Pranksters Troll BBC Political Reporter with Sex Noises

Not big, not clever, not funny…

BBC Reports Positive Unqualified Economic News

Shocking scenes in the BBC Newsroom as a positive story about the UK economy is reported without the “despite Brexit” suffix qualifying the headline. Do you think the continuous mocking from Brexiteers – not least Jacob Rees-Mogg on Question Time – has resulted in a change of policy? If a memo has gone out, it is a victory for our campaign against this Remainstream media meme…

Quentin Lets BBC Take His Poppy

Quentin Letts reports in his column today that the BBC’s Have I Got News for You asked him to remove his poppy before he appeared on the show last week:

“And to those who have upbraided me for not wearing a poppy on TV’s Have I Got News For You last Friday, apologies. I was wearing one beforehand but was asked to remove it. I should have held my ground but wimped out for an easy life.”

Ironically top columnist Quentin’s new book is subtitled “How the Elites Betrayed Britain“…

Newsnight Editor Runners and Riders

Media Guido hears the decision as to who will replace Ian Katz as Newsnight editor could be delayed until 2018, as James Harding’s successor as Head of News is likely to be overseeing the recruitment process. That could make it more likely to be an internal candidate given Harding’s unpopular penchant for hiring externally. Insiders don’t expect to see a definitive list of contenders until the new Head of News is appointed. But as ever, Media Guido gives you your early runners and riders…

Rachel Jupp – Former deputy editor of Newsnight from 2013-2016, currently editing Panorama. Has only been there a year, is it too soon for her to return to Newsnight?

Victoria Wakely – Was acting editor of the Today programme before Sarah Sands joined. Seen at the time as steering the Today programme through a good election period.

Louisa Compton – Editor of Victoria Derbyshire and executive editor of Newsbeat. Seen as a rising star within the corporation. Without the departing Harding’s backing will she go for it?

Jess Brammar – Current deputy editor of Newsnight and one of the two acting editors now Katz is off. Very popular among Newsnight staff. Only made deputy last year.

Dan Clarke – Brammar’s fellow deputy editor of Newsnight. Also now acting editor. 

Katy Searle – Editor of the Beeb’s political news in Westminster. She was through to the final round to be Today programme editor at the beginning of the year. Plenty of experience on the Six and Ten. Unlikely to go for it now given her new plum job in charge at Millbank.

Rob Burley – Current Marr show editor, might he want to jump ship? Living in Brighton means it would be a long daily commute.

Gavin Allen – Was on Media Guido’s runners and riders for the Head of News job, if he doesn’t get it could he fancy Newsnight? Popular old school hack. Currently oversees Today and the Six and Ten.

Shaminder Nahal – If the Beeb does go for an external candidate what about former the Newsnight deputy editor, who is now at Channel 4? Reportedly partly the inspiration for Emily Mortimer’s portrayal of a TV news producer in Aaron Sorkin’s The Newsroom. Been at Channel 4 since 2012, now head of specialist commissioning.

Neil Breakwell – Moved from Newsnight to Vice last year, though it has struggled to break through as a major player in news. Fancy a return?

Dan Sabbagh – If the BBC does want another print hire, pinching the Guardian’s associate editor is the sort of person they would go for. Though surely time for a non-Guardianista at Newsnight… 

Hugh Milbourn – well connected producer with experience across all the political programmes at the BBC. Former program editor at Newsnight.

George OsborneNot doing much in the evenings these days…

So far it’s a heavily female dominated list, but expect more names to come out in the next few weeks. Good luck…

BBC: Home of Despite Brexit

Last week David Dimbleby unwisely challenged Brexit champion Jacob Rees-Mogg when he pointed out the BBC had regularly pushed the “despite brexit” agenda. A clearly riled Dimbleby tore into Rees-Mogg on Question Time:

“Can you actually specify an occasion when you’ve heard that… have you got a quotation?… Are you sure, are you sure?”

Well… how about these, all from the BBC News website…

We’re sure, Mr Dimbleby…

Katz to Channel 4

Newsnight editor Ian Katz is leaving the BBC to become Director of Programmes at Channel 4, The Times is reporting. The move had been rumored for the past few days; he’ll get more viewers in the new job. Another big Beeb role going. Send us your runners and riders…

BBC Brexit Whinge of the Day

Classic Beeb moan from John Simpson this morning:

“MP wants details of anti-Brexit univ teachers. Decent folk deported on technicalities. Daily hate in press. Doesn’t feel like my country now.”

When Guido contacted the BBC press office to ask if this view was representative of the national broadcaster, they alerted us to a new tweet sent by Simpson in which he says: “Don’t assume you know my views on Brexit”. Think we can guess…

Unless of course, like Nigel Farage, he means “I want my country back!”. Nah…

B*tch-Gate in 60 Seconds

This handy video of today’s events is going big on the BBC’s social media streams tonight…

Harding Linked to Pink ‘Un

The Financial Times newsroom has been speculating that outgoing BBC head of news James Harding is on the list of runners and riders for the Pink ‘Un editorship. In his resignation statement last week, Harding mysteriously revealed he was planning to “start a new media company with a distinct approach to the news”. This line is being treated with scepticism in media circles – why would Harding abandon one of the biggest jobs in journalism and one of the largest audiences to start all over from nothing? Sensible FT types suspect the “new media company” could be a front and that Harding has his eyes on another prize…

It is an open secret that 62 year-old Lionel Barber is on the way out. Last week Buzzfeed reported half a dozen senior FT journalists had travelled to Japan as part of a “beauty contest” showcasing potential next editors to their Nikkei owners. Gillian Tett, Robert Shrimsley, James Lamont, Roula Khalaf, Peter Spiegel and Alec Russell are among those in the running. Male candidates are said to have an advantage in a Japanese-owned firm. The most likely outcome at the moment is Barber stays until next year and then recommends an internal candidate to the bosses. Though there has been speculation in the newsroom about Harding, a former FTer who was at the paper for 12 years, throwing his hat in. Industry sources note Harding has yet to register any new venture with Companies House. Is he sniffing around one last real job?

BBC Head of News Runners & Riders

Within minutes of James Harding announcing he is off, senior BBC editors immediately asked themselves: ‘Enough about him, what does this mean for me?’ All the gossip at New Broadcasting House is about their next Head of News. As ever MediaGuido brings you your early runners and riders:

  • Jonathan Munro: The early frontrunner, Munro is currently Head of Newsgathering and effectively Harding’s deputy. Former ITV man. Self-confessed lover of wine and posh food. Could he suffer from being the favourite?
  • Gavin Allen: Controller of Daily News programmes, overseeing Today and the News at Six and Ten. Popular among the troops. Old school hack who gets news.
  • Fran Unsworth: The experienced director of the World Service is seen as a safe pair of hands, she is also Director of News and Current Affairs and sits on the BBC’s Executive Team. Former Head of Newsgathering.
  • Jay Hunt: Until recently she was Chief Creative Officer at Channel 4, where she was favourite to become the new chief executive until she quit. Former controller of BBC One.
  • Peter Baron: Wildcard, edited Newsnight when it was worth watching. Left for Google in 2008.
  • Ian Katz: Current Newsnight editor, friends have let it be known he is considering throwing his hat in the ring.
  • Amol Rajan: A newbie at the Beeb but could another former newspaperman get the job? WATO, the One Show, the Media Show, Radio 2 drive time stand-in – Amol seems to be doing every other BBC job at the moment.

Good luck…

James Harding Quits BBC

BBC Director of News and Current Affairs James Harding has announced to staff he’s leaving to “build a new venture in news”. He’s off in the new year. Ripples in the newsroom as the news breaks…

UPDATE: Harding says:

“There is some journalism that the BBC, for all its brilliance, can’t, and probably shouldn’t, do. And that’s what I want to explore: I am going to start a new media company with a distinct approach to the news and a clear point of view. I know I will enjoy the chance to do some more journalism of my own and, at such a critical time, I’m seriously excited about the prospect of building a new venture in news.”

Shapps: ‘I Want to Be PM’

On Radio 4’s At Lunch With just three weeks ago Shapps was asked directly if he wanted to be Prime Minister. He said:

“Yeah, everyone would want to do that in their right mind… I don’t think there’s any reason why I couldn’t do it… what you’ll always think is what’s the best way to make a big change…”

Cringe…

BBC Question Time Panels Dominated by Remainers

Julia Hartley-Brewer joked with David Dimbleby on Question Time a couple of weeks ago that she was used to being the only Brexiteer on a panel. And she was right.

Lefties used to complain that Nigel Farage was forever on the programme, he has only appeared once in the 42 Question Time shows there have been since the referendum. According to research done by a co-conspirator*, Remain panelists have outnumbered Leavers by 137-72, nearly twice as many. 86% of the time the panel was dominated by Remainers…

  • Leavers have only outnumbered Remainers in 3 episodes. Remainers dominated in 36.
  • In 16 editions there was only a single Leaver.
  • Prominent anti-Brexiteers dominate the repeat appearances with Emily Thornberry and Richard Burgon on 5 times, Alex Salmond and Leanne Wood on 3 times.
  • Jacob Rees-Mogg was the only Brexiteer to appear 3 times.

Given the majority of the country backed Leave is it really too hard for the producers to have more balanced panels? Admittedly most of the political establishment they have to choose from is pro-Remain…

*Researched by co-conspirator and journalist Ken Andrew. He excluded the non-partisan edition immediately after the Manchester bombing and the Leaders’ Debates.

Brexit Twitter Sentiment Analysis: Robbo Not Neutral

Data Guido has been hidden away in a dark room, crunching the numbers to see whether our top broadcast journalists really are impartial on Brexit. Yesterday we analysed Robert Peston’s relentlessly negative Twitter feed, categorising his tweets as having either a positive sentiment about Brexit (not many), a negative sentiment about Brexit (82%), or being neutral. Today it’s the turn of the BBC’s Nick Robinson…

  • Robbo has sent 157 tweets about Brexit since 24 June 2016.
  • 3 tweets had a positive sentiment, that’s just 2% of his total tweets.
  • 65 tweets were neutral, that’s 41%.
  • 89 tweets were negative, that is 57% of his total Brexit tweets having a negative sentiment.

You’d surely expect a Beeb man to be neutral, yet only 41% of Robbo’s Brexit tweets have a neutral sentiment. The overwhelming majority of Robbo’s tweets about Brexit – 57% – had a negative sentiment. As you can see above it is the stories and quotes he chooses to report that give the game away – negative quote after negative quote from France, Brussels, George Osborne and other Remainers. By contrast he has sent only three tweets with a positive Brexit sentiment since the referendum. Nothing listeners of the Today programme didn’t know already. Stay tuned for more Brexit Twitter sentiment analysis tomorrow…

Remainers Reject Adonis ‘Sack Brillo’ Demand

Brexit is sending a lot of previously reasonable and rational people round the twist. Andrew Adonis is the latest, yesterday demanding that Andrew Neil is sacked and bizarrely claiming that Brexiters “control” the BBC. Adonis’ hysterical tweets were rejected by his fellow Remainers, who called him “daft”, “ridiculous” and “preposterous” and defended Brillo against accusations of bias.

Don’t imagine the many, many pro-Remain BBC journalists are particularly keen on the idea either. Adonis is in danger of going the full A.C. Grayling, it’s remarkable he still chairs the government’s Infrastructure Commission…

UPDATE: The FT’s editor adds his voice:

Today Programme to Include Websites in Paper Review

Back in May the Today programme included Guido, Buzzfeed, HuffPo and ConHome in a trial run of a “digital press preview”. According to a BBC memo published by Buzzfeed it is going to become a permanent fixture. About time, it is ridiculous that when digital media break a story it is the day-later newspaper write-up that gets reviewed.

While it is good to see Today entering 2017, digital publications are still excluded from Sky News‘ press preview and #TomorrowsPapersToday. (With the exception of the Indy’s fake front page. The Indy is not a newspaper, there is no justification in the BBC and Sky promoting them but not Guido, Buzzfeed and HuffPo.)

This should be pretty common sense stuff. When news-breaking digital outlets get a decent story it should be included in press previews. For example Guido’s Tory WhatsApp story was featured on the World at One yesterday, there is no reason why it shouldn’t be in a press preview. This is 2017, news isn’t only broken in ink…

Sarah Smith Replacing Brillo on Sunday Politics

The BBC has announced its Scotland editor Sarah Smith will be replacing Andrew Neil as presenter of the Sunday Politics. Fun fact: Sarah is the daughter of former Labour leader John Smith. Congratulations to Sarah, big shoes to fill in an already saturated Sunday shows market…

BBC Meets Young Leave Voters

The BBC meets young Leave voters to dispel Remain myths about Brexiteers. Not the sort of output you’d expect from the Beeb…

Rees-Mogg vs Chapman

James Chapman, the former pol-ed, turned SpAd turned lobbyist putting the potti into Bell Pottinger, claims that the Tories will never win an election again and that Cabinet ministers sympathise with setting up a new centre party, “the Democrats”Chappers sounding crackers

BBC Silent on Arch-Remainer’s Background

The BBC had former Foreign Office mandarin Sir Simon Fraser on Radio 4’s Westminster Hour last night: his comment that Brexit negotiations have ‘not begun well’ is doing the rounds in the remainstream media this morning. While the programme was straight about Fraser’s background, the BBC News website’s front page write-up bills him as “a former head of the diplomatic service… who now advises businesses on Brexit”.[…] Read the rest

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Quote of the Day

Embattled Henry Bolton on his battles…

“I’m going nowhere. I have seen people die, I have seen people blown up, I have seen people shot. Even the Taliban doesn’t quite prepare you for UKIP, though.”

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