Wednesday 20 April 2016

Loaded questions and the BBC's Matthew Price

David Keighley's new piece at The Conservative Woman is well worth a read (if you've not already read it).

I feel his pain when it coming to monitoring the BBC's output. His News-watch site decided to monitor a huge swathe of the BBC's output on Monday (from BBC Breakfast and Today to Newsnight), timed for George Osborne's 'killer' Treasury report. The resultant transcripts came to 36,000 words - an amount David describes as "boggling"! The BBC is such a behemoth it's always going to be "boggling" to monitor - unless you have the necessary time and resources (and who has?)

Some of the stuff David looks at will be familiar to your (our loyal readers); some won't, such as:
...the Chancellor’s document was given huge credence. But was it properly scrutinised? The devil can often be in the detail. Early signs were not good. On Today’s business news, for example, Peter Spencer, chief economic advisor of the EY Club, and David Cumming of Standard Life Investments, were both asked what were said to be ‘quick questions’ about the report. 
Their verdict? Spencer said that ‘it was not difficult to come out with figures like the Treasury have’ – suggesting the findings were credible – and Cumming, asked the loaded question  if the referendum itself was ‘already an economic drag’ replied that consumer spending was already being hit. He concluded:
‘I can see where the Treasury is coming from because the prospects for growth investment and profits would be poorer if we left the EU.’
There were no balancing comments, and these early verdicts thus stand out.
The BBC reporter asking the "loaded question" there, incidentally, was blog favourite (in the sarcastic sense of the term) Matthew Price, the programme's 'chief correspondent'. Has he been shifted sideways to act as Today's business presenter? Does he know anything about business?


  1. Well the BBC is always telling us the UK economy needs mass migration - even more than the current 600,000 (still not enough! cry the likes of Matthew Price). So it makes sense to make him chief business correspondent where he can promote the migration necessary to sustain our otherwise moribund economy.

  2. Ed Vaizey referenced the BBC's 'Reality Check' as a stamp of approval to Andrew Neil today. It's having the desired effect.

    1. Good grief, yes. And he referenced Kamal Ahmed, "the great BBC business editor", as well.

  3. Matt is always good value.


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