Re(1): Yesterday Once More
IP: 86.180.7.41

I think Steve and Enrico (?) are dead right. Rachael should not feel at all sheepish about setting questions on contemporary pop music. Indeed I can see a good argument for the majority of questions about pop music being contemporary - in that the question material is more likely to have featured in the media and have been talked about recently allowing non-experts to have a chance of getting the answer (after all even Tony and I know who Lady Gaga is!).

Where I would have found myself uneasy on Wednesday had I been taking part was in the proportion of pop music questions. I counted 18 about, or strongly related to, pop music when this is just one facet of one subject area (having said that there were a few excellent classical music questions in the paper as well). If, say, there were 18 questions about football (a subject Iím a little more adept at than pop music) there would be rumblings.

It is also important that, whatever the subject, the material is general rather than cultish knowledge. OK so one personís general knowledge is another personís cultish knowledge. Itís hard to judge and we all get it wrong from time to time. Iíd love to set a question about the great Bolton Wanderers team that beat United in the FA Cup final in 1958 but I think Iíd better not.

However the most important thing in our league (IMHO) is that we set the papers ourselves and relish the diversity and quirkiness that this often engenders. Iíd happily put up with 64 questions on Indie bands (whatever they are), or Cole Porter songs for that matter, if it meant retaining the freshness we get each week by allowing individual question-authorship. So please Rachael (and every other setter) do your own thing and donít be afraid. Itís the anticipation of the unexpected that makes it such fun.

MIKE


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