Friday, March 06, 2015

Democracy, debate, voting, and also music awards...

The disagreement over televised debates between political leaders is fascinating, up to a point, and mostly for the divisions and therefore the possible motives, on behalf of both politicians and broadcasters, that it has bought to public attention and a wider audience. I'm not going to enter the debate on UK politics here but this very public fiasco has focussed my attention on a long-standing case of double-standards that applies on all sides of the argument.
The distinctions between democracy, enfranchisement and transparency tend to be forgotten here: Without the last, the first is a poor guide to those that enjoy the latter and quite useless to those that don't. 
The broadcasters, including the BBC, are not entirely on the moral high-ground either.

We jump to music in the sense that this applies to the BBC Radio2 Folk Awards:
Emma Hartley has been on the case for a long time now and, despite her knowledge and persistence, it is like digging a tunnel with a candle and a toothpick. This link is not the start nor the end of the matter to date, but a good point to start on the stalling and frustrations that it has and likely will continue to provide:
This is neither open Government nor an example of the much-vaunted transparency promised by the BBC after a spate of revelations in recent years.

That is not to say that the short lists are flawed, nor the selection panels - any such venture needs some group of people that create a long list - for that is not so. That which is suspect is the undeclared voting members and, possibly, their commercial interests. There are actually many very splendid artists on the list of BBC Radio2 Folk Award nominations and this is that for 2015:
Another matter is that in the BBC Radio2 Folk Awards only one category is determined by a public vote, hence the issue with enfranchisement. You cannot vote for something or someone when you have a no vote at all.
On the other hand, just announced, are the Spiral Earth Award nominations 2015:  I don't know how these lists were chosen either and you will find that some of the same artists feature here, which is as it should likely be. There is one major difference and that is between now and noon BST (UTC+1) on Wednesday, 14 April you can vote on all eleven categories, each comprising a short list of four acts or artists.

I know that I might attract some flak here but so be it. As a matter of transparency I have posted all links fully and visibly, so that you can see what they are before you choose whether or not explore them
You should explore the music regardless.

Added 7 March 2015:
Timely as it is, here is a post regarding the approach that Glastonbury Festival takes in selecting the act or artist for its 'Emerging Talent' competition:
Included within the above article is a link to the 120 artists that comprise the long-list. That is still a long list, in any sense of the phrase, but consider the fact that this represents less than 2% of the total entries. 

No comments: