One month of voice news

Three: what I've been doing in a central London basement(?)

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Another week and it marks one whole month since the place I work, BBC News, decided to change how it does news for smart speakers.

Here’s an example of just one of those news briefings from the night of the BBC’s Conservative leadership debate.

I won’t sugar coat it, there’s not been a huge amount of positive feedback that you can see publicly. We’ve have been getting our own feedback from people who’ve emailed which has been much more varied and constructive.

We made changes during the first few weeks to take in some of that like tweaking how our background music sounds - and not always automatically using two people in a briefing, which had become a bit of the norm.

It’s worth knowing that something already existed as our flash briefing before our brand new style came along (in fact, there’s been a few different versions of our flash briefing coming from different radio station’s bulletins over the years) so bear that in mind people’s expectations if you’re adapting an old format - or choosing to do something completely new.

Other flash briefings are available of course, but hopefully you’ll give ours at least a try.


⚰️ What happens when your robotic home assistant, which you’ve grown to maybe even love, dies?

🎫 Maybe there will always be a future for paper tickets if we’re having to protest against our governments?

📈 Someone’s made a Twitter account helping people to understand my data/science journalism pet hate: when journalists mix up relative risk with absolute risk.

🇮🇸 How do I afford a trip to notoriously expensive, but lovely, Iceland - by mining for crypto in the sub-zero temperatures, of course!

One more thing

You love to see this article about why we all hate to see it

Two more thing

This one has gone out so late that I ended up picking up a new pair of sunglasses that promise to replace your headphones. They feel just a bit magic because you can hear what you’re listening to and barely anyone else can.

If you get tempted as well my advice is try them on for more than a few minutes first as they didn’t quite fit my nose properly (I got some sticky pads online to make them more snug) and, also, that they don’t work as well dealing with podcasts when you’re outdoors. You might have to crank up the volume for This American Life.

BYE <3