England, oh my England …now tell me about yours

By the time you read this blog, you’ll have had an earful, or maybe an eyeful, in the media about the BBC needing to redefine itself in this way or that.

Well, while listening to the news reports, I wandered over to the BBC Sports web site and chanced upon a great gizmo for football fans like me. You pick your formation, your England starting XI and share it with friends on social media – mine is shown above, for the little my views are worth.


I gather, from my 3 sons, that the BBC app is already wildly popular in the playground. And, whether I even liked football or not, I can think of no better way to illustrate the BBC’s best way forward in a changing world than through it’s starting a sort of “Big Conversation” of this sort among friends and families in the home and at work.

Initiatives like this clever app show the need for some sort of national creative catalyst to drive us on and lead the way. And, to my mind, this kind of collaborative endeavour could be taken much, much further.

I like Roy Hodgson as a football coach but why today do we need to rely on the wisdom or otherwise of any one man to announce the England squad, when we between us now have the technology pick it for him? If we can truly say this is “England … our England” aren’t we that much more likely to get fully behind the team rather than indulge in the dreary managerial blame game if and when it all goes wrong – and aren’t we likely to get more sweat, blood and tears from the chosen few on the pitch to make sure that it goes right?

I’d still leave the tactics and the team talk to the England boss though – it could get a bit confusing otherwise on the night if we all tried to do it.

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Merriborn Media is a business dedicated to developing clever content, engaged online communities and effective collaborative working and learning for clients. Both Merriborn Media and its founder Trevor Merriden were ranked in the Top 3 of social learning evangelists for 2016 in a recent major study.

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