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Exclusive: Former culture secretary Chris Smith calls for BBC action over Chris Moyles Staff Writer March 25, 2009
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Chris Smith, the former culture secretary who founded media watchdog Ofcom, has criticised the BBC over its handling of ‘homophobic’ comments made by Chris Moyles.

The Radio 1 DJ has not been disciplined after an Ofcom judgement found him in breach of broadcasting guidelines.

Eight listeners lodged complaints of homophobia after the presenter “adopted an effeminate and high pitched voice” to sing spoof versions of Young’s songs.

Mr Smith, the current chairman of the Advertising Standards Authority, said the BBC needed to take stronger action over its star DJ.

When asked by if the corporation should allow the presenter to make such comments, he said: “No, and I think they need to take a more severe line on Chris Moyles and make him aware of his responsibilities as a broadcaster.”

In reply to a question on whether such remarks about a black singer would be taken more seriously, Mr Smith said: “I suspect the reason why there is a difference in the way racism and homophobia are treated is that we haven’t yet changed attitudes as far as we need to in order to get people to realise just how unnacceptable homophobia is.”

Related topics: England

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