Tuesday, June 30, 2015

GoodCorporation "conducts independent and confidential assessments of ethical management practices." They were founded in 2000, and have worked with a diverse range of organisations including BBC Worldwide, the main commercial arm of the BBC.

In March last year GoodCorporation was asked by the BBC to carry determine whether the BBC’s child protection and whistle blowing policies are fit for purpose. The BBC is in possession of that report, but thus far they have declined to make it public.

The substantive part of my email to a senior figure at GoodCorporation (29th June 2015) -

... I did get in touch with the BBC to ask about a publication date. Unfortunately, however, I've not received a reply, despite a reminder last week.

You will recall that I am not alone in having reservations about the BBC's integrity.

It seems to me that something of an ethical dilemma has arisen. The BBC has asked GoodCorporation whether their policies are 'fit for purpose' and now they appear reluctant to publish the results which, as stakeholders, we are surely entitled to know at the earliest opportunity. In fact, according to the BBC, the original terms of reference to the Dame Janet Smith Review were amended, and a separate assessment carried out for the very reason of avoiding further delay.

GoodCorporation has confirmed the report is confidential, and say it can only be made public by the BBC. Presumably the broadcaster will eventually publish. Watch this space.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Introducing his show last Sunday, Andrew Marr mentioned that Lord Hall was a giving a "relatively rare TV interview." Marr said that "both the Tories and the Labour Party, not to mention the SNP, complained loudly about the BBC all the way through the election campaign. After it, Auntie's enemies are circling."

Newsround Blog has previously commented on Lord Hall's reluctance to submit himself to tough questioning but, of course, Andrew Marr is not exactly noted for giving his guests a difficult time.

During the interview Lord Hall was asked about problems the BBC faces -

Andrew Marr: .. there are a series of things, which, if they all happen together, would be quite serious for the BBC. Decriminalisation of the licence fee, so you can pay it or not as you wish - that could cost something like £200 million.

Lord Hall: About two hundred

Andrew Marr: .. but it could be a lot more than that. We don't know how people will behave, so it could be much more than that. Then there's a possibility of a freeze of the licence fee going beyond 2017, and the BBC having to pay the licence fee for OAPs, for instance. If all of those things happened together, a kind of general squeeze, how serious would that be for the BBC?

Lord Hall: Well if all of those things happened together, then of course that would be serious.

Strange as it may seem, nowhere did Andrew Marr mention another issue which could greatly compound the BBC's predicament, namely, the possibility of having to pay very large sums of money by way of compensation to victims of Jimmy Savile & Stuart Hall. Neither did Mr Marr ask about inordinate delays to publication of the Dame Janet Smith Review or the BBC's separate independent assessment of child protection and whistleblowing policies carried out by GoodCorporation.

Topics which were discussed included cuts in staffing, severance payments, and changes to Top Gear.

A telling moment came right near the end of the show, when Andrew Marr asked Lord Hall about the satirical sitcom W1A

Lord Hall doesn't veto the scripts

Saturday, June 06, 2015

In the absence of any response to enquiries about misleading information in the BBC online staff magazine, Ariel, it is probably worthwhile looking at the discrepancy in more detail.

This is the article in question. You should notice the article is currently dated 17th April 2015 at 9.15am. Now if you check this archive, made on 19th April 2015, you will notice exactly the same date/time information on the web page.

The present version is different from the archived version in at least one obvious respect: the photograph captioned "Future leaders? Adeluwoye, Abbey, Tezisler, Moncrieffe-Johnson, Pemberton and Berkeley with DG" was removed some time after 19th April, but that change hasn't been acknowledged by Ariel's editor, Claire Barrett.

Newsround Blog will, at a future date, consider why the page was edited.