After the BBC caused uproar for publishing a fake story about the impact of worker strikes, now the Guardian has joined in the anti-union propaganda.
BBC: punching down against striking workers
As the Canary previously reported, BBC News recently published an article on the National Union of Rail, Transport and Maritime Workers (RMT) industrial action on the rail network. The piece was about how ‘ordinary’ people were affected by the RMT strikes across Christmas. However, one of the stories BBC News included in the original article wasn’t true. A guy called Owen claimed he would not be able to see his son over Christmas due to the strikes. BBC News wrote:
Having supported strikes earlier in the year, Owen says he’s now against them due to the festive strikes “ruining” his Christmas.
“I have always been a staunch socialist…but it’s been a year now,” he says. “Enough is enough.”
However, Owen’s claim that no trains meant no visit to his son was incorrect – because he could get a bus on the day in question. BBC News had to remove Owen’s story from its article. As the Canary wrote:
The basic level of fact checking by the BBC is dire. Then, there’s the issue that [the] article originally only had comment from people who didn’t support the strikes – zero balance from a public service broadcaster. Plus, there’s the fact that the article got past editors in the first place…
However, the larger problem here is that this is typical BBC establishment punching down – pitting citizen against citizen while absolving those in power of responsibility.
You’d be forgiven for thinking the Guardian would do better than this. Well, no – it hasn’t.
The Guardian: shaming itself
First, the supposedly left-wing outlet has put a call-out for stories on its website. It was around the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) Union Border Force strikes happening over Christmas. The Guardian tweeted:
Tell us: has your holiday travel been affected by the strikes? https://t.co/W98jUq3aJm
— The Guardian (@guardian) December 11, 2022
Suella Braverman, the home secretary, has urged people to “think carefully” about their Christmas holiday plans because travel will be disrupted by the Border Force strikes.
We would like to hear from people who have cancelled their Christmas holidays or travel plans because of the strikes this winter. How will your plans be affected?
However, it’s not the first time the Guardian has run content like this recently. On 8 December, it published a call out for hospitality bosses to tell their stories about strikes impacting their industry – similar to another BBC article. Plus, in a typically Guardian-esque move, the piece also asked to hear from workers:
As a wave of strikes hits the UK this winter, we would like to hear from hospitality owners and workers about how this will affect your business over the Christmas period. Have Christmas party reservations been cancelled due to strikes? Tell us your experiences using the form below.
Like over-worked, under-paid hospitality staff should be siding with the boss-class over other, striking, workers.
When it comes to the BBC, it will naturally use the argument of balance for why it published it’s anti-strike article. However, this shouldn’t be the case for the Guardian. It is a private publication which is supposed to be left-wing. Guardian editors surely must know better than to put out content that is divisive and playing into government agendas. It could have just not run the story. However, with the Labour Party also treading a similar anti-striking worker path – it’s predictable Guardian would follow.
Featured image via Agence France-Presse (AFP) and the Guardian – screengrab
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