During the hacking brouhaha that popped up Thursday in Baku, news reports mentioned an ESC-themed website that I was not aware of, and I need to recommend it highly to Americans interested in what’s going on this week during the 2012 finals. ESC Insight is an informative and entertaining Eurovision blog without any obvious axe to grind, edited by a Scot, Ewan Spence, and an Australian, Sharleen Wright. Their team includes American Samantha Ross (of ESC Insider), noted author John Kennedy O’Connor (creator of THE EUROVISION SONG CONTEST: THE OFFICIAL HISTORY), Dr. Paul Jordan, whose doctoral studies concerned the national identity and nation-building aspects of an event like the ESC, and showbiz reporter and Eurovison Apocalypse blogger Roy Delaney.
Besides the news site and blog, the VERY best reason to visit ESC Insight is the daily podcast featuring members of the writing team and guests from other prominent Eurovision blogs and press. Accessible online for easy listening on your computer, the team runs through all the day’s developments in a half hour show (which is also available as a free download via the Itunes store for later listening on your mobile device). For those of us who can’t be on location in Baku, the varied and charming opinionation of the ESC Insight team is definitely the next best thing.
The other bonus feature online is the “ESC Insight Unofficial Guidebook to the 2012 Eurovison Song Contest” ebook which is available as a free download for blog readers. You can find out all about the entries and contest this year.