Wednesday, 27 February 2008

Award Ceremonies

February seems to be awards month with many awards evenings, events and presentations taking place. If you live in the UK you will have been aware of the Brit Awards which recognises musical talent in the UK and if you live in the US you would have been aware of the Oscars event which recognises talent in the film industry.

Now award shows are great especially when it is you that is getting an award. Watching awards is also fun if you follow the industry in which the awards are taking place as you always have your own personal favourites that you think should or should have won.

The one problem I have with awards is that in many award shows you never know what actually happened for that person act or piece of media to get the award. They say things like judges or the board voted but you are always left wondering if an act deserved to win or if politics, personal agendas or power struggles behind the scene had anything to do with it. That is why I prefer awards that are decided by the fans. It is the fans that put the money in to an industry and keep it going and they are the ones that are important. Films and music are made to attract an audience so it is the general public who should be the judge.

The thing that got me thinking was that in an arts and entertainment world how do you decide who should win an award how do you work out who the best actor / singer is or what the best film is. In sporting competitions its easy to see who the best is as they can compete against each other and the result is dependant on their own performance not influenced by other people. In arts and entertainment you can work out who the most popular artists or films are by sales but how can you say who is the best? It is all subjective as different people like different things so to have awards which are best this or best that I think are wrong as really they are just the people who the judges liked the most.

Here is another thought if someone is more popular than another does it mean they are more talented than less popular artists? If this is true are the most talented people already established artists or are there a horde of people more talented than popular acts who nobody knows about?

To share your thoughts on awards or awards ceremonies join in our topic of the week by going to:

Adam Sibley
Founder of the Talented Young People organisation
"Envisage it, Believe it, Achieve it!"

Wednesday, 20 February 2008

Welsh Tragedy

If you live in the UK you will be aware of the current situation in Wales, which is grabbing the headlines where twenty-one young people have died of suspected suicide in the last year. The people of Britain and the police have been left scratching their heads to what the reason could be for so many young people taking their lives.

One suicide a year is unacceptable so to lose twenty-one young lives is a tragedy. Now the Police may be doing their bit but to work out why these tragedies occurred but it is up to the people of the UK to do more to make sure their deaths were not in vain.

Teenagers need more support than they are getting. During your teenage years you are asked to deal with emotions and experiences, which you aren’t ready to deal with, and it can be one of the most frightening and scary times of your entire life. During this period you build your emotional strength, character and identity which will stay with you for the rest of your life. More needs to be done to help young people during this important time of their life as without the support they may not be able to make the most of their potential and end up being a problem for society or causing us tax payers money in their adult life.

If you are a young person and you are having problems dealing with life the thing to remember is that you are not on your own, many other young people will be feeling the same as you but suicide is not the answer. If you are depressed or having problems dealing with life talk to someone about it don’t deal with it by yourself. You are a much stronger person for talking about your problems than keeping them bottled up inside.

Many people are blaming the media coverage and social networking websites for this crazy number of suspected suicides. Yes the media and social networking websites need to be monitored and need to think about messages they are sending out but parents, friends, carer, teachers etc. need to play a more active role in the lives of young people. Adults like parents and carers need to talk to young people about issues affecting them or websites they may visit as well as noting any attitude changes or changes in character. Every young person is important and individual and we need to start treating them as such. Every young person is at risk and we all need to look out for each other.

Our thoughts here at Talented Young people go out to all of those who have been affected by these tragedies and we are saddened by the loss of twenty-one young people who could have helped changed this world for the better and achieved many great things.

Adam Sibley
Founder of the Talented Young People organisation
"Envisage it, Believe it, Achieve it!"

Wednesday, 13 February 2008


In what was tipped to be the biggest film awards night of the year before the Writers Guild of America called an end to their strike this week to safeguard the Oscars Ceremony the BAFTA’s took place last weekend.

Now for those of you who don’t know BAFTA stands for British Academy of Film and Television Arts. Now I am all for awarding and celebrating talent, brilliance and creativity but my problem with these awards is that there were only a few British nominations in the main categories and even fewer British winners.

In today’s world we need to continue to improve cohesion and links between countries but that doesn’t mean we should promote those other countries talent before promoting our own talent. The American awards evening the Oscars promote American film talent before any other country so why can’t we do the same with British film talent in Britain. Yes by all means have an international category but more needs to be done to promote home grown talent with more categories that are strictly for British talent.

The one problem at the moment is that many films are being branded or referred to as British like Bourne Ultimatum, Harry Potter and James Bond when they are funded, directed or produced by American companies or talent. Now I know American film houses have the money and the power in the international film market which isn’t going to change but I feel British film is at an important stage where it needs to keep a foothold in the film market.

To get public interest in an awards ceremony and to have a fair representation of the last year in the film industry you have to involve the American film scene but more needs to be done to make sure these awards are used to promote British film and it not just being remembered and talked about for the American winners. The one reason I am in favour of American films and actors being recognised at the awards is if it inspires a young British viewer of the awards ceremony to get involved in film which will end up helping the British film scene in the long run.

Like I mentioned earlier the Writers Guild of America this week have come to an agreement to end their strikes. This is great news for film professionals or young people trying to get in to film as people can now start going back to work. The strike was also good for talented young writers as there is now even greater financial stability and incentives to work in the industry. Now I know we are British but like I have commented on with America having so much control if you want to become a film writer there is a good chance you will end up working with an American company at some point.

One thing that is for sure is that with the strikes and awards ceremonies the film industry is the most talked about industry in entertainment which is hopefully getting young people interested and inspired to work in the industry.

What did you think of the BAFTA’s? We here at Talented Young People want to know and you can share your thoughts by visiting our topic of the week by going to:

Adam Sibley
Founder of the Talented Young People organisation
"Envisage it, Believe it, Achieve it!"

Wednesday, 6 February 2008

Experience over Qualifications?

This week I am addressing a hot topic which over the last year I have found myself in many long conversations talking about and discussing this being what is more important to have in order to get a job experience or qualifications?

With the rise in number of people attending university and completing Degrees it seems that some of the shine have been taken off them especially now that you can get a degree in any thing from Surfing to David Beckham. No longer is university just for the financial and social elite.

Getting a job and doing well at a job interview is all about standing out from the crowd and being better than the other candidates so now with degrees being common place it seems a degree alone will not cut it in the workplace. Many job adverts are now asking for a minimum of three years work experience in the desired field before they will consider you.

Now you say how can I get the experience when I am at university? This is a true point so this is why you need to know before you go to university what career you want to work in and what is the best path to get you there. Many university students just go to university as they don’t know what else to do but if you can go in knowing what you want to do it is a big advantage.

Another thing to remember is that after you have finished your degree you may not be able to walk straight in to a high paying graduate job. You may have to take a lower salary than you were expecting in order to build up experience. It is only with both experience and a degree that you will eventually get those higher paid management level jobs.

Many of my friends who are now in highly skilled professions didn’t go to university they forged their own careers going straight from school or college to gain hands on experience and work their way up the ranks so they got a three year head start on all us university students.

Employers are now more interested in your ability to do the job not what you have learnt in a classroom. I went to university and am proud of my university education but I don’t think there is a one size fits all policy when it comes to life after school or college. You need to research the industry you want to get in to and find the best route for you to get where you need to go regardless of whether that is on the job experience or class room learning.

Although people may laugh at McDonalds for now offering qualifications and study programmes for young people I think we need more big organisations like this giving vocational courses as I feel it will improve the speed in which school leavers find work in their chosen field and leave less people unemployed. For many years people have looked down at vocational courses but I think courses which mix learning and work place experience are the way to go and that universities could learn a lot from this approach instead of holding on to their old and tested methods.

We want to know what you think is more important experience or qualifications? You can share your views by joining in our discussion topic of the week by going to:

Adam Sibley
Founder of the Talented Young People organisation
"Envisage it, Believe it, Achieve it!"