September 17, 2005
THE BBC'S COVERAGE OF KATRINA is facing harsh criticism:
TONY Blair has re-opened the government’s long-standing row about BBC bias by describing the corporation’s coverage of the aftermath of the havoc caused to New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina as being “full of hatred of America”. . . .
Bill Clinton, the former US president, and Sir Howard Stringer, chief executive of Sony Corporation, also criticised the tone of the BBC’s coverage during a seminar on the media at the Clinton Global Initiative conference in New York.
The BBC's growing bias and anti-Americanism has been a disappointment for years, of course, but it's nice to see more people noticing.
UPDATE: More here.
ANOTHER UPDATE: Scotland on Sunday editorializes that the BBC is "bloated and biased." Meanwhile The Times reports that it's not even commercial-free anymore:
COMPANIES are paying fees of up to £40,000 to advertise their products covertly on BBC programmes, often in breach of the corporation’s rules.
At least 50 cases have been identified where top brands have bought favourable exposure on BBC television by paying specialist agents.
The practice, known as product placement, is so widespread that some leading BBC dramas and lifestyle programmes depend on free gifts.
If I were paying British TV license fees, I'd be rather unhappy to hear this. And at least paid commercials make clear who is paying the freight.