Here’s an interesting letter of complaint from one of our readers to the BBC;

“Hello, like many of your readers/contributors, I listened to the surreal experience that was the Today programme last saturday (20.08.11) which studiously avoided any mention of fridays arrest of an officer involved in Operation Weeting. This prompted me to make a first time complaint to the bbc as follows.

‘Dear sirs, given the importance the BBC and radio 4s Today programme has placed on coverage of phone hacking over the past few weeks, I listened to the whole of the Today programme on 20th August to find out more about the arrest of one of the police officers involved in Operation Weeting for allegedly leaking information to the press. I was very surprised to discover it did not warrant any mention whatsoever. Perhaps you could explain the reason for this.’

Here is the reply I received today:


Reference CAS-947408-F931RG

Thank you for contacting us regarding ‘Today’, broadcast on 20 August.

I understand you were disappointed with the content of this programme.

Choosing the stories to include in our bulletins and the length of time devoted to them is a subjective matter and one which we know not every listener will feel we get right every time. Factors such as whether it is news that has just come in and needs immediate coverage, how unusual the story is and how much national interest there is in the subject matter will all play a part in deciding the level of coverage and where it falls within a bulletin.

Essentially this is a judgement call rather than an exact science but BBC News does appreciate the feedback when listeners feel we may have overlooked or neglected a story. To this end, I can assure you that I’ve registered your comments on our audience log.

This is a daily internal report of audience feedback which is made available to all BBC programme makers and commissioning executives, including their senior management. It ensures that your concerns are considered across the BBC.

Thanks again for taking the time to contact us.

Kind Regards

Jamie Patterson
BBC Complaints

NB This is sent from an outgoing account only which is not monitored. You cannot reply to this email address but if necessary please contact us via our webform quoting any case number we provided.

So that’s alright then?

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  1. Billy-no-mates says:

    In other words
    Because of the unique way in which we are funded we will tell you what the news is and you will bloody well accept it


  2. Buggy says:

    Is this fabled ‘audience log’ in the public domain ?

    If not, why not – I’d be interested to see to just what extent “…your concerns are considered across the BBC” has any meaning whatsoever beyond “Be satisfied with that, you ingrate. Now bugger off. And don’t forget to pay the licence fee”.


  3. Millie Tant says:

    It doesn’t even address the question why that particular item wasn’t included. All it does is spout generalities.


    • hippiepooter says:

      I’m sure that is purely accidental.


    • NotaSheep says:

      I have had my fair share of these replies but I do press on with my complaint. The next reply I normally get takes longer to come, does actually mention the original complaint but does not admit a problem…


  4. Martin says:

    That is standard reply number 4. I’ve had several of those. Probably written by a 19 year old spotty student.

    The BBC have simply killed the story over the Guardian, but let’s be honest none of the other media bothered with it as well. One thing is uniting most of our media, the desire to see the so called Murdoch empire weakened or better still destroyed.


  5. JIM SMITH says:

    Off topic, Spotted this today in print version of inhouse rag Arial.

    As always you cant make it up…..


  6. cjhartnett says:

    Like that line” not an exact science”-as if that is what the criteria are now to be!
    That will explain the global warming fluidity and jazz hands improvisations of the BBCs “scientific output”.
    Maybe one day we`ll return to scientific enquiry…unless we`re proud to be returning to the 1650s and before Newton came along to help us out!


  7. hippiepooter says:

    Somehow, the BBC have decided that Andy Coulson receiving increments of severance pay from the NOTW at the start of his press job for Cameron is worth going on and on about for the last couple of days.

    I first heard it on R5L Breakfast from someone being interviewed who I was sure some Lab spokesman from Millbank.  Turned out to be Peston in exceptional sneery, drawly form.

    I think in future, if anyone deigns to make a complaint to the BBC about story selection, they copy and paste the answer above that you’re going to receive and then point out how it doesn’t answer the complaint you’ve just made.


  8. dave s says:

    You get a more sensible reply from a cat food manufacter when you complain but then the manufacturer is not funded by extortion.


  9. Cassandra King says:

    I feel sure that if the police officer had been feeding inside information to the NOTW/Mail/Times there would have been all the airtime in the world specially created by dropping everything.

    The letter is a standard reply of course, they have no intention of investigating, this particular complaint goes straight into what might be called the contaminated material section. This material is handled as though it were infectious, it is isolated from other complaints and sent into a dead end. The BBCV have designed a filter where damaging complaints are stopped dead.

    Like the comments section of their website, some comments get through straight away, those from their own staff employed to support the BBC position. The BBC have become experts at manipulating their complaints section, just as they had no intention of fingering their axis partner the guardian, they have enacted a detailed censorship campaign to erase any mention of it in their comments section, from their complaints section and indeed from the BBC in general.

    The BBC just cannot help acting like the degenerate squalid Marxists they are, they have been enabled and empowered and emboldened. The degenerate nature of arrogant bigots so frightened of criticism that they have spent an incredible amout of time and a great deal of thought into creating a system that has sealed itself from outside interference and accountability.


  10. Roland Deschain says:

    Their system is designed to fob off all complaints so only the most persistent will get any meaningful answer.  Following Evan Davis’s conflict of interest I registered a complaint via the Today website,  where “You can email the Today programme with comments, suggestions and complaints using the form below“.

    Lo and behold, back comes a standard email with the helpful suggestion “If you are making a formal complaint about the programme which requires an official BBC response, please forward your e-mail to [email protected]“.  Or in other words, “Piss off, your communication to us has been removed, bet you can’t remember what you sent us and even if you can, bet you can’t be bothered to write it all over again”.

    Perhaps that email address (indeed, all known direct complaint adresses) should be linked at the top of the Biased BBC site?


    • Millie Tant says:

      The self-serving so-called complaints system is designed like so many circles of hell for you to endure and suffer through for your sins – or rather, for your cheek in daring to write to them in the first place.  Like other publicly funded monsters, the NHS, for example, it is primarily run for the benefit of the organisation and the staff, not the poor fools who pay for it and are entitled to expect better from it but are condescended to on every level.


  11. Scoobywho says:

    Instead of opening the letter with “Dear sirs,” you should have tried “As a seriously offended black, muslim homosexual, and…”


  12. Scoobywho says:

    How could they ignore someone THAT important.  :0)