Monthly Archives: January 2021

BBC BIAS DIGEST 3 JANUARY, 2021

BBC ‘LAUNCHES BITTER LAST-MINUTE ANTI-BREXIT ONSLAUGHT’: Chris Hastings (Mail 3/1) said that BBC broadcasters and presenters had launched ‘ a bitter last-ditch onslaught against Brexit in the New Year schedules. He added that the UK’s departure from the EU on December 31 had coincided with what critics had said were ‘ill-tempered tirades, offensive remarks and heavily biased reportage’. Among them were:

  • Comedian Nish Kumar, appearing on Graham Norton’s BBC1 New Year’s Eve special, had described Brexit campaigner Nigel Farage as ‘a sack of meat brought to life by a witch’s curse’, adding, ‘now we have finally completed Brexit, I predict we will have a taste for leaving things and will vote to leave more stuff, starting with the continent of Europe, then the United Nations and finally the Earth by strapping rockets under the country and blasting off into space.’
  • Another comedian, Frankie Boyle, hosting a special edition of his BBC2 show ‘New World Order’, had said that Brexit was like finding cancer had spread to the walls of your house, and that, sooner or later, Britain would ‘re-enter Europe’ – as refugees.
  • In News output, business editor Simon Jack had spoken of firms facing ‘a mountain of new paperwork’ to deal with trade with the EU; politics editor Laura Kuenssberg had also warned of extra paperwork covering trade and holidays; and Katya Adler, the Europe editor, had also spoken of difficulties with trade.

Mr Hastings reported that the BBC had responded by stating that the corporation was ‘impartial on all topics’ and featured a variety of different perspectives.

 

BBC BIAS DIGEST 2 JANUARY, 2020

‘ALMOST HALF OF BRITONS DON’T TRUST BBC’: A report in the Times  (£ 2/1) said that, according to a YouGov poll, almost half of Britons thought  the BBC no longer represented their values amid declining levels of trust in the broadcaster, down from 62% in 2016.

The report said:

‘The results are understood to chime with the unpublished research recently conducted by the BBC which found that residents of well-off and diverse neighbourhoods held the broadcaster in higher esteem than people from poorer and less diverse communities.

‘The findings also tally with an Ofcom report in November which said that the BBC’s bedrock older middle-class audience was going off it. The report added that it was seen as the least impartial public service broadcaster, below ITV, Channel 4, Sky and Channel 5. Fifty-four per cent of adults believe that it provides impartial news.

‘The new research, by YouGov, found 44% of the public thought that the BBC represented their values badly. This was particularly true of older people, with 48% saying that the BBC did not adequately represent their views. In the north of England it was 51% and Scotland 47%. Among those who voted for Brexit, 58% were unhappy with the overall stance of the corporation.

‘Asked how their views of the BBC had changed over the year only 4% said that its values had become more like theirs while 33% said it had become less like theirs. Older male viewers outside London and the southeast were the most likely to be dissatisfied with the BBC’s perceived values.

‘The findings come before a government review on public sector broadcasting. Boris Johnson has made little secret of his desire to reform the BBC amid speculation that the licence fee in its present form could be scrapped.’