Letter: Stop looking at the rear view mirror and focus on the cliff edge ahead

PUBLISHED: 22:00 20 April 2018

BBC Broadcasting House in Portland Place, London. Picture: Nick Ansell/PA Wire/PA Images

BBC Broadcasting House in Portland Place, London. Picture: Nick Ansell/PA Wire/PA Images

PA Wire/PA Images

Both sides of Brexit think the BBC is biased towards the other side, as Chris Grey’s excellent piece points out. This may indicate that the Beeb is doing the right thing.

So let’s just cut to the chase and stop hammering the BBC for showing or not showing any partiality during the referendum debate.

What we should be expending our energies and resources on is ensuring that the BBC and is fully accountable in reporting on the lies of the Brexit campaign that are now coming to light (their coverage of the Cambridge Analytica and Aggregate IQ scandal has been woefully poor), that any unfairness or illegalities of their campaign are brought to light, and that if it is confirmed that the Brexit campaign was won illegitimately then we must have a proper debate on the final outcome, and a chance to have our say on whether we want to accept the terms of Brexit.

Do let’s stop looking at the rear view mirror and focus on the cliff edge ahead!

Raxa Mehta, London E14

There is one area of broadcasting where the BBC can never hope to meet its “strict requirements reflecting the vote share of political parties in the number of appearances across news and political programming”( James Ball, TNE #90).

That area is proceedings in parliament. To give one example: the Liberal Democrats hold “just 12 of 650 parliamentary seats and just 7% of the national vote share”. But 7% of 650 is 45, not 12. So in its broadcasts of the elected component of parliament (the important bit), the BBC must fail to reflect the national vote share of the Liberal Democrats as 12 is to 45.

UKIP must get an even worse deal, having no MPs at all despite its significant national vote share.

How is it that the publicly-funded broadcaster is strictly required to reflect the vote share of political parties and the publicly-funded national legislature, where the political parties do their stuff (if they can get near it), isn’t?

Colin Keppel

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