Biased BBC contributor Daniel Pycock writes…
“I don’t know if any of you have come across the BBC Echo Chambers blog. I certainly hadn’t until this week. The column itself is unremarkable, though one or two things there are worth reading. The complaint I have, however, is on this week’s post as regards the criticism of ’60 Minutes’ (which like Newsnight has faced a serious reputation crisis of late).
A perfectly reasonable argument to start off with, as to why this news programme faced a reputation crisis, yielded to the following throwaway comment: “it’s hard not to detect a certain amount of glee from conservatives[sic] on this topic as they’ve long viewed 60 Minutes as having a left-leaning bias (of course, they feel that way about most of the mainstream media, but that’s beside the point)”.
There is, of course, no evidence for either assertion. The conservatives who allegedly see 60 minutes as left-leaning and biased remain unnamed and, if the bold turned around to say anything other than ‘conservatives’, it would probably provoke howls of derision from the wronged party.
In my experience, Conservatives feel neither schadenfreude for a fallen reputation, nor victimisation from an allegedly unrepresentative mainstream media. In the UK, Conservatives read The Spectator, The Daily Telegraph, and The Times (which is probably the most establishment, mainstream news-outlet – loss-making notwithstanding), and might even watch BBC news programmes where Jeremy Paxman or Andrew Neil make politicians squirm under the weight of their own hypocrisy. In the US Conservatives have the National Review and The Wall Street Journal, among others.
It is unfair to claim Conservatives feel a victimisation they neither suffer nor recognise. It implies as used above that Conservatives hold an illogical position (because they disagree with a majority of “mainstream” media outlets), and that Conservatives thus criticise mainstream media outlets (such as the BBC) because of a psychology of victimisation and on disagreeing with the outcome of objective and impartial, evidence-based debates. This is not true.
The criticisms levelled at the BBC by blogs such as this and others, are based on fact where a state-broadcaster is abusing its position by, for example, presenting one-sided arguments without reply, or asymmetrically criticising positions, or not/asymmetrically citing their sources. The BBC, as a state-broadcaster, has stated objectives by which it should be judged. If it falls short of these, it should be pointed-out without a counter-accusation that critics hold illogical beliefs, and are thus beyond the pale of consideration.”