"The arms that you wield now are not such as your forefathers wielded; but they are infinitely more effective, and infinitely more irresistable" ~ Cymru Fydd leaflet, 1890

Thursday 6 February 2014

The editorial policy of the EBC

You may have missed this story from back in January, it's about a woman from Cardigan who for some reason, whilst drunk, decided to bite a car. You read that right, she bit a car. This story was picked up by a lot of media outlets. One of these was the BBC who featured it on both their Cymraeg news site and their English language news site. And as it was a funny story I shared the picture on my facebook page. I will however state that I didn't learn about this important news item via the BBC. I saw it whilst reading another news item that was getting a lot of coverage over on the ITV website.

Stay classy Cardigan

The story I was originally reading was the incident at Morrisons Bangor. Regular readers will remember I covered that back in January in order to expose the news black out the English language version of the BBC Wales news site operated back then. They completely ignored the story. ITV on the other hand reported the story here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here. I may even have missed some out. That's not to mention all the coverage it received in the English press, even the Daily Mail reported it!

One of my readers emailed the BBC on the 14th January to question why they operated a news black out of the Morrisons story. They finally replied on the 6th February and as requested it was forwarded to myself so that their reply can be shared.

Extract from the full BBC reply below. Share via twitter | facebook
-----Start of BBC reply-----

Thank you for your message regarding our BBC Wales News online service.

Please accept our apologies for the delay in replying. We know our correspondents appreciate a quick response and we are sorry you have had to wait on this occasion.

We were sorry to hear you were unhappy we did not report the story of the Mann family and their dealing with Morrisons. Please be assured your complaint has been brought to the attention of the service’s editorial team and our senior BBC Wales News management.

Unfortunately due to limited resources we aren’t able to report all stories and make editorial decision regarding which stories to feature. We appreciate that in this case you feel that decision was incorrect. Whether it’s positive or negative such audience feedback is invaluable to us and helps us make decisions about how to improve the service.

I would also like to assure you that I have also registered your complaint on our internal report of audience feedback, which we compile for all programme makers and commissioning executives within the BBC and their senior management. It ensures that details of your complaint are available for consideration across the BBC.

Thank you again for taking the time to contact us.

Yours sincerely,

Peredur A Jones

Audience Services, BBC Cymru Wales

03703 500 700

BBC Complaints


NB This is sent from an outgoing account only which is not monitored. You cannot reply to this email address but if necessary please contact us via our webform quoting any case number we provided.

-----End of BBC reply-----

Firstly, please note that the emphasis is mine, I have highlighted two key areas of the reply. The first and most obvious is the 'limited resources' that the BBC claim to have which means they have to pick and choose the stories they publish. This is why stories like a drunk woman biting a car are published yet a story that was reported on ITV at least ten times was only reported yn Gymraeg.

The second point, and this especially annoyed the original recipient was the fact that they had absolutely no right of reply. The BBC have spent a few weeks coming up with something to fob her off and then they have hidden behind an email you cannot reply to after basically saying 'tough'.

No doubt this website will be visited by BBC staff again as a result of this post, just as it was visited on numerous occasions after the Bangor blackout. Will the cowards leave a reply?

Edit 07-02-14
Four different people from the EBC in London viewed this page today. No replies were left.

In fairness to them they are so stretched, what with their limited resources that they were probably too busy to reply.

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