BBC: Urgent (from 38 Degrees)

I hope this link to 38 degrees works (it might have my name in it). I filled in the survey, skipping a couple of questions I couldn’t answer. Since then, I thought I should have mentioned BBC programmes I liked in defence of the BBC which is under attack.

Dear Ian,

There’s just 48 hours left to have your say on the future of the BBC. The government consultation on the BBC’s future closes on Thursday. David Cameron and media baron Rupert Murdoch – owner of the Sun, the Times and Sky News – are trying to build support for their plans to cut the BBC. They want to make way for more biased corporate news.

But together we’re showing them they’ve got no mandate to dismantle our independent BBC. Can you join the 125,000 other 38 Degrees members who’ve sent in a survey response and fill out the survey now, before it’s too late?

 

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Here’s the original email about this:

 

Dear Ian,

Government plans to rip out the heart of the BBC are taking shape. [1] Imagine a BBC where Newsnight is riddled with adverts. Or a BBC so underfunded that independent news becomes a thing of the past and the airwaves are dominated by Rupert Murdoch’s media. This is what the Government wants – we need to stop them.

If we’re going to stop these plans we can’t rely on newspapers or TV channels owned by Murdoch and other media moguls. Instead, we’re going to have to use people-power to show the government that we won’t stand for them destroying our independent BBC.

Just before the summer break, the government snuck out a ‘public consultation’ on the future of the BBC. It’s full of gobbledegook questions – they were obviously hoping that nobody would respond! So the 38 Degrees staff team has ‘translated’ the questions into plain English, and the time’s come to make sure they hear our voices.

It takes a few minutes to fill in the survey. Without our voices, the government can claim that people don’t care about the future of the BBC, opening the doors to Murdoch. So can you add your voice and stand up for the BBC?

 

From BBC News, to Doctor Who, Panorama and Blue Peter, the BBC’s broadcasts are one of a kind. Having no adverts on the BBC means we can be sure big corporations aren’t interfering in what’s reported. But if the BBC is weakened, it’ll be easier for Rupert Murdoch to dominate the news and push his agenda for making maximum profit.

The more power Murdoch has, the easier it’ll be for him to make politicians dance to his tune. That’s a huge threat to democracy and people-power. But unless we speak up to protect the BBC, it looks like Murdoch could be about to get exactly what he wants.

So can you take a few minutes to add your voice? You can skip any questions you don’t want to answer, and there are some tips on the page to help you:

 

Thanks for everything you do,

Nat, Blanche, Laura and the 38 Degrees team

PS: The government is trying to make it difficult to take part in the consultation. One original question read: ‘Which elements of universality are most important for the BBC?’. [2] It’s gobbledygook designed to scare people off. But 38 Degrees members aren’t easily spooked. The staff team have translated the questions into everyday language – so that all of us can respond!

NOTES
[1] The Guardian: ‘BBC warned George Osborne it would have to axe BBC2 and BBC4 due to cuts’:
http://www.theguardian.com/media/2015/aug/18/bbc-george-osborne-bbc2-bbc4-cuts
BBC News: BBC Green Paper: Key points:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-33556009
[2] Gov.uk: BBC Charter Review public consultation:
https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/bbc-charter-review-public-consultation

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