Has there been a subtle change in the presentation of the main BBC News programmes on BBC One?
An observant viewer may have noticed a little trend in recent weeks.
There have been a number of occasions when the presenter has delivered the top story from behind the desk.
It had become standard practice in recent years for the opening link to be delivered standing – usually at the studio column known as the “tower”.
There have also been occasions in the past few weeks when the opening headlines have been delivered seated.
One of the beauties of live broadcasting is that subtle changes can be made quickly. As far as we know, there were no exceptional or technical factors to blame for the decision to keep the presenter seated.
So what do standing links achieve?
There are two main ways in which standing links can enhance a news programme.
Firstly, the presenter can interact with the graphics – just like a reporter night. This can be more visually engaging than simply cutting up the graphics with the presenter out of vision.
Secondly, these links can showcase particularly striking or dramatic images or photojournalism.
This is not 1970. There is nothing wrong in principle with delivering links in these ways.
But it is also very important to avoid falling into traps.
Presentation cannot simply become gimmickry and it is important not to develop habits too. Does the top story actually have to be delivered in a particular manner or has that just become the cliche?
If things are moved around a bit each day, the presentation of the programme becomes more interesting.
Let the stories determine how the links should be presented – not predetermined notions of the format.
PICTURED: Sophie Raworth presenting the BBC News at Six. COPYRIGHT: BBC.