The BBC’s reaction to a ruling that it misled viewers shows why it cannot be trusted

Nick Robinson

On 1 July, Simon Maginn shared news that the BBC had upheld his complaint against Nick Robinson. In February, Robinson shared a tweet, on a BBC account, that made false accusations about disciplined Labour Party figures Chris Williamson and Jackie Walker. Yet, despite this ruling, nothing further has happened. The BBC, it seems, really cannot be trusted.

“Dear Mr Maginn”

Maginn’s complaint was based on a tweet Robinson made on 26 February. As the BBC noted, this “was posted on a BBC account and is considered part of BBC output”.

In the tweet, that’s still live at the time of writing, Robinson accused Williamson of screening a film “by a woman suspended from Labour for saying the Jews controlled the slave trade”.

Robinson was referring to the film WitchHunt. As Jewish Voice for Labour explained, this film explores the ongoing attacks “against the pro-Palestinian left, including its many Jewish members”. The film focuses on the treatment of Walker. She was suspended from the Labour Party amid what many people argue is an active witch-hunt to silence voices critical of Israel. Williamson planned to screen the film in parliament in March.

Maginn shared the BBC‘s response on Twitter. It suggested that Robinson’s accusation took Walker’s comments out of context. It also upheld Maginn’s complaint on the basis that although many tweets ‘compress’ information, Robinson’s:

paraphrase of Ms Walker gave an insufficiently accurate impression of her actual words


Yet since this ruling, neither the BBC nor Robinson has issued any kind of formal apology to those involved. Robinson’s tweet is still live. Indeed, he shared the tweet again the next day, following Williamson’s suspension:

Many people have questioned the lack of apology and asked why Robinson’s statement wasn’t retracted:

As The Canary‘s Kerry-Anne Mendoza noted, perhaps the lack of apology is no surprise. Because “that’s how smear works”:

On 28 June, Labour removed its whip from Williamson. This followed a backlash after the party readmitted him following a formal warning on 26 June. Since then, the corporate media’s ongoing allegations of antisemitism against Jeremy Corbyn and many left-wing Labour members have spiralled.

When the BBC upheld this complaint, it showed just how many of these allegations are based on flimsy (at best) and inaccurate accusations. But the fact that despite this, there’s been no formal apology really does highlight that the supposedly impartial broadcaster can’t be trusted.

Featured image via YouTube – The Update

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  • Show Comments
    1. I’m surprised they even acknowledged a complaint. during Corbyn’s election and then re election I wrote to the BBC on a number of occasions outlining bias against Corbyn. They didn’t answer any of the listed complaints I made, just repeated their mantra that the BBC is fair and unbiased. If only that were true. Prior to that I’d spent a lifetime watching BBC news because I thought that would be the best you could get. I would have been more impressed if they’d said they’d noted my complaints and would be careful in future, but no the bias, subliminal and more open, goes on.

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