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My view on the ITV Highlights
I’ve never been a fan of ITV, but the coverage of the FA Cup highlights from the weekend shown on ITV1 (starting at 10:30pm Saturday night) took the biscuit. The following letter has been sent in full to ITV in complaint.
I write with reference to the FA Cup highlights show broadcast on ITV1, starting 10:30pm on Saturday 28 January.
As a supporter of a team in the second tier, from an unfashionable part of the world I’m used to my team being overlooked when it comes to TV highlights. I can understand that whilst I have an undying love for Birmingham City not everybody feels that way, and that ITV has to structure it’s highlights programmes so that the majority of people watching them are satisfied.
However, your highlight show on Saturday night was galling to say the least. The first half hour of the show was devoted to highlights of games that had already been broadcast on television. No matter that some of us devoted football fans had already sat through them once, let’s show them again. One would almost think that ITV was too tight to send TV cameras out to other grounds to cover them properly (even in highlighted form) and were reduced to filling the programme with pre-broadcast footage, a bit of chat with two washed-up ex managers (both of whom, incidentally, were no fans of the media when they managed) and adverts. So many adverts.
Having sat through eighty two minutes of programme, you finally get to my club. Now, I’d expect if we’d played ninety boring minutes of football, there wouldn’t be much to show. However, we’d taken part in the highest scoring tie of the round – four goals – and apparently there’d been some verve and good football on show. Unfortunately, we got 52 seconds of actual footage. Four goals (shown once), one chance for Sheffield United and a bit of Wade Elliott celebrating. For chrissakes, you devoted more time to interviewing Paolo di Canio in the hope he’d come out with something humorous.
As you can imagine, I’m pretty annoyed. I’m not the only one. Take a look at twitter, and see how your coverage is discussed. There’s even a hashtag, which is the snappy #itvisfuckingshit. If you dare to look at it, you’ll see it’s not just fans of my team either; fans of many teams are peeved at the complete pile of excrement you broadcasted on Saturday.
This letter is being printed in full on my website, www.oftenpartisan.co.uk. I’m a fair and reasonable guy, so if you send me a reply I will (if you wish) publish it in full as a rebuttal. If you want to take the time out to explain why the programme was edited in the way it was, and what the thinking was behind it I’m willing to let other people know. However, I will admit my cynicism is such that I dare say I will get nothing more than an automated response.
Anyway, Birmingham City should thank you. Their website does multi-angle coverage of all their games, and these shenanigans have convinced me that I should part with my cash and subscribe to their feed. I’m certainly not going to waste my time watching another ITV Sport highlights show.
if you too would like to send a letter of complaint to ITV, their email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. More details here