Monday 8 March 2021

Ofcom 'does a BBC' over Emily Maitlis


In news that's unlikely to surprise anyone hereabouts, we learn today that Ofcom won't be pursuing the BBC over Emily Maitlis's infamous Dominic Cummings monologue on Newsnight. 

An Ofcom spoke says:

We consider the programme's opening monologue could be perceived as Ms Maitlis's personal view on a matter of major political controversy. 

But, having assessed the programme as a whole, we also found that a range of different viewpoints were given appropriate weight, including those of the UK government. 

Given this, and taking into account the BBC's acceptance under its own complaints processes that it fell short of its editorial guidelines, we won't be taking further action. 

We have, however, reminded the BBC that when preparing programme introductions in news programmes, to capture viewers' attention - particularly in matters of major political controversy - presenters should ensure that they do not inadvertently give the impression of setting out personal opinions or views.

It's the gentlest of raps on the knuckles. 

Ofcom is famously staffed with ex-BBC people. The language of that is pure BBC.

It "could be perceived" as Ms Maitlis's personal view? Presenters should ensure that they do not "inadvertently give the impression" of setting out personal opinions or views?

Whether or not it was solely Emily Maitlis's personal view, or the Newsnight team's point of view, it's absurd to claim that it wasn't a contentious point of view. 

And there was nothing "inadvertent" about it. It was meant.

No comments:

Post a Comment

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