Thursday, 12 May 2016

Enshrining diversity

I’ve been religiously watching John Whittingdale. My attention kept wandering. I did hear “enshrine diversity”[...]“Black and ethnic minorities”[...]“must reflect the whole of the UK population” and more global something or other.

top salaries, 
independence from government, 
the Importance of ‘Strictly’.

"I'm paid too much. Pay us less"

Ofcom is to replace the BBC Trust, but Rona Fairhead remains in her post till 2018.The consensus appears to be that the BBC is the most respected, trustworthy and impartial broadcaster in the world; I feel concerns about bias are unlikely to be allayed by any changes. I didn’t hear anything specific about the complaints procedure, but I imagine we’ll hear more as time goes on. Or not.

“A unitary board will be responsible for ensuring that the BBC’s strategy, activity and output are in the public interest and accord to the mission and purposes set out in the charter.

Editorial decisions will remain the responsibility of the DG and his editorial independence will be explicitly enshrined in the charter, while the unitary board will consider any issues or complaints that arise port transmission.”

The CEO of Ofcom is Sharon White trained economist and studied at Cambridge University and  University College London.”    UCL’s union hosted thisNot very reassuring. 

The Guardian seems rather worried about the BBC’s bias against the left.

Sir Michael Lyons thinks political pressure is making the BBC  biased against Labour and Jeremy Corbyn.  Thank goodness he’s no longer chair of the BBC Trust.

Page 60 (complaints)
Introducing an easier, more efficient complaints system for audiences. 

An important way in which audiences can hold the BBC to account is by telling the BBC what they think about its services and programmes directly: the BBC receives more than 250,000 editorial complaints every year. The current complaints system was described by the Clementi Review as “complicated and confusing”. 

130 This reflects long-standing concerns about the complaints systems in the BBC. For example, in evidence to the House of Lords back in 2011 Lord Grade, former Chair of the BBC, described the situation as “hopeless, absolutely hopeless”. 

131 Since then the relevant bodies – the BBC Executive, the BBC Trust and Ofcom – have worked together to try and make things work as well as possible, implementing changes following the 2012 complaints framework review,132 but they are hampered by the structures in which they work. A number of consultation responses reflected this concern. 

There are two main reasons why the reforms have not satisfied critics. First, there remains confusion around responsibilities. Currently, one complaint can be handled by two different regulators, the BBC Trust and Ofcom.  

Hundreds of complaints about the BBC go to both. Second, Ofcom is specifically precluded from regulating the BBC’s accuracy and impartiality record – the subject of a large proportion of complaints. This means that the BBC Trust deals with this important area without any external oversight.  
The reformed model of governance provides an opportunity to improve and streamline the way audience complaints are considered and make it easier for the public to engage with the BBC.  

The new Charter will introduce two changes: 
−a single complaints system with regards to the BBC in relation to editorial matters. In the first instance the BBC will handle the complaint. Where a complainant is unsatisfied with the response, or where the BBC fails to respond in a timely manner, the complainant will then be able to complain to Ofcom; −external regulatory oversight of editorial matters.  

Ofcom will be able to consider complaints about all BBC content, including accuracy and impartiality in BBC programmes. This means the BBC will continue to be held to the high editorial standards that the public expects. It will build on the expertise and experience that Ofcom already has in considering complaints about the BBC and the rest of the broadcasting sector. 

This approach will require Ofcom to take on responsibility for the regulation of aspects of BBC content currently outside of the Broadcasting Code. The government will work with Ofcom and the BBC to make sure that the BBC is held to the high editorial standards that the public rightly expects.

1 comment:

  1. The real problem with the BBC is that it has become a narrow self-replicating cultural entity - soggy liberal politically correct left.

    Oversight tinkering will achieve nothing. Structural changes will be required. Personally I favour licence payers being given the power to allocate part of their fee to programme making via a dedicated pin number (whihc would allow them to "vote" for certain programme ideas) and licence payers voting for the BBC Executive members.

    We would see real changes then.