BBC

BBC struggles with press freedom in Charlie Hebdo aftermath

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BBC’s own guidelines on the use of religious icons in any of their content restricts the use of any iconography or graphics that may be interpreted as the Prophet Mohammed, while not having this limitation on any other religion.

The BBC has clarified its guidelines on the depiction of Mohammed, god’s last prophet according to Islamic theology.

The old guidelines were tweeted out by the BBC Question Time Twitter feed after they were read out loud on the show by host David Dimbleby last Thursday (January 8).

The guidelines read: “Due care and consideration must be made regarding the use of religious symbols in images which may cause offence.

“The Prophet Mohammed must not be represented in any shape or form”. Read more »

This is the greater threat…problem is it is already here

What if Charlie Hebdo was a UK publication?

Spiked examines what would have happened.

Week 1: Magazine’s editors and staff get No Platformed by the National Union of Students on the grounds that their publication has been ‘identified by the NUS’s Democratic Procedures Committee as holding racist or fascist views’. They are forbidden from all campuses.

Week 2: Individual student unions ban the sale or display of Charlie Hebdoanywhere on their premises in order to protect students from feeling the need to ‘succumb to media pressure to fear and loathe Muslims’ and encourage students instead to ‘celebrate Muslim students for their academic achievements and countless other talents’. Unions across the country justify the ban as ‘an important symbolic step towards creating a culture of ethnic and religious parity on campus’.

Week 3: A Change.org petition is created, calling on supermarket chains to ‘Stop Selling Charlie Hebdo’. A different petition is launched, by a campaign group called Muslim Eyes, demanding that supermarkets hide Charlie Hebdo in black plastic bags so that Muslims and others will not feel offended by its front covers. Supermarkets are called upon to ‘promote the right environment in store’ and not allow the open display of ‘offensive material’.

Week 4: A Twitterstorm builds in support of the petition of supermarkets, with hundreds of thousands of tweets using the hashtag #CoverUpCharlie to demand that the magazine be put in black bags. A member of parliament backs the campaign. Supermarkets relent and announce that some stores will remove Charlie Hebdo from sale while others will put it in black plastic covers and on the top shelf next to the porno mags.

Read more »

The BBC capitulates to Islamists

Liberty Scott blogs about the capitulation of the BBC to Islamists:

The Islamists want to return us to the dark ages.  They are not murdering out of a random desire for hatred, nor are they avenging Western involvement in wars in Iraq (which France did not participate in) and Afghanistan (which France had almost no involvement in), they are seeking to impose sharia law.

They achieve their aims by these sorts of events, and the previous attacks on the Danish newspaper Jyllands Posten.

It creates a climate of fear, fear that if you do offend those who want sharia law, they will enforce it.

So what happens is that they get what they want.

That is exactly what the BBC has done (and many other media outlets).

I pick on the BBC for some obvious reasons:

1.  It is state owned.  As such, it is meant to represent the UK, as a whole and embody the ill-defined values of the country.

2. It projects itself as a bastion of objectivity and balance.  Although plenty will accuse of it bias (and it has an inherently statist bias, rarely taking the view that government should do less), it still has some credibility internationally, particularly with the BBC World Service, in not being afraid to take on those who would censor opinions and information that offend them or disadvantage them.  Read more »

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Why Assange, Snowden and their little henchmen aren’t heroes

The left-wing lauds Julian Assange, ignoring his alleged criminal behaviour.

They celebrate Edward Snowden despite the fact he is a traitor and currently enjoys the protection of a despotic virtual dictator.

They falsely claim that their enabler, Glenn Greenwald has won a Pulitzer Prize, when he has not.

They hold these three up as heroes, when the reality is starkly different.

Max Hastings calls them out and explains why the “liberals who defend traitors like Snowden and Assange should look at this photo and admit: We were deluded fools”.

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Just imagine the Queen’s Birthday Parade, June 13, 2015: the monarch, her family and escorting officers are arrayed on Horse Guards’ in Whitehall, watching the serried red companies wheel and march past in slow time.

Suddenly, men burst from the crowd and begin spraying bullets among the soldiers and spectators.

It is a scenario from hell, yet no more fanciful than that of Wednesday’s massacre in a Paris magazine office, or last month’s slaughter of 132 schoolchildren in Peshawar, or the carnage of the London bus and Tube bombs of July 2005.

It is the sort of image with which security chiefs live every day of their working lives, because for them that would be the cost of a failure.

Yesterday’s dramatic events in France ended with three terrorists and four hostages dead after a formidable French security and intelligence operation.

The intelligence services have never doubted that new terrorist attacks will come to the West, including Britain. An event such as the Charlie Hebdo killings merely gives the ongoing threat a shocking new sense of immediacy.

On Thursday, the director general of MI5, Andrew Parker, made a rare speech, warning it was almost inevitable that an attack in this country would get through sooner or later. ‘Although we and our partners try our utmost, we know that we cannot hope to stop everything,’ he said.

The price of living in an open society, with the precious freedoms we take for granted, is that all of us, great and small, are vulnerable to attackers consumed by hatred for our culture, its values, and manifest superiority to those from which they come.

Globalisation places a disturbing number of such people in our midst, rather than far away in Somalia or Iran.

The good news is that although Islamic fanatics can cause us pain and grief, they pose no existential threat as did Hitler’s Germany or Stalin’s Soviet Union.

They cannot be compromised or parleyed with, because they have no rational political demands: they claim affiliation to a feudal order in which women are denied rights, technology is banished and mullahs arbitrate over daily life.

Read more »

Islam already has the world’s media under pressure

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Yesterday we heard that the BBC had pixelated the cartoons in their reports.

Our own NZ Herald had carefully redacted the cartoon from the image above.  “For space reasons”, I’m sure.  After all, the Internet is nearly full.

Here’s another weapons grade piece of pandering to Islam by a scared media, AP:

As reported through Breitbart, the Associated Press made clear that its official policy is to censor photos of the Prophet Muhammad. Apparently, though, disparaging images of Jesus Christ are acceptable. Read more »

Face of the day

Today’s Face of the day is a man of courage, a man who stood for freedom of expression, a man who persisted in the face of danger. His body guard was not able to save him or the others at his newspaper. I honour him, and them today and I challenge us all to not let their deaths be in vain. We too must be brave. We too must stand strong against this worldwide threat against the freedoms that we hold so dear.

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Charlie Hebdo editor Stephane Charbonnier Photo: AFP

Stephane Charbonnier, editor of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, was among four cartoonists killed in the Paris massacre which left 12 people dead in total.

Read more »

Photo Of The Day

Photo: BBC. On 1 April 1957, the BBC current affairs programme Panorama hoaxed the nation with a report about the annual spaghetti harvest.

Photo: BBC.
On 1 April 1957, the BBC current affairs programme Panorama hoaxed the nation with a report about the annual spaghetti harvest.

The Swiss Spaghetti Harvest

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Photo Of The Day

Jenabu, 13, waits for her teacher to arrive at school in a village in Guinea Bissau in May 2011. Her photo was used without permission and out of context in the #BringBackOurGirls campaign. Photo Credit: Ami Vitale/AlexiaFoundation

Jenabu, 13, waits for her teacher to arrive at school in a village in Guinea Bissau in May 2011. Her photo was used without permission and out of context in the #BringBackOurGirls campaign. Photo Credit: Ami Vitale/AlexiaFoundation

Safeguarding Truth in Photojournalism

Ami Vitale’s Survival Guide

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Fakestinian social media b.s.

via BBC

Graphic images are being shared on social media to show how people have been affected by the renewed tensions between Israel and the Palestinians.

Over the past week the hashtag #GazaUnderAttack has been used hundreds of thousands of times, often to distribute pictures claiming to show the effects of Israeli airstrikes on Gaza.

A #BBCtrending investigation has found that while some accurate images are being shared, many #GazaUnderAttack images are not from the latest conflict and often not even from Gaza. Some date as far back as 2009 and others are from conflicts in Syria and Iraq.

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Google’s demise starts here, ctd

Not only are Google changing history, they are effectively censoring you, and me, and journalism too.

This morning the BBC received the following notification from Google:

Notice of removal from Google Search: we regret to inform you that we are no longer able to show the following pages from your website in response to certain searches on European versions of Google:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/legacy/thereporters/robertpeston/2007/10/merrills_mess.html

What it means is that a blog I wrote in 2007 will no longer be findable when searching on Google in Europe.

Which means that to all intents and purposes the article has been removed from the public record, given that Google is the route to information and stories for most people.

So why has Google killed this example of my journalism?

Well it has responded to someone exercising his or her new “right to be forgotten”, following a ruling in May by the European Court of Justice that Google must delete “inadequate, irrelevant or no longer relevant” data from its results when a member of the public requests it.

Let’s pretend, 8 years from now, Len Brown petitions Google to have all of Whaleoil’s articles on him suppressed.  After all, it’s no longer relevant, he’s no longer  mayor, and it is definitely out of date.

This is insidious stuff.   Read more »