An anti-bullying charity has rejected the BBC’s claim that Radio1 DJ Chris Moyles did not cause offence by referring to a ring tone as “gay”.

A complaint made against the presenter, Chris Moyles, after he dismissed a ring tone by saying “I don’t want that one, it’s gay”, was rejected by a committee of the BBC Board of Governors.

The word “gay”, in addition to being used to mean “homosexual” or “carefree”, was often now used to mean “lame” or “rubbish”, the committee said in a ruling. This is widespread current usage of the word among young people, they said.

John Quinn, Director of beatbullying said: “The BBC, a public body, are condoning the use of blatantly homophobic language. Almost two in every three young people are experiencing bullying today.

“A significant amount of this is homophobic bullying. Homophobic bullying affects young people regardless of their sexuality.

“While the BBC claim the word ‘gay’ has evolved into meaning ‘lame’ this is only because people identify being called gay as undesirable therefore giving power to that term.

“Using the word ‘gay’ as a derogatory word, whether in the context of homosexuality or not, further propagates the idea that being gay is a bad thing. BBC have just greenlighted the use of ‘gay’ as a derogatory word, therefore BBC have given credence to the idea that being gay is bad. This low-level homophobia is not acceptable and is outrageous considering how homophobic bullying destroys lives”