The Telegraph v the BBC. Round 116.
And it's the Telegraph's Tim Ross again piling on the punches. [I've never heard or seen him on the BBC, as far as I'm aware, and am probably even less likely to see him from now on!]
This story relates to the charity BBC Media Action and the news that it received £4.5 million from the European Union last year "mostly for work designed to ensure the progress of the enlargement of the EU".
Some Conservative MPs are concerned, saying this could "undermine the credibility of the BBC’s coverage of controversial European issues, including EU enlargement," and have called for the charity to sever its ties with the BBC.
Though legally a separate entity, the BBC classes it a part of its global news division, and the BBC's most senior global news manager, Peter Horrocks, chairs the charity.
The article quotes the BBC's defence...
A BBC said any suggestion that coverage of EU issues could be influenced by the charity’s funding arrangements was “completely unfounded and confused”.“BBC Media Action is an independent charity which works to support free and fair journalism and reduce poverty around the world,” the spokesman said.“The BBC’s editorial remit is to deliver fair, balanced and impartial coverage and we are satisfied that our coverage of the European Union does just that.”
......but undermines it by quoting Peter Horrocks himself, stressing how close the two organisations are:
“The juxtaposition of being an independent charity but also part of the BBC is an important and powerful one,” he said. “The charity has deep roots in the BBC and shares heritage and values but it also works in a distinctly different way to other parts of the BBC… It isn’t standing back and reporting — BBC Media Action gets involved.”
The article also notes that the BBC also gets funding from other significant world players:
BBC Media Action also received significant funding from the Department for International Development, the US State Department and the United Nations.