Last week we documented a breach of the BBC Academy’s “journalists’ guide to facts and terminology” during a BBC Radio 4 news bulletin broadcast on March 25th.
During that bulletin newsreader Zeb Soanes told BBC audiences:
“Mr Netanyahu cut short his visit to Washington because of escalating violence between Israel and Palestine. [emphasis added]
As we observed at the time:
“There is of course no point in having a style guide if journalists, presenters and producers – particularly it would seem at BBC Radio 4 – ignore its guidance. Given that the style guide correctly states “there is no independent state of Palestine today”, there is obviously no reason whatsoever for BBC staff to be promoting the inaccurate impression that such a state exists – and even more so when they are in fact referring to a terror organisation that violently seized power from the representatives of the Palestinians recognised by the international community.”
BBC Watch submitted a complaint concerning that issue and has received the following response:
“Thanks for contacting us regarding a Radio 4 bulletin on 25 March.
We discussed your concerns with the Radio 4 News team – this occurred within our hourly BBC News Radio 4 bulletin, rather than The World Tonight itself.
You’re right that this didn’t meet our established style – it was an unfortunate oversight on this occasion. We took action to ensure it was not repeated and reminded staff immediately of our approach as outlined in our guidelines.
We regret any instance where the incorrect terminology is used and appreciate you taking the time to raise this here.”
Despite that welcome action, with no correction issued BBC audiences however remain under the inaccurate impression created by that use of incorrect terminology.