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99 readers say they complained over BBC interview

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  1. Well if 99 Pink News readers told you they complained then it’s safe to assume that many more people complained.

    I complained but didn’t email Pink News to say I had. Considering that the story was reprinted in gay blogs worldwide (including how to complain) I suspect that the BBC received hundreds of complaints.

    Which is all fine and dandy, but considering that the BBC does not acknowledge its institutional homophobia, the only thing they will understand is a loss of TV license revenue.

    Gay viewers should feel under no obligation to pay their TV license fee.

  2. I complained too – so that’s 101 including David here! =)

  3. And me!! 102

  4. I’d urge anyone who did complain to follow up their complaint. The BBC have a multi-stage complaint process and I suspect give a lot more credence to complaints that are followed up.

  5. David: What you are saying is incitement to commit a criminal offence. I would be very careful what you say.

    And when these people go to court, are you going to be the one to pay their fines?

    Stop huffing and puffing make some practical suggestions. You are as bad as those students chucking fire extinguishers off buildings.

  6. get over yourselves 11 Jan 2011, 7:37pm

    ah shut up spanner. you’re a grade A prick.

  7. “What you are saying is incitement to commit a criminal offence. I would be very careful what you say.”

    No it’s not.

    I simply said gay viewers should feel under no obligation to pay a TV license fee. Why should they?

    That is merely an opinion.

    An opinion is not ‘incitement’.

  8. I didn’t complain, because I have better things to waste my life doing (like making sarcastic comments on News articles).

  9. “Stop huffing and puffing make some practical suggestions. ”

    That’s what I asked YOU to do.

    When this story broke, YOUR contribution was simply to engage in personal insults against other people.

    You said there were practical ways to respond.

    Still waiting for your suggestions…

  10. They won’t listen to us as long as they have the religious f***tards backing them up so unless we take legal action to have an opt out of bbc channels and tv license like was mentioned then i doubt they will do anything about this and will continue their homophobic crusade.

  11. I have sent a FoI request to the BBC, asking for;

    1. The number of complaints that have been received against the screening of said interview.
    2. How many replies by BBC staff have been sent out to complainants, excluding all automated replies.
    3. How many letters, telephone calls, emails of support for Mr Green’s interview the BBC has received.

    As far as I am concerned, given the controversy it has generated, it is obviously in the public interest.

  12. I just read about this in Private Eye. Foolish mistake to make.

  13. Jane Anderson-Hawkes 11 Jan 2011, 9:56pm

    I complained too

  14. Stephen Green is a great man! Keep standing for the truth, Stephen, and do not be afraid of all these deluded folks. There are millions with you and they need someone to speak up, after all!!

  15. I complained but did not get round to confirming to PinkNews that I had done so.

    I’ll just say – last year, the BBC revealed that they had received just over 100 complaints about a “ginger” comment made on the New Year Special of Doctor Who. It wasn’t revealed in a jokey way and the BBC took it seriously by answering the complaints. They then were very open about how many complaints they’d received. This was not a “large” number of complaints like the EE storyline received, and yet they were open about it. this proves that it can’t have been that the number that has prompted them not to reveal the number of complaints over this issue.

    I just wish they’d be honest about the real reasons.

  16. Alex . . . are you taking the P**s, or have you imbibed something you shouldn’t have?

  17. Jennifer – thank you for doing this, but I fear we’ll be disappointed again. I’m a member of a fan campaign (whatever you think of fan campaigns has nothing to do with this issue, so please don’t judge me on this) which was unhappy about the death of an LGBT character. Many, many fans complained and told us they had complained about the death. After the BBC refused to let us know how many complaints had actually been received, we submitted a FoI request. It was denied some weeks later.

    This is a far more serious matter that people have complained about, so it may be a different outcome. Thank you for doing it. But I fear openness is not something that the BBC does well.

  18. I didn’t complain either, but I did blog about it. Good news that the BBC lost its case with Miriam O’Reilly, as the Corporation discriminates against other groups as well.

  19. Spanner wrote

    “Stop huffing and puffing make some practical suggestions. You are as bad as those students chucking fire extinguishers off buildings.”

    Please view the sort of practical suggestions Spanner likes to “chuck around” . . . (Towards the end of the thread)

    Tell me what you think?

  20. Well done to Pink News for putting pressure on the BBC.

    Hopefully, the BBC will think twice the next time.

  21. I shamefacedly confess I did not bow to the Pink’s dictate and join 99 others to scream “homophobes” at the BBC Complaints Department operator. Does that make me a bad little gay, along with the tens of thousands of other gaily, sorry daily, visitors to this web site? Isn’t this telling you something, PN (ie: give this non-story a rest already).

  22. @William — not really a dictate thought was it ? And really just about homophobia ? And what are you suggesting Pink News does ? For a ‘non story’ it seems to be generating some interest. Why are you so keen for this to go away ?

  23. William . . . So whats new!!!

  24. I have watched the interview with the homophobic preacher, complained directly to the BBC, and got the automated response. So count me in. I’m not a part of any lobby. The BBC is walking on very thin ice.

  25. 21stCenturySpirituality 12 Jan 2011, 2:13am

    @ Alex…..are you taking the mickey? Why are you here? Lets talk about delusion shall we. Since when has mounting regular campaigns to trample on other peoples rights to freedom of thought, conscience and religion and freedom of speech, advocating and supporting the death penalty, and spreading hatred, fear, mysoginism, judgement and condemnation been anything to do with the inclusive and liberating message of Christianity and the teachings of Jesus? Stephen Green is about as much of a Christian as Osama Bin Laden. His views are not ‘truth’ at all and they certainly aren’t Christian. They’re just the insidious, ungodly, vindictive, hatemongering of a self important attention seeker who wouldn’t even recognise Jesus if he ran down the street painted purple.

  26. 21stCenturySpirituality 12 Jan 2011, 2:26am

    @Alex… millions support Stephen Green? Millions? LMAO. Stephen Green – a great man? Your standards of what makes a human being great are very, very, very, very, very, very, very low. Some people thought Adolf Hitler was a great man, it still doesnt change the fact that he was an absolute tyrant.

  27. 21stCenturySpirituality 12 Jan 2011, 2:34am

    And a bully.

  28. The Heretic Philosopher 12 Jan 2011, 4:56am

    Still, just goes to show, one mans terrorist is another mans freedom fighter.

  29. The Heretic Philosopher 12 Jan 2011, 5:00am

    Though what Stephen Green is fighting for is anybodys guess but it certainly isnt Christianity.

  30. Jock S. Trap 12 Jan 2011, 8:35am

    I complained too but didn’t say so thats another one. Add others that didn’t and I reckon plenty complained.

    Adding to that all that complained also recieved exactly the same uninterested, emotionless, no effort email which not one person could sign for just a department name.

    It is time the BBC became just another subscription channel. I pay £20 a month for channels I want. Whilst I admit I probably only watch a small proportion that is my choice.

    Yet I have no choice in paying £145 a year for 4 channels that I neither want nor watch. It seems I have to pay £145 a years for the apparent priviledge of being abused and insulted and that is fair how exactly?

    Enough already!! The BBC needs to face reality and pay for itself if it only wishes to represent the intolerant and abusive in society.

  31. @21stCenturySpirituality: Godwin’s Law has to rear its ugly head here to doesn’t it… but wait, Alex? Obvious Troll is being obvious, really!

    In all seriousness though, your sentiments are spot on, Green speaks for no one but himself and a few nasty minded cronies. His message is about as Christian as the Talibans.

  32. The Heretic Philosopher:
    > Though what Stephen Green is fighting for is anybodys guess
    > but it certainly isnt Christianity.

    In the immediate term its obviously for publicity, and then power over the vulnerable. I think the citizen group mentioned in have the right idea – don’t name check the people involved because it is publicity they want.

    It might be a good policy for Pinknews to talk of homophobic content but bury the names at the end.

  33. I also complained. The BBC treats (correctly) racist extremists as people whose opinions are not enlightening on a news programme unless the debate topic is racist extremism.

    Homophobic extremists are repeatedly invited on to discuss all aspects of policy on gay equality and (in this case) a gay couple having a baby.

    This is shock journalism and makes no editorial sense.

    This issue, which Pink News has raised so determinedly, has nothing to do with censorship. The question is editorial judgement.

    Gay people’s right to live our lives in peace and to exercise our legal freedoms commands wide public support, and so questioning this should not be the focus of every news story about us and our experiences. To do so is weak, sensationalist journalism which jeopardises the broad consensus in this country which we have all, LGBT and straight, worked so hard to achieve.

  34. And you think Stephen Green is a nutcase? Did you hear about all the dead birds recently? It’s them there GAYS wot did it.

  35. @William – it’s really not a non-story. If you actually sit back and think about it, what the BBC have done is give a platform to a guy who has the kinds of views that, if they were expressed about almost any other part of society, would not be given any airtime at all.

    Now, I think that it’s fair enough to give the airtime. Green is right up there, in my opinion, with the nick griffins of this world. For the BBC to use him as a casual interviewee – in a way they never would with griffin – is deeply wrong.

    The way in which they have responded to this is a lesson in how not to do public relations.

    I complained, I’m not part of an organised lobby but a licence fee payer who should be taken seriously. I got fibbed off with the standard reply. I have requested it is escalated and have heard nothing since. As a former BBC journalist I am absolutely appalled at the way they are handling this.

    Well done pink news for not dropping it. Keep up the good work and don’t let it go until you get some proper answers.

    My honest opinion? It was the middle of the Christmas break, anyone senior or with a bit of nous was off and the place had been left in the incapable hands of inexperienced staff. Note, that the Green interview isn’t on the website and probably wasn’t used anywhere else.

    Long rant – apologies.

    Last point – the BBC also need to think about what they consider a representative Christian voice is. Green is an extremist. They wouldn’t present Abu hamza as a representative of the Muslim faith (they’d bend over backwards not to, believe me), so where’s the complaint from mainstream, decent, Christians. As a follow up, pink news, why don’t you ask, say, the bishop of Manchester what they think about it all?

  36. EX-bbc . . . well said, my thoughts exactly!

  37. Well, it IS a non-story if only 99 PN visitors – out of a daily hit rate in the tens of thousands – were prepared to put their heads above the parapet and say they made a formal complaint to the Beeb. Even assuming that another 99 did so but did not register their complaint with the Pink, this all rather suggests that a lunatic fringe who shriek and shout and demand that freedom of laws speech be changed to protect our sensibilities and victim complexes have seized the debate and are shilling on these forums every time anyone utters anything even tenuously or moderately homophobic. In other words, a minority pressure group is professing to speak for the rest of us who prefer to just live and let live (ie: who accept that bigoted, intolerant people come with the territory) in their desperation to snuff out freedom of speech and make half of the populace technically guilty of “thought crimes”. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; we are on the edge of a very slippery slope into the unknown here. As Peter Tatchell himself infers in a brilliant headline story for today’s PN, if we cannot fight our own battles and put our detractors in their place with reasoned and intelligent debate, then we have become the bigoted, intolerant oafs and morons we seek to muzzle.

  38. Nigel J Dougan 13 Jan 2011, 2:11am

    I was one of the people who complained to the Culture, Media and Sports Committee of HM Government and then to the BBC.

    Their reply is herewith produced: –

    Dear Mr Dougan

    Reference CAS-536461

    Thank you for your feedback regarding the BBC News bulletin at 18:20, broadcast on 28 December 2010.

    We appreciate some viewers were unhappy that a report on Sir Elton John recently becoming a surrogate father included the views of Mr Stephen Green.

    We recognise this issue can arouse a diverse range of contrasting opinions. This brief report featured Sir Elton John’s thoughts and an opposing view on the matter at hand. It must be stressed that over time we have heard from all sides of this debate, dealing the subject in a fair and impartial manner.

    We acknowledge the strength of sentiment on this matter, thanks again for taking the time to contact us.

    Kind Regards

    Paul Graham
    BBC Complaints

    So, there we go. Very diplomatic.

  39. Adele Winston 13 Jan 2011, 12:07pm

    I complained too. I was horrified. There was no reason at all to add unpleasant comments; the guy had no qualifications of any kind and was just some unpleasant git they picked up in the street.

  40. The government has now published their response to the consultation on the Public Sector Equality Duty (which requires public bodies to promote equality), and their proposed list of public bodies to which they intend it to apply. The content of BBC and Channel Four, are excluded. There is no information on why. They do not bother to say.

    > The Government will be finalising the draft Order amending
    > Schedule 19 to the Equality Act [ .DOC at
    > ], which sets out the list of public
    > bodies to which the general Equality Duty will apply, and laying
    > it before Parliament for debate in late January 2011.

    The draft order says:
    | 1. After the entry for “the armed forces” insert the following
    | headings and entries—
    | Broadcasting
    | The British Broadcasting Corporation (“BBC”), except in respect
    | of functions relating to the provision of a content service
    | (within the meaning given by section 32(7) of the Communications
    | Act 2003()); and the reference to the BBC includes a reference
    | to a body corporate which—
    | (a) is a wholly owned subsidiary of the BBC,
    | (b) is not operated with a view to generating a profit, and
    | (c) undertakes activities primarily in order to promote the
    | BBC’s public purposes.
    | The Channel 4 Television Corporation, except in respect of—
    | (a) functions relating to the provision of a content service
    | (within the meaning given by section 32(7) of the Communications
    | Act 2003), and
    | (b) the function of carrying on the activities referred to in
    | section 199 of that Act().
    | The Welsh Authority (as defined by section 56(1) of the
    | Broadcasting Act 1990()), except in respect of functions
    | relating to the provision of a content service (within the
    | meaning given by section 32(7) of the Communications Act 2003).

    This would be the time to raise this with MPs and in the media.

  41. Stephen Green has apparently popped up in the Daily Mail today, where he was given a national platform to condemn gay people. According to the DM (which IMHO is little better than Stephen Green), Stephen Green is meant to ‘represent Christians’. What a joke. Does the KKK represent white people then? Not me it doesn’t!

    This double standard that is prevalent in so much of society frustrates me beyond words. Part of me just wants to ignore the news from now on and just enjoy my life.

  42. dave wainwright 29 Jan 2011, 6:28am

    In public he rails against immorality as the voice of Christian Britain but in private he is a wife beater, says his former partner

  43. @ Dave North:
    Oh. The delicious irony……

    Thanks for the link Dave, we always knew the man wasn’t right in the head and now there’s this first person witness account from his ex-wife.

  44. Green is new mud. This nasty pious bigot has scored an own goal.

  45. @ Erin. You are right. I received a reply from the BBC this afternoon stating that they were not going to release the information I requested, citing;

    ‘the specific information you have requested on complaints is excluded from the Act because it is
    held for the purposes of ‘journalism, art or literature.’ The BBC is therefore not obliged to provide this information to you and will not be doing so on this occasion.’

    So I wrote back to them, stating they obviously feel they have something to hide and are invoking the Act out of cowardice and the desire to avoid transparency regarding their practices and policy.

    Ho-hum, hopefully something will come of the complaints to the BBC Trust.

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