BBC Scotland radio audiences plummet


In a survey of radio audiences, from July to December 2017, by, BBC Radio Scotland audience figures have fallen from 1.1 million per week in 1999 to 839 000 at the end of 2017 and, critically, are falling so fast and so steeply, that they are in real danger of falling so low that the licence fee becomes even more indefensible.

No doubt this decline has multiple causes but the outrageous bias against the SNP and independence featuring daily on Good Morning Scotland and Call Kaye, must surely be playing a part.

Also, these figures are extremely generous in that someone who listens for at least (only) five minutes (per week?) is counted as a ‘listener’.


19 thoughts on “BBC Scotland radio audiences plummet

  1. Alasdair Macdonald. February 17, 2018 / 4:43 pm

    It would have been good to have seen a regression line fitted to the data to give a fairly quickly comprehensible impression. I realise that you do not have the raw data to do that accurately. My guess is that it would show a decline from around 970 000 in 2000 to around 890 000 in 2017, so, a loss of about 4/5000 per annum.

    Sadly, for your GMS/Call Kaye, hypothesis, the 2014/15 period looks like one of the bits of slight buoyancy. Wishful thinking?


    • Jim Fraser February 18, 2018 / 2:53 pm

      Actually, I listen to GMS each day just to see in which new ways they are trolling the Scottish government. It would be a mistake to imagine all the listenership is uncritical.


  2. Harry M Molloy February 17, 2018 / 5:02 pm

    Gave up on Bbc tv news question time and others of the like, after 2014. As for radio Scotland , ow much prefer smooth radio Scotland. Egged. Was. Better traffic reports. And less stress on my h art and my voice. Don’t need to keep shouting at the radio/tele

    Liked by 1 person

  3. William Henderson February 17, 2018 / 7:34 pm

    Heartening to know that sophistry still carries a price.

    Liked by 1 person

    • johnrobertson834 February 17, 2018 / 9:39 pm

      Do you think they’d know that was an insult? Ooooh, he said we were sophisticated.


      • William Henderson February 18, 2018 / 9:43 am

        Yes, John. On reflection, you’re probably right.

        As a wee aside, though, the definition of the word ‘conspiracy’ is “a secret plan by a group to do something unlawful or harmful”.

        Does this fit the present government’s handling of Brexit?

        Liked by 1 person

  4. mike cassidy February 17, 2018 / 11:54 pm

    And still no addressing the issue brought up the last time such figures were released.

    ie no differentiation between

    the numbers listening to their daily speech output

    the numbers listening to their evening music output

    the numbers listening to their football coverage.

    Although, to be fair, when you’re claiming you have a listener if they listen for five minutes, the figures are probably too much of a joke for the differentiation to matter.


    • johnrobertson834 February 18, 2018 / 8:55 am

      Yes, if the upped it to 1 hour per day, the figure falls to 20 000?


  5. Andy February 18, 2018 / 1:41 pm

    I usually listen for five minutes in the morning just as I am getting up, being classed as a listener to this biased news it’s now time to change the station.


  6. Dan Huil February 18, 2018 / 6:51 pm

    The bbc in Scotland is blatant in its opposition to independence. Good to see the decline in listeners.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. bedelsten February 18, 2018 / 6:53 pm

    It would be nice to think the decline in listeners was down to the BBC’s continual SNPBaad trope and willingness to insult fifty percent of the people of Scotland who are tuning out and dropping off – to misquote someone from the last century. While there will be some of this; this household, for example, do not pay the tax and tuned out a while ago as a silent protest against the endless denigration of Scotland (and to fund the Netflix subscription), if my offspring, and theirs in turn, are anything to go by, the young are not bothering to tune in as they get their entertainment, information and news off the Internet instead. ‘Alexa, play me Little Mix Power’ I hear the three-year old say.


  8. Anne Grigor February 19, 2018 / 2:25 pm

    Old age brings nostalgia I know but I remember short stories, plays, factual programmes, historical snipets, and some comedy series, not overtly Scottish but one felt a connection to deep roots. Now apart from snap bad the station seems bereft. As for during the night for insomniacs there is just verbiage from radio 5.


  9. Ludo Thierry February 19, 2018 / 7:07 pm

    Sometimes I’m not the world’s best at staying asleep – so I tend to try Radio 5 (Radio Bloke) or World Service (Radio Imperial Britannia) just for the background noise to try and help me doze off again. I’m pretty sure this is having injurious effects to my general health. Both stations have a certain addictive quality. A bit like getting one of those large tins of Quality Street chocolates at the festive season – then realising how sick you feel having worked your way through half the tin. Maybe the Union Jack stuff was always there – but – it does seem to be laid on quite a bit thicker these days. So, for the sake of my getting a better night’s sleep, we simply must win Indyref 2 smartish!

    Liked by 1 person

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