Tuesday, April 4, 2017


Whilst his sentiments may be eminently sensible, Nick Robinson, the BBC's former political editor, and now one of five regular presenters of the Today Programme, seems to have assumed a role of News-Executive-at-Large in his columns for the Radio Times.

"The referendum is over. The duty we broadcasters had to ‘broadly balance’ the views of the two sides is at an end. Why? Because there are no longer two sides, two campaigns, two rival sets of spokespeople reading out those focus-grouped slogans." Hmm. Well, the stopwatches required by the referendum campaign may have gone, but may would argue there are still two sides. Sir David Clementi, new Chairman of the BBC, has promised a 'scientific' approach to proving that news output is impartial and un-biased - it's hard to see how that can be achieved without counting time and apearances.

It would be interesting to know who signs off Nick's thoughts on the BBC's editorial responsibilities. In old days, it was the employing editor or above. Is it Sarah Sands who now checks Nick's copy - or is James Harding using the bespectacled one as a conduit for his own thinking ?

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