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Sandi Toksvig: I was groped on air during the 1980s by a ‘famous individual’

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  1. It seems to be more than just jimmy saville and gary glitter..i will go as far to say institutionised sexual abuse at the bbc other than embarrasment, why did the bbc initially try to ignore it.
    I totally sympathise with sandi toksvic.

    1. She should name her.

      1. Who said it was a her? Sandi didn’t! It was before she came out, so may have been a he!

        1. considering they asked her if she was a lesbian for not liking it and she talks about “famous boys” then its safe to say its a he.

        2. I assumed it was a man!

  2. Absolutely shocking. And “Grope” is a very Carry On Word, Honk Honk… Sandy, you were sexually assaulted and you didn’t deserve it.
    I would like to see you name the individual, what else did he get up to?

  3. Spanner1960 7 Oct 2012, 4:05pm

    This seems to have turned into an “Give Aunty Beeb a good kicking” exercise by the media.

    I think this kind of behaviour was going on the length and breadth of the country back then simply because it was a different time with a different social climate that would be considered unacceptable by today’s standards.

    I would imagine one would be more a social pariah in the 50’s as a gay man than one would be a paedophile: “Oh don’t worry, that’s just Uncle Jims’s way of saying he likes you.”

    Times change, and social values along with them; one should just be glad that certain elements have progressed for the better.

    1. Yes it was a different social climate or zeitgeist. I remember benign middle aged- elderly ladies foot tapping along to the Black and White Minstrels, yet if a producer suggested a remake now he/she would never work again. The world moves on, things change.

      1. Spanner1960 7 Oct 2012, 10:10pm

        I remember them as a kid. I actually found them boring and just a little creepy, but I would have never considered them ‘politically incorrect’, and to be honest I still don’t. There’s also a lot to be said for the back of marmalade jars…

    2. I remember back in the 60’s talk of “child molesters” (more evocative a phrase than “paedophile”, in my memory). I remember a man we called “Creeping Jesus”, who hung around the school gates, and my father, who worked opposite, threatening what he would do to him, if he saw him……..It was never ignored or condoned, but no-one wanted to talk about it for the same reason no-one spoke about bowel habits or menstrual cycles – it was not a “fit subject” for discussion.

  4. Robert in S. Kensington 7 Oct 2012, 5:21pm

    Amazing how straight men get away with it and when it’s a gay male, then their orientation is denigrated and ridiculed.

    What else can one expect from a patriarchal broadcasting service who’s reputation is slowly in decline? This doesn’t help matters.

    If I were Sandy, I’d reveal who the perpetrator was. Remaining silent only gives predators more impetus.

    1. That There Other David 7 Oct 2012, 6:11pm

      In her shoes I wouldn’t reveal anything yet. I imagine there are a few BBC or ex-BBC staff that have performed these sorts of “pranks” on their female colleagues, given that we’re now getting this story from multiple sources. Let those men sweat about whether their reputations are about to hit the fan. Let them experience worry and sleepless nights for a bit, knowing that they are likely about to face a major public backlash because nobody can get at Savile.

      Then, Sandi, tell the world and let the media storm do the rest.

      1. Dave North 7 Oct 2012, 6:58pm

        Indeed, Abuse is abuse.

        These men who allowed this are no better than the churches that
        allow these abuses.

        More so in that as, enforced in law, we have top pay this vile organization via license fees.

        Just when will this sh!t stop.

        1. Just remember, you only have to pay a licence fee if you watch or record TV *as it is being broadcast live* (including live streams of TV channels over the internet). Not saying your criticism is invalid or anything, but if you *really* strongly object to the licence fee, it’s maybe worth knowing that things like DVDs, YouTube, and even BBC iPlayer (if it’s not a live stream of a TV channel) can be used without paying it due to the rather specific definition of what the licence covers.

  5. Given the potentially very serious nature of the alleged offences it is of course quite right that neither Sandi nor Liz (Kershaw) have named the people they say did this. There may be a police investigation to follow and don’t forget people are innocent until proven guilty. As important as I think it is to seek justice it must be done sensitively anpretty due process. No doubt they will be discussing the allegations with the relevant authorities in due course.

    1. * and with due process (sorry, fat fingers and touch screen are a bad mix)

  6. GingerlyColors 7 Oct 2012, 7:08pm

    How many more cases of abuse have been covered up by the BBC? Will the BBC end up like the Catholic Church with it’s reputation in tatters? The BBC needs to come clean now and those responsible for the cover ups prosecuted. Visitors to this country have commented on the quality of our television and envy our BBC with it’s commercial free programming and I have always been happy to pay the Licence Fee as it means that I can watch programmes without my enjoyment being ruined by stupid, moronic commercials, although I wish they stop killing off LGBT characters! I do not wish the BBC to die of shame because of the likes of Jimmy Savile but if it continues to cover up abuse cases and pervert the course of justice then it deserves what happens to it.

    1. I imagine a proper investigation will reveal a few bad apples at the BBC whereas the RC remains completely rancid and rotten to the core.

  7. tooting lil 7 Oct 2012, 7:27pm

    sw dlt ne tb

    1. That There Other David 7 Oct 2012, 8:57pm

      Are you saying you know it’s one of them, all of them, or just speculating?

    2. Spanner1960 7 Oct 2012, 10:12pm

      Got the other three, but can’t get the first one.

    3. Lucas Michael 9 Oct 2012, 1:43pm

      Got N.E, not got a clue on the others.

  8. It’s not just the BBC. This was the atmosphere at the vast majority of work places in the 80s. I speak from experience. Groping, or, as it should correctly be called, sexual abuse, happened on a daily basis to women back then. And how many times did the old quote “you must be a lesbian” for not going along with it get said? I lost count.
    I am glad that we can say these things now and not have them dismissed, shrugged off or tittered at. Most evenings I went home feeling dirty.

    No-one should have to put up with this. I am glad things are changing.

    1. Spanner1960 7 Oct 2012, 10:14pm

      Except in your case they were right… ;)

      1. No I am pansexual. My sexuality does not give anyone the right to abuse me.

        1. Spanner1960 8 Oct 2012, 11:41pm

          I meant no disrespect, just having a bit of fun.

  9. Ben Foster 7 Oct 2012, 10:37pm

    The problem is that celebrities of all sorts, DJs, singers, actors, footballers…. have always regarded sex as a perk of the job and as long as there are girls of all ages offering it on a plate out of adoration of the celebs, it always will happen, in the BBC, ITV, and every other place where celebs are in easy reach of easy sex. And that is what leads to the sort of accusations levelled at Jimmy Saville and the abuses of women who weren’t offering it, like Sandy and Liz, by those celebs thinking that ALL women are their playthings. It isn’t just a problem at the BBC. It’s the cult of celebrity that does it.

    1. Couldn’t agree more Ben. But let’s face it, it’s a problem in other areas. How often it happens when a woman wants to move up in her area, such as law, and it’s suggested by her boss that if she scratches their back they’ll scratch hers kind of thing!

      With regards to Jimmy Saville, I think that it would have been better if someone had actually said something when he was alive. It’s all well and good speaking up after they’ve gone, but he’s not here to defend himself. I’m not saying they’re liars, no more than I would say Sandi is lying. But to bring it up after someone has gone, well it just starts to look like mood slinging really if you’re not careful.

      1. apparantly they did, an offical complaint was made to the police in 2008 but they took it no further and he apparantly constantly threatened papers not to print anything when they were going to.

  10. Who would want to grope this Borris look-a-like

    1. That There Other David 8 Oct 2012, 11:17am

      What a sad waste of DNA you are.

    2. Sexual assault is about power and dominance, and the demeaning of the target.

  11. ...Paddyswurds 8 Oct 2012, 12:20pm

    When I was 26 and living in New England, I had a similar experience.
    A female work colleague hit on me and when I rebuffed her she went to Management and claimed I had sexually assaulted her. I was called to Head Office and when challenged I revealed what had happened and that i was actually Gay and produced a pic of my then boy friend from my wallet to back up my story Fortunately I was believed and promoted while the aggressor was summarily dismissed…..

    1. ...Paddyswurds 8 Oct 2012, 12:23pm

      I should have added that i have always admired Ms Toksvig and i think she doesn’t get half enough exposure on the Telly. I do listen to her radio show sometimes and i wish her all the best for the future….

      1. i must admit being somwhat ignorant that i do not know her by name, its likley ive probably heard her on the radio or seen on tv buuut im usless with names at the best of times ^_^ id probably forget my own at work if i didnt wear a name tag :D

    2. There is some justice in the world! Glad it turned out well for you. I think many women assume all males are straight and permanently “up for it”, or that we all have rhino-thick hides. I have been embarrassed on many occasions by banter from female colleagues, fortunately as one grows older, one can shrug it off.

  12. damnedfilth 8 Oct 2012, 4:25pm

    Name him then Sandi. This “I know things” line from people like Sandi and Janet Street Porter is ridiculous. It is a bit late when people start accusing dead people of crimes.

    It makes the whole “shock and disgust” line the BBC took about Richard Keys and the female linesman when they all seemed to know what was going on with young women and underage children

    1. It is only now that they can talk about it. When these events happened, they were brushed off, and the victims put it out of their minds. The media coverage will have stirred up long forgotten memories.
      Sandi and Janet will have suppressed these memories – they may be famous now, but they are still only human!
      And they are not after money or publicity, simply sharing memories in interviews.

  13. I think Sandi and Liz Kershaw must be relieved that we are now in an era where women and men should not have to accept sexual harassment, and can talk about past issues.

    I am relieved to see some sympathy for the women here. Comments on other sites have taken the victim blaming approach.and frankly if they weren’t taken seriously when they did complain I can see why they kept quiet.

  14. Are new comments or replies allowed on this page at all?

    1. OK, good, but no replies. Fine. So, in reply to Jo:-

      It went on until shortly before Saville’s death last year. The BBC denied it only 2 weeks ago. 1,000s of victims, and many more compromised and victims too. Another personality tried to scare off one of the witnesses only last week, and one of Saville’s nephews was trying to rubbish the evidence too, then got very much contradicted by one of his brothers. NHS hospitals where girls were abused – BBC reports a paralyzed girl assaulted in full view of paralyzed women, with nurses ignoring it! – are only just starting to think about it, after decades of denial.

      Think: Toksvig had unscripted, live radio and TV access and could say nothing.

      This is abusive people so connected as to be untouchable, which means all victims and potential victims excluded from power or access to help. All, millions – very much a current, continuing problem. Is that really going to be ended?

    2. In reply to Marianne http://www.pinknews.co.uk/?comments_popup=31381#comment-363985 :-

      You are right on the TV Licensing rules, but the BBC is pushing viewing via the Net so hard that it is very clear they intend to get a license required for all net connections. if they are offered a small cut on that, all the newspapers will support it and it will be a done deal.

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