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Goodbye Mooney’s Money

January 17, 2015 in Culture

Derek mooneySo, back in December the news broke that Derek Mooney was leaving his mid-afternoon show on RTÉ Radio One.  Since then, Ireland’s cultural commentators have been breathless in following the dominio effect this has caused with Ray D’Arcy leaving Today FM to replace him and Anton Savage, in turn, getting D’Arcy’s old job.

Personally, I’m not too bothered about all this ‘deckchairs on the Titanic’ shuffling of Ireland’s broadcasting cards.  Mooney isn’t actually leaving RTÉ.  He will now be given free reign in his field of choice: nature programming.  So, whilst the show he fronted for the past eight years is gone, he is not.

Gone with it too is a feature which daily raised my ire: Mooney’s Money.  Each day listeners were invited to take their chance and see if they could win “€1,000 of Mooney’s Money”.  The annoying thing for me was that this game purported to be a quiz.  To take part, the listener simply had to call a premium rate number and answer the daily question.  The thing was, the question was always appallingly easy.  Examples come to mind such as “Who is the President of Ireland?” and “Kerry is located in which province?” Even better, they generally gave you two options: one correct, one laughably wrong.

As of now, this compeition’s dedicated web page is still online and features a perfect example.  Have a look here.

Others more knowledgeable in the law than I can explain the exact statute which must be obeyed but my layman’s knowledge tells me that whilst a lottery or raffle needs a specific licence, a game of skill does not.  The ‘skill’ in this case was clearly the knowledge to answer the question but when the question is generally the equivalent of being asked to declare the colour of the sky on a cloudless day surely everyone gets it right?  That being the case, if 100% of the hopeful participants in a game of skill pass ‘the test’ doesn’t that mean that the skill level is set too low?

As a final thought, consider the daily prize of €1,000.  The competition site linked to above informs players that calls would “cost €1.02 (incl VAT) and from a BT landline will cost GBP £1.02″.  The best estimate I can find is that the broadcaster would received between 40 and 50 cent per entry.  So that would mean that competition just needed somewhere in the region of 2,000 to 2,500 entries each day to break even.  In 2013’s JNLR figures, the show had an average of 225,000 listeners.

This sham quiz was probably quite the golden goose for RTÉ.  Let’s wait and see if the debut of the replacement show features a section called “D’Arcy’s Dough”…

10-year-old answers

April 9, 2014 in Quizzes

Life is still not what it once was, or should be.  Issues away from quizzing continue to take up my time and, as readers of the blog will have noticed, keep me away from the site.

Sorry about that.

Here, about two weeks after I posted them, are the answers to questions in the Are you smarter than a 10-year-old? post.

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Are you smarter than a 10-year-old?

March 26, 2014 in Quizzes

quiz-greenboardRecently I hosted a table quiz in aid of my local primary school.  “Be sure and don’t make the questions too hard,” the headmaster told me “as there’ll probably be several kids in attendance.”

Seeing as he was also the principal back in my own youth at the same school, I did what I was told.

Seriously though, I don’t think I needed that advice.  It’s part of the quiz master’s job to judge the potential crowd and what sort of questions will both challenge them and be attainable.  Too hard is bad, true.  But so is too easy.  (Here I mention the Ballyhaunis town quiz where the winners got 99 out of 100!)

At the end of this night, the winning team scored 79/100, which I regarded as a pretty good par score.

Would you like to have a go at some of the questions?  Read on so.

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(Formerly) upcoming quiz answers

March 12, 2014 in Quizzes

2014 Irish OpenRightyo, this post will include the answers to the questions I posted last Friday. Before we get to them though, I will report on some quizzing I’ve done in the interim.

I’ve been to two quizzes since and I hope you’ll forgive me but I’m going to step out of order to cover them.  The more recent of the two took place in Dublin on Saturday last. The first Irish Quiz Open was held in the IQO‘s home venue, the Addison Lodge. In truth this was a continuation of our first such Open, which took place in March 2013. However, that inaugural event was called the ‘Dublin Open’. We’re aiming higher than that now…

Three of our members Derek Cray, John Groarke and Colm O’Sullivan took charge of preparing the question set for the main event, the individual Open, and I think they did a great job. Unfortunately, I forgot to bring home my question paper when the day was done so I can’t pick you out a few choice examples of their work. I’ll see if I can sort that out in a later post.

The individual quiz was ran over two halves, each featuring three sections, each containing 40 questions. We didn’t do a discard section, so all six counted. I was happy with my own performance, averaging in the high 20s (from 40, remember) in each section. When the scores were totted up, I had finished fifth, one lower than last year but bang on my Irish ranking. I was happy with that.

At the top of the board, Lorcan Duff had some daylight between his score and second place. Second was a much closer affair, with Dave McBryan squeaking past Kevin Jones by a single point. Mark Henry (aided by near infinite horse racing knowledge) finished a few ahead of me, in fourth.

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Upcoming quiz plans

March 7, 2014 in IQO, Quizzes

identify-the-flagsHi all. I’m afraid my life outside quizzing is still affecting my ability to (find the time to) post articles here on the site.

However, I am still managing to find the time to attend the odd quiz. Things would really be bad if I couldn’t do that.

In fact I have a few events coming up in the next few days. Tonight I will take part in a table quiz in aid of the IHCPT, a children’s charity, which is being held in the Dalton Inn in Claremorris. It’s down for 8pm so come on in too if you’re about.

Tomorrow (Saturday) will see the the IQO host their first big event of 2014. The 2014 Irish Open will take place in The Addison Lodge, Dublin. A full day of quizzing, featuring team, individual and social quizzes, it is open to all and all are welcome. For more information, check out the event page on Facebook: www.facebook.com/events/232690113582313/.

I’m afraid the Movies Quiz, previously announced for next Monday night in The King’s Head in Galway has been postponed. The next big quiz in the Galway venue will be the third annual Galway Food Festival Quiz, which will take place on the night of the Easter Monday public holiday. I better get preparing.

As it happens, I will be hosting a quiz next week. On Friday next, I’ll be asking the questions at a quiz in aid of the primary school I attended in my youth. That should be fun!

Right, now for a few questions to keep you interested. I was at a quiz (for the school attended by my daughter) on Wednesday night. I just turned up on my own and was recruited by a team of three ladies who had a spare seat at their table.
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Upcoming charity quiz hosted by the IQO

February 7, 2014 in Culture, Quizzes

IQO-table-quiz-poster-III

Some Christmas questions

December 16, 2013 in Quizzes

santa-quizzerLast Thursday evening I hosted a Christmas-themed quiz in Claremorris, as part of Claremorris Community Radio‘s fundraising drive.

We all had a good night, albeit “we” was quite a small number as not much of a crowd turned up. :-(

Anyway, for those of you who couldn’t make it, please find attached a sample of the night’s questions and the two picture rounds. We also had a couple of music rounds, obviously, what with Christmas number ones and carols and all that, but I’ll spare you those today.

Anyway, here you go, something to get you in the festive mood. :-)
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A million sports answers

December 4, 2013 in Quizzes

sports-productionRightyo, let’s put all you sports (question) fans out of any misery I may have inflicted over the last few days with not one but two posts of questions.

I’d say after Friday and Monday’s posts, we’re all set for sports questions for the next few months. :-)

Did anyone notice my footnote on Monday that said that the question “On which racecourse did AP Mc Coy recently achieve 4,000 career wins?” had appeared in both of these quizzes?  Clearly, it’s in the quizzing ether at the moment.  It, and its unusual pronunciation (think “Leicester” and “Worcester”), could probably be called zeitgeist.

Click the ‘Read the rest…’ link to see the answers.

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