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Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Church of the Poisoned Mind

The text below is reproduced from an email looking for volunteers to help turn higher education into a branch of the entertainment industry. Enough reality TV already.

The Charlotte Church show is looking for outgoing lecturers to take part in a feature on the second series of her popular Friday night Channel 4 show. The idea is called 'Charlotte In My Ear' as I said on the phone, Ideally we are looking for a lecturer of quite an academic subject to take part.

Charlotte would be hidden in a room somewhere at the university and would have a direct link to the lecturer via an earpiece and she would basically be telling the lecturer what to say and do throughout a lecture. This would be a hidden camera shoot, the lecturer would obviously be in on it but the students would not be in the know. At the end of the lecture Charlotte would come in and reveal to the students what has been happening. we would then need to get their individual permission to use their footage of them. (i.e. we would not use someone's image without their permission.) We would not make the lecturer say or do anything untoward. It's really just a but of light-hearted fun, it's really about changing people's preconceptions of what a lecturer would normally do. Obviously we wouldn't expect the lecturer to anything he/ she didn't want to. Also we would be giving an incentive for the lecturer to take part, for example a donation towards a field trip etc...This is to be negotiated.

We would only need an hour of your lecturers time and we would endeavour to set up the cameras out of hours, so as to keep any disruption to a minimum. The first series of The Charlotte Church Show regularly received 2 Million viewers so is great publicity for the university. It would be great if you could put forward anyone that might be interested at your earliest convenience. I would hope to come and meet any willing lecturers over the next week or two. We are looking to film this at some point over the next 4 weeks.

(spelling and punctuation in the original.)

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