Rather than me retelling the story of how Newsnight is inviting its hardcore viewers (ie those signed up to its daily email) to affect the running order, here’s Jem Stone’s writeup and the show’s editor, Peter Barron’s explanation. I’m especially interested by Peter’s line:
Another concern is that we’re going to start reading out viewer e-mails on the programme. Don’t worry – we aren’t. Your e-mails are simply instant audience research.
The Newsnight crew have consistently shown that they really ‘get’ all this – and here’s further evidence. The fact is, nobody has yet cracked how to do readers’ emails and texts on TV. It’s not for lack of trying: but it’s painfully obvious that nobody’s yet found the formula. Five Live, meanwhile – and particularly the afternoon Drive programme – has more or less perfected how to do it on radio.