My Little Complaint to The BBC.

Discussion in 'The Intelligence Cell' started by maninblack, Jun 18, 2005.

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  1. maninblack

    maninblack LE Book Reviewer

    I recently made a complaint to the BBC regarding their "trouble at t' mill" "eee by gum" insulting style of news reporting on News and Current Affairs programmes covering the temporary relocation of Royal Ascot to York.

    I sent the following message.

    "I am concerned about the recent patronising and condescending way in which the BBC have reported, on both the radio and TV, the current 'Royal Ascot' racing at York.

    I have been astounded at the tone of the reporting and the attitude that 'Up North' the people must be so pleased to to a chance for fashion and culture.

    If you were to delete the words 'northern' 'Yorkshire' or 'York' from the reports and substitue a term such as 'India' 'Africa' or 'Dubai' you would find the BBC being accused of offensive descriminatory remarks.

    I appreciate that 'up north' is a quaint backward concept suitable only for comedy shows as far as the Corporate BBC is concerned. I don't expect that this complaint will be treated seriously, that would be too much for an organisation that broadcasts such ignorant, arrogant and offensive material without consideration for the consequences.

    It is as if the word 'descrimination' only applies to the chosens few that the BBC wish to suck up to."

    After a couple of days I received the following response. If you read it it is very obviously a cut and paste "p1ss off" message.

    Dear Mr MiB

    Thank you for your e-mail.

    We acknowledge that you feel the BBC discriminates against the North. We never set out to cause offence, but personal definitions of what is or is not offensive differ widely. The BBC has a responsibility to broadcast programmes that appeal to all sections of our audience. Comedy, drama and the arts will sometimes seek to question existing assumptions about taste. Where circumstances justify we may seek to challenge the audience's expectations in surprising and innovative ways. Our programme makers are expected to be aware of and respect the audiences diverse views on what causes offence.

    We do find that viewers' and listeners opinions are an invaluable source of feedback for BBC programme makers. Styles and policies are continually being assessed and changed based on feedback from the general public. Your views have been registered and form part of our daily feedback to programme makers and BBC management. Comments such as yours help us plan future programmes.

    Thank you for your comments.


    Xxxx Xxxxx
    BBC Information

    Now, how the hell does this address bigotry in News reports.

    I have now sent them another email, as follows.

    Dear Xxxx,

    Thank you for your reply, however, your response demonstrates that you have
    completely missed the point of my comments.

    The BBC has made a fine job of challenging the existing views through drama,
    comedy and the arts; programmes such as Little Britain are to be ceommended
    for dealing with social problems in a fresh and extremely amusing way.

    My point however was nothing to do with drama, comedy and the arts, it was
    to do with offensive, narrow minded and bigoted reporting on news and
    current affairs programmes during the past ten days or so.

    These broadcasters seem to have watched Last of The Summer Wine and assumed
    that this once funny but now assinine trash reflect life "oop North."

    I hope that I will now receive a response that deals with the issues raised
    rather than what appeared to be a BBC cut and paste "we know better than you
    Northern Monkeys" response.



    Now, let's see if they stick to their "We are so right that God pays attention to us." attitude or whether they deal with the issue.

    Watch this space.

  2. You never know, you may get a different answer, but if you do it'll just be corporate grovelling.

    I find your distain at comments of northern people a little strange though as I have found that a lot of people from what would be classed as from 'the north' are not backward in coming forward in ridiculing anything which is alien to their home environment, sometimes admitedly in jest, but often with honest hatered. There is the old saying... "If you can't take it, don't dish it out".

    If people can sit there and call everyone in the BBC a 'southern poof', why can't they have a laugh and add a few comments about 'flat hats' and 'whipets'? I've seen a few in Yorkshire, bet you have too, so what's the problem?
  3. Auld-Yin

    Auld-Yin LE Reviewer Book Reviewer Reviews Editor

    I agree with both comments above. There is an argument about BBC's treatment of anyone outside the London 'zone'.

    I would, however, take great offence at both of you for considering yourselves as being from the 'north' when the best part of Britain starts NORTH of the boundary which delineates the inferior (southern) from the greater (northern). York - North ---- FFS there is still about 500 miles before reaching the 'northern' part of Britain.
  4. maninblack

    maninblack LE Book Reviewer

    It gets better, my next response from the BBC.

    Thank you for contacting BBC Information. This email address inbox is no longer monitored; to contact us or reply to us you need to use one of our online forms. Please resend your message using one of the following options:

    If you wish to comment or make an enquiry, please use our online form on our About the BBC website at This site also has answers to common questions about the BBC's programmes, policies and structure, information about the BBC's Governors and documents such as the Annual Report and other corporate publications.

    If you have a complaint about a BBC programme or policy, please do so using our Complaints website at This explains how to complain about our programmes or policies, outlines our complaints process and also carries our responses to recent complaints.

    So if they have not addressed your complaint in their cut and paste response then you have to make a new complaint rather than entering into a dialogue. This is going to be bizarre I feel.
  5. ViroBono

    ViroBono LE Moderator

    At least you had a response. I emailed the BBC over their reporting of the last British casualty on Telic. Although I had an automated response stating that a detailed answer should follow within 7 days, (which shows it was received), they have so far remained silent.
  6. I doubt whether you'll ever get the answer you want from the sods. I complained bitterly to them about their big chief's comment that the newsreading community was so disgustingly white; he wanted lots of colour there, apparently. Not for any valid social reason, just so that his organisation could boast about being diversely and mutlicutlurally cool, I think. Now all the news programmes from London look like they're being broadcast from Lagos.
  7. Auld-Yin

    Auld-Yin LE Reviewer Book Reviewer Reviews Editor

    I was in Lagos in 1957 and again in 1958 and I don't remember any broadcasts from there.

    Mind you that might have something to do with no TV there then and the TV in UK was black and white (sorry - ethnically tinted and non PC coloured)
  8. .......just how old are you?
  9. Good old stories about the Bassildon Broadcasting Corporation whose corporate horizons peter out at the M25. In a country the size of Britain how they can claim that moving some assets (the tea ladies' union) to Manchester is making the BBC more 'UK-inclusive' is beyond me.
  10. In their defence....

    On the Today programme this week, Peter Oborne was talking about Royal Ascot being moved to York, and he said something like 'Of course, it's very convenient, only two and a half hours away - ' at which point, John Humphrys interrupted him to point out that York is not two and a half hours away from, for example, York.

    Generally, though, they are pretty Londonocentric.

  11. I was talking to a friend who works there recently. She is in a middle-management role. Now, I loathe the BBC with a passion and we were arguing (amicably) about how better Britain would be if the TV tax were abolished and the entire BBC staff put to the sword.

    During this exchange she mentioned the proposed move "Oop North" to Manchester of a large number of BBC personnel. She happily admitted that this was widely seen as a figleaf to guarantee the next charter review, after which the relocation (which is seen as a way to keep Neu Arbeit happy by making the BBC less "London-Centric") will be quietly shelved.

    The relocation, on purely political grounds, is rumoured to cost (you and me) in excess of ten million for employee contractual reasons.

    She also decried the "arrogant, incorrigibly leftist and elitist" attitude of BBC News staff who were being asked to consider their treatment of political issues in their stories. They just don't get it that they represent a very narrow, North London, utterly politically-correct POV.

    "Institutional Liberalism" anyone?

  12. Auld-Yin

    Auld-Yin LE Reviewer Book Reviewer Reviews Editor

    Thanks V.

    Nice to hear that the BBC is still a neutral, independant body, listening to its audience.

    Ahhhh; and thay say irony is dead.
  13. No! The BBC is quite right. York is exactly 2 1/2 hours from Bunhill Row.

    However I don't have a TV licence or a TV - so f**k 'em.
  14. Cumming from the Manchester area I wouldn't wish Manchester on anyone, except Mr. Glazeir, well done lad, you show that shower of sh1t who's boss.
    As for the BEEB up narf, cum on, they couldn't afford the LOA.
  15. That is fairly typical these days, to avoid having to deal with a real issue, make it difficult for 'the customer' to contact you. Having to sort through various web links, most of which are stupid "did this answer your concern" type, or make a post on a "discussion board" to be heard instead of an actual person manning an email address.

    eBay does the same sort of routine, you can no longer simply mail "safeharbour" any more.