BBC Complaints: The link you need!

Tuesday, 27 October 2009


Robin Horbury on the Biased BBC website pointed out that David Miliband got a very easy ride on yesterday's The World at One ( He certainly did. The interview lasted just under 6 minutes and Martha Kearney did not interrupt him once, nor were the questions especially tough (I.C. of 0). When Martha interviewed George Osborne later, in a 4 1/2 minute interview, she interrupted him twice (I.C. of 0.5), and told him off for repeating himself!
This contrast in treatment was as nothing compared to the Newsnight discussion between Labour's Chris Bryant and the Conservatives' Mark Francois, as conducted by Kirsty Wark. The issue was 'Blair 4 EU president' and the interview was nakedly one-sided, with Kirsteen attacking Mr Francois - who opposes Blair's presidency -, asking him 10 questions, while letting Mr Bryant almost completely off the hook, asking him a mere 2 questions - despite both guests getting similar amounts of time to speak!
As for interruptions, Bryant was interrupted twice (though the second of these was so that Kirsty could have another go at Mark Francois), scoring her an I.C. of 0.6 for him, whereas Francois was interrupted 5 times, scoring her an I.C. for him of 1.5 (all to ask him more questions).
She also took up Mr Bryant's accusations against Mr Francois, and put them to him as a question, but she did not take up any of Mr Francois's counter-accusations and put them back to Mr Bryant - such as the point that Tony Blair has hardly been a great success in his job as Middle East envoy (which surely she ought to have put to him).
All in all, a pair of clearly biased interviews from the clearly biased Beeb.

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