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Wednesday 18 December 2019

BBC - Charge Sheet Looks Grim

While some are still sceptical on the question of BBC News’ bias, and the trust that voters place in the Corporation, others have been less inhibited. Worse for the Beeb, which is also facing an assault from alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson and his pals in Parliament and the media, is news that the viewing public has already made its feelings known - and their feelings are bad news for the BBC and its defenders.
Lord Hall-Hall - time to start listening ...

But first perhaps the charge sheet can be considered, and recent lapses by those working in service of the Corporation have been summarised by Joel Benjamin. No-one should have trouble understanding their significance - or their gravity. His points are:

Editing out BBCQT audience boos of [Boris] Johnson to insert audience applause;

Newsnight edit out Johnson challenged re: status & release dates of withheld Russia report;

Running a news ticker on so-called ‘Labour anti-semitism crisis’ during holocaust package;

Weaponisation of anti-Semitism allegations against Jeremy Corbyn & the Labour Party;

Laura Kuenssberg broadcasting non-verified Tory Party claims on made up Leeds ‘punch’;

Laura Kuenssberg illegally revealing postal voting information, likely to affect voter behaviour;

News reporter broadcasting live on air speaking of ‘the majority [Johnson] so deserves’;

Failing to cease newspaper reviews during purdah, despite a well known right wing bias”.

To this can be added (a) the use of newspaper columnists, editors and press hangers-on in paper reviews, allowing the press to mark their own homework and therefore perpetuate right-wing bias, (b) the blatant use of the BBC’s Sunday Politics by veteran presenter Andrew Neil to push climate change denial, and (c) Neil and political editor Laura Kuenssberg, along with Robbie Gibb, orchestrating a resignation from the shadow cabinet live on the Daily Politics just before PMQs to the benefit of the Tories.

You want more? There is also (d) Ms Kuenssberg effectively taking dictation from Vote Leave’s Matthew Elliott over the campaign breaking electoral law, (e) Refusal to discuss the misbehaviour of Cambridge Analytica, to the extent of having Carole Cadwalladr shouted down during a paper review on The Andy Marr Show™, (f) a whole string of instances where the Question Time audience has been infiltrated by Tory plants, and (g) loading panel shows with right-wing pundits and other hangers-on.
... before Bozo takes your manor apart

That list may, whisper it quietly, have missed the odd howler or three. And while the latest set of excuses are readied, those prepared to give the Corporation a clean bill of health should note that the latest YouGov poll (not some self-selecting Rotten Leftie™ poll) has brought news that trust in BBC News with the wider public has fallen to a historically low level - it has dropped below 50% of those interviewed.

In October, fully 51% of respondents trusted the Beeb, with 41% not trusting it. But by earlier this month, those in the former category had dropped sharply to 44%, with the latter climbing to 48%. With trust in print media falling yet further, one might expect the public to trust the BBC more. Instead, they are trusting it significantly less.

Not everyone will agree with Joel Benjamin’s points, or his longer analysis (read the full text HERE), but perhaps they will understand his frustration, especially given the Corporation’s inability to listen to licence fee payers, some of whom are rapidly losing faith.

Now that Bozo The Clown and his fellow Tories are planning to emasculate the BBC yet further in their search for a more pliable and ideologically pure media landscape, Lord Hall-Hall and his minions are likely to find themselves high and dry.

That is, unless they rediscover the process of listening, and admit there is a problem.
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Arnold said...

"That list may, whisper it quietly, have missed the odd howler or three.".
Substituting a four year old piece of film showing Bozo managing to place a wreath correctly.

Nigel Stapley said...

None of this - none of this at all - will be news to anyone who observed the conduct of the State Broadcaster during the Scottish referendum of 2014. But when this was pointed out, the critics were scoffed at by London's media élite and their satellites in Scotland, with "conspiracy theorist" and "Tin-foil hat brigade" being the most-thrown-about epithets.

That can now be seen as a dry run for what is being described in this article.


If the BBC needs to be saved, then the first step must be to disband the entire News & Current Affairs section, re-establishing it with executives and editors of a strongly independent bent, and with journalists who are not content to be mere stenographers to political power and repeater stations for overwhelmingly far-right print media.

It goes without saying that this is not going to happen.

grim northerner said...

Decriminalising the licence could end the BBC as we know. Lots of Boris's new converts hate the BBC and the beebs gestapo tactics and capita goons may be the final nail in the coffin after the Saville debacle.

Mark said...

Finally got my reply from the BBC's ECU about the Remembrance Sunday footage. They're sticking to the 'it was a mistake guv, honest' line of course, whilst reminding me that I can now log my complaint with Ofcom.

Still waiting to hear on complaints re their inability to secure a signed, irreversible agreement from each leader to appear on Andrew Neil and Kuenssberg's...well...where do I start?!

Julian said...

I am never going to pay the licence fee again. A festering swamp of lies from the BBC despite its charter "impartiality".

Jonathan said...

The BBC senior management have hunkered down, sticking two fingers at its customers, ignoring genuine complaints by employing the Goon squad of Crapita (sic) outsourcing audience recruitment for QT, defending law breaking by its Political Editor.

The BBC has signed its own death warrant.

Anonymous said...

BBC "new and politics" is dishonest, lacks integrity and is staffed by shameful liars.

Which is why it is held in contempt by all free thinkers.

Its only function now is for an academic study of its intrinsic corrupt propaganda and hypocrisy. It is nothing less than a root and branch evil organisation.

God knows what its staff thinks they see in a mirror each morning. Truly vile, cowardly snakes the lot of them.

Julian said...

One other thing. The BBC is of course composed of lots of workers, some unionised. There was no solidarity action against the lies from these workers. I am given to believe from two sources that there was a lot of "muttering below decks". But that was all.

Bear this in mind when there are squeals about losing their jobs.

mikehineoftownchicago said...

I wouldn't get cheered by the increase in mistrust of the BBC,Tim.
The increase quite likely comes from deluded fools believing the Tory line about BBC left-wing bias.

'I don't trust the BBC anymore because Mr Cummings says that no ministers are allowed on the Today programme cos it's biased against us, so it must be true'.

grim northerner said...

Pilgers nhs doc would never be broadcast by the Beeb.

LiamKav said...

Are you saying that if one of the animators for Hey Dugee loses their job due to budget cuts we should just point and go "well, it's your own fault for not throwing a pie at Kuenssberg in the cafeteria"?

Anonymous said...

It did actually feel strange to watch the election night coverage on ITV instead of the BBC. Initially I was worried that I might miss a big moment during an ad break, until it became clear that there weren't going to be any ad breaks or unmissable moments, just George Osborne and Ruth Davidson's all night long job applications.

Anonymous said...

Remember the BBC "vetting scandal" of the 1980s?

Anybody who thinks that variant of McCarthyism began and stopped then is living in cloudcuckooland.

Right from its origins it has been a right wing mouthpiece. It has ALWAYS been connected to the "intelligence" services, sometimes even going beyond their paranoid craziness. All of it is a matter of public record for those willing to get off their arse and do some researcn - which automatically excludes all the cowardly weasels who front it.

For instance, I'm still waiting to hear what special talents Huw Edwards has that merits half a million pounds per annum.

Mark said...

Liam, I think Julian's referring to the BBC news team, which is after all what we're discussing.