Tories and the BBC - Shadow Minister lets the cat out of the bag

I argued some years ago that the strategy of those who oppose the BBC does not hold water.

Those with an axe to grind against the BBC attack it when it has popular programmes for appealing to populism and comprting with commercial broadcasters but when the BBC commits itself to minority interestests it gets attacked for not justifying its license fee due to lack of viewers.

This hollow line of reasoning has been shown in its full colours by the ever excellent Liberal Burblings who points out the total hypocrisy of the Tory spokesman at the Royal television Society's Conference.

As I wrote in my original article

"the best way for the BBC to justify its existence is to ensure that they have high viewing figures, popular shows, relevant content, and hit shows. In order to do this the BBC needs to invest lots of money in facilities, creative people and top presenters. But this is where the problems start. If the BBC pays too much for top stars, they are criticised by the Tories/Daily Mail. But as soon as the BBC fails to have top shows, lacks the stars to get viewers watching you know that the Daily Mail will be the very first to jump in and demand the axing of the licence fee because the BBC no longer has any top stars that anyone wants to watch."

And for anyone who believes that commercial broadcaster can make the sort of programmes the BBC makes, can I refer you to THIS article I wrote a long time ago which deals with original BBC shows and ITV derivitive copies which are useless in comparison.


Quiet_Man said...

My problems with the BBC come not from its populism nor its minority interests, but from its politics. It is blatantly leftist yet denies this as it honestly believes it is taking the middle ground. There's also it's fervent support for the discredited global warming scam.

Anonymous said...

I agree with QM - it is blantantly a mouthpiece for the left wing government.

If you have not seen the video of the BBC staff celebratory actions to the news of the twin towers disaster you might be forgiven for your nostalgic view of the once great BBC.

If you have and still support them then I am sorry for you.

thepoliteer said...

I find the whole BBC bias argument a little facile. Successive governments (and other parties) have all decried the BBC for its coverage... regardless of whether the Governments/parties have been left wing, right wing, or, as our political parties are now, middle wing.

In essence, it seems that Political parties disagree with the BBC when the BBC offers an alternative view to their party policy. Perhaps if the BBC was 'on message' there wouldn't be complaints. A better situation?

Norfolk Blogger said...

Its funny how a few people with no real evidence on their side describe global warming as discredited on the basis mainly of one documentary which has itself been discredited.

They ignore the 95% of arguments that support global warming.

What this has to do with the BBC and its entertainment output though is beyond me.

James Higham said...

Those with an axe to grind against the BBC attack it

... do so due to its clear political bias.

Norfolk Blogger said...

James, they then make their attacks look stupid (as in the case with this story) when they attack BBC Light Entertainment because they ahve an axe to grind with BBC News and Current Affairs.

Should all those people who dislike Fox News because of its blatant lies and bias therefore tar Sky News with the same brush or the output on Sky Sports ?

There is also some interesting research on the so called bias of the BBC. When doing my degree in 1994 a Tory friend of mine kept going on about BBC bias. We then did a module on the press and politics which had a breakdown of the news articles, the lead articles and main news stories from the 1992 General Election and the 5 months prior to that. Interestingly enough the evidence showed a Tory bias but my Tory friend was convinced that the stories were stacked against his party.

My guess is that the Tories fail to notice how much positive coverage they get.

Just look at BBC.CO.UK/Politics to see how Cameron dominates these pages regularly.

If you really want to know about institutional bias just try being a Lib Dem.

The Tories problem is that they want to destroy what is good with the BBC in order to attack the one bit they think is biased against them. It's liek taking arsenic to deal with an infected toe.

neil craig said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Norfolk Blogger said...

Neil, your essay about Nuremburg and War Crimes has been removed because it is blatant spam which has absolutely nothing to do with the article it is attached to.

You might call it censorship, I call it editing. Comments to this blog are welcome but they should address the articles. Spamming is bad manners.

BJ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BJ said...

Bravo Nich. This is the most sensible thing I've read on the internet all week.

As for your commenters: I just don't think the BBC left-wing bias thing holds up among anyone other than David Vance and a small circle of blog-commenting loons, who get up every morning, and switch on the Today programme, waiting to froth at the mouth with righteous anger.

The BBC is under a more sustained attack from politicians than at any time anyone can remember, and yet their target is not left-wing bias, but the cost of the licence fee (arguably fair enough) and the fees paid to some talent and bosses (totally justifiable)

If there was any mainstream concept that BBC coverage was in some way biased, then Ben Bradshaw or Jeremy Hunt or Don Foster would have said so, not Mad Mel Phillips, or a few loons on blogs.

None of the above said...

If any of those commenters who are advertising their ignorance like it were a virtue wish to learn more about climate change, they might like to start here


I can guarantee that those commenters denying climate change have not studied any of the science relating to climate change and have a paper thin understanding of the idea at best.

Their views are knee-jerk reactions, often given when surrounded by like-minded people or people too timid to tell them they're talking total bollocks - views that are better left in the pub.

Anonymous said...

It is worth noting that many who were quoted in the "Great Global Warming Swindle", often cited by Glabal Warming denyers, withdrew their support for the film claiming they were taken out of context or simply conned in to saying things.

neil craig said...

Not "many" but "one", who came under pressure from his university. The global warming scam depends on lies & censorship, something which also does (& to be fair semi admits to doing) to support war crimes, genocide & worse.