What Goes Up….


In January the BBC were boasting how much money they estimated they generated for the economy…but one stand out phrase is this from the Telegraph:

‘It concludes that value-for-money has improved overall at the BBC, even though total spending has risen by more than £100 million in the last year.’


I think you’re probably ahead of me already.


Just where did that £100 million go?  Down which black hole?

The Telegraph today tells us:

BBC suspends technology boss over ‘wasted’ £100m

The BBC has scrapped a £100m technology project and suspended the executive in charge after Director General Tony Hall admitted it had “wasted a huge amount of licence fee payers’ money”.

John Linwood, the BBC’s £287,000-a-year chief technology officer, has been suspended on full pay while the review is conducted. He chaired the Digital Media Initiative steering group.


A fair wage….you’ve got to pay top whack to get the best as Mark Thompson always assured us….and Linwood did have a staff of 1,200 people in his department.

Margaret Hodge was enjoying herself enormously laying into the BBC about this on 5Live (  13:09)…will the BBC now reciprocate and tackle Stemcor?

What was the problem?  The DMI project (Digital Media Initiative) was supposed to allow programmes to be made at any location by allowing access online to information, film or sound stored in remote BBC archives.  It didn’t work. And so far £100 million had been spent on the project….the BBC has decided to cut their losses and can the project.

Hodge nailed one big problem…the BBC has decentralised, moving much of its work to Salford…but its archives are elsewhere…presumably London….for Salford not to have access to that material is a real problem says Hodge if you want to make programmes.

It was the BBC ‘gold plating’ a project….canny BBC Scotland bought an off the shelf system which works…so was the BBC as a whole trying to be over ambitious?

What was really shocking, she said, was this project was ‘all or nothing’…and the BBC has nothing to show for it,  absolutely nothing, no benefit at all for that £100 million.


Wonder how much ‘Youtube’ cost to set up and run.











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19 Responses to What Goes Up….

  1. Anders Thomasson says:

    Why is anyone surprised? They’re socialists, of course they’re going to waste huge sums of public money!


    • Richard Pinder says:

      Proof that if you read the Guardian, you live in a fantasy world.

      Lord Hall thinks he has the best people employed at the BBC.

      He confuses the word “best” with the word “worst”.

      If you employ people because they are left-wing, the problem is that being self aware of being incompetent, gives people the necessary motive to be left-wing.

      It is the type of person that the Labour party was created for.


  2. AngusPangus says:

    Suspended on £287,000 a year. The horror!!!!! Bet he won’t do that again.


  3. Umbongo says:

    It’s not as if the £100 million had to be earned is it? It, sort of, “appeared” from the magic money tree – or taxpayers as they’re known in the real world.


    • Umbongo says:

      Although, to be fair, Tony Hall did acknowledge the ultimate source of the wasted millions.


  4. Colin E says:

    There appears to be an issue about BBC corporation tax here:



  5. uncle bup says:

    ‘The BBC has wasted millions…’

    According to BBC news.

    I suppose a hundred million is ‘millions’ but…

    They just can’t help dissembling can they.


  6. johnnythefish says:

    It is gobsmacking how they have managed to spend £100 million before discovering the system won’t work.

    A million quid tops on a feasibility/prototype should have been more than enough.

    But then in the public sector, where a £12,000,000,000 IT project failure in the NHS can be so quickly forgotten (especially by the BBC – it was under Labour after all), why should anyone be surprised – after all, it’s only taxpayers’ money innit?


  7. OldBloke says:

    I’ve cut and pasted the final paragraph in the above named article, which is a very thoughtful one as much of what is written on the BBC bias web pages, does indeed refer to the actions of the BBC, or should I put it this way: “Don’t do as we do but do as we say!” Typical Left Wing doctrine

    [But, whatever the outcome of this debate (better enforcement of existing rules or the development of new rules), it is extraordinary that our public service broadcaster is the source of such misinformation on this subject. It is not surprising, of course, but nonetheless regrettable. And the BBC, as can be seen, is casting stones when guilty of the same ‘sin’ of which it accuses others.]


  8. Span Ows says:

    Hey boss, I’ve just flushed nearly 700,000 licence fees down the toilet

    Never mind, we’ll collect it again next year.


  9. uncle bup says:

    Easy enough for Call Me Tony will be to shut down someone else’s pet project and write off a hundred million quid.

    We’ll see what happens when its *his* pet project that needs shut down with a hundred mill written off.

    Bog standard in the real economy for new CEO’s to kitchen sink as much as he can early doors.


  10. Regag says:

    The BBC obviously thinks it’s a good day to ‘bury’ bad news. Loathsome organisation.


  11. Teddy Bear says:

    Well 2 years further down the road and £100 MILLION of licence fee money down the drain, and the BBC has finally decided to stop trying to develop their own system and use those already developed.

    That may well be why they recently employed ex Labour minister James Purnell at a £295,000 salary to the position of director of strategy and digital to tell us this. Since the original decision to go ahead with the scheme was well before his time, naturally he comes across squeaky clean. Which is why he can announce ‘We’ve messed up and we apologise to licence fee payers for that.”
    He says ‘we’ now, but you can be sure as soon as criticism comes his way he will make sure the critic knows he actually had nothing to do with it.

    What about those who were responsible for this appalling decision?

    Well the BBC tells us under the sub-title of Disciplinary action

    “There are now standard off-the-shelf products that provide the kind of digital production tools that simply didn’t exist five years ago.

    “We will be looking into what has happened and will take appropriate action, disciplinary or otherwise,” he added.

    John Linwood, the BBC’s chief technology officer, has been suspended.

    Sounds real tough 🙄
    Is that suspended with pay and pension intact?
    I think it must be, otherwise they would have been sure to tell us if not.

    Here’s what James Delingpole thinks.
    The BBC loses £100 million on useless technology. This happens because of the licence fee. So scrap it


    • Teddy Bear says:

      As I surmised, and the following article confirms, John Linwood, the man who had been responsible for producing this now failed digital project has been suspended – but still receives full pay.

      Worse than that, it appears that back in 2011, when the first article on this thread showing the debacle going on, he also received a bonus of £70,000, making it £358,000 salary for the year.

      They’re still paying him while they’ve hired another to run his position.
      And the BBC have the nerve to criticise bankers bonuses. Will be interesting to see if they fire him at the end of their ‘inquiry’ or simply move him somewhere else in the corporation, as is their norm.

      I guess the latter.

      One of the comments on the article spells it out quite clearly:
      Reduce this to “real” terms to get the full picture–and it’s even worse.

      It took about 701,000 license fee payers (if you think of it in terms of one year) to pay for this failed program that wasted the equivalent of nearly three-quarters of a million license fees down the pan.

      Then it took another 2,000 license fee payers to support this man’s salary–ANNUALLY.

      Think of it that way, and the full aspect of this waste of space program and man are fully realized….

      BBC suspends technology boss over ‘wasted’ £100m


  12. OldBloke says:

    You know, I just type what I thought was £100 million into my calculator, but got it wrong when to my horror I saw only £1 million. I then kept tapping out the zeros to get to £100 million. My God! Try it yourselves and you will see just how much money this is. It nearly covers my screen! I then divided it by £25,000 (a nurses wage) and it came to 400.


  13. OldBloke says:

    It came to 4,000. Sorry, I was using a calculator Gordon Brown gave me at a car boot sale a few years ago.


  14. Lynette says:

    The Today programme sponsered Jenny Tonge for a weeks trip to Israel so that she could continue to spout her hatred from there !