Wednesday, November 28, 2012

What makes an important news story?

Last Saturday one story dominated the BBC's news channel. It was about the suitability of two foster-parents to bring up children who are "not indigenous white British." The couple had been deemed unsuitable by Rotherham Council workers, who felt membership of UKIP - which some believe is a racist party - meant they were not the ideal couple to bring up the children.

All day long, and at the start of almost every TV news bulletin that day, BBC News reported that there was 'mounting criticism' of Rotherham Council.

UKIP leader Nigel Farage was asked if politics should be a consideration when children are fostered. He replied "Absolutely not - and certainly not in the case of UKIP. We are a non-racist, non-sectarian political party." He went on to adduce the fact that UKIP's candidate in Croydon North by-election was actually born in Jamaica.

Mr Farage believed it was an example of "the most appalling prejudice."

On Monday it emerged that UKIP's spokesperson for culture, media and sport - who also happens to be the Croydon North candidate - believes that gay people should not be allowed to adopt - he said it amounted to child abuse.

So how much publicity did the BBC news channel give to this story. The answer is almost none at all, although it did eventually make the BBC News website.

Newsround did not report on either the foster case or on the homophobic remarks.

No comments: