Channel 4 news presenter Jon Snow has been chosen to deliver this year’s prestigious James MacTaggart Memorial Lecture at the Edinburgh Television Festival.
Snow, who has been the face of Channel 4 News since 1989, is the latest in a long line of leading figures given a platform to pronounce on the ills and opportunities of the TV world.
It may also afford Snow a chance to comment on his own appearance in the nation’s newspapers after he was reported to have allegedly chanted the slogan “F**k the Tories” at this year’s Glastonbury Festival. Snow said he had “no recollection” of the incident last month.
However he was happy to talk in more detail about his upcoming lecture: “I’m both delighted and honoured to have been accorded such an opportunity. These are exceptionally complex and challenging times, but amid the digital revolution this is also one of the most exciting times to be in television – laced with opportunity.”
Snow has been a front-line reporter for ITN since 1976, covering many of the defining news events of the last 40 years including the ousting of Idi Amin in Uganda, the Soviet Invasion of Afghanistan, the fall of the Berlin wall, and the release of Nelson Mandela – as well as the elections of Margaret Thatcher, Tony Blair, Barack Obama and most recently, Donald Trump.
Edinburgh TV Festival advisory chair Diederick Santer said: “Jon Snow is one of the leading creatives in our industry. An award-winning journalist who over the past forty years has brought his distinctive approach and great knowledge to reports of monumental events and interviews of world leaders.
“With his long-term perspective, I’m incredibly excited to hear his views on the past, present and future of news, and its impact across all our genres of programming. As the centrepiece to the Festival, this will, without doubt, be engaging, entertaining and inspiring. Bringing his trademark brilliant analysis, Jon will share with us all something we didn’t already know.”
The Festival takes place between 22nd and 25th August and will feature appearances from a host of TV names including Charlie Brooker, Russell Brand, Line of Duty writer Jed Mercurio and its star Vicky McClure alongside leading channel executives.
Ben has worked as a professional journalist specialising in TV and the arts for nearly twenty years. After a two year stint on local newspapers in the mid 1990s, he spent more than 5 years as the broadcast reporter at the Stage newspaper. Following that he enjoyed staff reporting positions at the Sunday Mirror and the Sunday Times breaking stories and writing features before settling as a full time freelance writing for an array of newspapers and magazines - but mainly for the Guardian, Evening Standard, Broadcast, Independent and the New Statesman where he wrote a column.