Published in 1992, this was the first book to assess the impact of television broadcasting on the House of Commons and its Member’s behaviour. It looks at the implications for political journalism as well as broader questions concerning the role of media in a democracy.
Bringing together contributions from senior broadcasters, politicians from various parties and academics and researchers, the book approaches the issues from a range of different perspectives. The first section of the book focuses on broadcasters’ accounts of the difficulties involved in establishing the structure and organisation of Parliamentary broadcasting, while the second section gives politicians’ own assessments of the consequences of the admission of cameras to the House. The third section looks at the findings of research studies assessing the type of materials broadcast, the impact on political journalism, and audience responses. The fourth section draws comparison with the American, German and European experience of televising democracy.
Table of Contents
Foreword Bernard Weatherill Part 1: Televising the Commons 1. Televising the British House of Commons: Issues and Developments Bob Franklin Part 2: The Organization of Commons Television: The Broadcasters’ Perspectives 2. ‘As Long as a Piece of String’: The Role of the Supervisor of Broadcasting John Grist 3. Putting the House on Television Glyn Mathias 4. The Committees and the Cameras: Romeo and Juliet or Cinderella and Prince Charming? James Leaton Gray Part 3: Assessments: The Politicians’ Perspectives 5. Televising the Commons: A Back Bencher’s View Austin Mitchell 6. A Sceptic’s Judgement of Televising the Commons Roger Gale 7. Televising the Commons: The View from the Third Party Charles Kennedy and Caroline Culey Part 4. Assessments: Academic Investigations 8. Televising the Commons: A Full, Balanced and Fair Account of the Work of the House Brian Tutt 9. Audience Reactions to Parliamentary Television Moira Bovill, Robin McGregor and Mallory Wober 10. Business as Usual: The Impact of Television Coverage on Press Reporting of the Commons Alastair Hetherington and Kay Weaver 11. Commons Television in the Regions: Creative Broadcasting in a Constrained Environment Bob Franklin 12. The Implications of Parliamentary Broadcasting for Politicians Guy Cumberbatch, Brian Brown and Julia Skelton Part 5: Assessments: The Experience from Abroad 13. The American Experience: C-SPAN and the US Congress Brian Lamb 14. Televising the Bundestag Heribert Schatz 15. Europe on the Move: The Travelling Parliament Roadshow Tony O’Donnell