BBC Scotlandshire (unfairly) accused of institutional bias

By our political correspondent Nat Hunter

Chris-PattenBBC Scotlandshire executives have been unjustly accused of political bias from a number of quarters this week.

It has been alleged, without any basis in fact, that the organisation has consistently favoured the Westminster government's position on Scottish independence, and that this has both skewed and stifled the political debate.

Chris Patton, chairman of the BBC Trust and the last Englishman to set foot on the British Empire, has written to BBC Scotlandshire following a private meeting with First Minister Alex Salmond. Mr Patton insists that steps are taken immediately in order to remove any impression of bias in the news reporting of the organisation.

In his letter, he suggests replacing the word 'separation' with the phrase 'ill-concieved plans for independence', replacing 'separatist' with 'swivel-eyed nationalist loon' and replacing 'separate' with 'alone, defenceless and bankrupt'. he also insisted that reader comments be restored forthwith.

After the meeting, Mr Patton told a BBC Scotlandshire reporter: “The first minister asked how many complaints of pro-unionist bias we had received and I told him that it was difficult to give an accurate figure, as we tend to weigh them rather than read them, but I believed the total was around half a million.

However, I also pointed out to Mr Salmond that we had received a number of complaints alleging pro-separatist bias, from a Mr Davidson of London, which clearly demonstrated that we were correctly fulfilling our role as state broadcaster.

There have been other pressures on the directors as a spoof BBC Scotlandshire website called BBC Scotland has been publishing satirical stories of an extremely biased nature, in a fruitless attempt to draw attention to this channel's supposed faults.

The mainly fictitious articles on the BBC Scotland site, however, are so far-fetched as to be almost unbelievable, despite many thousands of readers being fooled into thinking they were genuine news items, rather than obvious parodies of real journalism.

Figurehead of the now-defunct Scottish Liberal Democrats, oor Wullie Rennie, speaking from his party conference in a Dunoon telephone box, said:

“Well I was definately taken in by the satire on BBC Scotland – an i'm no what ye'd call naïve, like. BBC Scotland stories are mibbe a bit extreme, but totally believable aw the same”.

“But hey, whit can you do, eh,?” he added.

Additionally, there are rumours that an independent documentary called “I'll make you a Believer” is now turning its attention to the record of BBC Scotlandshire. The film, which will interview experts and members of the public to expose media bias against independence, had ignored the BBC until now.

However, insiders now say that the production is considering refocussing on the BBC in the light of recent remarks made by a notorious Labour MP.

ian-davidson-see-you-henChairman of the Scottish Affairs committee of Scotland-Hating Individuals for a Tory England (SHITE). Ian Davidson MP, told BBC Scotlandshire:

“That wee filum's still goin, is it? I thought we hud shut they separatist agitators doon – that's why ah went oan tae Newsnat Scotland and gied that Fraser burd a right doin.

"An noo ye tell me the bastirds ur still at it. They buggers must ae changed tactics on us an there's me none the wiser. Ay, weel, me an ma selected committee ul soon see aboot that, aw right”, he added.

Interim Scottish Labour leader Johann Lamont was unavailable for comment.


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