BBC strikes in light of Murdoch

(Source: The Guardian)

Sometimes it’s easy to figure out which side people are on – the strikers and their union, the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) are on one side – as are the other unions in the BBC and outside. At the rallies at the BBC’s Bush House and Television Centre, NUJ General Secretary Michelle Stanistreet read out a strong solidarity statement from her Public and Commercial Services union equivalent Mark Serwotka – one of many messages from other unions. Also on the side of the BBC are Labour MP and chair of the NUJ parliamentary group, John McDonnell, and former MP and NUJ Member of Honour, Tony Benn, who joined NUJ members on the picket line.

On the other side, for quite a long time, has been the Murdoch empire, chipping away at support for the BBC, particularly in parliament. However, the events of the last few days have shown the irony of the closing line of James Murdoch’s 2009 MacTaggart lecture: “The only reliable, durable, and perpetual guarantor of independence is profit.” The craven pursuit of profit by the company of which he’s boss led to the phone hacking scandal that has shocked and disgusted so many and so damaged his family’s empire.

…[T]he NUJ, on the eve of the strike, called for the licence fee deal to be re-examined in the light of revelations surrounding the influence of Rupert Murdoch and his News International executives on David Cameron and senior government ministers.

Read the full article in The Guardian.

Hague giving BBC World Service £2.2 million to save Hindi shortwave broadcasts

This is fantastic news for BBC World Service’s Hindi shortwave broadcasts. The allocated funds will be given to BBC WS over a 3 year period.Kudos to

Foreign Secretary, William Hague (photo source: Wikimedia Commons)

Foreign Secretary, William Hague, for recognizing the impact of BBC Wold Service’s Hindi language service.

Sadly, the cuts in funds earlier this year will still eliminate vital language services like Albanian, Macedonian, Portuguese for Africa, Serbian, and English for the Caribbean.

(Source: the Guardian)

The BBC World Service’s Hindi short-wave broadcasts have been saved from the axe after the foreign secretary, William Hague, agreed to give extra money to the highly regarded international broadcaster.

Hague has agreed to give an extra £2.2m annually to the World Service for the next three years from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office budget.

This slightly reduces the impact of a controversial 16% cut in the World Service’s FCO grant, announced as part of the government’s comprehensive spending review in October.

Read full article in the Guardian.