C4 ‘Clears Schedules’ For Paralympics After Criticism

September 3, 2012 by  
Filed under News

Channel 4 bosses have cleared their daytime schedules and will be screening the Paralympics non-stop today – apart from a half hour break at 7pm for the News – after viewers complained that they weren’t showing enough sport.

The surprise announcement came on Twitter after viewers kicked-off over the frequent commercial breaks which denied viewers cyclist Jody Cundy’s angry tantrum on Friday afternoon and interrupted the opening ceremony.

Cundy (above) was furious after adjudicators harshly disqualified him after his wheel span in the starting block.

Others said that presenters spent too long chatting to guests and didn’t show enough sport, while the tone of Jon Snow’s commentary on the Opening Ceremony was also criticised in some quarters.

The games were originally scheduled to appear on More4 during the daytime, but C4 bosses – who paid £9m for the Paralympic TV rights – moved them to the flagship channel after unprecedented viewing figures over the weekend.

Many have said that the broadcaster should have made this decision earlier after 11.2m tuned in to watch the opening ceremony – the highest ratings the channel has had for a decade.

“The coverage of the Paralympics has completely captured the public’s imagination,” said Channel 4’s chief creative officer Jay Hunt. “We are clearing our schedule to bring viewers even more of this fantastic sport”.

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vicy haines says:

What a poor show on C4.Why no archery, hardly any equestrian absolutely no rowing or cannoeing in which we had a gold medal. Somebody must have seen the schedule for these games before giving them to this poor channel.A once in a lifetime event ruined was this a political descision do you think

Yorkshire Lass says:

Don’t make me laugh, there was no difference between today when they have allegedly “cleared their schedule” and their coverage everyday since the start of the Paralympics. Huge chunks of time devoted to endless chit chat in their windowless box of a studio, advert breaks every 10 minutes often cutting into the live sporting action part way through events, pre-recorded video clips, need I go on? Oh and when they finally remember that they are supposed to be covering the Paralympics and not just their own presenters they actually show a bit of sport, though that’s often not even live. As the previous comment mentioned some of the presenters are amateur beyond believe, it’s an embarrassment and painful to watch and I’ve lost count of the number of times athletes’ names have either been pronounced incorrectly or got totally wrong, it’s an insult to the Paralympians who strive so hard to be the best they can. If this is Channel 4 striving to be the best they can then God help us if they get awarded other major sporting events to cover.

Brian Scott says:

Your coverage is appalling. When are you going to show the games instead of studio chat, adverts and recorded repeats. Wea virtually never see any of the sport live. You should never have undertaken these games if you did not know how to cover them.


OMG. I feel as if I’ve been transported to the US. Advert break after advert break on Channel 4 during the Paralympics. It’s ridiculous.

They are obviously doing these Games “on the cheap” – boring studio backdrop offsite from the Olympic Park with absolutely no atmosphere whatsoever; ill-informed, inarticulate presenters (with the exception of Clare Balding who must be squirming inside at having to endure this amateur-hour production), very poor production values (hastily cut off video inserts, presenters wrongly naming commentators, appalling studio camera work) and poorly prepared commentators on lots of the events. The whole thing is a shambles when compared to the BBC coverage of the 2012 Olympics. Shames on Channel 4, you have totally spoiled my enjoyment of these Games and have done a serious disservice to the immensely talented Sportsmen and Women taking part.
Oh, and did I mention the interminable ad breaks?
Channel 4 should never again be allowed to have the responsibility to cover such an important event. The coverage is a shambles.