The BBC aired the episode on 10 July. The show met with frustration and anger, in light of alleged journalistic bias against Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party. But the media outlet refused to tell journalist Asa Winstanley how many people complained about the show, reportedly citing “journalistic exception to [Freedom of Information] FOI law”.
The BBC complaints service, however, publishes a fortnightly report.
For the dates 8-21 July, the report shows that the BBC received a total of 1,593 complaints concerning its Panorama episode. The main issue was defined as “bias against the Labour Party”. The only other show to receive over 100 complaints was The Andrew Neil Interviews.
The number of Panorama complaints could be even higher, however, considering that the report only includes complaints received during the first 11 days after the show was first aired.
As well as complaining directly to the BBC, various journalists and Labour Party members have complained about the show publicly. The Media Reform Coalition, for example, condemned the episode as “a catalogue of reporting failures”. And The Canary published an investigation showing that certain Labour Party members contested key testimonies documented in the show.
Featured image via screengrab/BBCPanorama
We know everyone is suffering under the Tories - but the Canary is a vital weapon in our fight back, and we need your support
The Canary Workers’ Co-op knows life is hard. The Tories are waging a class war against us we’re all having to fight. But like trade unions and community organising, truly independent working-class media is a vital weapon in our armoury.
The Canary doesn’t have the budget of the corporate media. In fact, our income is over 1,000 times less than the Guardian’s. What we do have is a radical agenda that disrupts power and amplifies marginalised communities. But we can only do this with our readers’ support.
So please, help us continue to spread messages of resistance and hope. Even the smallest donation would mean the world to us.