It’s always good to laugh and one interview on BBC’s Radio 4 Today programme this morning certainly caused me to guffaw.
It is a classic and rather funny example of scientist Sushil Atreya, a Professor with the Curiosity programme, refusing to compromise and explain the possibility of life on Mars in layman’s language – and a journalist, Sarah Montague, working her socks off to try and help him.
This interview on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme was broadcast at about 8.30 a.m. – probably one of the most valuable and influential slots (peak audience) on one of the most valuable and influential programmes in the UK. Unfortunately the scientist in question does not care about PR – his own, the university’s or the space programme’s – he is just answering questions as he would for a rather dim and uninteresting student. Everything he says is coherent and undoubtedly accurate but totally inappropriate for the audience.
I am sure he is a very nice and clever man but boy, does he need media training!
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