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Paul Gambaccini: The BBC singled me out as a ‘potential security threat’ for being gay

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  1. Robert in S. Kensington 24 Jul 2013, 2:29pm

    Doesn’t surprise me one bit and it wouldn’t surprise me if the BBC still maintains this sort of thing though in a different manner to avoid falling foul of the equalities law.

    As for it’s claim of extensive coverage of every stage of the Marriage Bill…..hogwash. Perhaps a scant line here or there buried somewhere but definitely not front-page news.

    1. GulliverUK 24 Jul 2013, 2:43pm

      I certainly never once went to the BBC web site to get coverage of the same-sex marriage debate, … they don’t have anyone in the BBC who is worthy or has sufficient skills to cover such things.

      If you check out the difference between the BBC which is inept and biased against us in such matters, The Guardian, which occasionally produces good LGBT coverage, but is sporadic and poorly tagged for easy access, and Huffington Post which have a whole Black section, a whole Latino section, a whole Gay section, easy to find, and updated daily, and with an excellent attitude, reporting both the political struggles, and making sure they balance it with positive gay stories. I’ve been reading HuffPo Gay Voices since day 1.

      1. Robert in S. Kensington 24 Jul 2013, 4:29pm

        I visited their web site a number of times since January 24, 2013 when the Bill was first introduced in Parliament. I can’t even confirm that the extensive coverage it purports is actually true. I had a very hard time finding anything. We need a list and dates of just what was covered and who actually did the reporting because the opposition were given far greater attention including t.v. news as well as those very unbalanced programmes it aired in their favour.

        I complained and received a very lame response from them, the usual excuses. They don’t take LGBT complaints that seriously and dismiss many. They also sent me a survey as to how my complaint was handled. Of course, I gave it a very poor rating.

  2. Louis Barfe 24 Jul 2013, 2:30pm

    The Christmas tree on BBC personnel files did not mean ‘camp as Christmas’. It was a reference to O Tannenbaum, which shares a tune with The Red Flag. Christmas tree = dangerous lefty. Many straight BBC staff had Christmas trees on their files.

    1. GulliverUK 24 Jul 2013, 2:37pm

      BBC staff had no right to make any marks on any files, or to keep symbols indicating such things. It’s a disgrace. Today they would likely be sued, and quite rightly.

  3. GulliverUK 24 Jul 2013, 2:34pm

    The BBC said “… the formal moment of Royal Assent was reported online.”.

    Bull****. It was one difficult to find, biased as hell, minor piece, no TV news coverage, despite repeated reports from the BBC acknowledging they need to do more, much, much more, to represent fairly, accurately and positively the LGBT community. Their own reports have consistently shown they have lots of issues reporting and covering LGBT issues in their News. Now I’ve left I can say what I want.

    Any stupid remarks about it being pink-friendly, or being a left-wing organisation, or having more gay people work there than typical, are entirely untrue.

    Time and again we see anti-gay bias in their reporting, failing to provide balanced and fair debate, a lack of programming aimed at us, avoidance of covering LGBT issues, we are nearly invisible on it.

    Having said that I enjoyed working with the people around me. I did not work in news production, I worked in IT for about a decade.

    1. GulliverUK 24 Jul 2013, 2:35pm

      Oops. Me thinks I forgot to close the tag ! Sorry, didn’t mean to make it look like I was shouting :( my bad.

    2. Spanner1960 24 Jul 2013, 4:18pm

      “Any stupid remarks about it … having more gay people work there than typical, are entirely untrue.”
      Bollocks I say. I had numerous friends there back in 80’s, and TV Centre was awash with luvvies.
      The entertainment business attracts gay people, simple as that.
      Next you will be telling me its the same in flight crew or hairdressing.

      1. GulliverUK 24 Jul 2013, 6:11pm

        They don’t write the news though, that’s the point. They might do entertainment shows, but they don’t have any involvement in News 24 (now called BBC News), or the online news output.

        I’m talking about the 90s and early noughties when I was there – if you are suggesting NEWS output was controlled by 90% luvvies, then you’d better be prepared to provide witness statements, because that’s absurd.

        We’re talking about news coverage. I’ve worked at TV Centre, White City, Woodlands, Broadcasting House, and Bush House so met plenty of different people.

      2. There may be loads of gay people but, just as with cabin crew and hairdressing, it’d appear they’re limited to relatively powerless backup roles. The BBC news coverage of the whole equal marriage process has been disgracefully poor.

        1. Plus, people often totally overlook the fact that many gay people go into hairdressing, flight attending and other “gay” jobs because they have a difficult time advancing in many “straight” jobs. When I was a kid I wanted to be an actor, as soon as I realised I was gay, I dropped out of drama school, because I knew you couldn’t be a successful actor and be gay when I was a kid.

          My mum asked my why I don’t become a flight attendant, yet she knows I absolutley hate flying? Maybe it’s because she knows I’d be safe in that job and wouldn’t be at the risk of discrimination. People keep pushing me to go into fields where gay people seem to flock, and it makes me feel like i’m being put in “a place” where I “belong”. Irritating to say the least…

          If I wanted to be a footballer, rock star, or even work for the BBC? No chance….

  4. The BBC coverage in general of GLBT issues is shocking. I used to listen to the obituary programme on Radio 4 “Last words” until over a six month period they reported on the deaths of Arthur Laurent, and didn’t mention he lived with his partner for 50 years or set up the largest award in USA theatre in both their names, didn’t mention that Maurice Sendack came out aged 80 and again had a male partner for 50 years, didn’t mention that the first US woman in space was a Lesbian and lived and worked with her partner for 24 years and managed to do an obit of Gore Vidal without mentioning either the book that almost destroyed him because it was Gay or his partner of 54 years, I actually wrote to the producer and got an email back saying, “how can this be homophobic?” he couldn’t see it. I just stopped listening and I’m afraid I’m doing the same with their news.

    1. GulliverUK 24 Jul 2013, 6:19pm

      They did, however, cover the abuse that gay people were suffering in Iraq once Saddam had gone, because it got worse, much worse for them. There is a definite disconnect between the dumb and stupid news for the masses and some of the more intellectual and in-depth podcasts on “some” of their radio stations. I’d say World Service is the place where these more in-depth, less popular with the masses, programmes exist. Yet, your experience clearly shows that it’s based not on channel, but as I had said, on who is sitting in the Editorial seat at the time. Personal prejudices or equality beliefs seems to play an enormous part in deciding what programmes get produced, and what their content is. In the end, it’s like some papers, the Editor today has his/her beliefs and opinions, which come through in what is said and how it’s said, and tomorrow it might be someone else with a difference set of beliefs and opinions.

  5. Robert in S. Kensington 24 Jul 2013, 4:23pm

    I think Pink News should demand evidence of the extensive coverage of this Bill by the BBC, dates, exactly where it appeared so the ‘facts’ can be verified. I was unaware it contacted PN and who was it I wonder?

  6. Its a pity jimmy savil’s file wasn’t marked with some kind of warning instead of people who were no threat to anyone

    1. GulliverUK 24 Jul 2013, 6:22pm

      To know someone is committing criminal offenses and not to take it to the police is criminal in itself.

  7. Really! You couldn’t make this up!

    Paul Gambaccini is lovely.

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