On the day the BBC reveals that 100 of its employees earn more than the PM, here is a new OPEN thread. To me, the scandal is not the red herring of ‘pay gap” but rather one of the annual extortion of £3.5bn from anyone who owns a TV. A stalinist construction in 2017. Thoughts?

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659 Responses to MID WEEK OPEN THREAD….

  1. StewGreen says:

    4:30pm R4 Feedback BBC’s assistant political editor Norman Smith : about the challenges of working under intense scrutiny and * accusations of bias from MPs and on social media *

    – BBC talent earning over over
    “Licence fee payers give us their thoughts”
    (Means they’ll play a load of their Lefty mates saying it’s all about sexism
    They will lie by omission by failing to say
    – That totals fail to take account of ALL income (eg pension, image rights, private corp work)
    – That many talents are left off due to they way they use the Umbrella company route
    including top women earners like Ester Rantzen
    – That their is a separate list of BBC managers who earn over £100K

    – Last Week we discussed listener complaints about an exceptionally graphic story; we to re-broadcast the clip. Were we right to do so?
    Doh !

    – joined by Clive Anderson of Loose Ends – (the Virtue Signalling arts prog)
    “On this week’s #BBCFeedback, Roger will be sitting down with Clive Anderson – but what would you like to ask him?”


    • gaxvil says:

      Thirty odd years ago I enjoyed reading ‘Soviet Weekly. It fascinated me – all pro USSR and censorship by omission.
      Now I view the bbc in the same way. Not sure that could be described as progress.


      • MarkyMark says:

        Got any old copies of Soviet Weekly Gaxvil?
        Scan a picture in and we can compare with http://www.bbc.co.uk homepage.

        Crops are increasing! Insert photo of an empty field with no corn.
        Crime rates are down! Picture of empty streets where nobody will go.
        No unemployment! Everyone working in Government buildings, shuffling paper.


    • StewGreen says:

      Their Twitter mentions another item
      about John Humphrys vs Johanna Konta


      • StewGreen says:

        Next week they will Jon Sopel on talking about Trump

        (which reminds me Matt Frei was doing the LBC ahow this morning
        and last night I switched on LBC only to have to switch over to LBC cos the presenter was a lefty spouting rubbish
        And then it was the same on Talk Radio ..so I had to switch off
        ..all these media bubbleworld people are the same ..almost)


        • Grant says:


          Jon Sopel. there’s another beauty !


        • Alicia Sinclair says:

          Gentleman Jim Naughtie was on Today this morning dancing on his shortbread tin. Spouting off to a fellow old Jock on whether it was right to snap a dying Bobby Kennedy who knew him by name. It was-art is art, legacy for the ages and all that.
          Apparently, Trump had no dirt for our snapper to interest Jim.
          Which surely was the whole point of the interview of this photographer.
          Twenty minutes later and someone accuses Today and the BBC of removing all sense in regard of its news choices-apparently , all they do is major on trashing Trump.
          Nick Robinson failed to see the link-and nobody on his show would be rude enough that they`d proved Tim Montgomerys point that they`re unhinged re Trump.
          Don`t even need to listen to the end of their shows to see how dim, irrelevant and aimless they now are do we?


    • StewGreen says:

      They asked for listener input re coming Science special edition of Feedback.
      Being biased they will air all the views that say the coverage needs to be more Greeny and Lefty,


      • Alicia Sinclair says:

        Noted Fatty Mardell and Harrabin-and some greenie kook-all dishing the personality of Michael Gove on TWATO.
        Cod Freudian bollocks and dirt dishing by them all, none of who have even met Gove in recent history. But he interviewed Trump and is a bit poetic and clever for a Tory. As well as not rating experts like themselves and eanting to leave the EU.
        Hope Gove knows the Green nest of vipers he`s indulging. Personal insults, smears and the like.
        This Green Blob he`s taking on will be every bit as nasty as the schools one.


  2. StewGreen says:

    Abbott gaffe mention by Sluff “July 20, 2017 at 10:53 pm”
    she fights back (there’s a video as well)


    I note Labour websters are using a more flattering photo (cheating is OK by them)


  3. MarkyMark says:

    Halal is Kryptonite to Sadiq Khan – it exposes hypocrisy (more halal chicken 2012/less halal chicken 2015), religious privilege (muslim jobs only), positive discrimination (muslim jobs only), religious unyielding to change (animals not stunned), religious barbarism (google search “halal sacrifice pakistan kids”).

    Halal is Kryptonite to Sadiq Khan Options:
    Option 1: Stop Halal – Muslim apostate
    Option 2: Keep Halal – a true Muslim with barbaric beliefs and positive discrimination

    … I might have missed something, but it seems Khan could be cornered when confronted with Halal?

    // Sorry – a repeat of this post, but I think this could be very interesting 😉
    // Sadiq Khan/LondonIsOpen – notToUSA/Halal – privilege/Chicken/Dilemma – London


  4. gaxvil says:

    Remember this:-

    “BBC regulation 29 March 2017
    Effective from 3 April 2017, Ofcom becomes the BBC’s first external regulator.
    As required under the BBC’s Royal Charter, Ofcom is developing an ‘Operating Framework’ for the BBC, covering regulation of the BBC’s performance, compliance with content standards and impact on competition.

    Content standards
    The new Charter gives Ofcom responsibility for regulating the content standards of the BBC’s television, radio and on-demand programmes.

    Activity so far…
    •Statement: Ofcom’s rules on due impartiality, due accuracy, elections and referendums. In this statement, we explain the approach we have taken to regulating BBC editorial content in the areas of due impartiality, due accuracy, elections and referendums. This statement was published on 9 March 2017.
    •Statement: Broadcasting Code Review: Preparing for Ofcom’s new responsibilities for regulating the BBC. In this statement, we explain the amendments we have made to the Broadcasting Code (other than for the areas listed above) so that it can apply in full to BBC broadcasting services, and where relevant to BBC on-demand programme services. This statement was published on 29 March 2017.
    •Statement: Procedures for handling BBC content standards complaints, investigations and sanctions. In this statement, we explain the procedures that Ofcom will normally follow when handling complaints about BBC television, radio and on-demand programmes, and how we will conduct investigations and sanctions. This statement was published on 29 March 2017.
    •Statement: BBC Online Material. Ofcom has published an arrangement with the BBC and procedures for handling complaints about BBC online content.

    Ofcom has also published a Review of procedures for handling content standards and broadcast licensing investigations and sanctions. In this statement, we explain the changes we have made to our current investigation and sanction procedures for other broadcasters and notified on-demand service providers, to ensure consistency, where appropriate, with our proposed BBC procedures. This statement was published on 29 March 2017.


    The Charter and Agreement place duties on Ofcom to consider the impacts of the BBC’s activities on fair and effective competition.

    Regulating the BBC’s impact on competition

    This document provides a general overview to our approach to BBC competition regulation.

    Activity so far…
    Statement: Regulating the BBC’s impact on competition: Statement on requirements and guidance. In this statement, we summarise the comments we received in response to the requirements and guidance we proposed in December 2016 setting out how we intended to regulate the BBC’s impact on competition. We set out our responses to those comments and explain the amendments we have made to the requirements and guidance as a result. This statement was published on 29 March 2017.

    Consultation: The BBC’s trading activities: A consultation on Ofcom’s proposed requirements and guidance. We are currently consulting on requirements we intend to place on the BBC to ensure that its trading activities do not harm fair and effective competition. Start: 29 March 2017, End: 24 May 2017.

    Still to come…

    Statement: Procedures for enforcement of BBC competition requirements. We have consulted on the procedures we would expect to follow in our enforcement of these competition requirements, including how we would expect to handle complaints, carry out investigations and impose sanctions. We will publish our finalised procedures shortly.

    Ofcom is tasked with holding the BBC to account in relation to its output and services, using the range of regulatory tools at our disposal.

    Activity so far…
    Consultation: Holding the BBC to account for the delivery of its mission and public purposes. In this consultation (Start: 29 March 2017, End: 17 July 2017):
    •we set out our proposed Operating Licence for the BBC’s UK public services. This includes the draft regulatory conditions that Ofcom considers appropriate for requiring the BBC: to fulfil its mission and promote the public purposes; secure the provision of distinctive output and services; and secure that audiences in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are well served; and
    •a draft set of performance measures, which will enable us to assess the BBC’s delivery of its mission and purposes.

    The consultation also includes two draft procedural documents that will form part of the Operating Framework:
    •how Ofcom will set and administer the operating licence regime and the procedures to be followed, including the procedures for setting the regulatory conditions in an operating licence, and the considerations Ofcom will have regard to in setting regulatory conditions;
    •how Ofcom will set performance measures and the procedures to be followed.

    Research: BBC distinctiveness. Two research reports are available. The first report, published in full in June 2017, sets out findings from the qualitative market research we conducted about the expectations which people across the UK have of the BBC, particularly in relation to distinctiveness. The second report, published in July 2017, details quantitative market research designed to quantify audiences’ views and priorities relating specifically to distinctiveness as detailed in Schedule 2.

    Still to come…

    We intend to set and publish the final operating licence by the end of September 2017. The exact timing will depend on the BBC’s interim annual plan, which will be an input to our consultation and on the consultation responses from other stakeholders.

    We also plan to publish our final statement on performance measures and procedures by the end of September.

    Under the Charter, Ofcom must enforce compliance by the BBC with specified requirements. These include content standards in BBC programmes, competition requirements, and other requirements set out in the Agreement.

    Statement: Procedures for handling BBC content standards complaints, investigations and sanctions. This document sets out the procedures that Ofcom will normally follow when handling complaints about BBC television, radio and on-demand programmes, and how we will conduct investigations and sanctions.

    Statement: Procedures for enforcement of requirements in the BBC Agreement and compliance with Ofcom enforcement action This document explains our procedures for investigating (i) breaches by the BBC of a range of requirements specified in the BBC Agreement, and (ii) non-compliance by the BBC with enforcement action.

    Statement: Procedures for enforcement of BBC competition requirements. This document sets out how Ofcom enforces compliance with the competition requirements by the BBC.

    Budget and resources
    The Department for Culture, Media and Sport has agreed Ofcom’s additional budget for regulating the BBC.
    Ofcom plans to deliver its new duties effectively and efficiently, providing maximum value for money and ensuring the BBC meets audiences’ needs.

    The funding cap agreed with the DCMS will cover all of Ofcom’s additional responsibilities including required staff, audience research and an appropriate share of common costs. Common costs cover any non-sector specific activities, such as rent and ICT.

    The numbers below reflect the maximum extra agreed by the DCMS. The actual cost may fall below this and Ofcom will charge the BBC only for work carried out as it does for all other stakeholders.
    •Financial year 2016/17: £6.5m, of which £2.3m the BBC will pay in 2017/18.
    •Financial year 2017/18: £9.0m.

    (Plus the £2.3 million in overheads costs, deferred from the 2016/17).
    •In 2018/19, £8.5m, pending a review of the first full year of costs.

    Ofcom has currently recruited 30 additional staff and expects a total of 40 new members in post by April. Preparations are ongoing and, once a firmer view of workload and resourcing has been established, this number could grow – on our current reckoning – by an extra 10 people or so.


    1. When is Ofcom taking on regulation of the BBC?

    As stated in the BBC Charter, our duties start on 3 April 2017.

    2. What is your role?

    Ofcom will become the new external regulator of the BBC. Our job will be to hold the BBC to account.

    Our new BBC responsibilities will fall into three main areas:
    •Content standards – including assessing the impartiality and accuracy of BBC news and current affairs programmes.
    •Competition issues – including the final determination on new BBC services or significant changes to existing services, and ensuring the BBC’s commercial services are not unfairly cross-subsidised by the licence fee.
    •Reviewing the BBC’s performance against its mission and public purposes.

    The Government has decided that a new BBC unitary board will govern and run the BBC, and ultimately be responsible for editorial and management decisions.

    3. Doesn’t Ofcom’s Broadcasting Code already apply to the BBC?

    Yes, but not all of our rules currently apply to the BBC. Our rules about the protection of children, harm and offence, crime, disorder, hatred and abuse, religion, and fairness and privacy, all apply to the BBC already.

    When the new arrangements start, the remaining rules – on accuracy and impartiality, elections and referendums, and commercial references in programmes, will also apply to the BBC.

    4. What is happening to the BBC Trust?

    The BBC Trust will cease when Ofcom takes on responsibility for the BBC’s regulation on 3 April. The governance functions carried out by the BBC Trust will move to the new BBC unitary board.”

    Maybe they are covered by the, Official Secrets Act?


  5. Philip_2 says:

    As we have come to expect from the BBC, they disappoint big time and deliberately mislead parliament on salary payments on the true cost of a failed broadcast Quango. I kept this newspaper cutting dated July 7th in the FT which donated a half page declaration by the new Chair of the BBC directors that everything is ‘normal’.

    New BBC head David Clementi has told the FT that the broadcaster *stars* are not overpaid. He took up his post in April (2017). Sir David said: ‘People expect to see top talent on the BBC and I don’t think you will see the evidence of us overpaying.’ Oh really?
    ! ! ! !
    He may as well of said (repeating the TV advertising slogan- ‘..it’s because we’re worth it!’ These people think they are worth more than life itself. And its none of your business! I had to read further that self -certification of ‘brilliance’ in all things as upper management do masaging the egos of the presenters who are ‘SO VALUABLE that only a large amount of money will stop them from leaving to work at on BBC Radio as in Woman’s hour’.. None of them are employable in any other organisation apart from one (Linekar who also fronts BT Sport) and then is totally untrust worthy on any media front. (He may have a sense of grandisment entitlement which suits the BBC well).

    DJ Chris Evans is a loser twice over and would be unemployed were it not for the BBC, others are all BBC ex apprentices (not imports) of the BBC state monolith for reading the ‘auto-cue’ in a sincere manner as possible (and not questioning why they are there). And then Male *stars* are paid rather more than the femail presenters which upset a few luvvies who were obviously told they were indeed ‘worth it’ only to find they were not the chosen ones, after all. David Clementi said it all; ’ “We need to recruit people with extraordinary talent and hold onto people with extraordinary talent”, he said (not mentioning any names) he was not talking about ‘presenters’ particularly and he so loved Laura… as an example maybe of BBC thinking and ‘journalism’.

    The FT reveals (as we know already) that the BBC received £3.7 bn in public funding last year. And is in ‘crisis’ mode trying to save £800m by 2020 to fund over 75 license fees. Don’t hold your breath that any savings will be made by they have re-arranged the deck-chiars by making it almost impossible (next year) to find out how much money is ‘reallocated’ to fund political objectives and maintain ‘adequate’ TV spending. The FT states (via OFCOM) that the BBC can claim 1/3rd of all TV audiences (that would include children in a household and those that don’t pay the TV license as being over 75). An astonishing 73 per cent of people questioned used the BBC as their main source of information. So thats all right then. Sir David (call me Dave) has an office opposite Tony Hall in Broadcasting House and they are great ‘pals’. So its no surprise to learn that one of the duties of the new Chairman of ther BBC Directors can explain to us all …’during this time of national uncertainty’ that ‘…the BBC had passed the test on impartiality during the election’ and then onto to defend Laura Kuenssberg on which he states “She gets attacked from both sides of the political divide but I think she is a very good professional”… and ”asks the right questions and she analyses in detail. I regard her as a significant force in Media and News Journalism.” In closing this he says the BBC should be compared to Channel 4 and ITV expenditure on revealing ‘top talent’ embarassment….

    So lets look at the BBC top talent he refers to and what was published only yesterday. Chisi Evans has ‘top talent’ as does the talentless Alan Yentob (who get the same as Kuenessbery and works a lot less). Young BBC protogee Laura Kuenssberg gets shafted financially and is shocked that she gets a a lot less BBC dosh, a lot lot less….

    Laura is listed as earning between £200,000 and £249,999. According to the SUN 

    But that is not the whole BBC picture. If Chris Evans gets £2 million (as stated today in the Mail) then the real BBC high profile earners get twice as much and you will never have heard of them (apart from Lord Tony Hall. That is because the BBC has invented eighteen private BBC Companies to *pay* stars through Private contracts as if they were ‘freelancers’ vis thse new BBC ‘private’ companies totally sponsored by the BBC LICENSE FEE. As of next year, they will not have to publish the amount of money paid to *performers* and *presenters* over £150,00 as it will be via a ‘BBC Studio Limited’ or ‘BBC Worldwide Limited’. This avoids any FOI disclosure of the vast sums involved and any embarrassment to the Corporation when all money goes missing, it can be made into another ‘loss’ on overseas earnings. No Staff (NI) tax to pay either. No Corporation tax paid on UK or overseas earnings or for the BBC either or a limit to political donations (can be private) and favors to a certain political party that the BBC are rather partial to represent as ‘impartial’ that none of us (even those at the BBC) believe for a second. Guardian readers included.

    The BBC have managed to deflect criticism from the fact that, from now on, nobody but the BBC will know how much anyone ‘earns’ at the BBC. The BBC Minimum wage is now set at £150,000 (which will be published (as now) as working ‘direct’ for the BBC corporate) but otherwise not and nor will you be informed (at all) who earns what above this figure. No doubt Kuenssbeerg will get the same as other sexes after a short squabble. Pay rises for some, but plenty of extra money for everyone else as well, and all paid in secret via private personal contracts within the BBC (via private companies for and on behalf of the BBC). Brilliant! but not quite as clever as they think. We’ll see.

    This was the case in 2012: (THIS IS MONEY)
The 4,000 BBC workers avoiding tax: How workers across UK become ‘companies’ to cut tax rate to 20%’

    And in todays Daily Mail (front page and inside pages) we can be assured that its not changed that much but the *star* performers are re-employed on BBC private contracts (whilst still working as normal at the BBC) far above their ability usually and now hidden from public gaze via a new ‘BBC Studio Limited’ company and ‘BBC Worldwide Limited; which does not have to publish public accounts. Nor answer to frequent (FOI) Freedom of Information request of where all the money is going.


    This is the BBC. Your private public Quango. ‘Its because ‘we’re worth it!’ And then we have to pay for it and I would rather not pay for it at all, at all. Bloody bonkers to pay the BBC anything.


    • Alicia Sinclair says:

      With this gender gap at the BBC?

      Can I at least put in a good word for a pay rise for Carrie Gracie and Bridget Kendall?
      I genuinely don`t mind them doing OK out of their courage, integrity and independence when it would have served them better to be a Claudia or a Kirsty.

      Pay them more, reward the best women at the BBC-and take all money off Yentob, Naughtie and the likes of Purnell, who are compromised greaser blokes who contribute nothing.


  6. StewGreen says:

    When IFS’s Paul Johnson was saying lefty things the BBC wheeled him out
    Yet today in the Times he writes Education needs a revolution, not more cash
    ‘.. cos that hasn’t fixed the basics in education so far.
    (We’ve doubled real spending per pupul since the 1990s, but got little for it.
    Boys are doing far worse than girls’ (where is the cry from feminists ?)


  7. Alicia Sinclair says:

    Splendid to hear Nick Robinson sticking it to the toffs on Today at 8.10 this morning. Some Roland from the Country Landowners Association was on trying to defend why dukes and Saudi princes get public subsidies when they`re so bloody rich already.
    Fluffing around a few hedgerows, raking the stables and all that. Hardly interviewing Tim Montgomery on how the Toady Show might be improved now is it?
    And certainly not Jim Naughie or Alan Yentobs eternal gift of the gab were we ever-so humble collectors of their Grand Thoughts and Prognostications is it?
    Sorry BBC-to hear YOUR millionares berating other nations millionaires for pimping off the public purse , as you slither around in your Hampstead garrets makes us heave.
    And at least we get a horse or a damson jam from the toffs-all we get from Nick is a croaky throat, weasel words and vinegar bile..think I`d rather Sir Quentin screw us rather than the BBCs spongers like Red Robbo.