5 live airs Top 40 of week's news stories

BBC Radio 5 live is introducing a weekly Top 40 countdown of news stories, presented on Sunday nights by former LBC host Emma Barnett.

The 5 live Hit List will feature a chart produced using social media key words and hashtags to work out the rank and impact of each of the week’s news items.

Social media experts COSMOS (Collaborative Online Social Media Observatory) are pulling together the list for independent production company Wire Free Productions who are making the weekly BBC show. Wire Free was set up by former BBC executives Matthew Bannister and Husain Husaini, and also makes the Mark Forrest Show for BBC Local Radio.

We’re told The Hit List will take an ‘in-depth look at the most engaging, entertaining and unusual stories’ and will interview ‘content authors and the subjects of the headlines themselves’. There’ll also be pundits from journalism, entertainment and online industries. The chart will be revealed online and on Twitter as the show goes out too.

From 9 November BBC Radio 5 live hands the news agenda to the people, in an innovative new show on Sunday nights. From 7.30pm to 10.00pm

Emma Barnett – who left her weekly show on LBC earlier this year – is the Women’s Editor of the Daily Telegraph and also a guest host on Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour. She said: “I love the idea of listeners deciding the news agenda and this show reflecting the stories people are really talking about. The stories we should be interested in, versus the ones we actually are, can be surprisingly and amusingly different. Presenting The 5 live Hit List is going to be very revealing indeed. It combines three of my biggest interests: the fast paced world of social media, brilliant stories going crazy and of course, radio. Let the chart commence….”

Jonathan Wall, Controller, BBC Radio 5 live, added: “At 5 live we love nothing more than trying new formats and turning innovative ideas into live radio. In Emma Barnett we have one of the brightest young presenting talents in the country – she’s a great writer and I have no doubt she will be a top class broadcaster for Radio 5 live too.”

The 5 live Hit List starts on Sunday 9th November and will air weekly in the 7.30-10pm slot.

About COSMOS and how it will put the chart together

The Collaborative Online Social Media Observatory (COSMOS) is an information collection and analysis engine for harvesting and analysing freely available, socially significant data from blogs, micro blogs, RSS feeds and other social network platforms. The COSMOS team is an inter-disciplinary group of sociologists and computer scientists from Cardiff, Warwick, Edinburgh and St Andrews universities. COSMOS operates on a non-profit basis.

To create the chart, COSMOS analyses the frequency of the words and hashtags being used on Twitter and looks for links between them to create a list of the most popular stories. It examines which of them are making an impact in the UK and uncovers the associated links and content that are being clicked on and shared on Facebook and Youtube. COSMOS also plans to incorporate measures for Google searches in the near future. The results of their research are then compiled into a top 40 to create The 5live Hit List.

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