Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Telegraph Blogs jump the shark over coverage of Milly Dowler phone hacking scandal

His Grace is ever mindful of there being dark forces at work behind the scenes, but this article on Telegraph Blogs is quite extraordinary:
The BBC has pulled out all the stops in its coverage of allegations that a private investigator employed by the News of the World hacked into the mobile telephone of the murdered teenager Milly Dowler. The story has dominated its bulletins; it is getting wall-to-wall coverage on the 24-hour news channel; and the Corporation’s editorial big guns have been wheeled out to explore the implications, political as well as commercial. While the allegations are – in David Cameron’s well-chosen words – “truly dreadful”, do they warrant this level of news overkill? Well, they do if there is a commercial interest at stake – and the one element of the story the BBC seems coy about is that it is itself a player in a particularly frenzied media battle. The Corporation is bitterly opposed to News Corporation’s bid to to buy the 61% of BSkyB it doesn’t already own (as is much of Fleet Street). Indeed, it is so opposed that the BBC’s director general Mark Thompson took the extraordinary step last autumn of putting his name to a letter of protest objecting to the deal – for which he was forced to apologise by the BBC Trust. The BBC’s treatment of the hacking story suggests the Corporation still sees the value of blackening the reputation of Rupert Murdoch’s media empire as thoroughly as possible whenever the opportunity arises. As the Beeb’s own Robert Peston notes, it leaves hanging in the air the idea that News Coporation may not be a fit and proper company to acquire complete control of a major broadcaster.
It occurs to His Grace that blaming the BBC for the coverage of this News International scandal is a little like blaming The Times for their coverage of the perverse behaviour of paedophile priests. Of course, editors determine the inclusion, focus and prominence of a story. But, frankly, when The Telegraph is itself leading with this story (along with most of the non-NI tabloids), for Telegraph Blogs to blame the BBC is a little unhinged.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

You raise some good points, but I don't think "jumping the shark" means what you think it does.

5 July 2011 at 15:27  
Anonymous MrJ said...

DH... aims to demonstrate his bravery?

5 July 2011 at 15:33  
Anonymous Oswin said...

Interesting Your Grace, it certainly warrants some thought.

5 July 2011 at 15:48  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

One would think that the BBC was a privatised company. Now there’s an idea...

5 July 2011 at 16:04  
Anonymous Toby the Jug said...

"It occurs to His Grace that blaming the BBC for the coverage of this News International scandal is a little like blaming The Times for their coverage of the perverse behaviour of paedophile priests."

Now you know you could have come up with another comparison - you bad man e.g. the Mail for its coverage of benefit fraud or for covering Islamism in Britain.

5 July 2011 at 16:26  
Blogger Span Ows said...

I disagree. The DT is commenting on the AMOUNT of coverage; that is not "blaming the BBC for the coverage", they are perfectly entitled and SHOULD cover it but as the BBC - to suit it's agendas - blatantly cherry-picks what it 'goes big' on I believe David Hughes and the DT have a point.

5 July 2011 at 17:18  
Blogger Maturecheese said...

Mr Jug

Benefit fraud and Islamism are not reported on enough, nor a possible link between them. Yes I know we have plenty of our own homegrown benefit cheats but importing more is insane, especially those who see it as their duty to take from the infidel.

As for HG's post, I suppose the BBC is up to it's usual tricks but do we expect anything less?

5 July 2011 at 17:19  
Blogger steve said...

Your Grace,

The BBC is a left wing organisation engage in psychological war with News International. The 'phone hacking revelations are disgusting. But the amount of coverage by the BBC is too much. If you can't see the subtext I would suggest you have become inured too their continual drip of Labour propaganda. What you should be commenting is the £100 a year the majority of house holds have to pay to fund the BBC. And you should be berating the BBC for that travesty which impinges on our freedom.

5 July 2011 at 17:54  
Blogger Anabaptist said...

All of the coverage of this affair, whether of the 'story' itself or of the way in which the story is beibg covered -- all of it displays a distressing lack of sensitivity to the feelings of the Dowler family and now, it seems, to the sorrowing families of Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman. The BBC, the Telegraph, and all media outlets seem to be engaging in an orgy of quite unnecessary coverage. If there were any decency these outlets would make no more than discreet mention of it and then wait until investigations have taken place. I see photographs of these poor murdered girls in print and on TV. Must their families have their wounds opened yet again? Is it not bad enough for them to know that the perpetrators of these crimes are living in prison at the taxpayers' expense, without rehearsing yet again these dreadful stories?

It can only be that the media do this sort of thing because they have a credible persuasion that many people want to know about it. What a nation of ghouls we have become.

5 July 2011 at 18:31  
Anonymous Anguished Soul said...

I agree that the BBC has a hidden agenda with this one, Your Grace.

wv: chumsity

Yes, the Beeb is very Chum City.

5 July 2011 at 18:44  
Anonymous JayBee said...

Watched the 30 min BBC 6 o clock news. A full 10 minutes was spent on the phone hack and it ended on the BSkyB issue. Draw your own conclusions.
If that wasn't enough 5 min from the end of the programme they wheeled Peston in for further comment. In total, half the national news bulletin was spent on one issue in which the BBC appears to have a conflict of interest. It seems to me that David Hughes has asked a fair question.

5 July 2011 at 19:21  
Blogger Dodo the Dude said...

Are the BBC giving this more coverage than other channels, Sky news excepted? Is this a fact that can be demonstrated?

I think most of the above comments are missing the central point. Hidden agenda or no the BBC are quite right to give prominence to this. They're obliged to do so. We're talking here about personal privacy and the proper conduct of the press in a free society.

5 July 2011 at 20:38  
Blogger Span Ows said...

Dodo the Dude, I think most of the above comments would agree; can you indicate which of them have said that the BBC shouldn't give prominence or that that aren't obliged to? It seems in your rush to appear different you are missing what they are saying; yes report, yes show prominence, yes it's important...the above comments are talking about over doing it...and a possible reason for going OTT.

5 July 2011 at 21:56  
Blogger Dodo the Dude said...


Simply that people's comments seem more focussed on the side issue - the BBC's hidden agenda - as oppossed to the legimate prominence they're giving to reporting this matter.

My reading of Mr Cranmer's report which is a criticism of the Telegraph blog was that this was a silly attempt at confusing the issue and linking the BBC to reporting to undermining BSkyB.

Are they going over the top and lacking in integrity? That's the sub-plot.

5 July 2011 at 22:10  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

Michael White of The Guardian said

"The Yard has shown as strange a reluctance as successive prime ministers on four continents to cross News International's shadowy Australian Mr Big, the Ernst Blofeld of global media, whose white Persian cat, Sheila, is said to drink the blood of Sun readers' children. Mr Big would have to be caught personally hacking the Pope's voice mail ("It's God here, Benny, please ring me back") before being in trouble. That immunity does not extend to his associates. If ad revenue implodes and Blofeld starts stroking Sheila in a menacing way it may be time for Mrs Brooks to clear her desk."

Bloomin investigative journalist, my jacksie.
1.News International's shadowy Australian Mr Big. Two bit 'del boy of the rags' with a few billion in his back pocket. NOT EXACTLY A MEGLOMANIACAL GENIUS, IS HE?
2."the Ernst Blofeld of global media". I am offended beyond all offer of printed apology/retraction on page 51 under porno movies of NOTW.
3."whose white Persian cat, Sheila, is said to drink the blood of Sun readers' children."FIRSTLY MY CAT IS CALLED TIDDLES, you left wing numpty.
4."If ad revenue implodes and Blofeld starts stroking Sheila in a menacing way it may be time for Mrs Brooks to clear her desk."
Secondly MY CAT IS STILL CALLED TIDDLES, you left wing numpty.
A pathetic cheap reference to Elliot Carver in Tomorrow Never Dies. Ernst's 3 year old grandson could do better.

Maybe they should just send a copy of yesterday's Sun stuffed inside a halibut to state that Rebekah now 'rests with the fishes'.

Just when I thought I was out ... they pull me back in . Bada-Bing.

Ernst Stavro Blofeld. THE ONE AND ONLY!

6 July 2011 at 01:36  
Anonymous Atlas shrugged said...

The BBC has a mission.

The BBC's secondary mission is to perpetuate the illusion of democratic choice.

The truth is that there remains NONE, if indeed there ever has been any.

The illusion of democratic choice cannot be so easily maintained without the existence of an apparently independently owned counter-part to the BBC, so why not Murdoch Enterprises?

Sounds like as good a name as any other, to me.

Murdoch, BBC, or any other, it makes no difference, for the truth is that there is absolutely no meaningful difference whatsoever between the information propagated by The BBC, and that of Murdoch enterprises.

The style may sometimes differ slightly, but the essential content is exactly the same.

In other words the same old AP, or Reuters lies, propaganda, and vile disinformation.

Truth is an unlikely outcome, when two habitual liars argue with each other. Still more unlikely when the argument is utterly contrived.

For what will be, will be, as far as all things Murdoch are concerned, however much the BBC may wish to appear to huff and puff.

If you can still bare to watch TV news broadcasts these days, please play particular attention to the way in which The BBC in particular and The Main Stream Media in general seem to feel the need to above all else perpetuate all kinds of divisions within society.

These may be based on one, or a combination of two, or more of the following.

Race, sex, sexual orientation, age, wealth, education, national geographic location, or origination, political preference, region, height, breath, aesthetics, fitness, nationality, language, and so on and so forth.

Indeed never in the history of civilization has a group of people been so severally, systematically and purposefully divided.

Human existence on this planet is not an accident, but a product of something so vastly and universally intelligent that we can only guess as to its true nature.

Our existence and political and social changes have one very important thing in common with each other.

They did not happen because of any kind of chance, or accident, but by carefully and patiently executed highly intelligent design, coming from a mainly anonymous, or unknowable source. Some say, unseen hand using its all seeing and all creating eye.

Which brings me neatly onto The BBC's and main stream medias primary mission.

Which is, to above all conceal from the public the existence, of their true slave owners.

6 July 2011 at 04:04  
Anonymous MrJ said...

As in this morning's earlier hour (04:04) the theme of higher and deeper reality has been touched upon, the time may have come to propose a question:

Seeing Atlas as the Titan of the Farneses sculpture (but mindful also of his reputed origin as son of Aether and Gaia), would he know what a difference the Ascension has made to earthly life and in the evolution of his "parents" unless, as he bears the weight of the earthly globe on his back, he can see (by reading a book or by some reflection) such events as Dante or Milton have described (to name but two)?

6 July 2011 at 08:36  
Anonymous MrJ said...

typo at 08:36_ Farnese

6 July 2011 at 08:41  
Anonymous John Lindley said...

Your Grace, pray tell me.
If the name and contact details of a person involved in a public happening, easily available from the telephone book once the relationship is established, is a marketable item, what complaint have we if it is bought and sold like other information. The torrent of junk mail that afflicts us starts this way. The fact that the consequent ghoulish gloating over others misfortunes is repulsive to any sensitive man does not alter the basic fact. It seems that in this case, the police sold the contact details to the newspapers, willing seller to a willing buyer.
The truffle snuffling porcine enthusiasm for others misfortunes that ensued merely reflects and panders to the bad taste of those who buy the paper in the first place.

6 July 2011 at 10:01  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In this instance I believe that this article is absolutely right. It's tragic for Millie's family that any 'journalist' would have acted in this way. However, why have these allegations surfaced just now? The BBC have gone into overkill on this story. It suits the BBC agenda. It's the BBC that's unhinged.

6 July 2011 at 11:18  
Blogger Gnostic said...

I reckon the man from the Failygraph has his finger firmly on the Beeb's pulse, Your Grace.

7 July 2011 at 08:34  

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