What’s with the shoddy media performance?

The duration of the count has been one of the headline stories so far of this election, but I personally have been very disappointed by the performance of the broadcast media so far. Why has it not been possible for the BBC and UTV to provide first count figures per candidate as the results come in, as has always been the case in the past? The BBC have been providing visual graphics on party performance following count announcements, which is quite useless given the vagaries of the single transferrable vote system, whilst UTV does seem to be eventually getting around to giving first preference candidate figures- certainly online anyway, but no count by county progress.

Furthermore, the absence of such figures on the BBC’s internet site throughout the night was equally disappointing.

But at least these two outlets provided some coverage. It would appear that RTE, which traditionally provided the best coverage in terms of giving count progress figures, has completely given up the ghost this time.

Thank God for Mark McGregor’s live blog, eh?

  • Mark McGregor


    Not everyone shares your view on the Liveblog:


  • Fair Deal

    I’m with Chris on this the level of info is poor plus many of the journos sent to cover counts have a poor understanding of politics and PR – they come to the politicos there for explanations of everything.

  • Fair Deal

    Best one yet was BBC NI news website headline
    “DUP set for NI Assembly majority”
    Granted I take 60 seats any day of the week but we are on course for high 30’s.

  • Fair Deal

    According to this at 12.25 on Saturday the TUV didn’t get any votes

  • Chris Donnelly

    It’s quite incredible. I hope some of the politicians pull Thompson and Clark about it on one of the telethon sessions…..

  • joeCanuck

    Disappointing though it is to say it,the SF site has the best reporting.

  • oracle

    ***** DISGRACEFUL *****

    A day and a half after the polls closed we still haven’t seen one transfer posted.

    UTV BBC awful just bloody awful
    Either show the running tallies or pull your bloody election shows off the air

  • oracle

    SF site no better Joe unless i’m missing something

  • One of the problems is that the results are first provisionally explained to the candidates and agents (and hangers on who all gather round too) on the count floor. Sometimes the deputy returning officer will ask – “do you want me to go up there and announce it all again, or can we get on with the next round of the count?” … if the parties don’t mutter, then the media are denied an announcement away from the election floor and in sight of their cameras.

  • joeCanuck


    They seem to get the results up earlier.

  • Nordie Northsider

    I normally like Noel Thompson but his need to turn everything into comedy is becoming a tad David Brent-like. Bairbre de Brún was trying to make a serious point about the ethics of vote management (as opposed to allowing voters to opt for their candidate of choice) when he interrupted with some gag about Caitríona Ruane being a few votes short of a quota. Given the feelings of half of the panel on the subject of Ruane I thought it was a bit off. Still, I suppose he was just trying to relieve the boredom.

  • Nunoftheabove


    Yes not an easy job for ‘Nole’; I’d blame the producers for putting him in a challenging position. Job made none the easier by having quite dull panels for long periods (just how many hours of Alasdair bloody McDonnell is a licence-paying citizen supposed to be able to stand ?) By the way did anyone else catch De Brun at least twice complaining that old people found the voting process unduly difficult ?! And McDonnell’s incredibly self-pitying whining about how hard politicans work ? And how voters don’t need information to make informed choices ? Good of him to acknowledge that it’s all about him and that the electorate are all both disinterested and stupid, unwilling and unable to digest detail and plainly written facts. His lecturing the unimpressive young Maskey on civility was also telling.

  • chewnicked

    Pathetic that BBC called it a night on their election coverage at the ungodly hour of …..half six on Saturday evening! Disgraceful coverage from an organisation funded by the public-and McKee and Thompson have the cheek to lambast electoral office staff for not working hard enough!

  • edgeoftheunion


    That is a very helpful explanation. I didn’t notice anyone else give it or indeed anyone else bothering to stay at the King’s Hall till the death.

  • oracle


    The media can receive a hand-out sheet from the DRO at anytime after notice of a declaration, the DRO doesn’t have to stand at a plinth to do this.

    BBC Staff UTV staff if you’re reading…

    Your coverage was an embarrassment with neither one of you worth watching.
    Idiotic and boring twitter watching and the same boring hasbeens giving us their take on fuck-all squared.

    We’d all like to see the changing tallies as transfers are made, sitting at home we had no idea how anything was going for anyone no elected on the first count, the experts you both invited to the studio made the wrong calls in just about every constituency several times over.

    Let us see the changing figures we’ll decide after that ourselves thanks.

    Oh and don’t let the 56 full time employees of the electoral commission off so easily when they fuck tomorrows count up as well

  • Newman

    Is there no site out there which will publish the actual transfers? This is the truly interesting part of an STV system..yet we are all treated as if no one would really be interested…BBC website in particular truly risible

  • oracle


    I know it’s a difficult position for you to be putting yourself in when criticising State bodies as a fringe media figure but you really were far to light on Shields.

    Here is clearly someone who has beeen elevated to a position beyond his capability and he lacks the wit to realise it.
    When the most radical criticism comes from the University of Ulster representative then the media has failed and failed miserably