By Naomi Foyle
I am currently at the fourth stage of a complaint to the BBC about the outrageously imbalanced Jan Newsnight report by Col Tim Collins, described as the ‘Celebrated Iraq war veteran’s view of the Gaza conflict’. I have so far been met with only doublespeak and the most stunning manipulation of both my own language and Collins’. I will post separately about the progress of this complaint, but for now I would like to give this advice to any one complaining to the BBC.
1) Numbers count. Apparently if more than 20 people complain about a programme, they have to take it seriously. I know several other people who complained about the Collins’ report, and that has undoubtedly helped me. In cases of Offense, numbers in particular count, so joint-signatories to a complaint of being offended by a programme would be useful.
2) Don’t give up. It was only after contacting the BBC twice – one phone call and one letter – that I was invited to complain directly to the Editorial Complaints Unit. I won’t post the address, as the BBC has a clear three stage complaints process, but if you persist they will invite you to complain to the ECU as well.