Monday, 30 June 2014

Yes protest BBC's biased coverage of independence

An impressive number of Yes supporters assembled outside BBC Scotland HQ yesterday to protest the propagandist nature of its referendum coverage.   
The protest organisers estimated the crowd at around two thousand, rather than the 'hundreds' stated in the BBC's own cursory report.
Notably absent from their coverage was any mention of a rousingly informed speech by University of West of Scotland Professor John Robertson.
Robertson recently published a damning body of research confirming the BBC's biased referendum output, detailing how stories, interviews and other reportage were all weighted in favour of the No campaign.
Professor Robertson has also outlined his findings and views to a parliamentary committee at Holyrood, attended by the heads of BBC Scotland. 
Despite all this evidence, Robertson told the gathering yesterday that the BBC's "bias has gone into overdrive now."
He noted the BBC's constant repetition of shrill warnings over independence, from politicians and militarist figures like Lord George Robertson to celebrities like hairdresser Nicky Clarke. The No-serving quotes and soundbites are being uttered so routinely, he said, it's almost like "a parody".
Professor Robertson spoke of how No-supporting business elites are being deferentially treated. Citing the Weir Group, he said that, unlike the hostile interrogations of Yes figures, the BBC had posed no awkward questions to Weir, such as mentioning their past supplying of weapons-purpose pipes to Saddam Hussein, while the sanctions policy in place at the time was leading to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi children.  
As an example of BBC bias by selective omission, Robertson noted an Open Democracy article on the latest Social Attitudes survey showing increasing public approval of the NHS in Scotland, as opposed to decreasing confidence in a more commercially-driven NHS in England and Wales. Why, asks Robertson, is this kind of vital information not being headlined by the BBC?
Alongside his cited research, Professor Robertson also noted the close, insidious connections between senior BBC Scotland and main No political figures. 

He also criticised other media academics for failing to come to the forefront in defence of his research. Many, he said, "like being on the BBC".

Robertson's thoughts and the overall protest message underscores the widening disaffection of Yes voters towards the BBC. While applauding those holding Yes stickers from behind the BBC's windows, there was widespread talk about the necessary purging of the BBC in the event of independence.
The BBC's bias here is part of the same establishment-preserving remit, from its complicit presentations on Iraq, Afghanistan and other criminal 'interventions', to its loaded context and glaring omissions on Palestine-Israel.

Typical of its failure to cover mass anti-war demonstrations, six thousand complaints were recently sent to the BBC after its paltry mention of a fifty thousand strong march in London against austerity.
Thankfully, as with those showing support from inside BBC Scotland, there are still occasional glimpses of critical insight, such as a fine Radio Times piece by Jack Seale, helping to demolish the illusion of 'left-leaning bias' at the BBC. For good measure, Seale even cites Robert Peston, the BBC's economics editor, who describes"persistent claims that the BBC is institutionally biased to the left as "bollocks"."

Indeed. If the BBC is so 'left-leaning', why are the highest executive chairs always filled with people like Lord Patten? And why are we seeing the current efforts to install establishment figure Lord Seb Coe?

All these questions of elite entry and patronage are being increasingly exposed as more of the public come to see the Union-serving motives behind the BBC's independence coverage.

This fine video of the protest outside BBC Scotland offers some excellent thoughts on the case for independence, and what needs to be done to the BBC.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

John, I heard something that concerned me last week check out TEVA pharmaceuticals, huge contract for NHS, big supplier to many chemists...manufactured Israel distribution depot England, recruit from Zionist agencies?