BBC confirms Radio 4 Today programme paper review will expand to include 'influential' websites

The BBC has confirmed the Radio 4 Today programme’s newspaper review will expand to include “significant stories” from “influential” online websites and foreign publications.

It comes after a leaked message to staff at Today, which is one of the most influential current affairs programmes in the country, was published by Buzzfeed UK.

The message highlighted a “debate” in the newsroom about the review, which currently only covers the printed media, and said it “needs to evolve”.

“We are going to change the way we do things if the slot is to retain its relevance,” it said, adding it wanted to include “‘new’ news sources found online and eslewhere”.

“The papers will continue to form the backbone of the review but we are going to include some of the ‘new’ news sources found online and elsewhere. We think too there is a case for including foreign news titles more regularly.”

The BBC told Press Gazette in a statement today: “Newspapers will continue to form the backbone of the Today programme news review, but in a modern news environment it makes perfect sense to broaden out to include some significant stories from relevant and influential online sites and foreign publications.

“Across BBC News we will continue to review the news, whether online or in print, in the same impartial manner we always have.”

The change is expected to come later this month, in time for the party political conferences and after the review writers receive fresh training.

Today reached 7.45m weekly listeners in the last three months of 2016, its highest ever audience figures, quarterly listening figures from February compiled by Radio Joint Audience Research (Rajar) show.

Picture: BBC

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3 thoughts on “BBC confirms Radio 4 Today programme paper review will expand to include 'influential' websites”

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  2. Daily Business, the three-year-old news website based in Edinburgh, has campaigned for this change for a year. We have had one meeting with BBC executives and filed two official complaints. This is an overdue admission by the BBC that news consumption is changing.

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