nothing about flags at all - they don't work well on radio, flags - although John did mention there were some listeners' designs on the programme's website. And there are. Take a look - the page is here. There are three flags displayed on the website, all alternative flags for the North West. Very nice they look too. And then there's one of those special BBC online picture gallery things, in the column down the right-hand side. There are 15 flags in that BBC online picture gallery thing. Guess how many of my 12 flags made it into the 15 flag picture gallery. Go on, guess. Then click on the picture gallery link and take a look.

So, well, cor blimey, what an honour to have one's work showcased by the BBC. It's almost worth the licence fee in itself. I assume that only four people bothered to send in any designs but, well, hey, national recognition at last. OK, so they kicked off with my Cheshire flag, which I thought was one of the weaker ones, but 80% of that gallery is mine, all mine. Can't complain. Well, actually, yes I can. My 12 flags were quite small (96 pixels by 64) but the other people's designs must originally have been rather bigger and more detailed. And the good old BBC have displayed all of our flags in size 300 by 200. Jpegs aren't the sharpest of image formats so they don't expand well, so all my 12 flags look really blurry. But hey, they're BBC blurry. Respect.

I have one particular reason for a broad smile this morning. One of my 12 flags the BBC have posted on their website is this white flag here, labelled 'Flag design for the BBC by dg'. It's meant to be a flag of surrender, symbolic of the board of Governors' capitulation to the Hutton Report. I have a special message to the BBC lackey who lovingly snipped up my 12 flags and inserted them on the Corporation's website. "This was irony. I suspect you missed that". I really think the Today programme should check their sources more carefully. Have they learnt nothing?

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