Saturday, July 10, 2021

None of your business

On 18 May, the vacancy for an Executive Editor, BBC News Channels, closed. The FT has more than blown the doors off the process, with reports that BBC non-executive director Sir Robbie Gibb sent a text to the Director of News, Fran Unsworth about the preferred candidate, Jess Brammar, saying Fran 'cannot make this appointment' because the government's 'fragile trust in the BBC will be shattered'. 

Three quality hacks are involved in the FT's story, but clearly all sorts of levers are being pulled in the news becoming public - and the next step in the appointment process becomes a show trial of the independence of chairman Richard Sharp. 

The central BBC Press Office response is odd. 

They seem to be defending the right of Sir Robbie to chat to Fran Unsworth, perhaps even as far as asking "Any interesting appointments coming up that I should know about ?" The correct answer to the question, if it was asked, is "None of your business". 

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