Talk:British Broadcasting Corporation

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Should BBC redirect here? Would seem logical. G7mzh 13:59, 13 April 2007 (EDT)


The source used to justify the statement that the BBC has a political bias is a newspaper which itself has a political bias (of the opposite extreme). That's mad. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Ferret (talk)

By its charter, the BBC is required to be impartial (which was e.g. an issue in the Hutton Inquiry); this - of course - is difficult to achieve and often leads to the accusation of being biased. IMHO, it would be useful to add this information into the text. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Gux (talk)

Good idea. Please go ahead and add it.--Aschlafly 15:00, 15 May 2007 (EDT)
I agree - it gets into just as much trouble with Labour governments as with Tory ones. To say it has an inherent liberal bias is misleading I think. Successive governments have taken a soft line on this because they understand that nobody wants a state broadcaster which feels unable to be critical of the government - that's the sort of thing that happens in dictatorships not in modern democracies. Ferret 09:16, 16 May 2007 (EDT)

I object to the liberal euphemism "license fee" instead of tax. The BBC gets revenues from a mandatory, govt-enforced tax on everyone with TV, regardless of whether they watch the BBC. That is a tax. Why call it a fee? RSchlafly 18:33, 29 May 2007 (EDT)

Licence fee is the official name for it. Only people who watch television have to pay it. We have many types of licence, for which a flat fee is payable, fishing, driving, pilot. It is the generally accepted term in the UK. Gerrard 18:46, 29 May 2007 (EDT)

In the USA and the rest of the world, it is called a tax. RSchlafly 18:51, 29 May 2007 (EDT)
This 'Rest of the World' obviously doesn't include Albania, Austria, one of the three regions of Belgium, Bosnia, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Macedonia, Malta, Montenegro, Norway, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Israel, Japan, Republic of Korea, Pakistan, Singapore, Ghana, Mauritius, Nambia and South Africa. Those all also have TV licenses. If you include places that used to have one, but abolished it, for one reason or another, you can add Australia, another of the three regions of Belgium, Gibraltar, Hungary, India, Malaysia, the Netherlands, New Zealand and Portugal to that list. And I'm not sure if that's the complete list. Zmidponk 19:34, 4 January 2008 (EST)
I don't see the relevance of stating that Americans don't understand the funding structure of the British Broadcasting Corporation. Chrysogonus 19:13, 29 May 2007 (EDT)

Strictly doesn't tax go to the government? All the lecnise fee goes to the BBC. The government don't get any of it. DollarsAndSense 18:52, 29 May 2007 (EDT)

The BBC is an agency of the UK government. Yes, the government collects a tax from the UK residents with TVs, and disburses the tax money to the BBC. Some British citizens don't like to admit that they get their news from official government radio and TV, but that's the way it is. RSchlafly 22:51, 29 May 2007 (EDT)
The BBC is an autonomous public corporation established by a royal charter, in a similar way to many universities and professional bodies. It's an 'emanation of the state', but not part of the government. The distinction between state and government might be hard to fathom for those more familiar with the situation in the USA where state and government are often seen as synonymous. --Jalapeno 04:42, 30 May 2007 (EDT)

I don't know what "liberal euphemism" means. The television licence fee is collected by (a company under contract to) the BBC, and is used solely to finance the corporation. None of it is collected by, or given to, the government. The BBC is not a state organisation; it guards its independence staunchly.
To say the BBC is financed by a tax gives the incorrect impression that the money is supplied by government funds. G7mzh 10:10, 30 May 2007 (EDT)

And some Americans don't like to admit that they get their news from for-profit corporations whose mandate is to increase shareholder wealth, but that's the way it is. Sevenstring 22:53, 29 May 2007 (EDT)

This is slightly OT, but I have issues with people who complain about taxes. RSchlafly - do you not believe in your country? If you believe in it, and want to be a member of it, you must pay taxes. Otherwise you are a non-functioning member of society. Feichineejits 23:13, 29 May 2007 (EDT)

That is too simplistic a view of "tax", though, surely? I don't wish to fund the BBcs tosh, and I can't recall the last time I actually watched it. I'm still expected to stump up cash for it, however - despite paying separately for Discovery Channel, National geographic etc. Similarly, I don't use the Local Education Authority, NHS, pathetic local library, live in a small village with virtually no street lighting... I could go on - you get the idea. However, I am expected to pay taxes to provide all those things for someone else. Oh, and the vast over inflated salaries and feathered-nest pensions of MPs for whom I didn't vote and whom have never represented me or my constituency. Why? File:User Fox.png Fox (talk|contribs) 10:23, 30 May 2007 (EDT)

To stress the point to any Americans you do not HAVE to watch TV it is a choice therefore the TV Licence is not a tax it is more like a subscription to watch TV. However there is one section which is funded funded through taxation which is the BBC World Service which is funded through the FCO--Tracker 19:51, 6 December 2007 (EST)

Jerusalem, Israel

Just a little inconsistency that I saw. There's a line under the Accusations of Bias heading that says: "On June 15, 2007, BBC drew criticism for apologizing over calling Jerusalem the capital of Israel." I'm not sure that such a statement really supports the idea that the BBC is biased - the major complaint has been that the BBC leans towards being anti-US and a social-liberal perspective. As a consequence, in the context of the Israel-Palestine conflict, it has been seen to portray Israel negatively. But if you put the Jerusalem/Israel comment in, it directly contradicts the message that the rest of the article provides, which is that there is "institutional left-wing bias". I think we have to be careful between confusing errors with bias, because the BBC is obviously left-wing and to suggest otherwise (as this might indirectly do) would be descending to Wikipedia standards of information. I'm removing the comment for the moment, although if others want to put it in a new section under "errors" or something like that, go ahead. PeterS 20:52, 21 November 2007 (EST)

Calling Jerusalem the capital of Israel is supportive of Israel, but apologising for doing that is the opposite, i.e. showing an anti-Israel bias. Isn't that right? Philip J. Rayment 21:41, 21 November 2007 (EST)
I think that such a conclusion should be made clearer, because it was lost on me. I'll make an edit and see how it goes. PeterS 21:57, 24 November 2007 (EST)
Actually, it's my fault... I didn't read it carefully enough. Nonetheless, I've reinforced the statement to link it to the broader idea of anti-Israeli bias. PeterS 22:04, 24 November 2007 (EST)

Isn't it nice how a bit of discussion can sort out these things?  :-) Philip J. Rayment 07:24, 25 November 2007 (EST)

Source of criticism

Deleted material:

The BBC repeatedly says it is 'independent' but it clearly has an agenda all of its own. Furthermore, although the BBC is technically not-for-profit, it has an enormous worldwide revenue from the resale of programmes and repeat fees, from the sale of CDs, videos, DVDs, and a wide range of books and magazines. It is a major publisher in its own right.

I think this is correct, but this is an encyclopedia, not a blog. This criticism needs reference to a quotation. Who charges that BBC has an agenda? (And what evidence do they give for this charge?) --Ed Poor Talk 20:09, 6 December 2007 (EST)

Placement bias

I have added a load of stuff primarily around programming, funding, channels, news and internet. However, that new sectioned content has inevitably pushed down the section and sub-sections on accusations of bias. As I don't want to be accused of placement bias, I have pointed out in the intro that the BBC is often accused of bias and I have included criticisms of, say, the licensing fee within the relevant section. If you still think that the pushing down of the bias section still constitutes placement bias, please let me know or edit as you see fit. Thanks. Ajkgordon 11:45, 11 January 2008 (EST)

Oh, and I apologise for the lack of cites. Please anyone feel free to add them. I haven't just made this stuff up - I just didn't have the time! Ajkgordon 11:47, 11 January 2008 (EST)

"They will need to be redone"

I'm okay with the British spelling, given the nature of the article. However, the passive voice of the statement 'they will need to be redone" leaves open the question of who will redo them. I did them once, including a few egregious spelling mistakes. I'm not redoing them again. Whoever broke it can fix it. BillyR 11:23, 2 October 2008 (EDT)


Obviously this is an article about a British subject. Does anyone object to the all the US spelling in this article being changed to British?--Ieuan 17:27, 19 December 2008 (EST)

yes that's a good idea. RJJensen 17:29, 19 December 2008 (EST)
  • Check here. The CP Manual of Style says:

American English spellings are preferred but Commonwealth spellings, for de novo or otherwise well-maintained articles are welcome, and edit wars over the subject are seriously discouraged. The context of the article should help resolve edit wars; an article about Britain would use Commonwealth spelling, while an article about the United States would use American English.

--₮K/Talk! 17:34, 19 December 2008 (EST)
[Given] that there has been a bit of previous about this, thought it better to ask on the Talk Page first. Thanks for the reply.--Ieuan 17:41, 19 December 2008 (EST)
  • Understood. I think it is more of a matter of the user's spell checker, however, than it was of disliking the Brit spelling. However, as an American encyclopedia, students do need to be careful in using non-American spelling, otherwise American teachers will knock off points for incorrect spelling, which is the reason I have never supported non-standard spelling here.  :-)- --₮K/Talk! 17:51, 19 December 2008 (EST)


In a letter published in the Daily Telegraph on 3 August 2005, Oleg Antonovich Gordievsky, the highest-ranking KGB defector, stated,

"Just listen with attention to the ideological nuances on Radio 4, BBC television, and the BBC World Service, and you will realise that communism is not a dying creed."

The problem is that (surprisingly) this comes from the WP article on him, with no other verification, and all other references Google gives are from that page. I see CP does not allow copying from WP, and wonder if this should or can be included. The statement certainly is true.

Well researched documentary about the role that spy played, and Reagan's aversion to Armageddon (his use of the term) here: 10:57, 19 August 2009 (EDT)

Licence Fee

Should we stress that this is a VERY strict policy? If you are late people come to your door and you can be fined and even jailed for owning a television with no "license."Legolas2186 9:27, 19 July 2011 (EDT)

In the "Bias Against the United States and Israel" section....

You find this statement:

During a 2006 internal "impartiality summit", BBC executives said they would happily broadcast an image of a Bible being thrown away, but would not do the same with a Koran.

Considering the nature of this statement, I think a citation is in order... --StoryMaker 18:59, 3 August 2011 (EDT)