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By G.A.Ponsonby
 
BBC Scotland has denied it has closed down comments on its online blogs and has insisted that its main Political Editor, Brian Taylor did not ‘attack’ independence in a recent BBC training video.
 
The corporation was responding to a recent demonstration that saw around 150 people gather outside its headquarters in Glasgow to highlight what they claim is a lack of balance in BBC Scotland’s political coverage.

The protest on Saturday 26th May was covered by Newsnet Scotland was the subject of a short film by Equinox TV, which can be seen below.

Protestors interviewed by the Equinox TV crew highlighted the closing down of comments on BBC Scotland political and business blogs as evidence of what they claim was an attempt by the BBC to curtail debate and discussion.

Equinox producers also highlighted a recent BBC video that showed two prominent presenters, Andrew Neil and Brian Taylor, apparently attacking the SNP’s stance on the forthcoming referendum.

The videos of official BBC in house presentations to its staff, showed Mr Neil being highly critical of the SNP’s position on the EU.  It also showed BBC Scotland’s Brian Taylor claiming that Alex Salmond wanted to include Devo-Max as an option on the ballot paper as a “parachute” in case voters did not want independence.

BBC Scotland responded to the points raised by protestors by denying any of its staff were politically partisan and claiming comments were still open.

A spokesman told Equinox: “As a public service broadcaster the BBC has a duty to report fairly and accurately and that’s a duty we take very seriously.

“We reject completely any suggestion of bias or any suggestion that our staff favour one side over the other in the referendum debate.”

The spokesman claimed that trust in the BBC has “never been higher” and said that audiences would tell them if reporting wasn’t scrupulously fair.

Responding to claims that online blogs had been closed down for comment in Scotland, but not in England, Wales or Northern Ireland the spokesman said: “…it isn’t true we have closed down comments.”

However the spokesman appeared to concede the protestors criticisms of online blog censorship by admitting that comments were not in fact opened up on online blogs but were only selectively allowed on stories.

“Our online correspondent pages are opened up for comment when we believe this enhances the story e.g. last week we had over 2,000 responses to the Yes Campaign launch story.

“It is part of a flexible and adaptable approach on how we cover the main news issues in Scotland” he said.

The spokesman also denied that Brian Taylor had been critical of the SNP’s referendum stance when he claimed in a BBC training video that Alex Salmond wanted Devo-Max as a “parachute” and added: “It is also not true that Brian Taylor attacked independence during the training videos.”

BBC Scotland's response to the protest follows growing unease amongst many viewers in Scotland over what many perceive to be a lack of balance in reporting of the referendum and a general dumbing down of news and current affairs in Scotland.

Many observers are unhappy at the overrepresentation of Unionist leaning commentators in BBC Scotland discussion programmes and an apparent willingness to promote news stories that are deemed critical to the independence movement, whilst simultaneously failing to provide equal prominence to stories unhelpful to the anti-independence campaign.

They cite as examples of an institutionalised culture at BBC Scotland:

  • Videos of the First Minister edited to make it appear he is mocking his finance secretary
  • Erroneous headlines on online articles not corrected for days
  • Broadcasts of claims by Labour MSP Jackie Baillie despite the BBC knowing the claims were false
  • One sided coverage of the Megrahi release
  • News blackout of a diplomatic row caused by former Scottish Labour leader Iain Gray
  • News blackout of a fabricated rape case used by Gray’s replacement Johann Lamont to attack the Scottish government
  • Refusal to report on the relationship between the Orange Order and Glasgow Labour
  • Alleged links to Unionist parties of several BBC Scotland reporters

A recent appearance by UK BBC Head Mark Thompson and BBC Scotland Head Ken MacQuarrie in front of a Holyrood Culture Committee saw a repeated refusal to provide figures to support many of their claims regarding the BBC’s Scottish operation.

Mr Thompson claimed that the BBC were prepared to answer questions from anybody and said: “If people have got questions of fact they want to ask us then of course we can answer them, be they politicians, be they journalists, be they members of the public”

However the performance by the two men was criticised by the Committee’s head who said he was disappointed by their defensive attitude and their refusal to engage.

Chair, Stewart Maxwell MSP said: "I thought the director-general and the head of the BBC in Scotland were both rather defensive.

"What I found most annoying was the lack of willingness to engage with committee questions.  Clearly, the BBC receives an enormous amount of public money to carry out its operations and we are happy that it does so.

"But at the same time there has to be some transparency and accountability and yet they were unwilling to answer very basic questions about the budgets of programmes and why decisions have been taken to cut certain programmes, but not other programmes."

Other critics of BBC Scotland have pointed to their high profile coverage of the Megrahi release when attacks on the Scottish Government were regular.  However since Megrahi’s death, BBC Scotland seems to have become reluctant to draw attention to growing evidence of the Libyan’s innocence and to UK Government involvement in secret talks with Libya.

Only yesterday it emerged that successive Tory and Labour UK Governments have for twenty years, kept secret a document that suggested the bombing of Pan Am 103 had been carried out by a Palestinian terror group.

 

Some related stories files and stories:

Former BBC Governess Baroness Ruth Deech and Douglas Murray speaking on BBC Radio 4

BBC coverage of the Megrahi release

Fabricated rape case

http://newsnetscotland.com/index.php/scottish-opinion/4553-its-more-than-headlines-that-have-to-change-at-bbc-scotland

http://newsnetscotland.com/index.php/scottish-opinion/4818-bbc-scotland-and-the-doosan-story

http://newsnetscotland.com/index.php/scottish-opinion/4877-the-leveson-emails-salmond-and-bbc-scotlands-coverage

http://www.newsnetscotland.com/index.php/scottish-opinion/4263-so-think-you-can-trust-bbc-scotland-well-read-on-

http://newsnetscotland.com/index.php/scottish-opinion/2844-mccoist-apology-what-does-this-tell-us-about-the-bbc.html

http://www.newsnetscotland.com/index.php/scottish-opinion/4165-what-does-the-imminent-loss-of-newsweek-tell-us-about-bbc-scotland

Comments  

 
# Aplinal 2012-06-02 14:46
BBC says it has not closed down comments. But we can not comment on either the Scottish Political or Economic blogs, whereas the other respective blogs for England, Wales, NI are open. Do they think we are stupid? No, don't answer that, of course they do.

It beggars belief. However, the pressure begins to mount. When's the next demo, If it is in early August I might be back in the UK!!
 
 
# Dcanmore 2012-06-02 18:35
I'll be back in Scotland too in early August, so I'll join you :)
 
 
# mudfries 2012-06-02 14:54
The BBC deny they are biased! well they would say that wouldnt they.
 
 
# Dundonian West 2012-06-02 14:56
BBC SCOTLAND.What about this then? Nick Robinson:--- "Quite a day for the government."
With comments! 430!
bbc.co.uk/.../...
Three days ago Nick had a Cornish Pasty Tax article with comments!
Scotland--NIL repeatedly.
bbc.co.uk/.../...
www.bbc.co.uk/.../briantaylor
With respect,you're not worth the Licence Fee.
 
 
# Mac 2012-06-02 15:00
The BBC show themselves to be liars.
 
 
# EdinScot 2012-06-02 15:15
it isn’t true we have closed down comments.”

The EBC in complete denial. They really are in full delusional mode, the way those propagandist organisations usually end up.
Brilliant article Newsnet with all the evidence there through your cited examples and accompanying links there for all in Scotland and beyond to see and use to quote.

Its great to see the Equinox link of the protest against EBC bias brought to life. Its time to ramp up the pressure on this Unionist pravdaesque mouthpiece and get the next protest organised. Their denials give us no option. Its also great to see them forced to answer the accusations rather than arrogantly ignoring us and feeling they dont have to answer. Lets hope its the first of an avalanche on this question for the EBC.
 
 
# Exile 2012-06-02 21:41
Hey, come on now. They didn't close them down. They just didn't open them up. I mean, it's not my right hand I'm holding up. it's the one that's not my left hand. Obvious, isn't it. Poor BBC, being so unfairly criticised.
 
 
# EdinScot 2012-06-03 10:13
LOL! I agree, after all audience satisfaction hasnt been higher...hasnt it...well hasnt it..? They would be telling us the truth the whole truth and 'nothing' but the truth...

Now whens that most important referendum thats happening for the first time in 300 hundred years ;)... Oh thats right its 2014! Vote yes to get a fair and impartial Scottish based broadcaster.
 
 
# Callan 2012-06-02 15:18
Just sent the BBC yet another complaint about this. I have a feeling they cannot answer my direct questions. Not even with a generic letter.

" The BBC's Scotland politics section used to allow comments with Brian Taylor's blogs but now no longer allow this despite it being a feature of the other politics sections of other parts of the UK. I find this especially disturbing when Scotland has an independence referendum in 2 years time and there have been many times where Brian has written such imbalanced and poor quality blogs. Can the BBC justify this or why you failed to cover a news story on a protest at Pacific Quay regarding this and many other issues? You seem to find time to discuss Rangers football club over and over again and its financial issues but fail in your duty to supply the wider public with important news and a way to challenge the imbalanced news you spew out. Even Sky manages to show the negative side of News Corporation. Is the BBC its own judge? I would be more than happy to supply examples and more details but your instructions dictate this should be brief."

With any luck these blogs will open back up so we can dispell the myths and the lies they call 'news'. Where was the lengthy piece on how Scotland can sustain itself? Stephanie Flanders can say Scotland is subsidised (by 10% I believe she said) but if the BBC were really balanced they would have another article arguing the opposite but it goes against their desire to maintain the union.
 
 
# rhymer 2012-06-02 15:39
It is amazing how the BBC can get away with telling lies about their service and nobody does anything about it.

My recent complaint that a BBC reporter had lied was considered by them to be "a bit harsh" (their exact words) even though they agreed that what he had said was totally untrue. Catching them lying and asking them to apologise seems to be considered bad manners and being not nice to the poor BBC employees.
Don't they realise that they are supposed to supply information and not lies or political propaganda ?
 
 
# hafpipe 2012-06-02 15:50
In the Equinox report they zoom onto the BBC Alba logo, but Alba is the only channel (as well as BBC Radio nan Gàidheal) which takes a more balanced approach. They're the least biased of them all.

It's BBC Scotland who are the culprits. They're nothing but a Unionist propaganda machine.
 
 
# Old Smokey 2012-06-02 23:51
The reason why BBC Alba news is more balanced, is the fact that BBC Alaba is not 100% owned and run by the BBC!, its a joint venture
 
 
# CyBOS 2012-06-03 18:05
Quoting hafpipe:
In the Equinox report they zoom onto the BBC Alba logo, but Alba is the only channel (as well as BBC Radio nan Gàidheal) which takes a more balanced approach. They're the least biased of them all.

It's BBC Scotland who are the culprits. They're nothing but a Unionist propaganda machine.

Spoke to Martin of Equinox TV about this very matter. He zoomed into the BBC Alba as it is the Gaelic for Scotland. You've misinterpreted his intention.

He'll surely agree with you that BBC Alba is far more balanced than the main channels spewing out BBC Scotland content.
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-02 15:57
The BBC says "The spokesman also denied that Brian Taylor had been critical of the SNP’s referendum stance when he claimed in a BBC training video that Alex Salmond wanted Devo-Max as a “parachute" ...

As a point of information, does anyone have the document or video where Alex Salmohnd has said he wanted Devo-Max? As a parachute or anything else. Has he ever said this?

If Salmond has never said this, which leg is Brian standing on when he says that he has?
 
 
# DonaldMhor 2012-06-02 16:07
The spokesman claimed that trust in the BBC has “never been higher” and said that audiences would tell them if reporting wasn’t scrupulously fair.

_______________ _______________ _____________


If you are as honest as you claim to be then provide the evidence to support your allegation that support has never been higher and that there are a low level of complaints. Man up McQuarrie and stop being a London toady and looking after your pension pot.

Well done to Newsnet for an excellent article, and the catalogue of evidence of their bias. BBC Scotland you are a disgrace, you should hang your heads in shame if you had any.

Your affiliation to the Labour party is out there for all to see. Labour and BBC Scotland are the same beast.

This is not going away.
 
 
# Exile 2012-06-02 21:43
I'd have thought the demo was 'audiences telling them', no?
 
 
# clootie 2012-06-02 16:21
The BBC (Scotland) have not shutdown comments and they are not bias?

I can hear the music from the twilight zone.It's the only answer - a parallel universe.
 
 
# Cattanach69 2012-06-02 16:47
Well the Brit Brainwashing Corps brainwashing has worked on its mouthpieces as they are in a state of total denial!
 
 
# tartanfever 2012-06-02 16:51
Listening to the hypocrite Ruth Deech is appalling. She who will shout anti-semite at anyone and everyone who criticises Israel in anyway, even if it is to condemn the atrocities carried out by Israeli soldiers on Palestinian civilians.

A dreadful woman.
 
 
# gus1940 2012-06-02 16:52
Time for a FOI Request asking for the number of compaints of political bias by BBC Scotland for each of the last 10 years.

Even on the rare occasions that the Scottish Blogs are open for comment they are heavily moderated and we all know in which political direction.
 
 
# peter,aberdeenshire 2012-06-02 17:47
Quoting gus1940:
Time for a FOI Request asking for the number of compaints of political bias by BBC Scotland for each of the last 10 years.

Even on the rare occasions that the Scottish Blogs are open for comment they are heavily moderated and we all know in which political direction.


I did that a couple of years ago and it was refused on some flimsy excuse, I tried sending a general inquiry to the EU in the hope that there was something that could be done but again to no avail.
The unionist side will not make it easy to gain independence but I still think we will do it.
 
 
# tartanfever 2012-06-02 18:05
You may be interested to know that Director of the UK's 'Campaign for FOI' is Maurice Frankel, who just happens to be the cousin of Baroness Deech, who you can listen to above.
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-02 19:12
Peter, the BBC said to the parliamentary committe recently, if I am not mistaken, that if people had complaints then they would know of dissatisfaction , and then claimed that people were "more satisfied than ever".

At least the PCC has to publish an annual summary of complaints received, does it not?

Maybe the real thing to question should be the complaints system, but even in that they seem to be able to be judge and jury.

How is it, how can it be, that a body in public service and the official gatekeeper of public information can be allowed to be totally unaccountable to the public?
 
 
# peter,aberdeenshire 2012-06-02 19:29
Well I have complained numerous times by phone text and email, I imagine many fellow posters have done the same, so either there is a break down in communication or the BBC Scotland division is being economical with the truth.
 
 
# Exile 2012-06-02 21:45
Apparently to avoid possible political interference. Yeah, I know, it'd be funny if it wasn't so infuriating.
 
 
# creag an tuirc 2012-06-03 00:10
Hey Gus, see when you are making your FOI request could you ask for a copy of the letter Ruth Davidson pulled from her pocket during the Big Debate?
 
 
# A_Scottish_Voice 2012-06-02 17:22
Clearly BBC Scotland think they are untouchable, answerable to no one, and that they can do and say whatever they what, and if you don’t like it, they could not care less.

Given that it is also clear to anyone who looks, that BBC Scotland is not only biased in the way they report information, but also in the way they manipulate it, yet they can wash it off, it begs the question is there anything they cannot get away with.

Is there a limit to how far they can go, is there a line they cannot cross, probably not.

It looks like the only way to deal with BBC Scotland is to try and ensure that as many people as possible from now until the referendum are made aware of the fact that BBC Scotland has a political agenda, and that we are all paying for it in one way or another.
 
 
# schawaldowris 2012-06-02 17:27
We really must not be too hard on BBC Scotland employees. After all they are employed and paid by a staunch Unionist organization and secure pensions will rely on tests of their loyalty.

They are of course entitled to their opinion and when the people of Scotland re-assert their claim to independance, I am sure the BBC Scotland staff will be offered relocation by a grateful London media.
 
 
# Dundonian West 2012-06-03 11:15
"We really must not be too hard on BBC Scotland employees. After all they are employed and paid by a staunch Unionist organization."
I'm certain there are ordinary folk within BBC Scotland who are supporters of independence----the ordinary hard working people being paid a fair day's wage for a fair day' work.
Times are hard financially,but they WILL have freedom of speech and thought in the secret ballot box of Autumn 2014.
Vote YES in 2014.
 
 
# Jim1320 2012-06-02 17:31
Absolute bare faced lies. Comments are enabled once in a blue moon. How the hell is that "flexible".

Instead of just saying they are popular I think that it is time they started backing it up with facts.

The BBC news division in Scotland has to get a grip and distance itself with from its friends and (in some cases) family in the Labour party.
 
 
# Macart 2012-06-02 17:36
Just finished watching the Equinox piece. Still chuffed tae bits for the protestors who made it there on the day.

As for the Beeb, we know the score already and this is how its going to be for the next two years. They will simply deny any wrong doing time after time. That's not to say people should stop complaining or protesting, but that they should expect no positive response from the beeb. However bringing any outside attention to their biggest howlers over the campaign should cause them no end of embarrassment.
 
 
# Jim1320 2012-06-02 17:44
Every now and then a pop up appears asking for feedback on the BBC Scotland site. It is worth completing as it allows free text to say what you particularly dislike.
 
 
# Macart 2012-06-02 17:47
Veeeeery interestink.

Might be worth filling one out.

Cheers Jim
 
 
# Clydeinver 2012-06-02 18:41
Quoting Jim1320:
Every now and then a pop up appears asking for feedback on the BBC Scotland site. It is worth completing as it allows free text to say what you particularly dislike.

I fill out there feedback pop up every time it makes no difference
 
 
# Jim1320 2012-06-03 11:29
It must go in the count though so the question is were they lying when they said they were never more popular?

How do we get to see the figures FOI?
 
 
# Willow 2012-06-04 11:52
I've had these pop up questionnaires quite a lot mostly in the region sections in the Scottish news, but only when I go onto the site using an incognito window!

Funny that!

I always use stealth mode now when I visit our state broadcaster.

You're asked personal questions like where are you and if you are using a laptop?

You don't need to give your email, I don't give any private details other than location that being Scotland.
 
 
# tilly 2012-06-02 18:16
The BBC: ‘It isn’t true we have closed down comments.”

A bit like a bus company denying they are out of business but cancelling all services and running the odd bus when they feel like it.
 
 
# Taysider 2012-06-02 18:22
I looked just now at the item on the BBC website "Scottish Independence - Holyrood Endorses Independence".

The FM is quoted directly on just 5 lines of text. Lamont gets 7 lines, Davidson gets 6 lines and Rennie gets 3 lines.

So, no bias there then, a huge 5 lines on the Independence position and just 16 on the Dependence TPTWTS position.

More protest at Pacific Quay needed methinks.
 
 
# Macart 2012-06-02 18:37
Dear Gawd

Folks, for those of you on SKY check out the entry for channel 504 BBC Parliament and hit the prog info button on 12am Scottish parliament programme. See what they thought was the most interesting thing about Thursday.
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-02 19:15
What was it then? We're all agog ...
 
 
# Mark 2012-06-02 19:47
Land Registrration!
 
 
# Macart 2012-06-02 20:01
Yep, Land Registration etc.

That's the big deal in the Scottish Parliament this week. This independence thing is small beans.
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-02 21:03
Not sure if agog is the word then...
 
 
# Macart 2012-06-02 21:27
Well its not the first word that sprang to mind when I saw it.

A whole year of media strife, hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of column space bought and pontificated upon. Hours of negative TV coverage running to most of our license fee and on the day of debate and parliamentary vote..............land registration is what the BEEB find of interest?????
 
 
# James01 2012-06-02 18:45
I fear that the Scottish people will not be able to make an informed decision about independence due to the amount of bias and disinformation put out by the media.
 
 
# border reiver 2012-06-02 18:57
It is very important to tackle this on two fronts:-
1st - Keep the complaints rolling in where they are justified, then when the time is right hit the BBC with a FIO request for the last 2-3 years as asking for the last 10 years complaints as suggested will water them down as they are more relevant for the last few years.

2nd - Inform and highlight specific examples of their bias/lies to as many people as you can.

Hopefully the Yes campaign has something up its sleeve as I cant see them letting this sort of behaviour from a public broadcaster go unchallenged for long.
 
 
# gus1940 2012-06-03 07:46
The reason I suggested 10 years was to show the long term trends as the 'threat' of Independence increased. Note that I said 'each' of the last 10 years.
 
 
# Dcanmore 2012-06-02 19:00
Well done to the demonstrators who made it along. BBC Scotchland have given the wrong answer when faced with public scrutiny. Because they are publicly funded, instead of flat denials they should have accepted the accusations as a point taken then say they would review the situation (meaningless probably, but proper).

They have now admitted by their response that they have a game plan and they don't give a fig about public accusations. The only way BBC Pathetic Quay are going to question themselves (or be questioned) is to have a bigger demonstration, covered by TV cameras from the likes of RT and Al Jaz to provide embarrassment coverage. Exposure is the key with mention of names such as editors and controllers, the people behind the presenters.

If there's going to be a demo in early August then I'll be back in Scotland supporting it. Campaign to make it a target figure of 2014 people in the next demo ;)
 
 
# G. Campbell 2012-06-02 19:15
A spokesman for North Korean state media claimed that trust in Kim Jong-un has “never been higher” and said that audiences would tell them if reporting wasn’t scrupulously fair.

A spokesman for the BBC Monarchist Department claimed that respect for the Royal Family has “never been higher” and said that banned-from-TV republican voices would tell them if reporting wasn’t scrupulously fair.
 
 
# Woodside 2012-06-02 19:53
OT but on the theme of the media.

I have just complained to STV over the following headline

Jubilee celebrations under way as Scots mark 60 years of Queen Elizabeth II

Can others please also e-mail a complaint to viewerenquiries @stv.tv


I'm not big on the Jubilee, but at least can they report it accurately- we've never had a Liz the 1st.
 
 
# ituna semea 2012-06-03 06:23
SECOND ATTEMPT: Coronation Coronach.
Nae liz the Twa, nae Lillibet the Wan,
Nae Liz will ever dae,
We'll mak oor land republican
In a Scottish breakaway.
(Words Thurso Berwick Tune "The Sash) Heard the Corries sing this many moons ago,great fun!
Of course Mr Salmond may have redacted these sentiments from the Scottish Nationalist Songbook.
 
 
# MacSenex 2012-06-02 20:07
As the Un monitors elections in other countries could the Yes campaign not ask the UN to appoint a moderator to ensure no political bias in state broadcasting involving the referendum campaign?

Anything which can be done to undermine the BBC's patina of political neutrality must be employed. If we pick away at it the credibility over the next two years will be seriously undermined. Who knows, Leveson might even get involved
 
 
# Soixante-neuf 2012-06-02 20:53
It's a difficult issue. Just about anything there could be defended by the BBC as them reporting matters of interest. It's not that any individual item by itself is a complete outrage. It's the lack of balance.

Nowhere can we find an article or presentation that shows people happy about the prospect of independence - or not without a cynical commentary. Nowhere can we find presenters putting forward the Scottish government's position without a constant drip, drip, drip of criticism, often quite snarky. Nowhere do we see the BBC showing a positive vision of Scotland as an independent country.

I don't remember them ever sticking up for the compassionate release of Megrahi as a principled thing to do. I don't remember any committed presentation showing the actual truth, that nobody ever found any evidence of any of the back-door deals they hinted at so much. Even the opinion poll they referenced, saying it was an unpopular decision, was one they commissioned themselves and apparently a rogue, because a number of other polls at the same time had approval about 75%.

I don't know how this can easily be handled. It's not the individual stories they DO broadcast, it's the absence of the positive ones they DON'T broadcast that's the real problem.
 
 
# Legerwood 2012-06-02 21:40
O/T but a couiple of interesting stories in the Telegraph - more grief for the Tories by the looks of things.

Baroness Warsi and her business dealings
telegraph.co.uk/.../...

Senior LibDems in talks withLabour

telegraph.co.uk/.../...
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-02 22:04
OT, re. right of parts of European states to secede, just picked up this strange piece in 1 of the Catalan nationalist electronic newspapers and can't make head nor tail of it, don't think it's just my Catalan.

naciodigital.cat/.../catalunya

I'll look out for the actual text if it gets published later. May have to spread over 2 posts:

Brussels says Catalonia can be independent within the EU
The European Commission tells Reagrupament the way forward to "solve" the secession of part of a member state

"Prize". This is how Reagrupament sees the response that Brussels has sent to its request to initiate a process to promote a Citizens Legislative Initiative envisaged in the Lisbon Treaty, to regulate how to integrate the secessionist part of a Member State of the Union. The resolution, to which Nació Digital has had access, despite rejecting the petition, alleging that this matter is already regulated, gives the clue to finding the "solution" to a virtual independent Catalonia joining the EU.

The document signed by Catherine Day, Secretary General of the European Commission, tacitly suggests that there is no risk of expulsion of the secessionist territory nor any type of sanction, nor is it a matter for the internal law of the state concerned, quite the contrary, and suggests that the "solution must be found in international law and also international negotiation."

"There is no legal basis in the treaties of the European Union that allows secondary legislation, such as the European Parliament, to address the consequences of the secession of a part of a member state. In the event of the secession of part of a member state, the solution must be found and negotiated within the international legal order", sealed by the European de facto government.

In this sense, the resolution points out that European nationality is "secondary" because it is necessary to have the nationality of a Member State to enter the EU. On this premise, the text suggests that the secession of a part of a member state does not in any way prevent it from joining the Union using established procedures and obtaining European citizenship.

For Joan Carretero, leader of Reagrupament and signee of the petition, the decision shows "the threats by Spanish politicians based on the expulsion or punishment of the European Union if Catalonia became an independent state are false." "The text makes it clear that a process of secession by part of a member state causes no conflict for the EU, as they always speak of 'solution' and not of conflict, they show us the way" said Carretero.
 
 
# Mei 2012-06-03 10:10
This would be like Greenland and Denmark in the 1950s.
Greenland had to negotiate to leave the Common Market after becoming independent from Denmark.
 
 
# the wallace 2012-06-02 22:59
Cant wait for the next protest against beeb they will not be able to ignore us for much longer,it would be good if foreign media outlets covered it this time, i think they will only get bigger and louder they will reap the wirlwind soon.
 
 
# cjmasta 2012-06-02 23:25
We must keep the pressure on the BBC in Scotland particularly. Their clear political agenda is not what a modern democratic European nation should have to put up with in this day and age.

Infact we need to pile on the pressure, we need more people to turn up at the next protest whenever that may be. I think we should be demanding control over broadcasting with some clear guidelines set out to be put in place to insure our public service TV output is not abused by any political party or ideology.

Is there not some action Europe could take because what we have right now is another country effectively controlling our airwaves. Even if they continue to spend all the extra money we send to them which is never spent in Scotland but pays for broadcasting around the world and pays for the British 6 0clock news etc we should have control of the money spent in Scotland.

Did some welsh mp not threaten westminster years ago to gain a welsh tv channel? We are in a stronger position than 1 mp ever was and i think the scottish government should flex its muscles a bit more on some issues.
 
 
# Welsh Sion 2012-06-03 12:45
Quoting cjmasta:
Did some welsh mp not threaten westminster years ago to gain a welsh tv channel? We are in a stronger position than 1 mp ever was and i think the scottish government should flex its muscles a bit more on some issues.


Partly correct - that would be our very own Dr Gwynfor Evans, President - but not MP - of Plaid Cymru who threatened to go on hunger strike in 1980 unless the Tories reversed their policy of not granting us the fourth TV Channel.

Initially, it had been Tory policy in their election manifesto, and when they gained power in May 1979, Willie Whitelaw (the Home Secretary) decided not to implement it. Thousands in Wales refused to pay their TV licences, Evans contemplated his hunger strike, and eventually Thatcher and the Tories caved in - allegedly the only U-turn performed by Maggie in all her years in Number 10.

Evans himself was slightly disappointed that they yielded so quickly - but maybe Thatcher was afraid of the precedent set by the Irish Republicans at Long Kesh/the H Blocks, i.e. Bobby Sands MP and others.

Apologies for the wiki source - but I'll try and find something better if you want it.

en.wikipedia.org/.../...

Incidentally, hundreds of my compatriots are still refusing to pay their licences because of the BBC treatment of Wales and the anglicisation of BBC Radio Cymru.

Common cause, anyone?
 
 
# ButeHouse 2012-06-03 00:15
I hope the excellent coverage by the fledgling Equinox is already on YouTube. This Internet is absolutely fantastic, not only has it brought us NNS it also allows new sympathetic Nationalist TV to flourish.

I think without the Internet Independence would be a far more difficult goal to reach, but with the Net, our unionist enemies will find silencing our message much more difficult. VOTE YES in 2014
 
 
# mutterings 2012-06-03 10:37
Quoting ButeHouse:
I hope the excellent coverage by the fledgling Equinox is already on YouTube.

What do you think where NNS is pulling the video from?
www.youtube.com/.../
 
 
# Suomi 2012-06-03 07:03
To paraphrase Helem Liddell,former presenter on Reporting Scotland,and Labour MP:

''They would say that,wouldn't they?''

By the way,who are Equinox?
 
 
# ituna semea 2012-06-03 07:25
Suomi you really must keep up: Equinox TV is part of Equinox Scotland Limited, a company setup to help regenerate Scotland’s media and production industry.
 
 
# UpSpake 2012-06-03 07:50
Is the media attitude to the desires of the people of Scotland to self determination shared on a wider spectrum than just the BBC ?. I e-mailed Channel 4 advising them of the demo and complaining about their diminishing standard of financial reporting to no avail. No reply, no acknowledgement , silence.
I have a feeling that the BBC do get Scotland but that we are moving in a direction not shared by that un-biased corporation. Similarly, the other London based UK media don't want to rock the boat and therefore put up a firewall to anti-establishment sentiment.
Those here who advocate the presence of Al Jazera and Russia TV are de-facto recognising just how damaged the democracy is here in Scotland.
Essentially, the media here, and in particular BBC Scotland, are not fit for purpose !.
 
 
# CyBOS 2012-06-03 19:44
Quoting UpSpake:
Is the media attitude to the desires of the people of Scotland to self determination shared on a wider spectrum than just the BBC ?. I e-mailed Channel 4 advising them of the demo and complaining about their diminishing standard of financial reporting to no avail. No reply, no acknowledgement , silence.
I have a feeling that the BBC do get Scotland but that we are moving in a direction not shared by that un-biased corporation. Similarly, the other London based UK media don't want to rock the boat and therefore put up a firewall to anti-establishment sentiment.
Those here who advocate the presence of Al Jazera and Russia TV are de-facto recognising just how damaged the democracy is here in Scotland.
Essentially, the media here, and in particular BBC Scotland, are not fit for purpose !.

We need to have a growing number attending each and every demo.

Last once 150, next one 1500, then 5,000!

They cannot keep ignoring it or there and then we have the proof of partiality. We will have them nailed with their own Charter.

BUT THIS NEEDS EVERYONE TO PARTICIPATE, TO COMMIT, TO BRING ALONG FAMILY, FRIENDS AND ACQUAINTANCES.

UpSpake was there this time, I was there along with 148 others.

Will you be there next time?
 
 
# gus1940 2012-06-03 08:06
I have previously suggested regular weekly protests at Pacific Quay and the setting up of a permanent vigil there along the lines of The Devolution Vigil outside St. Andrew's House in the 90's

Why should we stop at that - what about protest rallies at Westminster and The European Parliament.

The ultimate would be a demo at The UN General Assembly. It would be too costly to send people across the pond but could something not be organised with Independence supporting expats in The States?

And another thing - given that the BBC is spending vast sums of our Propaganda Tax covering the ludicrous Olympic Torch fiasco it's not too late for some protesters with suitable banners to follow the torch progress across The UK waving suitable placards in front of the cameras. The same thing could have been done with all the Jubilee nonsense.

We might even manage to get some perfectly peaceful protesters arrested with resultant publicity.
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-03 09:04
A small group visit to Brussels to stand outside a relevant building wouldn't cost too much and is bound to get publicity from the international media and I wouldn't be surprised if the UK papers didn't take an interest.

It would shame the BBC. It's been done before by other countries, it really does work. Some guy even composed a campaign song to sing on the bus and put it on Youtube.
 
 
# Caledonian Lass 2012-06-03 11:16
Quoting Marga B:
A small group visit to Brussels to stand outside a relevant building wouldn't cost too much and is bound to get publicity from the international media and I wouldn't be surprised if the UK papers didn't take an interest.

It would shame the BBC. It's been done before by other countries, it really does work. Some guy even composed a campaign song to sing on the bus and put it on Youtube.

Excellent idea, Marga. Perhaps there should also be a few linguists in the group to dispel the BBC's idea that people protesting against their Unionist bias aren't narrow-minded and insular. They could even promote a positive image of the YES campaign in contrast to the negativity churned out by the Beeb.
 
 
# Welsh Sion 2012-06-03 12:50
For Caledonian Lass and Marga:

Perhaps there should also be a few linguists in the group to dispel the BBC's idea that people protesting against their Unionist bias aren't narrow-minded and insular. They could even promote a positive image of the YES campaign in contrast to the negativity churned out by the Beeb.

Count me in if you need any further help/references in this direction.

1 I agree with your standpoints

2 I have contacts of a similar mindset in Wales - Plaid, pressure groups etc.

3 I speak fluent French, Welsh and English

4 I am qualified to speak on matters of a legal nature (Upper Second English Law Degree with Honours and previous experience as a cub-lawyer and advocate for language rights and before various tribunals and public inquiries

5 I have links with various professional linguistic bodies as well as European contacts - especially France, Britanny and Poland

6 I am an extensive user of social networks and a moderator of various Welsh/Celtic interest groups on Facebook.
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-03 14:56
Sion and Caledonian Lass - in case you're interested, here's quite a good interview (2009 so things have moved on) with a university professor about the philosophy behind the Catalan march to Brussels, and a link to a short promotional video with English overtitles published by the same group "Deu mil a Brussel·les":

catalanstate.blogspot.com.es/.../...

andhttps://plus.google.com/115090381209734613898/posts

I have to say though that this initiative was for independence, so maybe the context is too different. Sorry if I'm mixing apples with pears here, but it could maybe be adapted to the present case.
 
 
# Welsh Sion 2012-06-03 17:15
Many thanks, Marga.

Please note our relationship with Catalunya too - rather dated but still a useful starting off point perhaps:

kimkat.org/

We need to build as many alliances as possible with like-minded individuals and (as yet) stateless nations. I have a Catalan linguist colleague too.
 
 
# Jamieson 2012-06-03 10:19
A good idea for people to trail the torch with placards. But NO! NO! NO! to protesters no matter how peaceful they may be. It will be spun back against the SNP. Look at what has happened to Nicola Sturgeon's fairly innocent remarks about PERHAPS having a seat on the BOE's Monetary Policy Committee. The media will always spin 'maybes' into actualities.
And O/T on that. SNP politicians must get a coherent media policy to decide and be better briefed about what to say and what not to say in public about Independence. It was a bit stupid for NS to even mention a seat on the MPC at this stage in the campaign. Keep it simple (and vague) stupid is a very good adage to work by.
 
 
# mealer 2012-06-03 08:35
gus1940
We dont really want to be seen as party poopers.Moaners and girners.Negative.Let them have their party.The Scots are not turned on by all this Brit Nat crap and are,in the main,choosing to ignore it.And thats the best answer to it.We'll get our turn nearer voting day.When it matters.In the mean time,we keep up the positive message about how good an energy rich country will be for our children and grand children.
 
 
# Caadfael 2012-06-03 08:46
On the very rare occasions that the commissars do open up comments, I cant help but wonder how soon it will be that AlJazz and Russia Today join NewsnetScotland on the profanity filter.
Could someone who monitors the beeb please alert us on facebook? At some point they're bound to whinge about "unfair treatment"!
 
 
# Woodside 2012-06-03 09:43
A bit OT but I bet this story wont make the BBC.

google.com/.../...

Apologies but I didn't know where to post this, it's a very important story for anyone who frequents the waters and coast of the West of Scotland
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-03 10:08
Woodside - Belfast and Stornaway rescuers to cover the Clyde?
 
 
# rhymer 2012-06-03 11:50
Scary news story there, Woodside.
I wonder what Westminster's response to the first deaths caused by this stupid action will be ?
That area of the Clyde coast is probably the busiest, for amateur sailors, in the whole country. Withdrawing coastguard services from that area will result in unnecessary deaths.
 
 
# Woodside 2012-06-03 20:23
Quoting rhymer:
Scary news story there, Woodside.
I wonder what Westminster's response to the first deaths caused by this stupid action will be ?
That area of the Clyde coast is probably the busiest, for amateur sailors, in the whole country. Withdrawing coastguard services from that area will result in unnecessary deaths.


Westminsters response will be to blame the foot soldiers as usual, even if it's one of those same foot soldiers who are killed or injured.
In many rescues time is of the essence and honest misdirection by people who don't know the area as intimately as Clyde will be critical to someones survival at some point in the future.

Sad but then we know that some folk know the price of everything and the value of absolutely nothing.
 
 
# Davy 2012-06-03 10:13
So the BBC claim they only allow comments in Scotland if they believe it "ENHANCES" the story, lets see.

England :
Nick Robinson - Political editor - allowed comments all the time.
Robert Peston - Business editor - allowed comments all the time.

Wales :
Betsan Powys - Political editor - allowed comments all the time.
David Cornock - Parlimentary correspondent - allowed comments all the time.

Northern Ireland :
Mark Devenport - Political editor - allowed comments all the time.

Scotland :Brian Taylor - Political editor - No comments allowed.
Douglas Fraser - Business and Economy editor - No comments allowed.

Therefore I conclude the only parts of the UK that believes that comments "ENHANCES" the story / article are England, Wales and Northern Ireland. And nothing the Political and Business editors of BBC Scotland are writing are worth ? well anything. Time to get new Political & Business editors for BBC Scotland then, as the ones they have got are obviously not doing their job.
 
 
# Welsh Sion 2012-06-03 12:52
To add to your list:

All regional English commentators also have their blogs open for comments as does our own Vaughan Roderick (Political Editor: BBC Cymru - in Welsh).

Methinks something is rotten at the core of BBC Scotland - but they will not like it up them when we mobilise.

Onwards together - Wales and Scotland united and together against the maledictions thrown against our nations.
 
 
# alicmurray 2012-06-03 11:13
Worth reading about the BEEB in the Sunday Times today.
 
 
# Davy 2012-06-03 12:27
Quoting alicmurray:
Worth reading about the BEEB in the Sunday Times today.


Yep, I read it, a very nice letter on "Bias BBC", the message appears to be getting through. Keep it up folks.
 
 
# Dundonian West 2012-06-03 11:27
Another small donation to newsnetscotland .Well done---I honestly don't know what we'd do without you.
Keep it up.
 
 
# BillDunblane 2012-06-03 12:58
Knew I'd find it - check out the last paragraph in Taylor's Blog.

bbc.co.uk/.../...

Hoist by their own petard?
 
 
# Welsh Sion 2012-06-03 13:06
From BBC Scotland Brian Taylor's blog:

We will continue, however, to enable comments from time to time on this page as we do across our online service to provide users with the opportunity to contribute on particular stories.

Hoist by their own petard?, ask BillDunblane.

Indeed.

When? How? Who decides? What to allow?

May you soon be living in a free, democratic and independent, sovereign nation.
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-03 14:50
Weasle words - it is NOT "as we do across our online service". It is different. It is demonstrably different. Does anyone want to challenge this with Davy's figures?

BBC English used to be a standard reference for clarity and precision, now its standard is its apparent pride in perverting language to conceal the truth.
 
 
# X_Sticks 2012-06-03 20:44
Daniel Maxwell is the man who has decided. This from a reply to one my complaints:
-----------
Thanks for getting in touch. I've decided to close the comments on theBrian and Douglas blogs as a rule of thumb. Instead I am opening upcomments across all our content more regularly - that way I am givingpeople the opportunity to comment on a wider range of subject areas -recent examples being minimum pricing and high speed rail. That's my reasoning. I obviously disagree with the assertion that I'vedone it to stop unsubstantiated propoganda as you describe it. If you're not satisfied then you have already indicated theopportunitie s available to take this further. All the very best, Daniel Maxwell
---------------------
 
 
# Davy 2012-06-03 14:40
Quoting BillDunblane:
Knew I'd find it - check out the last paragraph in Taylor's Blog.

bbc.co.uk/.../...

Hoist by their own petard?




The words we would be looking for is GUTLESS BBC. They like to give it out, but they cant take back.

Vote YES, Vote Scotland
 
 
# Dundonian West 2012-06-03 13:05
Abandon BBC Scotland News on-line? Methinks we may actually be the only people reading it!
Over the weeks I've posted balanced news links comments permitted from on-line STV---here's one:-----
news.stv.tv/.../...
I say again,the site is OPEN and WAITING. STV on-line News/Comments.
To STV everyone?
 
 
# gus1940 2012-06-03 17:35
As regards BBC bias I thought that I had seen it all until I read The Daily Mail's TV listings for the week ahead.

Thursday's Question Time is to come from Inverness and the composition of the panel is incredible:-

Danny Alexander
Michael Forsyth
Johann Lamont
Melanie Phillips (London Journalist if my menory is correct)
Alan Cumming

QT from Scotland and no SNP politician on the panel.

It will be interesting to see what sort of rigged audience and rigged questions they will manage to come up with.

For anybody who thinks that they may on occasion be imagining Unionist Bias this should eliminate any doubt.
 
 
# Dcanmore 2012-06-03 18:05
Well, of course this is to give the impression to a mass TV audience throughout the UK that Scotland is pro union, because the panel is made up of pro-union Scots and they will try and isolate the independence movement as an SNP only cause.

The token pro-independence voice (the Hollywood actor) is there to make himself look embarrassed and be out of his depth as he is rounded upon by the politicos for supporting independence.

This is going to be a BBC sponsored slaughter for the masses.
 
 
# jafurn 2012-06-03 18:06
# gus1940 .. I cannot believe that is the line up. I am not saying you are wrong just that I cannot believe it.

Surely that cannot be allowed to stand...Is someone having a joke here?
 
 
# creag an tuirc 2012-06-03 18:13
Hey Jafurn, whilst I agree. I think having Beaker, Lord Forsyth and that woman that talks drivel at FMQ every week, could be a good thing. :-)
 
 
# jafurn 2012-06-03 18:19
I know what you mean but that's not the point is it? How can they (BBC) be allowed to come to Scotland and put on their flagship political show and not have representation from the Scottish Government..it beggars belief. Unless the SNP have decided not to take part... then that would be another story.
 
 
# EdinScot 2012-06-03 18:43
Is it possible to get someone from the SNP to explain this decision as being a political programme they must surely have been approached for being a panel member for thursdays' 'question time' programme from Inverness?.

Alan Cumming is not a politican and cant be expected to respond to hard facts regarding Goverment policies such as the economy. This has all the hallmarks of a set up.
 
 
# Holebender 2012-06-03 20:20
We're talking about the BBC here; what makes you think the SNP "must... have been approached"?
 
 
# EdinScot 2012-06-03 20:37
Maybe the word i should have used was 'surely' instead of 'must', but until we all know otherwise we're all whistling in the wind as usual.

So i reiterate, is there any clues as to whats going on SNP?
 
 
# Jamieson 2012-06-04 09:45
Question Time is NOT "their flagship political show". It is on late at night at 10.35 pm. It is a Noddy version of Newsnight and has been since 'Slebs' started appearing on it. I'm a bit of a politics anorak but I don't watch it because the questions are naff and the 'discussions' are usually no more than childish points scoring exercises between political parties.
 
 
# Barbazenzero 2012-06-03 20:44
Hard to believe, I agree, but the BBC website says it's true. See www.bbc.co.uk/.../b01jsxb3
 
 
# gus1940 2012-06-04 06:08
Victor Meldrew would agree with you but if you get hold of Saturday's Daily Mail Suuplement you will see it clearly in black and white. It could, of course be a wind-up by that purveyor of racism and xenophobia.

As for The BBC - after their denial of bias and their nonsense about allowing comments they are now showing their total disdain towards Scotland and her people by giving us 2 fingers.
 
 
# Jamieson 2012-06-03 18:50
I wonder if the SNP were asked to provide panellists? Whatever, my view is that the SNP should refuse to participate in any BBC discussion programmes unless there are equal numbers of anti and pro Independence people on the programme. And it must insist on seeing questions in advance. It is not good for the SNP to appear just to be shouted down.
It is also my view that Alan Cumming should back out of this programme. He is on a hiding to nothing because there will almost certainly be at least one question about Scottish Independence comes up.
Melanie Phillips is a well known nasty, viperous, anti-Scottish Daily Mail columnist who is also a rabid supporter of Israel against the Palestinians.
 
 
# xyz 2012-06-03 19:24
Absolutely incredible .. four aggressive, loud, obnoxious, anti independence panellists .. and one defender of independence for Scotland, who happens to be an actor.
 
 
# gus1940 2012-06-04 06:19
Don't forget Dimbleby with his usual attitude to any mention of Scottish Independence.

This is the most blatant example to date of Anti-Independence bias and must not be tolerated.

3 Unionists,a Daily Mail columnist and The Chairman against an actor - are they taking the unmentionable?
 
 
# gus1940 2012-06-04 06:22
Not forgetting the no doubt carefully selected 'balanced' audience and the 'equally balanced' questions' plus the ability to edit a pre-recorded program.
 
 
# G. Campbell 2012-06-03 19:34
"Danny Alexander, Michael Forsyth, Johann Lamont, Melanie Phillips, Alan Cumming"

Take away Alan Cumming and that's possibly the most right-wing panel ever to appear on a QT from Scotland

"no SNP politician on the panel"

Alan Cumming is pro-independence. If the BBC were to invite an SNP politician on to the same programme they would be showing a clear nationalist bias. A panel made up of 80% unionists is perfectly fair (83% if you include Dimbleby). I just hope that Alan knows what he's letting himself in for, and that he'll be sufficiently clued up on all the important topics beforehand.

I predict now that Michael Forsyth will receive the most applause - just as he did in the programme from Aberdeen last year. On that occasion, Forsyth was everyone's friend and Salmond appeared slightly shell-shocked at the hostile questioning from the audience. Dimbleby will have been impressed.
 
 
# ButeHouse 2012-06-04 01:30
I'll bet Alan gets the biggest cheers of the night. Let them show off their unionist bias, people aren't stupid.

I hope the London Journalist knocks Scotland and the Scots (moaners and spongers) as much as her colleagues on BBC Radio 4 have done in the recent past.

VOTE YES in 2014
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-03 22:17
Johann will have to sink or swim with that lot!
 
 
# josepy wallace 2012-06-03 18:28
I have had 3 people I know tell me that thier view is that the BBC is bias all the time and that they were not able to post even after this statement claiming this was not the case, well you keep telling yourself that BBC and maybe if you say it enough even you will believe it to be true your bias end of
 
 
# Jamieson 2012-06-03 19:34
Folks a really good discusion about the bbc here on the Guardian. Some really good comments as well.
guardian.co.uk/.../...
 
 
# Dcanmore 2012-06-03 20:04
This is Alan Cumming's representative in the UK. Get a message to him and warn him! I've sent him one already via email, maybe a few more by others will alert him in time.

Alan Cumming, c/o Conor McLaughlin, Troika, 3rd Floor, 74 Clerkenwell Road, London, EC1M 5QA
T 020 7336 7868. F 020 7490 7642 email: info@troikatale nt.com
 
 
# Ready to Start 2012-06-03 20:14
You can be sure the SNP were not invited to put up a politician.

It is so loaded with no SNP politician on the panel that Labour feel confident enough to let Johan Lamont appear. In addition to Lord Forsyth we have the right wing journalist Melanie Phillips billed to take part along with Danny Alexander to attack Alan Cumming who although an articulate advocate of independence is not a street wise politician. Why is BBC allowed to get away with this unrepresentativ e distortion with two right wing Tories on the panel in Scotland but no SNP representative.
 
 
# From The Suburbs 2012-06-03 20:25
Has anyone alerted the SNP press office?
 
 
# Thee Forsaken One 2012-06-03 20:32
And so Johan Lamont is finally allowed to show her face on Question Time, but interestingly there is no SNP politician at that time. One might think she's only turned up because she doesn't have to worry about people disagreeing with her.
 
 
# Welsh Sion 2012-06-03 20:51
I am incensed for the good folk of Scotland on this matter - and trying to be as objective as possible, I do think that the political issues regarding Scotland should be discuss as fairly as possible from all sides on e.g. the matter of independence.

The fact that the state broadcaster of a so-called United Kingdom will not countenance a single member of the democratically elected Government of Scotland - and that by a landslide - is an affront to democracy, an insult to the Scottish people and a betrayal of fair play, something that I had previously expected from the BBC.

I know many of you are far more savvy than me in these matters and also you are in a much better position than me to plead your case of BBC bias against Scotland and the independence campaign generally, but in case anyone thinks it might be beneficial in attempting to join the QT audience (I did stress attempt to join, as there is a distinct likelihood, on previous form, that independence wishing nationalists and patriots - of all parties, persuasions and none will be weeded out - I send you this link.

bbc.co.uk/.../...

On a personal note, I see that QT will be down the road to me in Luton on 28 June. What is your advice - should I apply to be a member of the audience, and if yes, should I give any party political affiliation?
 
 
# Dcanmore 2012-06-03 20:38
Here's the Question Time schedule confirmed for Thursday in Inverness, on the BBC website. Indeed it is Lamont, Forsyth, Alexander et all.

www.bbc.co.uk/.../b01jsxb3
 
 
# Old Smokey 2012-06-03 22:14
Is that line up a joke?
Danny Alexander , Libdem and pro unionist
Forsyth, Tory and pro unionist
Johann Lamont , Labour and pro unionist
Melanie Phillips, pro Tory and pro unionist
versus Alan Cumming pro independent
Really the BBC are taking the royal P here and would strongly suggest to Alan that he pulls out at the last minute

There is no way it will be a balanced debate
 
 
# odds ON 2012-06-03 20:51
Demonstration outside the venue in Inverness on Thursday night then?
 
 
# KOF 2012-06-03 21:21
Quoting odds ON:
Demonstration outside the venue in Inverness on Thursday night then?


Does anyone know where about in Inverness the venue is?
 
 
# EdinScot 2012-06-04 13:43
Hey KOF, ive been trying to find out by googling on any info on thursdays question time show but no luck so far...

Im sure (correct me if im wrong?) that its usually held in the Eden Court Theatre when in Inverness.
 
 
# Soloman 2012-06-03 20:51
A thought to counter lies from Pathetic Quay, how about advertising in cinemas when big films are being screened?
 
 
# From The Suburbs 2012-06-03 21:27
AS BBC often has two Labour or two Tories on Question Time from England and given the political balance in Scotland there is absolutely no excuse for them not to have an SNP MSP as well as Alan Cumming on the programme.
 
 
# lochside 2012-06-03 21:57
If this line-up is true, then the Scottish Government should complain loud and long publicly.They should also ask Alan Cumming to refuse to attend. By both of those actions, the BBC would be forced to explain his absence, and it would magnify to the Nth degree to the viewing public, if they still needed it, of the disgusting parody of a programme has become under the tutelage of Dimblebore (nepotism anyone?). This would undermine the obvious agenda for Lamont et al to rubbish an earnest but unskilled patriot such as Cumming from being publicly ridiculed along with the pro-Independence debate. It might even prevent Dimblebore sticking his Little Englander neb in with his customary slurs about Megrahi's release.
 
 
# jafurn 2012-06-03 22:16
3 Unionists and Ms Phillips.

Here is a sample of her thoughts on Scotland.

"The Westminster subsidies also helped create fertile soil for the politics of infantilism in which the Scots specialise — more genteelly styled as Left-wing thinking — whose radical disconnection from reality has been cushioned by the generous largesse of the English and Welsh taxpayer."


dailymail.co.uk/.../...



I honestly think that the BBC are having a laugh here. They just don't give a s*&t.

If they can get away with this then what can't they do?
 
 
# Welsh Sion 2012-06-03 22:20
I have tried rallying the Welsh and Celtic troops behind you on Facebook with the following. I hope you approve.

------------------------------------------

Please show your support for fellow Celts, the Scots with regard to the insulting nature of the composition of the BBC Question Time panel from Inverness this coming Thursday:

Danny Alexander MP (Lib Dem) - Pro Dependence
Lord Michael Forsyth (Con) - Pro Dependence
Johann Lamont MSP (Lab) - Pro Dependence
Melanie Phillips (London Journalist and Pro Dependence)
Alan Cumming (Actor) - Pro Independence

NOWHERE is there an ELECTED member of the Scottish Government - the SCOTTISH NATIONAL PARTY - on this panel. Let us remind ourselves that the SNP won an election landslide last year in Scotland.

This BBC anti-SNP bias is an affront to democracy, an insult to the Scottish people and bare faced prejudice against the pro-independence campaign.

We must protest and let our voices be heard against such tyranny - let there be no doubt that these types of dirty tricks are being trialled out on our Celtic cousins the Scots. When they are free, and our turn comes, then we too, Welsh and Cornish will have to confront the same black-ops. (I'm sure similar things are perpetuated against our other Celtic cousins on the Continent by the state powers in Paris and Madrid).

So let us unite with the Scots and let the Londonian BBC no longer speaks to us nor does so in a manner which is fair, reasonable and just.
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-03 22:25
OT but interesting - Labour "block votes" - I didn't know about this.

"Labour needs to end its decades-long practice of relying on blocks of minority ethnic votes to be delivered by community leaders, Tony Blair's former race adviser Faz Hakim said on Sunday.

"The remarks come as the Labour party's national executive digests a report admitting it lost the Bradford West byelection to George Galloway of Respect partly because it believed that a small group of British-Pakistani community leaders could deliver the election for Labour. Ed Miliband ordered a no-holds barred inquiry into the Bradford defeat and visited the city to discuss why Labour was rejected."

Does this apply anywhere in Scotland?
 
 
# jafurn 2012-06-03 22:44
How does Question Time select its panel members?

By Ric Bailey
Deputy Head of Political Programmes

Question Time is rooted in politics and therefore has to achieve a fair and appropriate representation from the various political parties across the UK.

In normal programmes, that means Labour and the Conservatives are virtually always represented; in the majority of editions, so are the Liberal Democrats.


We keep these proportions - and those of smaller parties - under constant review, taking as our guide the level of electoral support at national level which each party enjoys.

news.bbc.co.uk/.../... does


"at national level which each party enjoys."
I suspect that this will be their alibi as they can claim that the SNP does not have a great support at National (UK)level
 
 
# scottishwatersnotforsale 2012-06-03 22:56
Hang on guys,dont panic about BBC QT. Alan Cumming may be a breath of fresh air and more than capable of dealing with politicians.
I appreciate he is a huge star more in America but perhaps he can bring a different,down to earth view ,a more broad view ,rather than stale soundbites that QT has become.Afterall he is a UK citizen and does pay tax here and if anything should be praised for standing up for what he believes.Lets be honest and I say this as an SNP member,if anyone from the SNP was on the panel, the topics would be limited and dominated by the referendum but lets see how certain MSPs perform when questioned out of their comfort zone-could make for interesting viewing..
 
 
# millie 2012-06-03 23:47
Lesley Riddoch article …. Re: BBC in Scotland- (mentions the HQ protest)

scotsman.com/.../...
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-04 02:46
Nice to see the demo being used as the main hook for a cracking article. Lesley is now regularly exposing the Scottish media to a scrutiny that they must take seriously.

The SNP did well to keep out so the issue is clean-cut and uncontaminated. And the demo now has legs and is walking into interesting places!
 
 
# G. Campbell 2012-06-03 23:56
BBC TOLD NOT TO OFFEND SNP IN REPORTING OF REFERENDUM

BBC news staff covering the independence referendum have been advised not to use words that the SNP believes are biased against them.

Words and phrases such as “divorce” and “break-up” could affect the result, according to Nationalists who also claim the description “separatist” implies an independent Scotland would be isolated, rather than working in partnership with other countries.


scottishdailyexpress.co.uk/.../...
 
 
# Marga B 2012-06-04 02:49
What's in a word! 2 prize quotes:

"The BBC has also faced criticism from Labour politicians who say they should not say “the Westminster Government”, because it makes the UK Government appear to be London-orientated."

and

"The referendum guide is similar to one issued by the BBC to journalists covering the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, advising them not to use expressions that could offend either camp."
 
 
# jafurn 2012-06-04 11:16
Would be nice but can you imagine Mr Dim bleby allowing this question...

Robert Stewart ‏@_RobertStewar t
@PeteWishart Let’s hope one of the questions selected is

“Why is Scotland’s Government not represented on the panel?”
 
 
# Willow 2012-06-04 12:13
Re BBC QT was Humza Yousaf a bit too good last time for the state broadcaster & unionist parties?

They could have at the very least invited Patrick Harvey, but then I suppose this is more about looking after Lamont, who will be guided & protected by Dimbleby.
 
 
# Caadfael 2012-06-04 14:14
Or why is NewsNetScotland a forbidden subject?
It is absolutely SHAMEFUL that we are not allowed to comment on politics and economics IN OUR OWN COUNTRY .. this is called REPRESSION Any comment containing the word"Newsnetscotland " is removed with some spurious, bullshit exuse. This is CENSORSHIP!
Both these practises MUST STOP, they are the actions of a TOTALITARIAN government.
 
 
# gfaetheblock 2012-06-04 22:28
There is an odd irony to this article, as I seen to being moderated on every submission and half of them don't get published.

Is it because I is a unionist?
 
 
# Outoftown2012 2012-06-08 05:38
Dont worry, as the Unionist claim, after Independance we cant call ourselves British (were we ever?).
So now we can change the BBC to the SBC or has that website been taken by the British Labour and British Tory alliance?
 
 
# flyingscott 2012-06-15 21:24
For all the good it will do, but it made me feel better.

BBC Complaints dept.
I am writing in the vain hope of a reasoned response to the unremmitting pro-unionist bias where covering political news in Scotland (with Mr Boothman in charge what hope), and also to express disgust at the undermining of the democratic system shown by not allowing comment on Scottish political issues. With comment allowed in every other BBC region, every other bar Scotland, how can this be defended?
It is understandable why the BBC would like to retain the union, licence fee loss & the very nature of the British element in BBC the main drivers. But with impartiality written into your charter by Reith, corporate interests should not prevail.
The BBC has always had British interests at heart when covering foreign news, and is truly world class & unique,so a British 'slant' is understandable, but Scotland isn't a foreign country. Yet.
 

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