General BBC-related comment thread:

Please use this thread for comments about the BBC’s current programming and activities. This post will remain at or near the top of the blog – scroll down for new topic-specific posts. N.B. this is not an invitation for general off-topic comments, rants or chit-chat. Thoughtful comments are encouraged. Comments may be moderated.

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215 Responses to General BBC-related comment thread:

  1. Miles says:

    BBC double standards at play:

    Complaint by MP about ‘Christianophobia’ – bring in the opinion of the National Secular Society to rebut said complaint:

    Complaint by MP about ‘Islamophobia’ – NOTHING in rebuttal:

    It’s beyond a joke.


  2. WoAD says:

    Neither ‘Christianophobia’ nor ‘Islamophobia’ exist anymore than “inventomania” (the tendency to create psychiatric diagnoses in excess)


  3. Miles says:

    Agreed. In fact labelling something a ‘phobia’ is designed to imply that the fear is, by definition, ‘irrational.’ So the BBC tows the line that there is nothing whatsoever to fear from Islam, and anyone who thinks otherwise is suffering from delusions. I wonder how far society is from classifying ‘Islamophobia’ as a disorder requiring psychiatric treatment to overcome.


  4. Richy says:

    This is almost comical really.

    BBC ‘took terrorist trainers paintballing’

    “The BBC funded a paintballing trip for men later accused of Islamic terrorism and failed to pass on information about the 21/7 bombers to police, a court was told yesterday.

    The BBC paid for Mr Hamid and fellow defendants Muhammad al-Figari and Mousa Brown to go on a paintballing trip at the Delta Force centre in Tonbridge, Kent, in February 2005. The men, accused of terrorism training, were filmed for a BBC programme called Don’t Panic, I’m Islamic, screened in June 2005.

    The BBC paid Mr Hamid, an Islamic preacher who denies recruiting and grooming the men behind the failed July 2005 attack, a £300 fee to take part in the programme, Woolwich Crown Court was told”.


  5. Matthew says:

    BBC funding terrorist training? Look forward to John Reith explaining away this one. Obviously it’s all down to their new sense of comedy:

    ‘Phil Rees, who produced the show, told the court that he was impressed by Mr Hamid’s sense of humour while looking for someone to appear in the documentary. He said: “I think he had a comic touch and he represented a strand within British Muslims. I took it as more like a rather Steptoe and Son figure rather than seriously persuasive. I saw him as a kind of Cockney comic.” Mr Rees, who now works for the Arabic TV station al-Jazeera, gave Mr Hamid a signed copy of his book Dining With Terrorists.’

    Has anyone else noticed that there seems to be something of a trend with BBC journalists leaving for the al-Jazeera Arab and Hamas propaganda machine? Darren Jordan, Rageh Omaar, David Frost, Phil Rees… One of the clearest indications yet of the cultural bias of their staff.


  6. Matthew says:

    Re: ‘BBC took terrorists paintballing’

    I’ve looked in vain for this on the BBC website: the closest I can find is this: .

    No mention of the BBC’s involvement or connection with the terror suspects. Surely a breach of their guidelines: ‘Our reporting must remain accurate, impartial and fair even when our content, or the BBC itself, becomes the story,’ or do they assume they can get away with non-reporting?


  7. Anonymous says:

    Yup, lots of Beeboids seem to cross over to the other side – al-Jazeera.

    How many go to Fox News?


  8. Anonymous says:

    In my experience it works better than Sky. Every time I have complained I have received a proper response. Every time I complain to Sky, I get a ‘Thanks for your email…’ template that is sent out automatically. I have never once had a proper reply. Comapred to the competition, the BBC does an excellent job of dealing with complaints.
    korova | Homepage | 04.12.07 – 11:09 pm | #

    So don’t pay for SKY you imbecile. Unlike the BBC payment you have a choice you numbskull.


  9. Tim says:


    I think your find that the M16 rifles that you are referring to, would indeed of come from dead US soldiers. The insurgent TV channel in Iraq used to love showing these as trophies.

    OR –

    They were the guys own weapons before they were taken hostage.

    Either way the Beeb really are scum there is no argument in that.


  10. bob says:

    That really is priceless! “He represented a strand within British Muslims”… that’s about as close as we’ll get to (unintentional) honesty from these pro-terrorist BBC scum!


  11. marc says:

    Reference the Muslim terrorists and paintballing scandal at the BBC, you might want to do some research on Suleaman, the BBC presenter and researcher at the heart of the scandal. I did.

    For example, did you know that she, like the Muslim terrorists, is a British born Muslim of Pakistani descent? I’m not saying she is a terrorist but might this not help explain why she “felt no obligation to inform police”?

    There’s more.


  12. Zdarma says:

    This indecipherable story makes a lot more sense with added facts.

    It’s white girls being targeted.
    It’s Asian men doing the grooming.

    Here’s the story from a slightly different angle, making a fair bit more sense.


  13. MattLondon says:

    David | 04.12.07 – 2:23 pm,

    Infuriating, isn’t it? I complained recently and got led on a time-consuming maze through BBC red tape, without anyone dealing with the substance of the complaint, until I ended up back where I’d started. The unaccountable BBC shows absolute contempt for the public with its joke of a complaints process.

    Well, at least you got an initial response. I seldom do. They usually simply ignore my complaints.
    Bryan | 04.12.07 – 10:52 pm | #

    Have you tried writing a letter to your MP about the way your complaint was handled, asking him/her to forward it to the chairman or whatever?

    Most MPs will do that, even if they don’t agree with the complaint, and usually there will be a response to the MP from whoever they wrote to.


  14. Anonymous says:
    Group targets grooming of girls so says the BBC but it’s actually young Pakistani men in Yorkshire and Lancashire. Ask CROP. Yorkshire TV was barred from showing a programme about this a few years ago. West Yorkshire Police got an injunction I believe on the grounds that it would raise racial tensions. The BBC make it sound like its widespread across all races. It’s not.


  15. backwoodsman says:

    Another Toady programme, another valient attempt by the beeboids to airbrush the appaling nulab sleeze of Donorgate out of the nations conciousness !

    The technique is to relegate it to the margins, then present it as a general debate on party funding. Nice try guys ! All you are achieving in reallity , is to strengthen the determination of people to end the existence of another corrupt institution, the bbc !


  16. John Reith says:

    MattLondon | 05.12.07 – 9:18 am

    {Bryan} Have you tried writing a letter to your MP about the way your complaint was handled?

    I’d be interested to see what response the chairman made to to a letter from the Knesset Member for Tel Aviv Central complaining that Bryan hasn’t had a prompt reply.


  17. keith says:

    Today’s report from the BBC on “groups” targeting teenage girls for prostitution is a typical example of the BBC’s economy with the truth, when the truth happens to contain the word Muslim.

    It is well known in the Midlands and the North East that these “groups” are exclusively Muslim men targeting under age naive white girls. There have been documentaries on this problem before, but they were not so mealy mouthed as to refer to the easily identifiable culprits as “groups”


  18. teddy says:

    the bbc never cease to suprise me how
    predictable they are.


  19. George R says:


    “Follow the soap star: a modern BBC nativity” –

    “Tory MP criticises ‘Christiamophobia'” –


  20. George R says:

    Is the BBC ready to play the

    dhimmi in Dubai?:


  21. Ritter says:


    Springer opera court fight fails

    The word ‘scum’ comes to mind again.


  22. Bryan says:

    From what I’ve read on this site and elsewhere about the BBC complaints process, the following personal experience is typical:

    26/10 and 27/10: I sent 2 comments to the HYS on Iran, breaking no House Rules, but pointing out the terrorist nature of the regime:

    27/10: I noticed both comments had been rejected, i.e. had apparently broken the rules. One has to register at HYS to get one’s own page and a breakdown of how one’s comments have been handled. If HYS doesn’t like a comment, it can simply not publish it. It is apparent that by rejecting comments in this instance, the “moderators” made a statement of PC disapproval. This is backed up by the Debate Status:

    Total comments: 3105
    Published comments: 1883
    Rejected comments: 1111

    That number of rejected comments is unprecedented. Taken together with the fact that the comments published by the moderators were mostly supportive of Iran or only mildly critical, the inescapable conclusion is that there was a deliberate move here to stifle and distort debate in favour of Iran.

    30/10: I sent a detailed complaint via the website, pasting in the rejected comments:

    05/11: Received a response from a living being at BBC Information to the effect that the complaint had been sent to the wrong place and advising as follows: If you disagree with a moderation decision about your own post please email [email protected] including a complete copy of the moderation email that you were sent when your post was removed. The Central Communities Team will then review the posting – if an incorrect decision has been made the post will be reinstated and you will be notified.

    06/11: Sent a detailed response to the living being at BBC Information pointing out, among other things, that, While I have contributed to “Have Your Say” for a few years now and have had quite a few comments published and then removed and others rejected, I have never received an e-mail advising me of that fact.

    06/11: Received an automated response, including the following: We are sorry but our email system will not receive your email unless you use one of our pre-formatted webforms.

    I should point out here that nowhere in the original e-mail from BBC Information did it advise me not to respond to the e-mail.


  23. Bryan says:


    07/11: OK, e-mailed the Central Communities Team outlining the state of play up till then and pasting in the original complaint sent to the website.

    No response.

    27/11: Scolded the Central Communities Team mildly for their lack of interest and courtesy and pasted in the complaint sent on 07/11.

    28/11: Received the following reply:

    Dear BBC Visitor

    Thank you for your email.

    The Central Communities Team are not involved in the running of the Have Your Say site.

    Have Your Say users should contact the site owners using their feedback form –

    Kind regards,
    Central Communities Team.

    Clicking on their link above accesses a Have Your Say page where they point out that complaints about moderation decisions should be submitted to Newswatch:

    And Newswatch cheerfully informs us that, While we try to read all e-mails, we cannot guarantee a response.

    29/11: Gave up in disgust.


  24. Bryan says:

    MattLondon | 05.12.07 – 9:18 am,

    As Reith points out, I live in Israel and therefore obviously don’t pay the licence fee. However, nowhere on the BBC site do I see anything that tells me that I cannot complain about the BBC from outside of the country. And if they had such a ruling, it would obviously be ridiculous in the light of the fact that the BBC spreads its pernicious propaganda worldwide and people living in other countries have every right to complain about its biased output.

    The complaints website acknowledges the fact that the BBC accepts complaints from all over the place by including the entire planet on the official complaint form:

    So Reith can be as snide as he likes about it, but as long as the BBC keeps pumping out bias, it should expect complaints worldwide – and stop throwing up every obstacle it can think of to avoid dealing with them.


  25. Ben says:

    You have every right to complain, but as someone who doesn’t pay the license fee, you can’t justifiably demand a response (any more than you can from CNN or Fox)


  26. Maureen says:

    BBC has put 4,500 through trust course

    About 4,500 BBC editorial staff have participated in a Safeguarding Trust workshop, it has been revealed.


  27. Bryan says:

    Ben | 05.12.07 – 11:14 am,

    You mean the BBC is unaccountable to people outside the UK? You must work for them.


  28. Ben says:

    I think you need to re-read what I posted.

    Should license fee payers be paying for the additional resources required to satisfy the demands of those that put nothing into it (it was about time they put ads on the news site)?

    I’m not saying they shouldn’t respond, but you can hardly give them additional grief for acting like their other commercial rivals.

    additionally, Worldwide enterprises are funded by high street banks…


  29. Reimer says:

    “Group targets grooming of girls

    Girls are threatened and isolated from their families
    The scale of the problem of British girls being lured into prostitution in their own country is being examined by the Home Office”

    Little specific about quite where in Britain this ‘internal trafficking’ is going on, or what sort of ‘British’ people are involved. C4 ought to do a docu on this – non-specific aspersions are one of the great menaces of our time.


  30. John Reith says:

    Bryan | 05.12.07 – 10:40 am

    We may have had our spats in the past, but I am genuinely sympathetic to your experience of getting stuck in the BBC’s e-mail equivalent of the voicemail void.

    Though no expert on HYS, perhaps I can suggest an explanation of what happened to your posts.

    You appear to have jumped to the conclusion that your posts were read by a moderator and rejected, despite not breaching any house rule.

    Given that you did not get any e-mail pointing out a rule-transgression, I’d have thought it far more likely that your posts were never read by a moderator at all.

    According to the HYS faq:

    We currently moderate about half of the comments we receive.

    i.e. any individual post only has a 50-50 chance of even being seen by a moderator.

    In the case you cite the figures at close of play as:

    Total comments: 3105
    Published comments: 1883
    Rejected comments: 1111

    Here more than half the total comments were actually published, suggesting that the moderators put in extra time to get a higher than usual proportion of comments through the system.

    As you say, the number of rejected comments looks huge. Typically rejections appear to run a 4 or 5 per cent, maybe 10 per cent on topics like Iran.

    I’d guess that the moderator who closed the thread probably tipped the 900 or so unread posts into the ‘rejected’ category. Actually, that seems quite sensible to me, as suggesting they’re still in a moderation queue could be a bit misleading if the thread is absolutely closed.


  31. D Burbage says:


    re: BBC 10 O’clock news

    I saw that. In between saying that this lot of hostage takers were different from the last lot of hostage takers (Shia not Sunni or the other way round) they managed to have a 10 second piece of a US general talking from April 2006 (!) saying that the terrorists had Iranian weapons, apparently criticising the earlier shot of terrorists with M16s (even though the general was talking 18 months prior to the current situation, and about a different circumstance altogether). Really crass.


  32. John Reith says:

    ShugNiggurath | 04.12.07 – 4:34 pm

    For John Reith:
    Considering that Lord Ahmed is a Labour peer as they have been more than keen to show us recently, can we expect to see a story about Labour being split over policy on terrorism?

    No. Lord Ahmed seems to me to be rather predictably ‘on-message’.

    The closure of Gitmo has been a UK Government policy objective for some time now (see below) and Control Orders have replaced dentention without trial.


  33. The ‘reports’ on the BBC’s website which seek to mask the ethnicity and culture (to BBC – we know who they are anyway) of the ‘group’ responsible for most of the predatory pimping of young white girls in Lancs/Yorks appear to have been written by…. well, nobody. Perhaps JR or another BBC visitor would care to clarify the BBC’s policy on this absence of journalistic accountability?


  34. Martin says:


    How do you know that what you buy goes to Sky? Not all products get advertised on Sky and generally speaking 99% of products don’t get advertised on Sky.

    You are more than entitled to refuse to purchase products advertised on Sky. For example buy food and other products from your local independent store rather than Tesco or Asda.

    How do you expect companies to survive without advertising? Are you a Communist?

    The difference with the BBC is that the TV tax is compulsory even if you don’t want to watch the BBC. The Sky Subscription is not.

    Oh and the BBC carry adverts as well. They advertise the Guardian and Independent newspapers all the time.


  35. Lee Moore says:

    korova : Every time I purchase a product I ‘pay’ a bit to Sky. Any suggestions on how I could avoid this, short of living a hermit lifestyle? I can choose not to pay for BBC and know that they will never receive a penny from me. I can refuse to pay a subscription to Sky and yet know that a proportion of every product I buy goes to Sky.

    You haven’t thought this bit of teenage sophistry through. If you argue that by paying for your toothpaste, you are ultimately funding Sky (absurd but let’s stay with it) then you are obviously also paying for the BBC by exactly the same chain of “reasoning.” For some of your toothpaste money will go on wages of toothpaste workers, or on dividends to toothpaste company owners, some of whom will have Sky subscriptions.

    What distingusihes the TV licence from the ordinary chain of commercial flows is that you have to pay it for a government licence to possess a working TV, not in return for a service, or for goods. With your toothpaste purchasing there’s a quid pro quo, as there is with tootpaste suppliers buying advertising space, or wages for working, or dividends for providing capital (all of which are simply components of the cost of buying the goods or services that you are buying.) Every link in the commercial chain is an entirely voluntary arrangement with a quid pro quo. The TV licence involves no quid pro quo. The quo is not a valuable service, but just an annual waiver from a threatened jail sentence.


  36. Andy says:

    More predictable and vacuous tripe from bug-eyed oaf Jeremy Bowen. Does he never tire of repeating himself?

    To summarize: Palestinian society’s problems are nothing to do with the Palestinians and everything to do with Israel’s military activities and settlement building.

    In common with the populace of many dung-heaps, the easy cop-out is to blame others, but never take a cold clinical look at themselves.

    The sad reality is that many Palestinians don’t want peace as this means having to make sacrifices and compromises. They want victory and nothing less than the total destruction of Israel.


  37. George R says:

    John Reith:

    “Lord Ahmed seems to me to be rather predictably ‘on-message’.”

    Does JR mean this sort of thing?:

    “‘Lord’ Ahmed, Baron Ahmed, of Rotherham”


  38. bodo says:

    WRT the so-called “internal trafficking” of young girls. I suspect the use of such phrases is a bit of Newspeak used to divert attention from what is really happening. Anyone in the areas affected knows full well that it is young white girls being targeted by Asian men – the crime does indeed have a very nasty racist angle to it, but the colours are the wrong way round and so the BBC will ignore it — just as the police and social services do.

    As an aside, I suspect the young girls in question have been left dreadfully vulnerable because of some of the “citizenship lessons” which are now compulsory in school and which paint the Asian/Muslim population as being very family orientated, and that criticism or even suspicion of Asians is Islamophobic or simply racist. Any parent trying to rescue their daughter from the clutches of these paedophiles will also be fighting against the school indoctrination of their daughter.


  39. wally greeninker says:

    As far as this story about pimping up north, the BBC gave quite enough information, for them, about the nature of the gangs involved when they mentioned that the story came from the Yorkshire police. Anyone with the smallest amount of background knowledge would have instantly filled the story out for themselves.

    Listening to any story about non-specific youths, broadcast by the BBC, is comparable to having to think like one of those Kremlinologists in the days of the cold war: you just have to learn to read between the lines.

    Still, it is a somewhat bizarre procedure in a free and open society.


  40. Lee Moore says:

    Sorry my second sentence a few comments above should have said :

    For some of your toothpaste money will go on wages of toothpaste workers, or on dividends to toothpaste company owners, some of whom will have BBC TV licences.


  41. dr says:

    Still, it is a somewhat bizarre procedure in a free and open society.
    wally greeninker | 05.12.07 – 2:46 pm | #

    sadly thanks to the likes of the BBC and nulabour we no longer live in a free and open society.


  42. meggoman says:

    “Group targets grooming of girls

    Little specific about quite where in Britain this ‘internal trafficking’ is going on, ……..
    Reimer | 05.12.07 – 12:03 pm | #

    Actually this morning on Radio 5 Live Nicky Campbell asked a representative from CROP if this ‘internal trafficking’ was being done by any specific ethnic groups to which she replied along the lines of Yes they found that Pakistani Asians youths are the main perpetrators and paritcularly in Lancashire and Yorkshire.


  43. Ritter says:

    Have a read of this DHYS ‘Most Recommended’ views here:

    How can we deal with prison overcrowding?
    Do you support the building of new “super-prisons”?

    In response to the questions posed, the majority of commentators say “yes, get on with building the prisons already” (I paraphrase obviously).

    Why are these views not represented fully and fairly on BBC News?

    In the actual news article referring to the ‘super prisons’, BBC News have highlighted one DHYS comment. Does it reflect the balance of views submitted to the BBC? Not a chance – the DHYS quote picked is

    “I feel that “super-prisons” will just result in more professional criminals”

    Dave Mudie, Edinburgh

    I call that bias. No more no less.


  44. Rob Clark says:

    Perhaps JR or another BBC visitor would care to clarify the BBC’s policy on this absence of journalistic accountability?
    [email protected] | 05.12.07 – 1:34 pm | #


    Pick up any newspaper the world over, Allan, and you’ll find stories without by-lines. There are any number of reasons for this and I don’t really see the relevance.

    Whoever it’s written by, the BBC is accountable.


  45. Mugwump says:

    Matt Frei on good form in today’s Washington diary, sneering about America’s ‘new terror’ over unsafe Chinese-made toys.

    Frei comments that the phrase toxic toys “…trips off the tongue like, well, Yellow Peril.” After ticking the Americans = Racists box, he moves on to the Hong Kong port call controversy, sarcastically observing that the Chinese snubbed “the mightiest navy the world had ever seen”.

    His advice to the Americans? “Calm down about the toys. Let American sailors spend their dwindling dollars in the strip clubs of Wan Chai..”

    The news from America, seen through the eyes of the BBC.


  46. George R says:

    Marc 8:29 am

    – raised the issue of the BBC sponsorship of paintballing for Islamic terrorist supporters.

    Where’s the BBC’s reply?

    “BBC took alleged terrorists paintballing”


  47. meggoman says:

    Asian pimps. Was this reported on BBC website.


  48. meggoman says:

    Not forgetting the BBC version.


  49. Tim says:

    My comment on prison overcrowding:

    Stop jailing people who refuse/ can’t afford to pay the TV licence.

    Surprise, surprise it’s not being posted, despite it not breaking any of their rules.