04 May 2022
One of the special features of the British Library’s Breaking the News exhibition is a large-scale panorama, created by designers Northover&Brown. Objects and graphics have been placed into flowing pictures of networks, places and people, tracing the changing ways in which we have discovered the news over five centuries, from town squares to what Elon Musk calls ‘the digital town square’. This post complements the panorama.
Interior of a London coffee-house (c.1690), British Museum
Thence to the Coffee-house … where all the newes is of the Dutch being gone out, and of the plague growing upon us in this towne; and of remedies against it: some saying one thing, some another.
On 24 May 1665 Samuel Pepys wrote in his diary of his quest for news. Pepys visited one of London coffee houses two or three times a week over 1663-1664, the habit falling away in 1665 as plague took its grip on the city. He seems not to have cared that much for coffee, but yearned for the companionship, good business contacts and information to be found at a coffee house. Here one discovered the world.
The news one gleaned from a 1660s London coffee house came as much from discussion and talks as it did from printed news. Coffee houses had long tables on which the latest newsbooks and newsletters would be laid out. In 1665 there were only two print newsbooks available (from one publisher), both mostly restricted to overseas news: The Intelligencer and The Newes. The news Pepys discovered was an amalgam of publication, rumour and opinion. Such it was then; such it has remained.
The news has to seek us out. Just as much as it is shaped by those who are able to publish it and those who choose to consume it, news is shaped by where it is found. News publications in Britain in the seventeenth-century were found in print shops, coffee houses, taverns, and in the homes of those in business, officialdom and the church served by private news services that provided handwritten newsletters. Tight publication regulations prevented coverage of anything except overseas events, but the Civil War (1642-1651) created an audience hungry for information and opinion. Mostly confined to London, it was circulated, at some risk to publishers and sellers, as newsbooks, newsletters and proto-newspapers, news from the streets that was sold on the streets.
In the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries newspapers gradually grew in numbers, geographical range, and habit. News was carried across the country by mail coaches along ever-improving roads to homes and public spaces such as taverns and workplaces. Copies passed from hand to many other hands. Such news could be shared verbally, reaching out to the illiterate or those priced out of purchasing a newspaper by taxes designed to suppress radical thought. Working class memoirist Thomas Carter recalled passing on the news in 1815:
I every morning gave them an account of what I had just been reading in the yesterday's newspaper ... My shopmates were much pleased at the extent and variety of the intelligence which I was able to give them about public affairs, and they were the more pleased because I often told them about the contents of Mr. Cobbett's "Political Register", as they were warm admirers of that clever and very intelligible writer. (T. Carter, Memoirs of a Working Man, London, 1845)
In the nineteenth century the newspaper flourished, aided by rapid growth in readers and advertising money that freed newspapers from political control. Coffee houses remained a popular location, but from the 1830s newspaper reading rooms emerged, followed later by newspaper sections of public libraries, greatly widening access to local and international affairs to those who had previously been priced out of such knowledge. The rapid spread of a rail network not only boosted the distribution of newspapers but created a new kind of space for news, the commuting space, private consumption in a public environment. Newspapers could be organised to last for the duration of a rail journey. Truly national newspaper titles came to the fore – The Times, The Morning Chronicle, The Daily Telegraph (few other countries have so dominant a national newspaper culture as the UK). Sunday titles such as The Observer and The Sunday Times fitted into the weekend pattern of lives with greater leisure time. All culminated in the great game-changer, The Daily Mail, launched in 1896, a million-seller by 1901.
In the twentieth century different news forms arose to compete for public attention in both private and public spaces. From the 1910s through to the 1960s cinemas usually featured news in their programmes, in the shape of short newsreels, with dedicated news cinemas proliferating across cities from the 1930s. Radio news started in December 1922, delivering its messages exclusively for domestic consumption, building up its reputation so that for the Second World War it was the essential means by which the general public anchored itself to the daily progression of the conflict. BBC television in the 1930s showed only cinema newsreels, introducing its own newsreel in January 1948. It introduced newsreaders in the format that endures to this day in 1955, just ahead of its new commercial rival, ITV. It proved to be the perfect domestic, communal medium, gradually supplanting radio, pressurising the newspapers and crushing cinema newsreels, which could not compete with so frequent a service.
Newspapers were still read on trains and in libraries, but the contest for news supremacy lay in the domestic space. News was something that came to us, that occupied our homes. It tied us constantly to the turn of events happening outside our protective four walls. Local radio and television arose, following newspapers in serving audiences who understood themselves as much regionally as nationally.
The multi-format, domestic model began to be overturned at the turn of the century. The Internet has become a platform for all established news media (press, television, radio) and has led to the creation of new news media forms. Social media combines personal and general information, serves as a distribution platform for stories from the other news media while delivering original content as well, and supplies content on which all news media now depend.
The Internet has not only broken up traditional news forms, but has changed the relationship between news and space. The news no longer needs to seek us out: it is everywhere. Amy, aged 25-30, in a 2019 Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism report on news habits of the young, describes how she occupies this world:
I’m on Instagram, for example, and there are videos on there, that could send me to a link to somewhere else… It depends what I’m looking for, but if I’m scrolling that could be anything from a post on Facebook to a video on Instagram to an article on BBC News or something. So, it sort of depends where I am and what I’m looking for.
Part of the ‘Where do we find the news?’ panorama, Breaking the News exhibition, British Library
For 400 years, since the publication of the first newspaper in Britain, the established news media have been defined by regularity. As C. John Sommerville argues, they built an economic model around news as something shaped in a particular form, forever replaced by new content, an idea of news that fed off assured spaces and a regularity of habit. Pepys went to the coffee house when his morning’s office work was done. Newspapers arrived when the mail coach was due, or were read on the daily train commute, or were delivered to the doorstep each day. They called themselves dailies or weeklies, naming themselves after their dependability. News reading rooms were open for when workers had leisure time, a weekly luxury. Newsreels were released twice a week because, in its heyday, that was how often the average person went to the cinema. Radio news established itself around daily bulletins – the six o’clock news, the nine o’clock news. Television followed the same model until it devised 24-hour news, though even that was built around regularity, with headlines on the hour. News has been defined by, indeed has helped shape, the daily round.
The Internet knows no regularity and demands no physical space. It ignores all confines (at least in those societies that permit such freedoms). The Internet is therefore changing the news. We still measure our time in days, but the network through which we communicate across the globe does not. Many, of course, still cling to the daily newspaper, or to the early evening TV news, or a radio report at midnight, signing things off for another day – but these are habits, no longer certainties. What once could be defined by a physical space must now be defined by its absence. The news today is determined not by where we are but by who we are, or who we want to be. This is the unsettling, but exciting, world of news that the twenty-first century is now delivering to us.
Lead Curator, News & Moving Image
Richard D. Altick, The English Common Reader: A Social History of the Mass Reading Public, 1800-1900 (Chicago/London: University of Chicago Press, 1957)
Markman Ellis, The Coffee House: A Cultural History (London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 2004)
Matthew Engel, Tickle the Public: One Hundred Years of the Popular Press (London: Victor Gollancz, 1996)
Andrew Hobbs, A Fleet Street in Every Town: The Provincial Press in England, 1855-1900 (Cambridge: Open Book Publishers, 2018)
Anthony Smith, The Newspaper: An International History (London: Thames & Hudson, 1979)
John Sommerville, The News Revolution in England: Cultural Dynamics of Daily Information (New York/Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1996)
08 December 2021
Opening next April, Breaking the News, supported by Newsworks, is a major exhibition from the British Library, spotlighting the role news plays in our society, exploring issues of choice, interpretation, truth and trust in the news.
Smashed hard drives used by The Guardian to store Edward Snowden’s files © Guardian News & Media Ltd 2021
From the earliest surviving printed news report in Britain on the Battle of Flodden in 1513, to smashed hard drives used by The Guardian to store Edward Snowden’s files and an original BBC radio script announcing the D-Day landings, Breaking the News will go beyond physical newspapers to examine the role news in its many forms plays in our lives. Presenting historical and contemporary reports on war, natural disasters, crime, politics and celebrity scandals, the exhibition will reveal that while the themes that interest us generally do not change, the form and ownership of news does.
Breaking the News will interrogate what makes an event news, what a free press means, the ethics involved in making the news, what objective news is and how the way we encounter news has evolved. Delving into the biggest collection of news heritage in the UK, housed by the British Library, these pressing issues will be set against the backdrop of over five centuries of news publication in Britain through newspapers, newsreels, radio, television, the internet and social media.
Ahead of, and then in tandem with the Breaking the News exhibition, pop-up displays will open at over 30 public libraries across the UK, via the Living Knowledge Network. The displays will draw upon each library’s individual collection and regional connections to celebrate the value of regional news in communities across the UK.
Breaking the News will run 22 April-21 August 2022.
The touring exhibition will run 24 February to August 2022.
05 May 2021
As Joe Biden has now passed his first 100 days as the 46th President of the United States of America, it is time to reflect on the broadcasts of the US presidential election archived by the British Library. 2020 thrust upon us a global pandemic, the Black Lives Matter movement, the final months before the UK left the European Union, plus a Presidential election in America like no other. In 2016, the Library’s Broadcast News service archived the election of Donald Trump as the 45th President, continuing to collect broadcasts dealing with his presidency over the following four years. The 2020 US Presidential election was certain to be an interesting one, with an incumbent President with a background outside of politics versus a career politician who was a former Vice President.
CNN Final Presidential Debate, 23 October 2020
The Democratic nomination debates were recorded for the Library’s Broadcast News service with extensive coverage by CNN and the debates covered by many of the world’s broadcasters in their news programmes. All was going as expected … and then the Coronavirus pandemic hit the world.
This meant that Broadcast News was now being run from a curator’s spare bedroom, rather than from the British Library’s News, Radio and Moving Image area at our St Pancras site. The Coronavirus not only made adapting to new working conditions tricky for Broadcast News, but it also made politicians across the globe develop strategies and legislature to deal with a pandemic.
In the US, President Trump’s handling of the pandemic had attracted much news coverage throughout the year. His press briefings as part of the White House Task Force we captured from CNN coverage, albeit with the problem of no regularly scheduled time and sometimes patchy coverage. A trawl around other news organisations covered by Broadcast News resulted in finding fuller broadcasts of the briefings on Turkey’s TRT World, Sky News and the BBC. On many occasions CNN sometimes only broadcast the questions taken after the speeches were made, whereas TRT World and Russia’s RT would only show the speech itself. Plenty of documentaries were broadcast covering Donald Trump’s four years as President. These were also archived for Broadcast News, originating from stations across the world that that are licensed to broadcast in the UK.
This was all good preparation for the run up to the election itself. First there would be three Presidential debates. The initial one, on 29 September 2020, was a strange one, to put it mildly. CNN had full coverage, so their programming was duly archived. However, the combative manner of the debate, with Trump’s interruptions and responses in particular, triggered worldwide interest in how the debate was conducted. Breakfast news programming from Britain’s main news networks, the BBC, ITV, and Sky were recorded to show the post-debate analysis for each channel, to avoid bias. The major news programmes from China’s CGTN, RT, Al Jazeera, Japan’s NHK World, France 24 and TRT World, also gave their judgement, and that was also recorded.
Then the President caught COVID-19. His rallies had been noticeable for both himself, his aides and most of the crowds not wearing masks and not practicing social distancing. In contrast, his rival, Joe Biden, always wore a mask at his events and reporters and attendees were segregated. The Democratic Party’s convention was held virtually, compared to the Republican Party’s convention being held in large rallies. Both conventions’ highlights were recorded, and the key speeches were captured from live footage.
TV coverage criticized how the President was holding ‘super spreader’ events with his rallies, especially the gathering announcing the appointment of Amy Coney Barrett as an Associate Justice to the Supreme Court.
It was announced that the second presidential debate would be a virtual one, owing to the President’s diagnosis. Donald Trump rejected this idea, however, the two candidates instead taking part in separate ‘Town Hall’ events. It was impossible for CNN to show both Town Halls live, so highlights were broadcast and, again, the news broadcasts of the BBC, ITV, Sky News, Al Jazeera, CGTN and TRT World would also show clips and give their comments.
The final TV debate was held on 22 October. Both candidates attended, and this ended up as a stark contrast to the first one, resembling the civilized debate held prior to this in the debate between Vice President Mike Pence and the Democratic Party’s VP choice, Kamala Harris. Both were archived from CNN’s coverage and a balance of views was also obtained from coverage by the other news organizations.
A mixture of CNN’s coverage and that of TRT World, Sky and the BBC was captured to gain a flavour of the rallies then held in the run up to the election itself.
TRT World, America Decides, 3 November 2020
And then election day itself came. An election like no other, with all sorts of protestations that mail-in votes would lead to a fraudulent result, and a vicious second wave of the Coronavirus in America leading to many wanting to vote without attending the polling stations on the day.
The views of both President Trump and Joe Biden about voting were made clear in the run up to the election. Late night programmes from CNN were taken in addition to CNN Newsroom (which is recorded daily) to reflect the nature of voting intentions and the candidates’ views on this. CNN had many interviews with local officials in areas that had wildly different views on voting procedures, so this was an important set of programmes to archive in order to provide researchers into this election a chance to see how America was split on this issue. Most Trump supporters would turn up to vote on the day, many rejecting wearing a mask. Most Biden supporters suggested that they would largely vote by mail, also worried that voting on the day might bring intimidatory tactics from right-wing extremist supporters.
Early voting in some states also took place and scenes of day long queueing, and interviews given whilst waiting in line, were also recorded from CNN sources and other broadcasters.
It was decided to take all night coverage of election day itself from several stations to reflect balance in the views of the presenters. CNN, BBC, ITV, and Sky were chosen, and CGTN, Al Jazeera and TRT World were also recorded after polls closed giving their initial reactions to the results. However, there was no clear result and the election coverage continued over the next week.
It was decided to take all of CNN’s coverage throughout each day until a winner was declared. CNN had received good press reviews for their coverage (known on social media as ‘The Map Programme’), and this was complemented by coverage of key state declarations and updates from the BBC, Sky, ITV and Broadcast News’ overseas stations in Turkey, China, Japan, the Middle East, France, Nigeria and Russia. There were many documentaries about both President Trump and Joe Biden broadcast across many channels in the run up to, and during, the election. These were also archived.
Our broadcast archive of election day featured radio as well. The coverage from BBC Radio 4, BBC 5 Live, BBC World Service, LBC, TalkRADIO and Monocle 24 was all archived for our National Radio Archive pilot. This also included Siren Radio, a small community station set up in Lincoln University. They apologised for not having live coverage due to the station being closed due to the lockdown. Yet, they were able to record 20-minute interviews with professors in the US, political commentators in Washington and talk to American Studies students, who were watching the election. They returned to get their thoughts in the aftermath of the election one week on.
Bradford Community Broadcasting schedules the current affairs programme ‘Democracy Now!’ each day. This is a syndicated programme based in New York and has proved to be invaluable in covering the pandemic and the lead up to the election. Its coverage of voting and the aftermath of the election is helped by access to big names linked to social commentary and research, and the hour-long programme is a valuable resource into what life is like in America using first-hand accounts.
ITV News, 6 January 2021, with reporter Robert Moore at the Capitol
Finally, on November 7, Joe Biden was declared the winner. Again, TV coverage of the result was archived from the same sources. At this point the 24-hour coverage from CNN was halted and regular recordings of CNN Newsroom would report on the situation from then on.
Of course, that was not the end of the matter. President Trump issued lawsuits to recount or reject votes where he claimed that the voting had been illegal and refused to concede. His chief lawyer, former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, held a bizarre press conference at the parking lot of the ‘Four Seasons Total Landscaping’ store in Philadelphia, a business located near a sex shop and a crematorium. Coverage of that was not covered live by CNN, but was by Sky News, with an amused Adam Boulton puzzling over the peculiar location.
With President Trump still refusing to accept his defeat, continually claiming that it was a fraudulent election, Georgia had its state runoff in early January. A run-off election was called because no candidate in the Senate election had enough votes to clear the state mandated percentage for a clear win. This meant that with two Senate seats at stake, and the US Senate majority for the Republican Party at risk, more campaigning by the two parties began again. All major rallies and speeches were again captured from CNN, TRT World, BBC, ITV and Sky. The election day itself was captured in full via CNN. With the lead changing hands throughout the night, it was a tense affair. Finally, both seats were won by the Democrats, meaning that they would now hold the majority in the Senate.
But this was not the end of the matter. One month later, America was rocked by an event that shook its democracy to its foundations. With the College Electoral Vote due to be ratified by Congress on the 6 January 2021, President Trump held a rally in Washington, where he and several key speakers once more condemned the validity of the election and its outcome and incited his followers to take action. The speech by President Trump and coverage of the rally was again archived from CNN broadcasts and other news outlets around the world.
What followed next was unprecedented in American history. A large group of Trump supporters forced their way into the Capitol building in Washington DC as the Senate was in session. CNN was covering the Electoral Vote session and this coverage continued as the rioters entered the building. The world’s news networks soon started following the events live. Broadcast News has the coverage of CNN, BBC News, Sky, TRT World and Al Jazeera. ITV’s coverage was particularly enlightening, as their reporter, Robert Moore was able to talk to the protesters as they entered the building and even within it. Euronews covered the event from their studio, but their coverage included up to the minute reaction on social media from world leaders and senior politicians. The subsequent Impeachment of President Trump for a second time was also captured by CNN and all major news stations also covered the session in the Senate in depth.
The Inauguration of the new president happened without the out-going President in attendance. His final message as President was recorded for the archives, and full coverage of the Inauguration of Joe Biden taken from the coverage of CNN, BBC, ITV, Sky, TRT World and Al Jazeera. Kamela Harris becoming the first woman to become Vice President, and the first black person to achieve that office, also allowed some of the stations to reflect on the historic aspect of the day. Amanda Gorman became the youngest poet to perform at a presidential inauguration, reading her poem, ‘The Hill We Climb’. The British Library has a direct connection with Amanda as she is a 2020 Eccles Fellow (one of the awards offered by the Eccles Centre for American Studies).
A huge amount of coverage of this historic chapter in American history is now archived as TV and radio coverage. With 2020 and 2021 being significant for a global pandemic, the US election could have been a sideshow. The material archived by Broadcast News and the National Radio Archive will show researchers in the future, just how extraordinary this moment in history was.
Neil McCowlen, Broadcast Recordings Curator
Broadcast News is available in all British Library reading rooms
06 May 2020
Ten years ago, at 22:00 on 6 May 2010, the polls closed. Five minutes earlier, because that is when the all-night news programmes began, we officially threw open the switches on the British Library’s Broadcast News service. The UK General Election felt like an appropriate start for what was an exciting new venture for the Library. We were going to create an archive of UK television and radio news broadcasts, recorded live.
ITV's election night coverage, 6-7 May 2010
The reasons for setting up Broadcast News (for that was what we ended up calling the service) were two-fold. Firstly, the British Library wanted to establish a distinctive moving image archive that would fill a gap in existing provision for researchers. News was an ideal choice. Although there were television news collections available to academic researchers, they were limited to selected programmes from the main terrestrial channels, and our goal was to preserve and provide access to a far wider range of news broadcasts.
Secondly, the Library needed to respond to a changing news world. Its vast newspaper collection was a bedrock of British research, but in a digital age the form of news was changing. A more inclusive approach was required, once which encompassed print and web, TV and radio.
We started cautiously. On that first day we recorded four programmes: the BBC One and ITV all-night-election broadcasts, Channel 4’s Alternative Election, and BBC Radio 4’s all-night coverage (radio being part of the Broadcast News plans as well). The following day we recorded 15 programmes, widening coverage to include CNN, Al Jazeera English and BBC World Service.
The Green Party's 'boy band' party election broadcast from 2015
Ten years on, and we now record from twenty-two channels, taking in around 30 hours of TV and 50 hours of radio each day. The total collection is just over 160,000 recordings, of which 102,000 are TV. We are recording television on a daily basis from Al Jazeera English, BBC One, BBC Scotland, BBC Two, BBC Four, BBC News, BBC Parliament, Channel 4, Channels 24 (Nigeria), CGTN (China), CNN (USA), Euronews (European Union), France 24, ITV1, NHK World (Japan), RT (Russia), Sky News, and our most recent addition, TRT World (Turkey). We record news programmes, documentaries, party political broadcasts, satirical news programmes, interviews, debates, news specials – anything that reflects the news in its broadest sense.
NHK World coverage of the Japanese tsunami, 11 March 2011
With programmes recorded from channels in America, China, France Japan, Nigeria, Qatar, Russia and Turkey, we have good international coverage, but strictly speaking they are all British news, which is why we record from them. Al-Jazeera English, CGTN, CNN, NHK World and the others each have offices in the UK, and are all licensed with Ofcom. That broader sense of what comprises British news is an important part of the Broadcast News mission.
Donald Trump is elected President of the United States, Sky News, 9 November 2016
Over those ten years we have built up an archive of extraordinary news events. The UK has had four general elections and three referendums (on changing the voting system, Scottish independence and Brexit). We have seen the ‘Arab Spring’, the UK riots of 2011, the Olympic and Paralympic Games of 2012 and 2016, the Japanese tsunami, the death of Nelson Mandela, the Euro crisis, the rise and fall of Isis, the Syrian conflict, the era of Donald Trump, and now the coronavirus pandemic.
The latter story, ongoing of course, has demonstrated how television still governs our world of news. Newspapers (increasingly in digital form) and social media play their part, of course, but in a crisis we turn to television. It speaks to us individually yet seemingly connects us with everyone else. It is both public and private, live and yet composed. The social experience of television news, as well as its content, is why we archive it.
The first daily government update on Coronavirus, BBC One, 16 March 2020
However, these are also remarkable times for radio. Radio, particularly community radio, has come into its own during the coronavirus pandemic, bringing together information, entertainment and a reassuring, local voice. As part of the British Library’s Save our Sounds programme we have established a pilot off-air radio archiving pilot, which greatly extends the number of radio programmes we are able to capture. There will be more news on that particular venture in due course.
Broadcast News is normally available in the British Library’s St Pancras and Boston Spa reading rooms. These are closed for the time being. There is no online access to Broadcast News, for reasons of copyright, but records of the programmes we have recorded up to the middle of 2019 can be found on the Explore catalogue. But the archive continues, hour by hour, day by day, turning live news into permanent record of our extraordinary times.
17 July 2019
The world of news is changing, and at the British Library we are responding to that change - in how we collect, preserve, describe and present our news collections. Our goal is to transform what we hope is a world-class newspaper service into a world-class news service. This post outlines the Library's News Content Strategy for 2019-2023 with our plans for the next five years.
Inside the National Newspaper Building at Boston Spa
The British Library holds many millions of newspaper issues, and thousands of news websites, radio broadcasts and television programmes. Because it is a legal deposit library, it regularly collects thousands of news-related UK websites for its web archive and continues to receive the range of UK newspapers in print, including foreign language news published in the UK. It also subscribes to news services from across the world, providing a first class research experience for its readers. Together these form one of the greatest historical collections in the world, underpinning research into centuries of UK life and events, and to those of further afield.
In the last decade the Library has transformed its preservation of news, building state of the art facilities to store its historical newspapers collection in excellent environmental conditions and putting in place the first key elements of digital storage for ‘born digital’ news. It has greatly upgraded its service offer for news, making its content available in its reading rooms in London and Yorkshire, including a specially dedicated Newsroom at St Pancras. But there is much more to be done for the discovery of news onsite and online.
Size of collection
60 million issues
Figures for the current news collection at the British Library
The Library works in partnership with other bodies to develop in-depth understanding of news and the events it describes. Working with family history company Findmypast the Library has provided most of the digitised newspapers on the British Newspaper Archive website, helping researchers and the general public to view rare newspapers from the comfort of their home or workplace. With over 30 million pages digitised, many online readers exploring their family history will already be familiar with the resource. It is proving invaluable for a huge range of academic research topics as well.
That said, there is still so much to do. The digitisation challenge is vast: 93% of our newspaper content remains undigitised
One key to transforming our news offer is through data. News data is of particular value to researchers for its range across so many subjects and time periods, and for the regularity of its published outputs. It has huge potential for furthering our expertise in the data sciences. Our digitised newspaper archives are already being used by several ‘big data’ projects; in particular our historical archives underpin the major UKRI-funded ‘Living with Machines’ collaboration between the British Library and the Alan Turing Institute. Through the Heritage Made Digital programme we are building up a substantial body of out-of-copyright newspaper data which will greatly improve the service we offer to digital scholarship.
Finally, data forms the building blocks by which we will bring together the different news media to deliver an integrated news service that best serves future needs.
Our commitment is to the news, not to the newspaper. This shift in thinking follows the direction in which the news media themselves have gone, and will trigger great changes in storage, access and use. It will ensure that the British Library continues to offer the best news research service, for researchers now and in the future.
Over the next five years, the Library will concentrate on four areas of its news collections:
Transforming discovery of news
We will greatly improve the ease with which readers and the wider public can access our news offer, and respond fully to the big data opportunities of our historic news collections.
Collecting contemporary news
We will collect UK contemporary news digitally as a matter of course and regularly review our selective approach to overseas news.
Protecting at-risk historical news
We will greatly increase our preservation of historical newspapers, digitising to rebalanced priorities, including at-risk titles.
Planning the next major phase of our strategic storage of news
Our large secure digital store will take audiovisual and digital news as business as usual, and save on physical storage space by switching to digital versions for a majority current UK newspapers; but we will still need to plan for new physical storage.
Masthead for The News and Sunday Globe, 2 July 1837, one of the titles being digitised by the Heritage Made Digital programme
Many activities relevant to the News Content Strategy are already underway. As we approach the 400th anniversary of the first newspaper available in Britain (1620) and the first newspaper published in Britain (1621), the British Library is responding to the profound changes taking place in the world of news today. At the same time we aim to revitalise how researchers may use and understand the news of yesterday. Look out for some significant announcements over the next year. Good news is on its way.
21 May 2019
In Spring 2021 the British Library will be hosting a major exhibition on the history of news in Britain.
The aim of the exhibition is to explore the history, present and future of news in Britain over 400 years since the first newspaper was published in this country, asking what makes the news what it is, and what this means for us.
The exhibition will trace how news for the diverse audiences of this country has been produced, distributed and read over four centuries, through news sheets, news books, broadsides, newspapers, newsreels, radio, television, the internet and social media. The exhibition will encourage questions about the role of news in society. It will look at the ways in which news is changing as we ourselves change. It will invite to us to consider vital issues of choice, interpretation, truth and trust.
Planning for the exhibition, provisionally entitled Making the News, has got underway. To help us put it together, we are advertising for a two-year exhibition project curator.
Working with a curatorial team and the Library’s exhibition team, the post-holder will contribute to the development and delivery of the exhibition. They will contribute to the administration of the curatorial content of the exhibition; will prepare external visits and show-and-tells; will promote the exhibition on social media and to visitors; and will apply research expertise in one or more areas of British news history in support of the selection and curation of content for the exhibition.
Details of the vacancy and how to apply can be found on the British Library's careers site. The deadline for applications is 23 June 2019.
21 June 2017
The general election that no one was supposed to want turned out to be completely compelling. Many of the apparent certainties on which the UK's snap election of June 2017 was based were overturned, at least in part - from its core themes (it was supposed to be about Brexit but never really was), to demographics (young people don't turn out to vote, except that they did), to the balance of political power (the predicted comprehensive victory by the Conservatives instead resulted in a hung parliament).
Tim Farron, then leader of the Liberal Democrats, from BBC News at Ten, 17 May 2017
One certainty that remained in place was the primary position of television as the platform for information and debate. Probably the defining image of modern electioneering is the politician speaking with a grouping of supporters with banners bunched behind them, the supposed audience seeing the back of the speaker while the true target is a remote one. Reality is subverted to televisual reality.
Although subsequent analysis of voting trends has shown that social media may have had a greater influence, in some sectors, than before, while newspapers' influence has not waned as greatly as some have pronounced (again, in particular sectors), television was where the general election was played out. One of the particular coups of the election campaign was when Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn changed his mind and decided to take part in a BBC party leaders' debate, wrong-footing the Conservative leader Theresa May. Likewise the performances by the various politicians in interviews (Theresa May telling The One Show about who in her household put out the bins), Jeremy Corbyn telling Jeremy Paxman on Channel 4 why he wasn't campaigning to abolish the monarchy) seem to have had a persuasive effect on public perceptions. Other media play their part, but television is the testing ground.
The British Library was recording all this, or at least a good part of it. Between the surprise announcement of the election on 18 April 2017 and election day on June 8 we recorded some 1,500 television news programmes from 15 channels (BBC One, BBC Two, BBC Four, BBC News, BBC Parliament, Channel 4, ITV1, Sky News, Al Jazeera English, CGTN, CNN, France 24, NHK World, RT, Channels 24). This included general news programmes from each of those channels, interviews, speeches, panel debates, party election broadcasts, satirical shows, and of course the through-the-night election results programmes and post-election reporting. Because of the surprise nature of the election, there weren't some of the in-depth documentaries and comedy series that we saw at the 2015 election and the 2016 EU referendum, but the air of improvisation as TV reacted to events only added to the compelling nature of those six weeks.
Because in the middle of the election were breaking news stories that halted the campaigning twice - the suicide bomber at the Manchester Arena on 22 May and the attacks on London Bridge and Borough Market on 3 June. Both events wove their way into the election narrative, and saw the broadcasters adapting to the abrupt shift in the news agenda. Extended recordings of the breaking news reportage on these events, across multiple channels, are also part of we archived.
George Osborne and Ed Balls, part of ITV's election night commentary team
All of our UK 2017 general election programmes are now on the Explore catalogue, and can be played directly from the I Want This links on the catalogue at either our London or Boston Spa sites. You can access the programme either directly from the catalogue, or you can go to our onsite Broadcast News service, and search in greater depth for programmes by date, channel or subject (to find Broadcast News, following the Sound & Moving Image services link from the front page of any British Library terminal).
We have produced a spreadsheet of all of the news and election programmes we recorded 18 April-11 June, in .xlsx format, which you can download here.
Our news collections go back to the 1620s, but they are as much about today as yesterday. It is not possible to archive the whole of the world of news as it impacts on the UK. The range of publications and platforms is too vast, and in an increasingly personalised news world, everyone is seeing different news. But we capture the best that we can - comprehensively for newspapers (thanks to Legal Deposit), reasonably comprehensively for web news sites (thanks to Non-Print Legal Deposit) and selectively for television and radio. It is instant history, turning what is live and uncertain into that which has become fixed and a subject for study and contemplation. And it is compelling.
04 January 2017
The incoming US president, Donald Trump, is rewriting the book on the political process. However, despite the apparent creation of policy via social media, the real impact Trump has made since the presidential election process began has been through the more traditional media, particularly television. His statements made through Twitter have been picked up by newspapers, television and radio, and it is here that the seismic realignment of American political priorities is being digested and disseminated. Twitter has been used to ignite a media process. Social media remains for Donald Trump a means of being on TV, where his mass audience lies (Trump has 18.6m Twitter followers, but there are 114m television sets in the USA alone).
From the Sky News coverage of the US presidential election result, 09/11/2016
Trump's impact on television in Britain can be traced through the news and current affairs programmes recorded for the British Library's Broadcast News service. As well as recording regular television and radio news programmes each day from 22 UK and international channels, we have recorded numerous special programmes on Trump and the US election. On 8/9 November we recorded the election night programmes of BBC One, ITV1, Sky News, Al Jazeera English, CNN, RT (Russia Today), Channels 24 (Nigerian television) and CCTV (China). All of these can be found on our Explore catalogue with links to the playable programmes, which for copyright reasons can only be played on terminals at our London or Yorkshire sites. For ease of searching it is best, if you are onsite and using a British Library terminal, to go to the Broadcast News service itself (http://videoserver.bl.uk) and use the Advanced Search facility to select all recordings for 8/9 November 2016.
We also have many individual television programmes produced through 2016. of which the titles below are only a selection. They document not only the events of recent history, but the struggle that the often incredulous traditional media have had in trying to come to terms with the Trump phenomenon. The links are to our catalogue records, but again please note the programmes will only be playable on a British Library terminal. Descriptions in inverted commas are those provided for the programmes as part of the EPG (Electronic Programme Guide).
- The Mad World of Donald Trump (Channel 4, tx. 26/01/2016): "Matt Frei enters the colourful and mad world of presidential hopeful Donald Trump, whose meteoric political rise comes amid one of the most controversial political campaigns America's seen."
- Piers: The Trump Interview (ITV1, tx. 23/03/2016): "Piers Morgan's full, uncensored interview with controversial US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump."
- President Trump: Can He Really Win? (Channel 4, tx. 30/03/2016): "Donald Trump has emerged as the clear front runner for the Republican Presidential nomination. Matt Frei investigates whether 'the Donald' could make it to the White House."
- Republican Presidential Town Hall (CNN, tx. 30/03/2016): Anderson Cooper hosts a Republican Presidential Town Hall with Ted Cruz, John Kasich and Donald Trump.
- Listening Post (Al Jazeera English, tx. 23/04/2016): "Trump and Clinton win the New York Primaries but what part have the media played in their victories?"
- United States of Hate: Muslims Under Attack (BBC One, tx. 05/07/2016): "Examining America's recent upsurge in Islamophobia and the reasons it has come about."
- Panorama: Trump's Angry America (BBC One, tx. 18/07/2016): "Hilary Andersson visits the racially divided town of Bakersfield to meet Donald Trump supporters as well as those who fear Trump becoming president."
- Republican National Convention 2016 (BBC Parliament, tx. 22/07/2016): Recorded coverage of the 2016 Republican National Convention, from Thursday 21 July. Including speeches from Reince Priebus, Peter Thiel, Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump.
- Republican National Convention 2016 (CNN, tx. 22/07/2016): Live coverage of Republican National Convention for 21 July 2016, including acceptance speech by Donald Trump.
- President Trump: Can He Really Win? (Channel 4, tx. 23/08/2016): "Matt Frei explores how the US presidential contest is shaping up to be one of the most brutal in living memory, and asks if Donald Trump can make it all the way to the White House."
- Trump vs Clinton Live (Channel 4, tx. 27/09/2016): "US Presidential Debate: Channel 4 presents live coverage of the first of three US presidential debates, as Donald Trump goes head to head with Hillary Clinton."
- Tonight: Trump's America - Will It Happen? (ITV1, tx. 06/10/2016): "Robert Moore explores why many Americans feel so angry ahead of one of the most bitterly-fought and divisive presidential campaigns in history."
- Clinton v Trump: The Second Debate (Sky News, tx. 10/10/2016): "We join Sky News for coverage of the second presidential debate of the 2016 US Election between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump."
- Paxman on Trump v Clinton: Divided America (BBC One, tx. 17/10/2016): "Jeremy Paxman travels to Washington and beyond to understand how Americans came to face such unpopular choices in its candidates for the presidency."
- US Presidential Debate (BBC News, tx. 20/1/2016): "Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump face each other in the final 2016 presidential debate at the University of Nevada in Las Vegas."
- This World: Conspiracy Files - The Trump Dossier (BBC Two, tx. 03/11/2016): "Investigative documentary looking into how Donald Trump has used conspiracy theories to further his bid for the presidency."
- Trump's Unlikely Superfans (BBC One, tx. 07/11/2016): "Angela Scanlon meets with the passionate and unlikely people stumping for Donald Trump to find out why they support his controversial campaign."
- Rich Hall's Presidential Grudge Match (BBC Four, tx. 07/11/2016): "An examination of the sordid machinations involved in becoming US president."
- Newsnight: Trump's America - A Newsnight Special (BBC Two, tx. 11/11/2016): "With reporting from across the United States, Newsnight explores the ramifications of the election of Donald Trump as president."
- The World According to President Trump (Channel 4, tx. 12/11/2016): "What will a President Trump really do? Will he really ban all Muslims? Build a wall? Pal up to Putin? Smash Isis? Matt Frei speaks to the people who know."
- Panorama: Trump's New America (BBC One, tx. 14/11/2-16): "Hilary Andersson meets angry Americans on both sides of the electoral race who feel disillusioned and disenfranchised by the electoral process."
- Listening Post (Al Jazeera English, tx. 19/11/2016): "How the US media begins the process of 'normalising' Donald Trump"
- Frankie Boyle's American Autopsy (BBC Two, tx. 20/11/2016): "Frankie attempts to make sense of the US election through stand-up and debate."
We will of course continue to record the television news throughout 2017 and beyond. For discussion of the impact of Donald Trump's tweets on the news agenda, see What really happens when Donald Trump goes on a Twitter rampage (Quartz, 11/12/2016), If Trump Tweets It, Is It News? A Quandary for the News Media (New York Times, 29 November 2016), How Trump Took Over the Media By Fighting It (Politico, 5/11/2016), or Why the establishment was blindsided by Donald Trump (Washington Post, 28 October 2016).
Or you can check every Trump tweet, the deleted and the active, with telling categorisation, at the admirable Trump Twitter Archive.
05 July 2016
The most tumultuous British news story since the British Library began recording television and radio news programmes in 2010 has undoubtedly been the EU referendum. The result of the vote made on 23 June 2016 is still causing shockwaves, and has generated a compelling archive. It is hard to calculate just how many hours of broadcasting we have archived since the date of the referendum was announced on 20 February 2016 that relate to the subject, but it will be somewhere between 2,500 and 3,000 hours of TV and radio. On June 24 alone, the day the result was announced, we recorded 135 hours.
The archive comprises regular and specialist news and current affairs programmes broadcast over February-June 2016, plus comedy programmes, broadcasts by the Vote Leave and Britain Stronger in Europe campaigns, interviews, live speeches, parliamentary debates, public debates and through-the-night coverage of the result of the vote. There are programmes from the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Sky News, but also CNN, Al Jazeera English, RT (Russia Today), France 24, NHK World (Japan), CCTV (China), BBC national radio channels, LBC and more. In general the referendum saw the traditional news media providing the chief platform for the national discussion. There was considerable activity on the web and via social media, but print (often thought to be waning in influence at general elections) and particularly television were where the mass audience came for its information, and to see the arguments played out.
Programmes on Broadcast News
The archive is available already at the British Library, and continues to be added to each day. Every programme recorded up to the end of June can be found via Explore, or on our Sound and Moving Image catalogue (SAMI), though the programmes themselves can only be played onsite, at either our St Pancras or Boston Spa locations. Researchers onsite may find it easier to explore the archive via the Broadcast News service, which offers word-searching for subtitled programmes and filtering by date, date range, channel or medium (TV and radio). If you are using Explore, you should search by a programme title or terms such as 'referendum', 'Brexit', 'EU' etc, and filter the results by Moving Image or Audio. Clicking on the Details tab of any record will give you the description plus the link to the playable programme (which will only play onsite).
Below is a list of some of the key special programmes broadcast (the list mostly does not include programmes such as Newsnight, Question Time, Peston on Sunday, The Andrew Marr Show, Murnaghan, Pienaar's Politics, Today and Daily Politics, which we record on a regular basis in any case). The descriptions mostly come from EPG (Electronic Programme Guide).
2016 EU Referendum - selected special programmes, February-June 2016
|BBC News||BBC News||20/02/2016||Prime minister announces date of referendum|
|BBC 1||BBC News at Ten||20/02/2016||Includes news that EU agreement has been made, triggering UK referendum|
|BBC Parliament||Live EU referendum statement||22/02/2016||Live coverage of the statement in the House of Commons by prime minister David Cameron on the deal reached with EU leaders on reforms to the terms of the UK's membership|
|BBC1||Panorama Special: In or Out - The EU Referendum||22/02/2016||How much do you know about the EU? Nick Robinson debates immigration, jobs and sovereignty.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum - George Osborne||23/03/2016||The speech by George Osborne in Bristol on the importance of staying in the EU alongside fellow cabinet ministers Liz Truss, Amber Rudd and Stephen Crabb, from Monday 18 April.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum - Gordon Brown||23/03/2016||The speech on the reasons for Britain to remain in the EU made by former Labour prime minister Gordon Brown at a conference on the economic consequences of "Brexit", from 21 April.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum - Michael Gove||23/03/2016||Recorded coverage of the speech by justice secretary Michael Gove on the case for leaving the European Union, from Tuesday 19 April.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum - Nigel Farage||23/03/2016||The GO movement rally in favour of leaving the EU with speeches from UKIP leader Nigel Farage and Conservative cabinet minister Chris Grayling, from Monday 18 April.|
|ITV||Tonight: is Britain Really full?||31/03/2016||Ranvir Singh travels to London, Lincolnshire, Lancashire and Greater Manchester to find out whether public perception of immigration is borne out by the facts.|
|BBC Parliament||Live House of Commons coverage||11/04/2016||Government statement on EU referendum leaflet|
|BBC2||Europe: Them or Us - part 1||12/04/2016||1/2. An Island Apart: Nick Robinson explores the troubled history of the UK's relationship with Europe.|
|BBC News||Victoria Derbyshire||14/04/2016||Includes Jeremy Corbyn speech on EU referendum|
|BBC Parliament||Alastair Darling EU Speech||18/04/2016||Recorded coverage of former Labour chancellor Alistair Darling making a speech setting out the economic argument for the UK to remain in the European Union, from Friday 15 April.|
|BBC Parliament||Boris Johnson EU Speech||18/04/2016||Recorded coverage of London mayor Boris Johnson making a speech at a Vote Leave event in Manchester calling on the UK to leave the European Union, from Friday 15 April.|
|BBC2||Newsnight||18/04/2016||Referendum special on the economy|
|BBC Parliament||Vote Leave Event||18/04/2016||Recorded coverage of Labour MP and Vote Leave Chair, Gisela Stuart, making a speech entitled The Risks of Staying in the European Union, from Wednesday 13 April.|
|BBC2||Europe: Them or Us - part 2||19/04/2016||2/2. Voice of the People: The troubled history of the UK's relationship with Europe. Episode two goes behind the closed doors of Whitehall and Brussels.|
|BBC News||HARDtalk||19/04/2016||The battle for Britain's future, in or out of the EU, will be settled in June. Stephen Sackur's guest is Tim Martin, founder of JD Wetherspoon. Could Brexit make economic sense?|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum - Boris Johnson||10/05/2016||Recorded coverage of the speech by Conservative MP and leave campaigner Boris Johnson on the 'liberal cosmopolitan' case for Britain leaving the European Union, from Monday 9 May|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum - David Cameron||10/05/2016||Recorded coverage of David Cameron's speech on the forthcoming EU referendum, warning that peace in Europe could be at risk if Britain votes to leave the EU. From Monday 9 May|
|BBC2||Newsnight||16/05/2016||An EU referendum special with Evan Davis|
|Channel 4||Channel 4 News||17/05/2016||Includes EU referendum debate with members of UK minority communities|
|BBC1||Paxman in Brussels: Who Really Rules Us?||19/05/2016||As the EU referendum debate approaches its climax, Jeremy Paxman takes viewers on a journey to the heart of Europe, meeting the movers, shakers and anonymous faces who run the EU.|
|Channel 4||Referendum Campaign Broadcast||23/05/2016||A referendum campaign broadcast by the Vote Leave campaign|
|Channel 4||Referendum Campaign Broadcast||24/05/2016||A referendum campaign broadcast by the Britain Stronger in Europe campaign|
|Channel 4||Boris v Dave: The Battle for Europe||25/05/2016||Michael Crick examines how the EU referendum campaign has become a personal battle between David Cameron and Boris Johnson; a battle that will define the future of the country|
|BBC1||How Should I Vote? The EU Debate||26/05/2016||Live from Glasgow, Victoria Derbyshire hosts a debate on the issues that matter to younger voters ahead of the June referendum on whether or not Britain should remain in the EU.|
|BBC Parliament||Business Views on EU Referendum Committee||27/05/2016||Recorded coverage of the Business, Innovation and Skills committee on the views of businesses on the EU referendum, from Tuesday 24 May.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Polls Debate||28/05/2016||Recorded coverage of an event with pollsters and commentators asking whether the EU referendum polls can be relied on. From Wednesday 25 May.|
|BBC Parliament||Scotland and the EU Referendum Committee||28/05/2016||The Scottish Affairs Committee's session on the impact of the EU referendum on Scotland, from Wednesday 25 May.|
|BBC Parliament||Speaker's EU Debate||28/05/2016||Recorded coverage of the House of Commons speaker hosting a debate on the UK's membership of the European Union. From Monday 23 May.|
|BBC1||Countryfile||29/05/2016||Snowdonia: John Craven races a hill runner to the summit of Snowdon and meets the volunteers protecting the area's ospreys. Includes David Cameron and Boris Johnson speaking on EU referendum and the countryside.|
|Channel 4||An Immigrant's Guide to Britain||30/05/2016||Comedian Henning Wehn and his gang of first-generation immigrants provide an irreverent guide to life in Britain. This episode explores caravans, rugby, the weather and more. (Ep1/3)|
|BBC 2||Britain & Europe: For Richer or Poorer?||31/05/2016||Laura Kuenssberg examines the economic costs and benefits of EU membership.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum - Chris Grayling||31/05/2016||Recorded coverage of Vote Leave campaigner Chris Grayling MP making a speech in London, from Tuesday 31 May.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum - Sajid Javid||31/05/2016||Recorded coverage of business secretary Sajid Javid taking part in a panel discussion for the Britain Stronger IN Europe campaign group, from Tuesday 31 May.|
|Channel 4||Referendum Campaign Broadcast||31/05/2016||A referendum campaign broadcast by the Vote Leave campaign.|
|Channel 4||Referendum Campaign Broadcast||01/06/2016||A referendum campaign broadcast by the Britain Stronger in Europe campaign.|
|Sky News||EU: In or Out?||02/06/2016||Adam Boulton presents build-up to the first big TV event of the EU referendum in which David Cameron will answer questions from Sky News's political editor and a live audience|
|Sky News||EU: In or Out?||03/06/2016||Adam Boulton presents build-up to the second big TV event of the EU Referendum in which 'Leave' campaigner Michael Gove will answer questions from Faisal Islam and a live studio audience.|
|BBC1||Countryfile||05/06/2016||Montrose: Matt Baker and Anita Rani are at the Montrose Basin in Scotland, while Tom Heap looks at the EU referendum and Britain's fisheries.|
|BBC Radio 5 Live||Pienaar's Politics||05/06/2016||John Pienaar is joined by the former deputy prime minister, Nick Clegg, and energy minister Andrea Leadsom. He also speaks to a panel of young voters about the EU referendum.|
|Channel 4||An Immigrant's Guide to Britain||06/06/2016||Comedian Henning Wehn leads the irreverent guide to life in Britain. This episode explores work, dating, the British sense of humour, and breakfast in a can. (Ep2/3)|
|Channel 4||Channel 4 News||06/06/2016||Includes live youth debate on EU Referendum|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum Campaign: Jeremy Corbyn||06/06/2016||Recorded coverage of a referendum campaign event with Jeremy Corbyn MP in favour of the UK remaining in the European Union, from Thursday 2 June.|
|BBC1||The Andrew Neil Interviews: Leave or Remain?||06/06/2016||In this first programme Andrew speaks to the shadow foreign secretary, Hilary Benn MP. Then BBC News.|
|BBC News||Victoria Derbyshire: The EU Debate||06/06/2016||Victoria Derbyshire hosts an EU referendum debate live from Manchester with an audience of 150 voters and senior politicians.|
|ITV||Cameron and Farage Live: The EU Referendum||07/06/2016||Julie Etchingham presents a live hour-long programme in which David Cameron and Nigel Farage will in turn answer questions from a studio audience in London.|
|BBC2||Jack Dee's Referendum Help Desk||07/06/2016||1/3. Jack Dee helps a live studio audience dispel their problems regarding the EU referendum. Jack's guests include Romesh Ranganathan and Katherine Ryan.|
|Channel 4||Power Monkeys||08/06/2016||New comedy spin-off from Ballot Monkeys with Jack Dee, Claire Skinner, Kevin McNally, Andy Nyman, Archie Panjabi and Amelia Bullmore following both sides of the EU referendum. (Ep1/6)|
|Channel 4||Referendum Campaign Broadcast||08/06/2016||A European referendum campaign broadcast from the Britain Stronger in Europe campaign. Featuring Stephen Hawking|
|BBC1||The Andrew Neil Interviews: Leave or Remain?||08/06/2016||Andrew Neil speaks to the chancellor of the exchequer, George Osborne MP. Then BBC News.|
|Channel 4||Referendum Campaign Broadcast||09/06/2016||A European referendum campaign broadcast by the Vote Leave campaign.|
|ITV||The ITV Referendum Debate||09/06/2016||Two-hour live debate ahead of the most significant UK referendum in recent history. Three senior political figures from each side answer questions from members of the audience. Nicola Sturgeon, Angela Eagle and Amber Rudd speak for Remain; Boris Johnson, Gisela Stuart and Andrea Leadsom speak for Leave.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum Campaign - Blair and Major||10/06/2016||Recorded coverage of the EU referendum campaign event in Northern Ireland, with former prime ministers John Major and Tony Blair backing the UK to remain in the European Union.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum Campaign - Gove and Raab||10/06/2016||Recorded coverage of the EU referendum campaign event with Michael Gove and Dominic Raab on why the UK should leave the European Union, from Wednesday 8 June.|
|BBC1||The Andrew Neil Interviews: Leave or Remain?||10/06/2016||Andrew Neil talks to leading campaigners on both sides of the EU referendum debate. In this programme he speaks to Ukip leader, Nigel Farage MEP. Then BBC News.|
|Channel 4||The Last Leg||10/06/2016||The award-winning satirical comedy show returns. Hosted by Adam Hills, Alex Brooker and Josh Widdicombe. The first guests are Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn and Russell Crowe. (S8 Ep1/6)|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum Campaign - Stronger in Europe Event||11/06/2016||Recorded coverage of a Stronger in Europe referendum campaign event with speeches from David Cameron, Harriet Harman, Tim Farron and Natalie Bennett, from Monday 6 June.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum Campaign - Vote Leave Event||11/06/2016||Recorded coverage of a Vote Leave referendum campaign in Stratford-Upon-Avon, with speeches from Boris Johnson, Michael Gove, Gisela Stuart and John Longworth, from Monday 6 June.|
|Al-Jazeera English||Listening Post||11/06/2016||As Britain's EU future hangs in the balance, is the media helping or hindering voters? Plus, the challenges of covering Australia's refugee policy.|
|BBC1||Better In or Out? A BBC Referendum Special||12/06/2016||Politicians and business leaders debate what London's future holds after the EU referendum.|
|Channel 4||An Immigrant's Guide to Britain||13/06/2016||The irreverent guide to life in Britain continues. Henning's laugh exasperates an etiquette expert, Obosei tries a pie in a tin, and Veronika investigates personal space. (Ep3/3)|
|Channel 4||Referendum Campaign Broadcast||13/06/2016||A European referendum campaign broadcast from the Britain Stronger in Europe campaign.|
|BBC2||Britain & Europe: The Immigration Question||14/06/2016||Mishal Husain investigates migration within the EU, including the impact of immigration on the UK as well as the advantages for Brits living abroad.|
|BBC2||Jack Dee's Referendum Help Desk||14/06/2016||2/3. Jack Dee helps a live studio audience dispel their problems regarding the EU referendum. Jack's guests include Romesh Ranganathan and Katherine Ryan.|
|BBC2||Referendum Campaign Broadcast||14/06/2016||Referendum campaign broadcast by the Vote Leave campaign.|
|Channel 4||Power Monkeys||15/06/2016||Topical satire. In the Unity Unit the PM is coming to visit and Ruby's making cheesecake, Oleg reminisces about Angela Merkel, and the Trump team attempt to woo women. (Ep2/6)|
|BBC1||Question Time EU Special: The Case for Leave||15/06/2016||Justice secretary Michael Gove MP answers questions on the case for leaving the EU.|
|BBC1||Referendum Broadcast||15/06/2016||Referendum campaign broadcast by the Stronger IN Europe campaign.|
|Channel 4||Eurotrash||17/06/2016||Antoine de Caunes and Jean Paul Gaultier present a new edition of the legendary show about the many, varied and occasionally alarming cultural delights enjoyed by our European cousins.|
|Channel 4||The Last Leg||17/06/2016||Hosts Adam Hills, Alex Brooker and Josh Widdicombe are joined by US playwright and actor Jesse Eisenberg and Kunal Nayyar to take a fresh look at the week's events. (S8 Ep2/6)|
|BBC Radio 5 Live||Pienaar's Politics||19/06/2016||John Pienaar presents a special EU referendum edition of Pienaar's Politics. He speaks to politicians and pundits on boths sides, including David Miliband and Nigel Farage.|
|BBC1||Question Time EU Special: The Case for Remain||19/06/2016||An audience in Milton Keynes quizzes David Cameron on the case for remaining in the EU.|
|Sky News||EU: In or Out?||20/06/2016||Jeremy Corbyn - live television debate of the Referendum campaign, exclusive to Sky News.|
|BBC1||The Big EU Reality Check||20/06/2016||The Big EU Reality Check gets to the facts behind the claims in the EU referendum campaign.Then BBC News.|
|BBC1||EU Referendum: The Great Debate||21/06/2016||David Dimbleby, Mishal Husain and Emily Maitlis present the biggest debate of the EU referendum campaign live from the SSE Arena in Wembley, London.|
|LBC 97.3||Iain Dale||21/06/2016||Includes EU debate between Nigel Farage and Lord Heseltine|
|BBC2||Jack Dee's Referendum Help Desk||21/06/2016||3/3. Jack Dee helps a live studio audience dispel their problems regarding the EU referendum. Jack's guests include Katherine Ryan, Jeremy Hardy, Nina Wadia and Nish Kumar.|
|BBC R5L||Phil Williams||21/06/2016||Phil Williams presents reaction to the evening's debate on the EU referendum at Wembley Arena.|
|BBC News||The Great Debate Countdown||21/06/2016||A special programme building up to the start of the BBC's EU Referendum Great Debate - with behind the scenes access to the audience, the experts and the BBC's presenting team.|
|BBC Parliament||BBC Wales EU Referendum Debate||22/06/2016||On the eve of the EU referendum, leading figures from the two campaigns face questions from a studio audience in a debate presented by Bethan Rhys Roberts.|
|Sky News||EU: In or Out? Time to Decide||22/06/2016||Dermot Murnaghan hosts a special night of coverage in the hours before EU Referendum polls open, with reports and analysis from Sky News' Editors and leading contributors from the UK and abroad.|
|Channel 4||Europe: The Final Debate with Jeremy Paxman||22/06/2016||Jeremy Paxman hosts the final debate before the EU Referendum, with politicians, celebrities and figures from business, science, sport, the military and security services.|
|Channel 4||Power Monkeys||22/06/2016||There's one day left for the EU referendum camps to sway the waverers. In the Unity Unit, Sara is trying her best to manage conflict, while Jackie wants to be eaten by eagles. (Ep3/6)|
|BBC Radio 4||The Moral Maze||22/06/2016||The EU Referendum: Combative, provocative and engaging debate chaired by Edward Stourton. With Mona Siddiqui, Matthew Taylor, Claire Fox and Giles Fraser.|
|LBC 97.3||Britain Decides||23/06/2016||Britain Decides with Iain Dale & Shelagh Fogarty.|
|Sky News||Decision Time: In or Out?||23/06/2016||Adam Boulton hosts a momentous night on the referendum result from 50 live locations. Is the UK really about to leave the EU?|
|CCTV||Dialogue||23/06/2016||Discussion of UK referendum on EU membership|
|BBC1||EU Referendum: The Result||23/06/2016||David Dimbleby is your guide as the votes are counted around the UK. Joining him in the BBC's Referendum Centre are Jeremy Vine, Emily Maitlis, Kamal Ahmed and Laura Kuenssberg.|
|France 24||News & Magazines||23/06/2016||Coverage and analysis of the results of the referendum on the UK's membership of the European Union.|
|RT||News UK||23/06/2016||Live coverage of the UK's EU Referendum result.|
|BBC Radio 4||Referendum 2016||23/06/2016||Coverage and analysis of the results of the referendum on the UK's membership of the European Union.|
|ITV||Referendum Result Live: ITV News Special||23/06/2016||Tom Bradby presents live coverage of the biggest decision facing the British public in a generation. With Julie Etchingham, Robert Peston, Allegra Stratton and James Mates.|
|BBC R5L||Stephen Nolan||23/06/2016||Stephen Nolan and Chris Mason with initial reaction from campaigners and 5 live listeners following the close of the polls for the EU referendum.|
|CNN||UK Decides: In or Out?||23/06/2016||Live coverage of the UK's EU Referendum result.|
|BBC1||BBC News Special EU Referendum||24/06/2016||Huw Edwards presents live coverage from Westminster on the EU referendum result, with reaction from BBC teams across the UK and around the world.|
|BBC News||BBC News Special: EU Referendum||24/06/2016||Huw Edwards presents live coverage from Westminster on the EU referendum result, with reaction from BBC teams across the UK and around the world.|
|BBC News||BBC News Special: EU Referendum||24/06/2016||BBC News presents live coverage from Westminster on the EU referendum result - with reaction from BBC teams across the UK and around the world.|
|CCTV||Dialogue||24/06/2016||Discussion of UK's decision to leave the EU|
|Sky News||EU Referendum Result||24/06/2016||Dermot Murnaghan with reaction and analysis of the referendum result. So what happens now?|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum: Arlene Foster||24/06/2016||Recorded coverage of the speech by Northern Ireland's first minister Arlene Foster in response to the Leave result on the UK's membership of the EU, from Friday 24 June.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum: Boris Johnson||24/06/2016||Recorded coverage of the news conference held by Vote Leave with speeches from Boris Johnson, Michael Gove and Gisela Stuart, from Friday 24 June.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum: Carwyn Jones||24/06/2016||Recorded coverage of the news conference held by Welsh first minister Carwyn Jones in response to the Leave result in the UK's referendum on EU membership, from Friday 24 June.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum: David Cameron||24/06/2016||Recorded coverage of the Downing Street news conference held by prime minister David Cameron announcing he will step down in October, from Friday 24 June.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum: Enda Kenny||24/06/2016||Recorded coverage of the news conference held by the Irish taoiseach, Enda Kenny, in response to the Leave result in the UK's referendum on EU membership, from Friday 24 June.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum: European Reaction||24/06/2016||Recorded coverage of reactions to the Leave result from Angela Merkel, Donald Tusk, Jean-Claude Juncker and Martin Schulz, from Friday 24 June.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum: Mark Carney||24/06/2016||Recorded coverage of the news conference held by the governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, in response to the Leave result in the EU referendum, from Friday 24 June.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum: Nicola Sturgeon||24/06/2016||Recorded coverage of the news conference held by Scottish first minister Nicola Sturgeon in response to the Leave result in the EU referendum, from Friday 24 June.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum: Nigel Farage||24/06/2016||Recorded coverage of the speech by Ukip leader Nigel Farage in response to the Leave result in the UK's referendum on the European Union, from Friday 24 June.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum: Ruth Davidson||24/06/2016||Recorded coverage of the speech by Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson in response to the Leave result in the UK's membership of the European Union, from Friday 24 June.|
|France 24||News & Magazines||24/06/2016||Live coverage of results of UK EU Referendum|
|BBC World Sv.||Newsday||24/06/2016||Coverage of the EU referendum results.|
|BBC World Sv.||Newshour Extra Special||24/06/2016||A special edition covering the results of the EU referendum.|
|BBC 2||Newsnight||24/06/2016||With Evan Davis. So... now what?|
|Channel 4||Power Monkeys||24/06/2016||Topical satire. The results are in, the UK's fate has been decided. Tony is keen to begin the healing process, while the David Cameron fudge has morphed into a sad metaphor.|
|BBC R5L||Referendum 2016||24/06/2016||James Naughtie and Carolyn Quinn present overnight coverage and reaction to the results of the EU Referendum.|
|BBC World Sv.||Referendum Extra||24/06/2016||Coverage of the EU referendum results.|
|ITV||Referendum Result Live: ITV News||24/06/2016||Alastair Stewart presents live coverage of all the latest news following last night's historic EU referendum result.|
|Sky News||Sunrise Special: EU Referendum Result||24/06/2016||Dermot Murnaghan with the crucial result of the referendum on the UK's membership of the EU. Did we stay or did we go?|
|BBC1||The Big Decision with Nick Robinson||24/06/2016||Nick Robinson examines what the results of the EU referendum will mean for the UK.|
|Channel 4||The Last Leg In, The Last Leg Out||24/06/2016||Adam Hills, Alex Brooker and Josh Widdicombe are joined by Stephen Mangan to examine the EU referendum result and the most entertaining news stories of the week.|
|Al-Jazeera English||Listening Post||25/06/2016||After an EU referendum campaign full of racism and fear, we examine the UK media's influence on the result. Plus, how ad blockers are costing the news business.|
|BBC2||Newsnight Special: Life After Brexit||25/06/2016||In-depth investigation and analysis of the stories behind the day's headlines.|
|RT||Sophie & Co.||25/06/2016||Bright, straightforward, honest, respectful. Questions that stick. Answers that matter.|
|CNN||Connect the World with Becky Anderson||26/06/2016||CNN's Becky Anderson joins the dots of stories and events by exploring how an event or circumstance in one part of the world can have a significant impact elsewhere.|
|BBC1||Question Time: A EU Special||26/06/2016||A special live edition discussing the implications of the UK's vote to leave the European Union. The Leave and Remain camps are evenly represented in the audience and on the panel.|
|Channel 4||Channel 4 News||27/06/2016||Extended EU referendum news special.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum: George Osborne||27/06/2016||Recorded coverage of a speech by the chancellor of the exchequer in response to the Leave result in the UK's referendum on the European Union, from Monday 27 June.|
|BBC Parliament||EU Referendum: Jeremy Corbyn||27/06/2016||EU Referendum statement by Jeremy Corbyn, Leader, Labour Party, from June 25|
|BBC Parliament||Prime Minister's Statement||27/06/2016||David Cameron's statement to Parliament on the outcome of the EU referendum|
|BBC Parliament||Gibraltar Newswatch||28/06/2016||GBC Television Gibraltar present coverage of the EU Referendum vote, with local reaction, analysis and discussion on implications for Gibraltarians. Recorded Friday 24 June.|
|BBC News||HARDtalk||28/06/2016||Radek Sikorski, former Polish foreign minister: HARDtalk's Stephen Sackur talks to former Polish foreign minister Radek Sikorski about Britain's Brexit vote|
|BBC Parliament||Live European Parliament||28/06/2016||Live coverage of proceedings in the European Parliament in Brussels on the outcome of the UK referendum on membership of the European Union.|
|BBC Parliament||Scottish Parliament - EU Referendum||28/06/2016||Coverage of the statement in the Scottish Parliament by first minister Nicola Sturgeon on the outcome of the referendum on the UK's membership of the EU, from Tuesday 28 June.|
|BBC4||Power Monkeys||29/06/2016||The dust has settled in both EU referendum camps. Spencer is now scolding the Premier League and zigzag haircuts, while Tony endeavours to save his marriage... to the Tory party. (Ep5/6)|
|BBC Radio 4||The Moral Maze||29/06/2016||Debate on the outcome of the EU Referendum. Combative, provocative and engaging debate chaired by Michael Buerk. With Mona Siddiqui, Giles Fraser, Melanie Phillips and Anne McElvoy.|
|BBC Parliament||Conservative Leadership - Boris Johnson||30/06/2016||Recorded coverage of Boris Johnson announcing that he will not stand in the election to become the next leader of the Conservative Party, from Thursday 30 June.|
|BBC Parliament||Conservative Leadership - Stephen Crabb||30/06/2016||Recorded coverage of work and pensions secretary Stephen Crabb launching his campaign to be the next leader of the Conservative Party, from Wednesday 29 June.|
|BBC Parliament||Conservative Leadership - Theresa May||30/06/2016||Recorded coverage of home secretary Theresa May launching her campaign to be the next leader of the Conservative Party, from Thursday 30 June.|
|BBC News||HARDtalk||30/06/2016||Stephen Sackur talks to Segolene Royal, French environment minister and former socialist candidate for the French presidency about the British Brexit.|
|BBC 1||Question Time||30/06/2016||Topical debate in which guests from the worlds of politics and the media answer questions posed by members of the public|
|BBC R5L||Question Time Extra Time||30/06/2016||John Pienaar introduces coverage of Question Time, with the chance to continue the debate after the simulcast.|
|Sky News||The Pledge: Brexit||30/06/2016||This week on The Pledge it's a Brexit special. There will be straight talking debate on the UK's historic vote to leave the EU.|
As said, we continue to record programmes relating to the aftermath of the referendum, as well as our regular news programming - some 40 hours per day. We will aim to upload new programmes to SAMI and Explore at the end of each month, but those who want up-to-the-minute recordings can always go direct to the Broadcast News service, which makes most of the programmes it records available an hour or so after broadcast. To access Broadcast News onsite, go to any British Library terminal, and click on the front page link for Sound and Moving Image services.
The British Library has also been archiving websites on the EU Referendum, as outlined in this blog from our Web Archiving team: Capturing and Preserving the EU Referendum Debate (Brexit). And of course we have been taking in most British newspapers as part of our standard Legal Deposit intake.
Meanwhile, the recording goes on ....
Recording today's news
01 June 2016
It's time for another edition in our occasional series on news about news, the St Pancras Intelligencer. Here are some of the recent stories on where news and where it might be going which have caught our eye.
Google's Accelerated Mobile Pages Project
Death to the Mass - Jeff Jarvis writes on the death of the traditional idea of the mass media as delivering the same content to everyone. What replaces it will be tailored to the individual, who is now the king over everything:
What has died is the mass-media business model — injuring, perhaps mortally, a host of institutions it symbiotically supported: publishing, broadcasting, mass marketing, mass production, political parties, possibly even our notion of a nation. We are coming at last to the end of the Gutenberg Age.
All well and good, says Roy Greenslade, but how in this brave new world are we to save public interest journalism?
When it comes to social media, news consumers tend to stick with 1 source - Media plurality is all very good, but humans still tend to stick with the familiar. The Pew Research Center and Knight Foundation find that 64 percent of social media news consumers get their news on just one favorite site.
43 percent of social media users don't know where the stories they read originally appeared - Some disheartening news for all news brands, as Digiday reports that 43% of social media users are unaware of them.Why China fakes 488 million social media posts a year - Mind-boggling report from Mashable on how China's government fills its social media with positive social media comments to distract its citizens from bad or politically sensitive news.
Digital archives of British national newspapers - Our own guide to current UK national newspapers available digitally at the British Library (and those which can't be found digitally anywhere).
A neighbor is better than a newspaper - A rather heartening report from Solutions Journalism Network, showing how the oldest form of news distribution - word-of-mouth - operates in rural Western mountain communities in the USA.
Facebook's Instant Articles
Facebook news selection is in hands of editors not algorithms, documents show - So many stories out there about how Facebook's algorithms are shaping the world's news. The Guardian reports on the humans behind the algorithms making selection decisions much like a traditional media organisation. Quartz has Facebook’s news feed algorithm is so mysterious, users are developing “folk theories” about how it works; Will Cathcart at The Verge has a long talk with Facebook about its role in journalism; Fusion reminds us that the real ‘news curators’ at Facebook are the engineers who write its algorithms; while The Independent reports Facebook denies claims it suppressed conservative and controversial news on its ‘Trending Topics’ sidebar.
Facebook is the new paperboy - And there's more. Matt Carroll at Medium traces the history of news distribution from paperboys to platforms, and how this is changing how newsrooms work.
Social networks could do much more to protect eyewitnesses in breaking news - Josh Stearns at FirstDraftNews calls on Facebook, Twitter and Google to do more to help eyewitnesses supplying on-the-spot news at disasters to protect and understand their rights.
Beware the ‘false consciousness’ theory: newspapers won’t decide this referendum - Charlie Beckett at LSE's Polis blog says that traditional newspapers no longer have the influence over something like the EU Referendum debate that campaigners imagine they have.
How the New York Times plans to conquer the world - Alex Spence at Politico reports on how the New York Times is eyeing Europe for new digital subscribers.
Suddenly, national newspapers are heading for that print cliff fall - The end has been nigh for a while now, but Roy Greenslade is now certain: newspapers "have no future".
A BBC for the future - And finally, among all the stories coming out the BBC White Paper - funding local journalists, cutting back on sections of its News website, no longer running local news index web pages, possibly merging the News and World channels - we were pleased to see this line lurking towards the back of the document: "There should be particular scope to do more to enable access to BBC historic news archive". Let's hope so.
The Newsroom blog recent posts
- Encountering the news
- Breaking news on Breaking the News
- The US 2020 election broadcast archive
- Ten years of Broadcast News
- Moving from a newspaper collection to a news collection
- Help us make the news
- Archiving the general election on TV
- Trump on TV
- Brexit - the broadcast archive
- St. Pancras Intelligencer no. 39