herald

Tuesday 30 September 2014

It's a long way for €75 if you're a guest on the Today Show

RTE's Today show is believed to be struggling to find guests who'll travel to Cork for a €75 appearance fee.

It seems some Dublin-based contributors aren't too keen to travel all the way to the Rebel County at that price.

The financially strapped broadcaster does, however, provide guests with a train ticket or reimburse them for petrol on production of receipts -- on top of the appearance fee.

"Most guests choose to take the train," a spokeswoman told the Herald. "No mileage is paid."

Contributors promoting new books or DVDs aren't paid at all.

"The whole point of the show was to try something new and bring different voices on to RTE, but a lot of the type of guests they're looking to go on to the programme are based in Dublin and it's naturally harder to schedule in a trip down to Cork as part of your average working week," said a source.







DIFFERENT

"For many people, it's just not worth their while. This wouldn't be an issue if people were only going as far as Montrose, but having to head to Cork makes it a whole different ball-game."

On yesterday's episode of the show, a live link was used to interview TOWIE star Amy Childs -- who was in Dublin on a promotional rout to open up several chemists.

The Today Show is fronted Monday to Thursday by Daithi O Se and Maura Derrane with Blathnaid Ni Chofaigh and Norah Casey taking over on Fridays.

Co-presenter Blathnaid has herself acknowledged the difficulties that could lie in getting people to make the 255km journey down from the capital city down to Munster.

"A few people have brought up the issue of whether it will be difficult getting guests down to Cork and I think we'll definitely be pulling in a few favours. It will be hard, as the budget is tight, but like everything else, we have to be careful that we're not getting the same people all the time," she said.

RTE said that during the first two weeks of the show fewer than 30pc of the guests travelling to take part in the show came from Dublin.







Travelling

"As we have a Dublin studio many contributors can take part in the show from there," a spokeswoman said. "The rest of the guests travelling did so from other parts of the country.

"Not everyone is based in Dublin and guests on all our shows may have to travel from other parts of the country to Dublin, or in this case, from all parts of the country to Cork."

RTE says it's delighted with the response the Today show received from viewers with 112,000 tuning in for the first week.

Colm Crowley, head of operations in Cork, said: "We're delighted with how Today is being received. The show is evolving and energising the regional studios around the country.

"There's great chemistry between our presenters," he added.

clairemurphy@herald.ie

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