Tony Hall is now firmly ensconced back at the Beeb, a place he left in 2001 to run the Royal Opera House.
He feels pensionate – sorry, passionate – about the job, but what should he do first, apart from see if some of the people who took part in Secret Santa in 2000 are still there (and try and find out which of them gave him the squirting tie – "Look out Lord Patten!")?
Well, he could start by banning the irritating habit of interrupting the credits at the end of dramas with: "Next Time...".
Many of us are adults. We can hold on to the dramatic thrust of a story ourselves. If there is a chance that two characters might meet in the next instalment, do we need to see a glimpse of it already?
Does this happen in novels? At the end of a chapter do we have a few lines saying: "Coming up next: Pip meets Miss Havisham". All right, this used to happen a very long time ago, when it might have said: "Chapter Four, in which our hero ...' and so on. But that has long been dispensed with.
The use of "next time" is juvenile. When you have a meal in a restaurant, can you imagine if they gave you a little bit of dessert on the side of your main dish, just to let you know what was coming up next.
The Ten O'Clock News needs a makeover too. Those swirling graphics at the start are all well and good, but it would be so much better if the odd, unexpected town name were slipped in, so that when "Beijing" floats down from the top of the screen (or is it up from the bottom?), it can meet "East Kilbride" sweeping boldly across from the left. A new town – or even a New Town – could be added every night, until people rang in to complain that "Nairn" or "Helmsdale" had been overlooked.
Also, can he please make sure the Beeb makes a contribution to viewers' pensions (I know – what pensions?), whenever they watch the channel?
Finally, given his previous job, one wonders if he'll bring any of the Opera House's way of doing things with him.
When his PA says: "I'm sorry, he's not at his desk right now," does a chorus of staff sing: "Not-at-his-desk! Not-at-his-desk! Not-at-his-desk, RIIIIIIIIIIIGHT NOW!!
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