Friday, 6 March 2015

Try your hand at this week's newsquiz

There were some good scores in last week's news quiz. The top mark went to Daniel Matthews with 18. Matt Cornish and Alex Murphy both got 17, Natalie Marchant and Ian Parker delivered a joint effort (in the pub no doubt) of 16, Chris Lennon scored 15 and Adam Batstone 11. I didn't hear from a lot of the regular quizzers ... which usually means they are busy or didn't do very well. 
Have a crack at this week's. As usual there are 20 questions with five bonus points, so 25 points in all. Let me know how you get on.


Harrison Ford crashes his plane. An updated Sun page from today (Q18)
1. Boris Johnson confronted Asim Qureshi on his radio show after his campaigning group suggested MI5 was to blame for the radicalisation of Mohammed Emwazi. Name Qureshi's campaigning group. Bonus: It was alleged that Emwazi kidnapped two schoolboys in 2008 and dumped them at the side of which road? Bonus: Jamshed Javeed was sent to prison for six years by Woolwich Crown Court for planning to go to Syria. What was Javeed’s job?
2. Why was Nathan Matthews in the headlines?
3. Beautiful South musician Paul Heaton, gay rights campaigners and MP Dennis Skinner are among those attending rallies around the country to mark the 30th anniversary of what?
4. Which fictional character did the parents of three-year-old Amari Black blame for teaching their son to swear?
5. Tony Blair is to donate £1,000 to each of Labour’s 'battleground seats' to help their election campaign. How much is he donating in total?
6. Lara Stone has left her husband David Walliams, taking with her their son and their dog. Name the dog. Bonus: Name the son.
7. The Government announced it is selling its 40 per cent stake in which company to an Anglo-Canadian consortium for £757.1m?
8. According to a survey in the British Medical Journal how long is the average male penis when erect?
9. What does chief executive officer Antony Jenkins want to kill off - saying it would be a ‘step forward’ for customers?
10. What did Martin Le-May capture that went viral and graced the pages of most newspapers? 
11. According to an investigation led by Dr Bill Kirkup, the deaths of 11 babies and one mother at Furness General Hospital were the responsibility of a group of midwives who called themselves  'The …………..’ Fill in the blank word.
12. What did horologist David Mitchell do to mark his retirement?
13. How many matches will Newcastle striker Papiss Cisse miss for spitting at Manchester United’s Jonny Evans. Bonus: Footballer Adam Johnson was suspended by which club after being arrested on suspicion of having sex with a 15-year-old girl?
14. John Sylvan said he regretted inventing what?
15. Konstandinos Erik Scurfield was killed in which country?
16. Who are the only two unbeaten teams in cricket’s World Cup? Half point for each.
17. Who said: 'My understanding is mourn the dead but celebrate life. I chose to celebrate life by going to the Red Cross gathering in Palm Beach’?
18. Actor Harrison Ford crash-landed his plane on which hole at a golf course in Venice, California? Bonus: How old is Harrison Ford?
19. Who said: 'You can’t actually physically get up… you can’t get off your bed. It is hard to explain, it is like you’ve got the weight of the world on your shoulders.’
20. Eleven-year-old Liam Scholes was told to adjust the costume he wore for a World Book Day event at his Manchester school. Who was he dressed as?

Answers here

How not to write a news intro

Here's one of the best examples I have ever seen on how not to write a news intro. The reader finds out the name and address of the golf course, the colour of the plane, the fact it is small (twice), the time of the crash (can you have 'about 2.24pm'? It seems a bit precise to me) and the name of the fire department spokesman - all in the first two paragraphs. It isn't until par 3 that we discover the pilot is (drumroll) Harrison Ford. I like drop intros ... but that is just plane (geddit) silly. Hat tip to @CazzaW

Friday, 27 February 2015

Try your hand at this week's newsquiz

It was clearly a much tougher quiz last week with a top submitted score of 15 by Adam Batstone. Others reaching double figures were Alex Murphy with 14, Charlie Taverner and Mike Smith with 12, Lydia Willgress 11 and Chris Lennon and Damon Wake 10. Our old friend @subedited, who scored a lowly 7, asked if there could be a fashion alternative to the sports questions. The answer is No. Here is this week’s quiz - as usual there are 25 points. Let me know how you get on. 


The i's front page on cash-for-access (Q1)


1. MP Sir Malcolm Rifkind, embroiled in a cash-for-access scandal, said he could not survive on an MP’s salary. What is an MP’s salary? Bonus: Rifkind announced he is to quit as an MP after 40 years. What is his constituency?
2. Lady Gaga sang songs from which musical at the Oscars? Bonus: Julianne Moore won the Oscar for Best Actress for which film?
3. Which cricket team won their first ever World Cup game by beating Scotland?
4. Eddie Raye Routh was found guilty of murdering two men. One was Chad Littlefield, who was the other?
5. Ed Balls was described as a 'sexy beast' on which website?
6. Three Al-Jazeera journalists were arrested for doing what in Paris?
7. Why was Joshua Leakey in the headlines?
8. Which of these did not win an award at the Brits - Pharrel Williams, Taylor Swift, Sam Smith, the Foo Fighters, George Ezra, Paloma Faith, One Direction? Bonus: Which designer did Madonna ‘blame’ for her wardrobe malfunction? Bonus: Who led the protest against Kanye West’s use of the N-word by saying: 'I don’t think it is OK for a black man to use the N-word ... I don’t think it should be said and become normal.'
9. Five English football teams took part in European competitions this week. Four lost and one won. Who won?
10. A video of a couple having sex on the centre spot of which football ground got more than a million hits on social media?
11. How is Mohammed Emwazi more commonly known?
12. According to the coroner Sheriff Payne, aircrew and frequent fliers are at risk from what?
13. During which two months has it been proposed that the 2022 World Cup games will be played?
14. Which company paid out £421million in bonuses in 2014 despite a loss of £3.5 billion? Bonus: Which company confirmed it will resume paying dividends to shareholders for the first time since 2008?
15. Islamic State extremists used sledgehammers and power drills to smash ancient artwork at a museum in which city?
16. Ed Miliband is considering plans to reduce the maximum level of university tuition fees in England from £9,000 to how much?
17. According to the Department of Transport 500,000 drivers do what illegally every day?
18. A Cambridge University study showed that doing what could double the risk of having a stroke?
19. Who issued a statement saying: 'I have never, in my life, assaulted anyone and I remain confident the truth will prevail’?
20. The Commons Culture, Media and Sport Committee recommended replacing what with a levy? 
Answers here

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Forever Young ...


You may think this looks like a couple of desperate vagrants on the streets of London. But in fact it is two of Britain's best and most respected newspaper editors. On the left is Ted Young, editor of Metro, and on the right is Peter Barron, MBE, who has been editor of The Northern Echo for an astonishing 16 years. They were at the Emirates on Sunday to see Middlesbrough lose to Arsenal in the FA Cup. To add to the confusion Peter, a Teessider, is an Arsenal supporter and Southerner Ted follows Newcastle. Ted says the best bit was watching Peter being branded a southern softie by Boro fans queuing at Arsenal tube station. Peter says it was a momentous occasion: "Ted bought a round! Never seen that many moths." We were all on the Echo together 25 years ago. Nice to know their humour and their dress sense have stayed the same.

Friday, 13 February 2015

Another layout cock-up



Canapes and what? Here's an unfortunate error from the Suffolk Free Press. Note to subs (or reporters writing directly to the page) ALWAYS, ALWAYS check that the headline hasn't busted.

Try your hand at this week's newsquiz

There were lots of good scores in last week's newsquiz ... the best being a huge 19 out of 25 by Michael Owens. Damon Wake was spurred on by the foreign questions to get an impressive 17, the same score as Ailsa Leslie. Lydia Willgress and the South West News newsroom in Plymouth clocked up 15.5 as a team effort. Some non-journalists also got into double figures, including Michael Bryan with 11 and Carole Naseby with 10. Well done to them. Here are this week's questions ... as usual there are 25 points up for grabs. Let me know how you get on. 
Dumper truck tragedy as reported by the Mirror
(See Question 2)

1. Harriet Harman defended the colour of Labour’s pink bus. What three words are on the arrows on the sides of the bus? Bonus: Harman also defended herself against a claim that she had told Councillor Karen Danczuk she was 'far too pretty for politics' and should be in ______ _____. What are the blanks?  
2. In which city did a runaway dumper truck kill four people?
3. Who won the Bafta for lead actress? Bonus: The BBC received complaints over Bafta host Stephen Fry’s language, including giving one of the stars the middle name ‘F***ing’? Which star? Bonus: At the Grammy Awards in America Kanye West interrupted whose acceptance speech for the Album of the Year?
4. Which non-European country has been invited to take part in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest?
5. What was the name of the 26-year-old American hostage murdered by ISIS?
6. One Premier League manager was reportedly sacked and then reinstated this week - and one was just sacked. Name them both. Half point for each.
7. What do MP Zac Goldsmith, German-born automotive heir Georg von Opel, Lord Sterling of Plaistow and Lord Fink have in common?
8. Why did Sir Michael Gambon say he was retiring from the stage?
9. Devinder Kainth has been charged with murder in the Costa Del Sol after allegedly catching his victim doing what? 
10. The Premier League has sold television rights to its games for a record amount. How much?
11. Where have retired couple Alan Lane and Kristina Smith been living for four months?
12. Ex-IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn told a court in France that he only attended how many sex parties in three years?
13. Why was Chapel Hill, North Carolina, in the headlines?
14. The leaders of Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany gathered in which city to negotiate a peace agreement for Ukraine? Bonus: The ceasefire that was agreed at the meeting comes into force when? 
15. Police officers in Wiltshire, Wales and Cheshire asked newsagents for what?
16. According to research by the British Heart Foundation, 40 per cent of people lie about what?
17. The opening ceremonies for the Cricket World Cup were held in which two cities? Half point each. Bonus: Who will England play in their first game?
18. Who said: 'A society with a greedy generation, that doesn’t want to surround itself with children, that considers them above all worrisome, a weight, a risk, is a depressed society.’?
19. Francesco Schettino, captain of the Costa Concordia, which sank killing 32 people, was sentenced to how long in jail?
20. An auction at a Conservative Party fundraiser at Grosvenor House included the opportunity to do what with Home Secretary Theresa May?

Answers here

Ooh baby ... another headline that sings


Here's another song lyric headline to add to the collection. This one is from The Evening News in Edinburgh. Thanks to Sunday World TV editor Daragh Keany for flagging it up. There are more here