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RAF NEWS - Rag or What?

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RAF NEWS - Rag or What?

Old 30th Mar 2013, 10:01
  #41 (permalink)  
 
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RAF Yearbook

Slightly off thread, but I see that the Royal Air Force Yearbook has been discontinued this year. It's a shame because after my grandad gave me a 1976 copy, I have purchased it every year since.
It became more commercial in recent years, with apparent more adverts than articles, but nevertheless I always looked forward to reading it about this time of year.
Have still got a stack of the copies in my bookcase. Off course in OCD chronological order!
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 10:12
  #42 (permalink)  
 
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TT ...

The RAF Year Book was stopped some 3 years ago and replaced by the RAF Annual Review.

This was the announcement at the time ...

The Royal Air Force Charitable Trust Enterprises, publisher of the official RAF Yearbook, has decided to cease publication of the annual magazine.
The Yearbook, which was printed for the 44th – and final - time last year, provided an insight into current RAF operations, deployments and new technology. It featured regular contributions from some of aviation’s most respected writers and photographers.

Chief Executive Tim Prince said the decision was taken partly in response to the growth of the internet which has made much more detailed information about RAF operations and equipment available online – and in real time.

He added: “The marketplace for aviation magazines such as the RAF Yearbook has also become crowded whilst advertising revenues – and sales - in the sector are shrinking. At a time when the aerospace industry and the military are facing unprecedented cost-cutting, we have decided that the best course of action is to focus on other areas of our core business.

“Nevertheless, we are very proud that in its time, the RAF Yearbook was the leading RAF publication and for this we’d like to thank all of those involved in the production process along with those who contributed articles and photographs over the years. We, and the Chief of the Air Staff Sir Stephen Dalton, hope opportunities arise in the future that will enable us to work together to revive the title for special one-off publications that mark key anniversaries or special occasions.”
see my Thread on the topic

http://www.pprune.org/military-aircr...ew-2013-a.html

Coff.
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 10:15
  #43 (permalink)  
 
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Ditto my unpublished letter about needlessly slapdash DWR dates being fired out to people that were almost consistently pulled forward by a week at short notice - despite the incumbents RTU date being known from the day they arrived.

I followed it up with the editor who told me he'd chased 'the necessary respondee' who'd just decided to ignore it. Editor wasn't political enough to publish it without an official reply, which I guess is indicative of being in the pocket of the organisation. Pity really as my underlying intent was to highlight people getting needlessly f***ed around so that someone could do something about it.
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 10:15
  #44 (permalink)  
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Ladies & Gentlemen,

I thought to send something along the following lines to the editor of RAF News. It seems only fair to allow him an opportunity to see/rebut/respond before seeking to involve the big guns of AMP or COS Personnel.

Any thoughts would be welcome.

Dear Editor,

You may be aware of a website: PPRuNe.org, which is an aviation related series of fora, within which individual subject Threads are posted and commented upon. It is a global site, although much of the content emanates from the UK.

On Good Friday and within the ‘Military Aviation’ forum, a Thread was started which enjoyed the title: ‘RAF News – Rag or What?’. Within less than twenty four hours, the Thread had attracted three dozen responses and whilst some had ‘drifted’ off the main thrust of the question posed, those which had not were universally critical of RAF News.

The main area of concerns seemed to be:

a. Inaccuracy of reporting with significant errors of fact. This complaint being indicative of an ignorance of the subject matter ie the RAF and its history .

b. A poor level of content quality, relative to the other service newspapers/magazines eg Navy news and Soldier.

c. A blithe acceptance of the ‘party line’ with no attempt to apply any cerebral rigour to the articles being printed.

d. A suggestion that comments by letter or email, critical of air force policy or of the newspaper itself were suppressed and certainly not responded to by the editor or a staff member.

The concerns above will suffice for the moment to indicate that the RAF News is not seen by some to be representative of the real world within which the RAF operates and it probably sacrifices an opportunity to attract and hold readership because of this.

May I suggest that you go to PPRuNe – membership is free – and take the opportunity to absorb the comments in detail. It goes without saying that you can comment on or rebut what is posted. You might find the Thread useful in gauging some opinion about your newspaper and formulating some changes of direction and focus.

Yours sincerely

Old Duffer
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 10:18
  #45 (permalink)  
 
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Just looked- latest copy I've got is 2011.
Must have been too busy on det for the last 2 years. Or could I have been in a coma?
Thanks Coff.
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 10:19
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Spot on OD ... I support
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 11:44
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OD,

Good start - however, it my experience (and others) that the Ed RAF News or his staff will not reply. Much better to bite the bullet and fire something up to a level where there might be some interest - don't hold your breath! The RAF News, Imho, is heavily managed and censored from above - you only have to look at the drivel on the letters page. Overall, the RAF News is not for us, it is for outside consumption - and air cadets. IIRC the banner on the latest issue says something like " a newspaper for heroes"!!

T
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 11:49
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I agree with Torchy - keep pushing out drivel and keep job as editor; sail closer to controversy for no prizes and wobblier job prospects.

Last edited by dallas; 30th Mar 2013 at 11:56.
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 11:54
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OD - have you sent a copy of your excellent letter to DPR (RAF) or whoever fills such a slot these days. D of R and IT might be a good target too, as presumably potential applicants and recruits are encouraged to read it.
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 12:17
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Maybe they should employ what used to be an RO whose bonus was directly related to the balance of wrong aircraft ID and praise.
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 12:45
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O-D,

Spot on . Unfortunately, it's not only the RAF News that has degenerated into little more than a local 'free newspaper' - the RAF website isn't much better when compared to our sister Services' offerings.

In both cases, there is precious little of any interest other than what somebody in Air Command thinks we should be reading about because it's 'good news'. I could go on, but frankly, your note to the editor just about sums up everything that is wrong with both the RAF News and the Website. I am just waiting for the first article about a flower arranging contest on the married patch at RAF Little Snoring on the Wold - we've already done the cake baking to death over the years.

If you don't get any joy with the editor, you might want to try feeding comments into the RAF website. I made some enquiries before Christmas about a PERSEC breach on the RAF Website and was told they would also inform the RAF News to ensure that the offending items weren't re-published there. So if both publications aren't 'run' out of the same office, I suspect there are strong links between them and your message might just get some traction there. If you do it over the weekend, it should make Tuesday morning more interesting in the Ivory Towers!
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 13:11
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O-D

It's a good start. The state of he RAF News is a sad situation. One only has to look at the letters page(s) in Soldier magazine to see that the Army don't seem to fear a bit of public (internal) criticism and the ability to provide reasoned responses.I do have to wonder what their agenda and direction says; did anyone see the article on gay marriage the week after the parliament vote? Not quite sure what the purpose of that was or what message it was trying to send.

I have to say that in a tri-service office where we get all three publications, Soldier magazine is the best and most professional, followed by Navy News and then the RAF News as the equivalent of The Sun
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 13:40
  #53 (permalink)  
 
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Seriously?

Dear Sir, you might want to know that 23 (backgrounds generally unknown) people made 36 posts (of which 20 were relevant to the topic) about how bad the RAF News is. Make changes.

More chance of my Mum winning the 100m in Rio..........
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 14:42
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Don't worry chaps ... the RAF Web Site may be a little [email protected] ... but sales of "official tat" are on the up

I love the RAF Officer with an enormous weapon ... who modelled for it



RAF Official Merchandise

Coff.
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 15:30
  #55 (permalink)  
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Coff, as if you didn't know.
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 15:34
  #56 (permalink)  
 
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Someone having a stroke?
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 15:44
  #57 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Melchett01 View Post
Unfortunately, it's not only the RAF News that has degenerated into little more than a local 'free newspaper' - the RAF website isn't much better when compared to our sister Services' offerings.
I can't remember the numbers, but at a media seminar we were told that the RAF website budget was in the low 5-figure mark (maybe it was lower) and run by a Chief at Strike. In comparison the Telegraph website had a budget in the high 6-figures and of course was run by professionals. This was about 7 years ago.

The RAF has continued to shrink and perhaps proportionally the per capita media budget of years gone by would be hard to justify today. The RAF News and the website probably have no journalistic staff and are limited to format offerings from on high.

It is probably like the Red Arrows, no one is prepared to say enough, we can't afford to do a proper job so lets kill it. Or perhaps how about contracting out to Qinetiq?
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 19:19
  #58 (permalink)  
 
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RAF Websites

As the person responsible for running the RAF Internet I read your comments with interest. If there are any problems with persec or opsec please feel free to contact me at Air Cmd, Media and Comms. For those in the RAF you will find me under SO2 Digital or, for those outside, you can contact me through the details on the website. I do my utmost to provide engaging content but, as I am sure you will appreciate, rely on other people to provide the content. If you wish to offer content please let me know, my latest project is the 70th anniversary of the Dambusters.
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 19:45
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Many thanks Blunty ...

For starters can we get the RAF Periodicals updated please ...

RAF Periodicals Downloads

Coff.
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Old 30th Mar 2013, 20:08
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Blunty,

So am I correct in thinking that the PPRuNe membership is now doing your job for you, by proof reading the website and pointing out the errors it contains?

While you may rely on others for new content, surely it is your responsibility to keep the site up to date overall. As just a couple of examples:

RAF - 120 Squadron

RAF - 201 Squadron

According to the website 2 Sqns which are currently based at RAF Kinloss, oh, and the aircraft in the picture on the 201 page is a Nimrod R1, not an MR2....

They've only been disbanded for nearly 2 years!!!

Then again:

RAF - Stations

Closed April 2006!!

Totally symptomatic of a website which is, quite frankly, an embarrassment and a disaster....

Last edited by Biggus; 30th Mar 2013 at 20:22.
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