Sunday 9 February 2020

'Why am I trying to disturb the consciences and sense of justice of people who plainly have neither?'

Peter Hitchens is one of those people with a longstanding attachment to the BBC. Its a BBC of the past and his imagination, of his memories and hopes. He can't bring himself to call for its abolition because, as he says, he loves what it used to be, and what it ought to be. But, as of this week (as he writes in today's Mail on Sunday), he no longer feels any inclination to defend it.

Despite feeling that in the past two or three years "it has grown sharply worse" and that there has been "a crude slide into open partiality on so many things", the straw that finally broke his camel's back was an "insulting" reply from the BBC to his complaint about Christmas Day's Gavin & Stacey breaking BBC editorial guidelines by condoning the use of illegal drugs before the watershed:
I was wasting my breath. They ignored what I had said, and responded to different points I had not made.
(Ah yes, that's BBC Complaints in a nutshell!)
And I thought: 'Why am I trying to disturb the consciences and sense of justice of people who plainly have neither?'
So that's it. He simply "can't be bothered" to defend the corporation any longer.

Given that it's 'Peter Hitchens of The Daily Mail' (actually The Mail on Sunday, a different paper), I'm guessing many a BBC type will shrug this off. But they should beware: it's another straw in the wind.


  1. Yes, another example of BBC not answering the point. It's funny how Peter [not Hitchens] commented in the Open Thread highlighting the complaints unit's sudden interest in receiving specific information, when there is a pattern on their part of ignoring the specific points and circumstances detailed in complaints.
    Examples abound and Hitchens has previously detailed a laborious correspondence with them about a programme about midwives where they did exactly the same thing.

    Another straw is that the complaints unit has come to the attention of OFCOM recently, no doubt as a result of Sir intervening in a complaint that had been dismissed. OFCOM mentioned again its interest in transparency in the complaints process in its response to the latest incident where a BBC 'comedian' made a 'joke' about violence to a suitable target for disapproval.

  2. The primary opening gambit of all BBC droid responses is to not answer the point.

    This is then somehow concocted down the line as part of the justification to pull a complaint plug as 'it is taking too much time'.

  3. Testing, had problems posting on this thread before but that might be because I mentioned T....R (the non-person formerly known as something else).

    1. That's weird. I've checked that your comment didn't go into Spam. I'm going to type the words Tommy Robinson and see what happens.

  4. Well to summarise my previously diverted post, Hitchens and BBC have been in a symbiotic relation I think. He's had plenty of exposure from them - useful for a well paid columnist - and the BBC for their part get the sort of conservative they like: slight whiff of CS Lewis and the 1950s, a little eccentric-looking and censorious about drugs, as they feel young people instinctively dislike such figures. You'll notice that the BBC are very uncomfortable about letting articulate, contemporary-looking, right-of- centre young populists anywhere near a TV studio.


Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.