Monday, November 19, 2007

Scottish Broadcasting Commisssion - And There's More

There's a letter in the Scotsman this morning from Blair Jenkins repudiating the Scotsman's article on Saturday about the Broadcasting Commission. He says.

"I was surprised and disappointed at how misleading and inaccurate your editorial, "Lack of transparency in TV debate" (Opinion, 17 November) was.

Your "outrage" is misplaced and illogical. There is nothing secret about the work of the Scottish Broadcasting Commission. Evidence-taking sessions are on-the-record and taped and transcripts will be made public. All parties giving evidence know this and their comments will be there for all to see.

I would have expected better of your newspaper than to cast aspersions without a basis in fact. You attribute to me the view that this way of working "will allow broadcasters to talk about rivals" with the benefit of secrecy. I have never said this and it is patently untrue."

The first thing to say is that the Scotsman did not attribute the remarks on secrecy to Mr Jenkins it said. 'A spokeswoman for the commission said transcripts of the meeting would be made available at a later date.' She went on: "Oral evidence-taking sessions will not be held in public in order to ensure that those taking part do not feel inhibited in discussing or offering evidence or information which might be a commercial confidence and/or speaking frankly."

As for the matter of transcripts they said nothing different from Mr Jenkins, that they will be available at a later date. So why not let the press and public into the sessions when they are happening? Do they want to massage the results?

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