Several times during the day BBC presenters have turned up explaining the new style forecasts in the face of a majority of people who don’t like the new style forecasts. The broad issues are as follows:
The counter arguments I’ve heard so far are as follows:
I have to say, after the first day, I do rather agree with all of the objections. Whilst I accept that the new style is more accurate, with the lack of many places on the main map, I still can’t totally accurately place myself on the map, so accurately knowing the weather at a particular spot is pointless if I don’t know to the same accuracy where that spot is located. As to distinguishing browns, I also have difficulty spotting the fairly subtle variations in brown shades for the cloud cover, and a similar, although lesser problem with the blues for rain. Obviously they had a focus group with 20-20 vision and a big TV screen!
However, one interesting discovery I found, was in the online service, which uses the same software, complete with the familiar top down map, and the familiar symbols. It does stink a bit of kids with their new toys, so maybe in the coming weeks we’ll see the familiar symbols reappear, I hope so, at least then I’ll be able to work out the weather from the TV forecasts.
Update: The debate has even reached Westminster! Today the MP for the Western Isles in Scotland put down a motion calling for the BBC to reconsider a map that gives a distorted view of Scotland. In addition the BBC has had 248 calls about the new weather – only 8 in favour. One is really tempted to ask quite who they consulted for their audience research.