Sunday, February 14, 2016

Up with this we will not put

Since 2010, this blog has chronicled some of the pertinent questions asked of the BBC under the terms of the Freedom of Act by one Spencer Count. He of she has made 69 inquiries via the excellent website What Do They Know; 35 have been successful, 15 partially successful, 2 are marked delayed, 2 long overdue, and the remainder either refused or returned "Information not held".

Since 29 September 2015, Spencer has been pursuing a question which should have revealed the latest numbers of staff graded at Band 11, amongst other more detailed stuff about salary totals and spread. The basic numbers question is one the BBC has fairly promptly answered before.

In mid January, Spencer asked the BBC to conduct an internal review on the reason why his request was taking more than the allotted 20 working days to answer. Step forward BBC enforcer Nicola Cain, who says that, whilst there may have been a handling breach on timeliness
"I note that this request was submitted by an individual  operating  under  a  pseudonym. Therefore I do not consider that this
constituted a valid request in accordance with s8(1)(b) of the Act and the BBC was 
under no obligation to comply with it."

This charge has not been levelled at Spencer for six years; it would be some kind of wonderful if Nicola was wrong. Meanwhile I hope some brave individual takes up Spencer's mantle.

I shall muse further on why the BBC is being so defensive now on Band 11 stuff in a later post.

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