You could almost feel jaws dropping when it was announced last month that the pioneering Deborah Turness had been appointed the new head of BBC News. Turness, 54, had only recently got her feet under the table as ITN’s third CEO in as many years. Why would she give up this plum position – ideally suited to her skills at the company where she originally made her name – to take on the multiple challenges of running BBC News?
The infiltration of fake news in today’s society isn’t just a scourge for those in the newsrooms – it affects the authority of whole media brands on one side and the public’s well-being on the other. Since the term “fake news” was made Collins Dictionary’s word of the year in 2017, it has only become a bigger issue.
To prove how convincing fake news can be, attendees at this session were put to the test. Chair Naga Munchetty showed a series of viral images, with the audience deciding if they were real or fake using the poll function on the RTS Cambridge app.
BBC Director General Tim Davie looks back on his first year in post and at what the future holds in conversation with new ITN CEO Deborah Turness.
Trust isn’t scientific, it’s instinctive, it comes from the gut, not from the brain,” Martin Lewis told the Cambridge audience, and he should know. The founder of MoneySavingExpert.com, consumer business warrior and the man who sued Facebook and won is also the most trusted man in Britain, according to Google.
Deborah Turness, the former editor of ITV News, ex-President of NBC News and now boss of Euronews, admits that there are parallels in her working and domestic lives. She is, she says, a serial renovator. She bought a place in Shepherd’s Bush and turned it into a family home just before her first daughter was born, and then did the same thing in Chiswick, just before her second.