Wednesday, December 19, 2007

This is the BBC in Warsaw, Moscow, etc, bla bla

If you listen to BBC World Service at the top of the hour you'll hear various variations of the idea "This is the BBC in (insert major capital city here). I wonder where this rebranding came from. One clue may be a spoof closedown of the old BBC Radio 5 (before it became BBC Radio 5 Live) on March 27th 1994. Listen to this Real Audio extract about 13 seconds in....

2 comments:

lou josephs said...

Interesting with the VOA voice folks but the orginal idea was in the old WNYW long interval signal a thirty minute loop tape. You can find a short real audio file http://193.63.162.100/wnyw.htm

steve martin said...

That's interesting because I am responsible for that BBC World Service ID and also worked at Radio 5, although I left one year before it closed.

The idea you hear on the BBC World Service today came from a wish to demonstrate that the BBC had more correspondents in more places that any other broadcaster.

That claim (although still true) would sound pretty pompous in 2008 so today's ident is much more about a universal experience of being with the BBC. It also features the voices of listeners, not those of correspondents.

I'm always amazed at the number of emails we receive from listeners who want to hear their own city or voice on the ID. User-generated content, even in the branding.

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