Last week did not quite go according to plan as far as getting a good news story. In the news meeting we all discussed our ideas and I intended to do a story on the legalisation of gay marriage. I had read the story on the BBC News website. There had been further talk from Equalities Minister Lynne Featherstone about lifting the ban on civil partnerships taking place in religious settings. I had hoped to localise the story and speak to the Bishop of Winchester about his views on the matter. To ensure the story was balanced I also contacted the head of the LGBT at the University.
After making calls to the Bishop of Winchester's secretary throughout the day on Monday, I was told that the Bishop did not feel it would be appropriate to give an interview on the proposal until a decision had been finalised. I then proceeded to contact the head of the Chaplaincy at the University but unfortunately he was not available to speak.
It was then decided that this story should be put on the back burner until the government have made a final decision on the legalisation of gay marriage.
With my initial story now having fallen through, I was asked to do a 'fluff' piece on Valentines Day and whether it was a success in Winchester. I set off down Winchester High Street on Tuesday morning to speak to retailers about their views on how this year's Valentines Day had been. Most places were unwilling to speak to me either due to legal reasons or simply because none of the staff wanted to be on camera. One shop I went into the woman behind the counter looked at me and just said 'no.' With no explanation as to why. Personally, I found this rather impolite.
I could already tell this piece was going to be a disaster. As I was sat editing the footage together on Wednesday morning I knew this was not something I wanted to be broadcast under my name. My lecturer Brian Thornton pointed out to me I had already self spiked my story and that no matter what my opinion on it is, the most important thing is to complete it and meet the deadline. That way it is the news editors decision on whether the package is usable.
I was of course quite relieved the piece did not make it into the bulletin because it was pretty awful and there was no real angle on it but I know for future reference not to openly broadcast the fact I think it is horrific.