In defence of public media, or, why we need to save the BBC

The BBC had it coming. Not because of systemic problems or “shoddy journalism” inherent in a crumbling institution. But because from the very first day that the current government was in power, the BBC has been under sustained attack from those whose vested interests would like to see it gone. Last year, an open letter to the government signed by over fifty public figures (including, for example, Jo Brand and David Tennant) warned against the Tory plans to derail the BBC, saying that “It is, of course, right that there is a national debate about the future of the BBC. But attacking the BBC to serve the interests of its commercial rivals would be short-sighted and threatens to devalue not just the BBC itself, but our culture as a whole”. The events of the past twenty-four hours, and the lead-up over the past month and more, has provided a prime opportunity for those out to destroy the BBC to make their voices heard – and in the midst of the attack, those who have been voiceless for many years after suffering terrible abuse as children have once again been drowned out by people in positions of power serving their own interests. Continue reading In defence of public media, or, why we need to save the BBC