Monday, May 09, 2011

Kiss Me Where The Sun Don't Shine, The Past Was Yours, The Future's Mine!

The second episode of the current series of Doctor Who - you know, the one that only got 5.4m viewers overnight to such unrestrained cartwheel-spinning glee from the lice at the Daily Scum Mail - had a final, consolidated, rating of 7.3m viewers after another near-two million timeshift BARB have confirmed. And that's, of course, not counting the full 'Ratings +7' figures that the BBC are now collecting which will also include over 1.2m iPlayer views in the first seven days and a further eight hundred and ninety thousand audience for the two BBC3 repeats of the episode during the first week after initial transmission. So, that's an overall audience 'reach' of approximately 9.2m overall. Or, to put it another way, about one in every six people in the UK. So, we should expect the Daily Scum Mail to ... you know, ignore those facts entirely because they don't fit in with the alleged newspapers thoroughly sick and venal anti-BBC agenda. Doctor Who Magazine editor, Tom Spilsbury tweeted news of the final figure and noted: 'Interesting that ratings so far for Matt [Smith]'s second series (8.86m and 7.30m) are slightly higher than for David [Tennant]'s second series (8.71m and 7.23m).' Also, isn't it peculiar (and, rather sad) that the BBC's own website isn't trumpeting its flagship Saturday night family drama series picking up nearly a million additional week-on-week viewers on Saturday night for episode three? Particularly as it seemed so keen to tell the world and its dog about the fall in overnight ratings last week? On a (slightly) related note, yer actual Keith Telly Topping is rather tickled, so he is, that From The North's reviews of this year's Doctor Who episodes are being link to by the very excellent Steve Moffat Net. Wow. That's jolly pleasing. And, if any new dear blog readers happen to have stumbled in here from there, you are very welcome. Pull up a chair and stick around!

Yer Keith Telly Topping confesses that he caught a small part of So You Think You Can Dance on Saturday. I watch these things so that you don't have to, dear blog reader. It's a dirty job but someone's got to do it. Anyway, I was rather surprised when one of the judges - I think it was Nasty Nigel his very self - told the contestants that they would be dancing 'in front of six million people.' Err ... only if you add the ratings for the main show to the ratings for the result show together, and then assume that they're watched by totally different people, Nige.

A Twitter user claims to have 'unmask' some of the celebrities who have obtained superinjunctions to prevent publication of details of their private lives. Although essentially nothing more than spreading gossip, the page has quickly gathered almost fifteen thousand followers and challenged the effectiveness of superinjunctions in the modern world of social media. The user concerned alleges that he or she has 'outed' a number of public figures, though the subsequent allegations appeared to contain several factual errors and in some cases seem to be nothing more than repeating various salacious rumours which have been doing the rounds on Internet message boards and forums for weeks already. For example, the BBC website reported that Jemima Khan had tweeted: 'Rumour that I have a super injunction preventing publication of "intimate" photos of me and Jeremy Clarkson. NOT TRUE!' A minute later she added: 'I have no super injunction and I had dinner with Jeremy and his wife last night. Twitter, Stop!' According to the Torygraph, the socialite told her Twitter followers that she had received a 'nice text' from Jezza's wife, Francie, after the false online accusations. She also said the Top Gear presenter had sent a text message of his own saying: 'It's odd. I'm sure I'd remember if any photos of us existed.' Tweeting, Miss Khan said of the Internet rumours: 'I've woken up trapped in a bloody nightmare.' The first individual to be named on the Twitter site was the married Premiership footballer - who may, or may not, play for Manchester United depending on which version you read - who, allegedly, had an affair with Imogen Thomas, the former Big Brother contestant. It was claimed that the 'highly paid' player, described by his agent as 'a family man,' had a six-month affair with the former Miss Wales. The pair are said to have met several hours before big games in luxury hotels for the purposes of sex. An actor in a very popular British drama series who obtained a privacy injunction after - it is claimed - cheating on his wife with the prostitute Helen Wood was also supposedly identified. He had found it increasingly difficult to keep his name a secret after Wood told a newspaper that he had paid her one hundred and ninety five smackers for sex. Wayne Rooney, the England footballer, previously paid Miss Wood one thousand pounds for an encounter. Which would appear to suggest that, like many aspects of the business world, whoring is in something of a financial slump at present. A 'showbusiness figure' who had his 'celebrity mistress' sacked from her job after his wife discovered their affair has also been exposed. The 'star' began an affair with a married woman while they were working together in November 2009. Both were described in court as 'working for the entertainment industry.' When the man's wife found out about the relationship last April, he ended the affair and told their bosses they could no longer work together. The mistress was sacked in December while her former lover was on holiday with his family. Gabby Logan has recently furiously denied that she is the woman in question and that her BBC colleague Alan Shearer is the man. The '@superinjunction' Twitter user also identified whom he (or she) claims to be an 'internationally renowned chef' who has won a gagging order preventing publication of details of a legal wrangle with two former employees. The former colleagues are suing the chef at an employment tribunal. One, a female accountant who can only be identified as Ms J, is claiming unfair dismissal and sexual discrimination. She is also making a claim under the Public Interest Disclosure Act, which protects so-called 'whistleblowers.' The fifth celebrity named on the Twitter site is a television presenter who, it is claimed, had an affair with his ex-wife after he had remarried. The sixth gagging order is claimed, by the Torygraph, to be 'so strict that the individual cannot be described - even anonymously.' Not that this stopped our anonymous Twitter user who did, indeed, name an indivdual that they allege this refers to. Louise Bagshawe, the Conservative MP whose joke about one of these gagging order case had to be censored on the BBC show Have I Got News for You last month since it clearly broke the terms of the injunction (and she wasn't covered by parliamentary privilege at the time), said that the use superinjunctions to hide extra-marital affairs is 'cheapening British justice. You cannot keep things secret in this day and age because of Twitter and other social networking websites, which are outside the British jurisdiction,' she added. 'One wonders if the celebrities who have taken out superinjunctions might regret it now as rather than one or two days of embarrassment they face a saga which goes on for months.' The tweets will doubtless add to concerns being expressed over injunctions and the non-mainstream media. Some newspapers - and MPs - have attempted to challenge the court orders, suggesting it should be Parliament and not the courts which decide on the introduction of any privacy law. Lib Dem MP John Hemming, who is compiling a report on superinjunctions, said last night: 'It shows the absurdity of what is being done in the courts. It ignores the way that modern communication works.' Hemming, whose constituency is in Birmingham, added: 'Normally with these things, only a few people in London know what is going on. But recently people have been coming to my constituency surgery and telling me that they know who these people are.' Last month, Prime Minister David Cameron said the increasing use of such strict gagging orders made him feel 'uneasy.' A report by a committee set up by the Master of the Rolls will report on their use later this month. The BBC's legal correspondent Clive Coleman said it will have to grapple with the issue of publication online. 'If it doesn't the super or secret-injunction may no longer be an effective tool in the administration of justice,' he said. A spokesman for Twitter told the Gruniad: 'There are tweets that we do remove, such as illegal tweets and spam. However, we make efforts to keep these exceptions narrow so they may serve to prove a broader and more important rule – we strive not to remove tweets on the basis of their content.' 'I think it is inevitable that once something gets onto the Internet and people know how to transfer it then it will become more and more widely picked up and an awful lot of people can find out about this information very quickly indeed,' legal commentator Joshua Rosenberg told Sky News. 'Whether the information is accurate or not, nobody can be sure.' Notifications of so called superinjunctions are sent by lawyers to all of the UK's media outlets who are, in turn, not allowed to report them - the wider public aren't made aware because that would, effectively, defeat the point of the injunction. But this then begs an obvious question, particularly in relation to Twitter, Facebook and other social media networks: If an individual independently finds out about A having an affair with B, and said individual was never directly made aware of a superinjunction being taken out, then how can that person be in breach of the law? Or, is this one of those cases where ignorance of the facts is no defence? From The North, as ever, will continue to report what's in the public domain and nothing else.

And, still on the same theme, we are on the verge of a momentous judgment by the European Court of Human Rights. According to the Independent on Sunday, the court's judges will rule this week on Max Mosley's petition to make it a legal requirement for newspapers to inform people in advance that they intend to publish an article about them. Whether this applies to Twitter uses, bloggers, or people who post 'have you heard about who's knocking off whom' posts on Internet Forums or not doesn't appear to be known at this time. This 'prior notification' amendment to the privacy section of human rights law follows the News of the World's invasion of Mosley's privacy in March 2008, when the paper revealed his sexual liaison with five women. He was not contacted before publication of the story in print, which was accompanied by the online posting of video footage. Mosley sued for breach of privacy, won, and was awarded sixty thousand quid by the high court. But, as Mosley went on to point out, once something that is private is published, no court can erase it from the public mind. 'The only effective remedy is to prevent publication,' he wrote in a Gruniad comment piece earlier this year. 'But the court can only do this if the victim knows and alerts a judge. This is why prior notification is essential.' If the European court supports Mosley it would be regarded as a landmark ruling with implications for all newspaper investigations that involve people's personal lives. It would be a severe blow to the press - especially to tabloid kiss'n'tell stories - which have already been choked off by the use of gagging orders. The editors of broadsheet newspapers also broadly opposed Mosley's petition, arguing that prior notification would have a chilling effect on general press freedom. However, Mosley has always countered that journalists investigating stories of genuine public interest would be able to make a case for publication. Mosley has also said that it would involve only a small number of cases as most of the time, newspapers do contact people in advance of publication for a reaction comment to the story.

Speaking of bizarre Internet rumours, one is currently doing the rounds that Osama Bin Liner was a big fan of The IT Crowd. These emerged over the weekend. It was 'claimed' - although by whom seems unclear - that videos of the Channel Four sitcom were found in the al-Qaeda leader's fortified hideout in Pakistan after he was assassinated by US Navy SEALs. The rumours circulated after the American government released previously unseen video footage of the terrorist figurehead, which include shots of him channel surfing satellite TV for news reports about himself and some out-takes from propaganda videos. However, none of the clips support the story about The IT Crowd which – although rife on Twitter – does not appear to be confirmed by any reputable news source. According to some unconfirmed rumours, Bin Liner was said to have been seen mouthing dialogue from the sitcom as he watched. There was no audio on any of the footage release by Washington. The show's creator Graham Linehan himself tweeted: 'Does anyone have confirmation that Osama was watching The IT Crowd in these home movies? Amazing if true. Don't know how to feel. Obviously, a monster, but still. Was he all bad?'

CSI star Marg Helgenberger has criticised Justin Bieber's behaviour during his two guest stints on the series, describing him as 'a brat.' Helgenberger, who plays Catherine Willows on the CBS drama, made the comments during an interview on a French radio station this weekend, when asked how the cast had responded to the Canadian pop star's involvement. 'Justin Bieber wasn't bad,' the actress said, according to TMZ. 'He had never acted before.' However, when pressed, Helgenberger admitted that Bieber had often acted childishly during working hours. 'I shouldn't be saying this, but he was kind of a brat [on the set],' she explained. 'He was very nice to me, but he locked one of the producers in a closet, and he put his fist through a cake that was on the actors' table.' Bieber made two guest appearances on CSI as teenage bomb expert Jason McCann, before his character was spectacularly blow'd up real good in February.

Bones actress Emily Deschanel has said that the show's producers are struggling to work around her pregnancy. Emily, who plays Temperance Brennan on the series, announced in March that she was expecting her first child with her husband, David Hornsby. The actress admitted that it is still uncertain how much her pregnancy will affect the series when it returns for a seventh season this fall. 'I image you're going to see Brennan behind a microscope a lot next season,' Deschanel joked to Entertainment Weekly. 'I think there's gonna be a lot of close-ups of Brennan. I said I'd work through my hiatus, but we didn't have a pick up until now, and they have to write before we shoot,' she explained. 'It's a whole situation.' She added that the production is unlikely to solve the issue by including her pregnancy as part of her character's storyline. 'I am not gonna say no. Never say never, I guess. But I think it's unlikely,' she revealed. 'I feel like that would change things so much.'

Joe McElderry has reportedly signed up to appear on the next series of Popstar to Operastar. The X Factor winner, who has allegedly been dropped by Simon Cowell's Syco record label after a series for flop records, will reportedly compete in the ITV reality show when it returns in the summer. A 'source' told the Sunday Mirra: 'Joe loves to sing - he's not bothered about what people will say. He will prosper from doing a show like this.' Well, yes, in so much as it'll be a few weeks where he doesn't have to stack shelves in Morrison's to earn a crust, I suppose that's true.

George Webley, the presenter of the weekday overnight programme on BBC London 94.9, has died aged fifty three. Big George, as he was known, had presented the show for the past five years. He won a gold Sony Award in 2002 for best music presenter and was formerly with BBC Three Counties Radio. He died in the early hours of Saturday, his family said. He also had a long career as a musician and composed TV theme tunes, including most famously, Have I Got News For You. The cause of death is not known at this stage, the BBC said. BBC London 94.9 Editor David Robey said: 'Big George lived up to his name in every sense, a larger than life character with a radio personality to match. He was a truly distinctive broadcaster who will be terribly missed by his many devoted listeners and his colleagues at BBC London 94.9.'

John Walker, one of the founders of The Walker Brothers, has died at the age of sixty seven His spokeswoman said that JohnSaturday at his Los Angeles home after a six-month battle with liver cancer. The band was formed when three unrelated US musicians - Scott Engel, John Maus and Gary Leeds - adopted the Walker Brothers name in 1964. Their biggest hits included the songs 'Make It Easy On Yourself', 'My Ship is Coming In' and 'The Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Any More'. The group's fame flourished after travelling to the UK - arriving in the bone-chilling winter of 1965 - where their trademark massively produced big ballads - usually sung in deut by John and Scott - struck a particular chord. They continued to score huge commercial success in the 1970s, notably their 1976 single 'No Regrets.' The official John Walker website said it was with 'eepest sadness' that it had to report John Walker passed away in his LA home on 7 May 2011. 'He was a beloved husband, brother, father, grandfather, friend, and artiste,' it said. Playing tribute to his former band member in a statement on his website, Gary Walker said it was a 'very sad day for John's family, myself and all of our many fans. John was the founder member of the group and lead singer in the early days. He was also a fantastic guitarist which a lot of people didn't realise. He was a compassionate song-writer and a gentleman with lots of style. The three of us had the most incredible adventure together, all the time not realising that we were part of pop history in the making. His music will live on, and therefore so will John.'

David Beckham has reportedly been involved in a car accident on a freeway in Los Angeles. TMZ reports that the Los Angeles Galaxy player was involved in a collision with another vehicle which resulted in the other driver being taken to hospital. Beckham allegedly crashed into the back of a gold Mitsubishi while driving on the 405 Freeway close to the LA suburb of Torrance - where they used to film the school scenes for Buffy the Vampire Slayer, fact fans! - on Friday morning. The Mitsubishi driver had broken down and was parked in the carpool lane when the accident occured. It is believed that although the other driver was taken to hospital after the accident, Beckham himself was unharmed. Although his fender was, ahem, bent like Beckham. Oh, suit yerselves. I'm working with limited material here, guys.

For today's Keith Telly Topping's 45 of the Day we've got a twenty four carat-indie classic from Ian Brown, John Squire, Mani and Reni

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