Chapter 126: The New Segment is Going on Air!
Beijing Television Station. Zhang Ye came early to the unit once again. After he put down his stuff, he was prepared to do some cleaning.
“Eh?” He suddenly realised that someone else was in the office, “You are?”
It was a fifty-something-year-old middle-aged man, who was almost fully bald, and who looked older than others his age. Upon seeing Zhang Ye, the middle-aged man curled his lips. He was holding a broom behind the door and was sweeping the floor, “You are Teacher Zhang?” You can just call me Old Wei. Hur hur. I am an editor of the Arts Channel. Everyone calls me Editor Wei or Old Wei.”
Zhang Ye said, “Yo, then why are you doing the cleaning? Please leave it to me.”
“It’s fine.” Editor Wei replied, “The cleaner is on leave today and I wasn’t doing anything anyway.”
“That won’t do. I am younger; how can I let you do the work?” Zhang Ye tried to snatch the broom from him, “Besides, you are not from our team. You don’t need to.”
But Editor Wei did not let him take the broom. He just laughed and took out a small book, “Just help me by signing this. I am your fan and like your poems very much, especially that “Facing the Sea with Spring Blossoms” from the other day. My daughter had found it online and showed it to me. To be honest, I read it ten times and still can not recite it by heart. There aren’t many good works like these now in modern poetry.”
Zhang Ye was a little embarrassed, “Then an autograph won’t suffice. Since you like it, then it’s my honor. I will write out this poem and sign it for you.”
Editor Wei was very happy, “That would be the best.. if it’s not too troublesome?”
“It’s not troublesome.” Zhang Ye quickly took a pen and paper. Since it was a modern poem, a pen would be good enough. There was no need for brush and ink.
The poem was written.
He signed on it.
Zhang Ye then gifted it to him.
Editor Wei shouted his praises, “Good poem, good poem!”
At this time, the twins Hou Ge and Hou Di arrived at work. When they entered the office, they saw Editor Wei. Hou Ge panicked and rushed over, “Uncle Wei, why are you doing the cleaning again?”
Hou Di also rushed over, “Give me, give me!”
Editor Wei couldn’t argue with them, so he just took the rubbish out from their office and went back.
When he left, Zhang Ye asked curiously, “Who is that Editor Wei?”
“You must have thought he’s a cleaner, right?” Hou Ge sighed, “When I first came, I also thought so, too. I always see him cleaning the place or clearing the trash in the various offices or changing the water cooler’s water. I heard from other colleagues from other departments that Uncle Wei even sponsors several students who can’t afford school. He’s a very kind uncle. Everyone respects him a lot. But apparently, he previously offended our Arts Channel’s boss, Director Wang Shuixin. Although his job title is an Editor, he doesn’t get one bit of bonus. He doesn’t have any responsibilities and has been repressed all this while. Since he has no jobs to do usually, he would help clean the place and change the ink cartridges. Hai.”
Director Wang Shuixin?
Zhang Ye’s “This is also Everything” had previously also offended him, so he knew that he was not a magnanimous person.
Xiao Lu came into the office following that, in high spirits. Seeing Zhang Ye, she laughed, “Teacher Zhang, why aren’t you feeding the horses, splitting logs and traveling the world? I thought you wouldn’t come to work today and will be facing the sea, watching the flowers bloom in spring warmth.”
Hou Ge also recalled and gave a big thumbs up, “Yesterday, that poem on Weibo was amazing. Did you not see what happened on the web later? It was spread like mad!”
Xiao Lu laughed, “My own tagline has changed to the name of your poem. I wish only to face the sea, where flowers bloom in spring warmth? What grows on your brain? How can everything you write be so deep?”
Zhang Ye chuckled, “My brain doesn’t have anything growing. But at least there’s something underneath my feet.”
Dafei also arrived at the unit. Hearing that, he asked, “Underneath your feet? What’s there underneath your feet?”
Zhang Ye said, “I am standing on the shoulders of giants.”
At the door, Hu Fei strode in and happened to hear their conversation, “Haha. Amazing. What an amazing ‘standing on the shoulders of giants’. Little Zhang’s words are always pearls of wisdom!”
Xiao Lu and Hou Ge were also impressed.
The shoulders of giants? They had never heard of such a metaphor!
This expression was attributed to his world’s Newton; however, they would forever not understand what Zhang Ye really meant. The giants were not giants. Zhang Ye was not referring to the greats of this world, but the sages of his world. Of course, he would definitely not explain this. This was a secret of his. He would not tell a second person as long as he was alive, regardless of who it was.
After some chatting.
Hu Fei suddenly clapped his hands. “Alright, let’s get down to business. Stop standing and take a seat. Just listen to what I have to say, and ask if you have any question.” He sat at his own desk. His office was also there and had the same treatment as the rest. Hu Fei did not have a lone leader office for himself. It was just that he was usually busy, so he would be away at meetings and various other affairs. Sometimes he would have things outside of the office, so he was seldom around.
Zhang Ye and company waited for him to speak.
Hu Fei seemed to be in a good mood as he laughed, “Yesterday, I obtained a message that our segment will begin soon. The program at the same time slot has been decided by the station to be axed this Friday. So our segment will officially begin on Saturday. If we are recording, it has to begin tomorrow or the day after tomorrow. We need to finish recording it at the latest on Friday, to make it in time for the Saturday afternoon broadcast. So for these few days, we won’t be able to rest easy. It’s time to busy ourselves. I hope that no one grumbles when we work overtime. I will work overtime with everyone.”
Xiao Lu chuckled, “Look at what you are saying, Brother Hu. What’s there for us to grumble about? We will work overtime if need be. We’ve been relaxing for so long, so we can’t wait to busy ourselves!”
Hou Ge also said, “Right. We will definitely do our best to help Brother Hu!”
Hou Di said, “Brother Hu, it’s alright if we work overtime. If you need to rest, please rest. We will do everything well for you!”
Dafei said, “You invited us because you trusted us. We also trust you. As long as you say it, I would be fine working overtime for an entire week!”
Hu Fei nodded feeling relieved, “Then I’ll thank everyone first.” Saying that, he looked towards Zhang Ye, “Actually, the person who will be working the hardest will be Teacher Little Zhang. I have already gotten the approval from the higher-ups. Little Zhang will officially take on the role of our segment’s host. He will be responsible to work with the lecturer and the guests, as well as interact with the audience. This role of his is very important. I do not have any script. The lecturer has been confirmed, and what is to be talked about has been fixed. The only thing is the that the content and order of the lecture hasn’t been confirmed. We might need to have some discussions during the recording, so the workload on Little Zhang would be even higher and more difficult.” He was also not very sure, for Zhang Ye had no experience being a television host. “Little Zhang, is it fine without a script?”
Everyone looked towards Zhang Ye.
Zhang Ye was amused, “Leader, go to my previous unit and ask, and you will know. Even if it’s a live broadcast, I have never used a script. I just say whatever is on my mind. I actually might not be able to say anything if you give me a script. I’ll just improvise on the spot.”
Hu Fei was relieved, “Alright, I was just waiting for you to say that!”
Xiao Lu chuckled, “With Teacher Zhang, one of him can handle two!”
Hou Di said, “Teacher Zhang would definitely not have any problems with his working abilities.”
Hou Ge said with concern, “What’s the name of our new segment?”
Hu Fei said, “It was also just fixed. It is tentatively called ‘Musings of History’. If there is something more appropriate, we will change it later. It’s a trivial problem. Well, with Zhang Ye as host, he will work with the lecturer. He will try to let the lecturer’s knowledge be expressed to the fullest extent. Maybe a historical figure or historical event will be discussed. It might even be a novel. Anyways, it will be a spread of historical knowledge. We will then invite a few guests. The guests will supplement or examine the topic. They can even raise doubts. It’s alright, even if they do not agree. This will largely be moderated by Teacher Zhang Ye. I believe that he will do it well, but the core is to listen to the lecturer’s speech. The guests are just helping out. The main point is to accommodate the lecturer’s point of view. The person that we invite is definitely a professor, and it one of the most authoritative ones. What he says can’t be wrong. So the doubts by the guests will just be an interlude and not the main theme.”
Zhang Ye nodded, “I understand.”
Hu Fei said, “The time of the segment also has some minor adjustments. From today on, our segment will take over the Saturday and Sunday 1 – 2 P.M. time slot. There will be two episodes a week, and each will be an hour long. Hur Hur. Although this time slot can’t compare to the primetime hours on the weekdays, it’s actually pretty good.”
Hou Ge snapped his fingers, “That’s good.”
“Are there any more questions?” Hu Fei looked at them.
Zhang Ye asked, “Have the higher-ups given any instructions on the ratings for our segment? For example, how high do the ratings have to be, to be passable? How much lower than a certain percentage will it be axed?” Amongst the colleagues, Zhang Ye was really the only professional. He was from a specialized major and had worked in the radio media for a period of time, so he knew a bit more. The others like Hou Ge and Xiao Lu, they were in no way part of this profession. They were, at best, technical staff.
“Ah? There’s a possibility of being axed?” Xiao Lu asked with a dumbfounded expression.
Hou Ge said, “That can’t be. Our station seems to think highly of our new segment.”
Hu Fei smiled wryly, “No matter how highly they think of us, results still matter. Also, every program in the station is highly thought of. If not, would they even air the program? Is there a need to say anything else? Teacher Little Zhang asked a good question. I didn’t want to talk about it initially, but it’s okay if I say it. The Arts Channel set the lowest ratings for us that the first episode must get as at least 1.0%. If it is lower than that, it could be axed three weeks later.”
“It’s not considered very high. It’s alright.”
Zhang Ye also felt it was manageable. It was not high at all.
People might say that the hottest variety shows in the country would be considered blockbusters if they broke 2%. Breaking 1% was considered pretty popular. So how could it be easy? Actually, it was not the same. Those were for the Central TV or other provincial satellite TV segments. They covered the entire country’s frequencies. Although it did not cover 100%, the signal was in basically all the major districts in the country. There were hundreds of millions of people. As for the Beijing Television Station’s Arts Channel, it only covered the area of Beijing. Even if everyone watched it, there were only tens of millions of people. The difference in audience numbers was huge, hence the ratings were not comparable.
For example, for the Beijing Television Station satellite TV segment, if a program could obtain 2% in ratings, there might be tens of millions watching. Then it would be considered to be hot.
But if it was the local channel with the Beijing’s Arts Channel, if a program could obtain 2%, the number of people watching was only about a million. It might even be 800,000-900,000 people. Zhang Ye could only estimate. He did not know the actual figures, as he was still new. However, what he was sure of, was that the ratings required were not considered bad, nor was it hot. It could be considered average, neither high nor low.
The difference was great!
Hence, a satellite channel’s ratings and a provincial channel’s ratings were completely different concepts!
If one wanted to really compare, it was like Zhang Ye at the Beijing Radio Station where despite being a provincial radio station with a short range signal, he had managed to use “Late-night Ghost Stories” to create history. His ratings had overtaken the ratings of the Central Radio Station, which broadcast to the entire country. Only then could it be said that the Beijing Radio Station’s program had exceeded a similar program of the Central Radio Station. The listenership and audience numbers were the most objective statistic. Only then could a provincial station compare with a satellite station. There was no point in looking at percentage ratings, for there was no way to compare them, as the way it was calculated was different.
Of course, getting back to the point.
Taking a provincial audience count to compare with a satellite channel’s? This was also impossible. It was fool’s talk!
Any satellite channel’s program would have a potential audience of hundreds of millions, but what about a provincial channel? The potential audience was just tens of millions!
The difference was nearly ten times!
How could they compare?
Only an anomalous person like Zhang Ye had done it previously. But that was in the radio system. There weren’t that many listeners, so the probability wasn’t that impossible.