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Quarter of complaints to BBC over full 2-week period were about Panorama ‘hatchet-job’

Corporation released complaints figures – dominated by reaction to Panorama anti-Labour episode

The BBC has released its complaints figures for the period 8-21 July. Across that full two-week period, it received 6,551 complaints, with 1,593 – nearly a quarter – related to the BBC’s Panorama programme “Is Labour antisemitic”:

Labour criticised the programme at the time of its broadcast as a ‘hatchet-job‘ and pointed out that it contained major inaccuracies, including innocuous emails doctored so that they appeared damning, such as a response to a request for input that was presented as ‘interference’.


The proportion of complaints about a single programme was unusual enough that the BBC felt obliged to try to explain it, claiming it was linked to an online call for complaints. Of course, that does nothing to explain away why so may people felt outraged enough to act on it.

The programme was widely derided on its broadcast for its unsubstantiated claims and its misrepresentation of supposed Labour ‘whistleblowers’ who in fact have well-known and chequered histories – and who all or almost all belonged to the same anti-Corbyn group, although the programme failed to mention it. So poor was it that only the most die-hard opponents of the Labour Party seemed to feel able to try to exploit it.

Yet the BBC continues to insist that it ‘stands by its journalism’. Appalling.

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  1. Anyone remember the neutron bomb? a latter-day weapon that could cause immense damage to the enemy whilst leaving infrastructure intact.

    The 2019 version has been launched: it’s called Ofcom. So brilliant and precise is its targeting, it can obliterate RT whilst leaving the BBC utterly unscathed.

    BTW There is a link here to make complaints about the Panorama programme to Ofcom: my advice is: “do it – but don’t hold your breath.”

  2. Obliterate? I reckon RT can probably afford £200,000 (if not, the Kremlin can), but your broader point is sound.

    I’m wondering what percentage of the BBC’s budget goes to News/Current Affairs? I’d like to withhold that percentage of my licence fee and write to them telling them so.

    Anyone know?

    1. Withhold the whole amount of the licence fee. I do. They don’t get so much as a bean from me. I stopped funding propaganda years ago. The bbc should be broken up, its way beyond “unfit for purpose”.

      1. At my last address I avoided it for 25 years but it’s not so easy where I am now. Do you manage easily to live with the possibility of the dreaded knock on the door in the back of your mind?

    2. I genuinely think that the whole BBC charter arrangement should be reviewed and the BBC abolished altogether.
      Why should 13 million people who voted labour at the last election be forced to pay massive salaries to the likes of Fiona Bruce a less than average presenter who consistently demonstrates ignorance and anti labour bias. I haven’t watched a full episode of Question Time since last February when she mocked and tried to humiliate Diane Abbott yet I am still forced to contribute to her fat salary.
      Its just not on . If the BBC want to spread anti labour propaganda and engage in nasty personal attacks on our MPs they should they not receive public money-our money- to do so.
      Labour should do away with the TV licence and let the BBC , like commercial channels seek sponsorship for their activities. I’m sure the Tory party to which the BBC has long given unqualified support will be happy to return the favour.

      1. Absolutely spot on!

        And after all, hasn’t Corbyn previously said something to the BBC to the effect of “we’re coming for you”? 😈

      2. I’d forgotten about that Timfrom- great – can’t wait.

  3. Well, it’s 3.52am, and I’m ready to hit the sack, but I came across this SB post a short while ago, and I have no choice but to strike whilst the iron is hot, so to speak.

    As some of you may recall, a couple of days after the Panorama program – which I recorded so that I could watch it a second time and make notes etc – I posted an assessment of the first five minutes of the program, and a few days ago I got round to evaluating and, as such, dismantling a bit more of the program…. about another five minutes in fact, as it transpired (if you want to check out my previous post covering the first five minutes approximately, it’s here):

    Anyway, the following is a segment from the latter part of the five minutes or so that I ‘examined’, and the particular segment in question starts immediately after the Labour spokesperson – Andrew Gwynne – makes an initial appearance, and directly after a 4 second shot of a full moon, either rising, or setting, where some ‘atmospheric’ background music starts up, and continues whilst the the next person to appear has their say. She starts by intoducing herself, and then goes on to say that she joined the Labour Party in 2015 “and the anti-semitic abuse I received was what I was subjected to every day”, then there’s a two or three second shot of her not saying anything, but just looking perturbed at the memory of it all, and then she goes on to say: “Telling me that Hitler was right, and Hitler did not go far enough”, and then after another clip of her not saying anything and looking perturbed again, she then says: “In Labour Party meetings we’ve seen people engage in Holocaust denial, and that’s terrifying for Jewish members, and then finishes by saying: “It absolutely breaks my heart, but I do not think the Labour Party is a safe place for Jewish members any more”, and then it moves on to another segment.

    Right, so imagine if you were Jewish, and you join the Labour Party and, as such, you attend meetings (presumably her local CLP) AND from the outset you are subjected to anti-semitic abuse every day (not that CLPs have meetings every day of course, or even every week, and as far as I’m aware, it’s normally once a month). But anyway, so you’re subjected to this anti-semitic abuse ‘every day, with people telling you that Hitler was right, and that he didn’t go far enough, and that at meetings you – and OTHER Jewish members (she DOES say ‘we’ remember) – see people engaging in Holocaust denial…….


    NO, of course you wouldn’t, and yet we’re expected to believe that SHE – *AND* other Jewish members – just carried on attending them and being subjected to more anti-semitic abuse every time. And assuming these other Jewish members didn’t join and start attending meetings at the same time as HER, then had they ALREADY been attending meetings for a while and being subjected to anti-semitic abuse every day…… I mean EVERY meeting, or did they join and start attending meetings AFTER her and being subjected to anti-semitic abuse, or a combination of BOTH before and after. It is of course too absurd for words, and complete and utter fabrication, because after the FIRST time it happened, you would NEVER attend another meeting AND you would of course cancel your LP membership the very next day.

    Oh, right, and we’re supposed to believe that local party officials just stood by and let all this anti-semitic abuse and Holocaust denial go on day after….. I mean meeting after meeting! Yes, of course, it sounds totally plausible, doesn’t it! Oh, and I wonder if she – and the other Jewish members who were subjected to it all – ever made a formal complaint to the NEC about it all. Well NO, of course she/they didn’t because it’s ALL disgusting and despicable and abhorrent Big Lies. And of course her buddies who appeared on the program saying much the same were also lying through their nasty fascist teeth!

    Oh, and her name was Izzy Lenger, and she’s an offical of the Jewish Labour Movement, as I determined shortly afterwards.

    NB Needless to say, that saying you were subjected to anti-semitic abuse and Holocaust denial ‘every day’ obviously makes more of an impact on your audience than saying ‘every month’. As I said in my previous/initial post, they – John Ware and EVERYONE involved in making the program – set out to emotionalise the audience from the outset, because having DONE so, people are much less likely to ask themselves, for example, “Why on Earth did she keep going to meetings then?!”. Or, “What was that full moon all about”! And that background music!!!

    1. PS Or, “Surely they don’t have meetings every day, DO they!?”

      The bit in question starts at 8 mins on Iplayer.

      1. Thanks Allan…..Its good to have an eagle eye and a forensic mind to analyse what’s the Beeb serve up as journalism in today’s fake news and downright lies…..I gave up on the BBC licence 4years ago and would advise others to do.We do not need to have a mouthpiece of the Establishment bleeding us dry for gossip broadcasting and fawning subservient life at the Buck house..that we are also bled for…pathetic

      2. Don’t get carried away Joseph or you’ll swell his head. This “forensic mind” can tip over into the kind of wild unfounded accusations he claims to be fighting. He recently accused me of being a “shill” for absolutely no reason and failed to back it up when asked.

        Oh, and his name isn’t Allan Howard, it’s Malcolm Colemann. In my experience, someone using a false name is a lot more suspect than one who doesn’t, wouldn’t you say?

      3. Don’t worry about my head swelling up timfrom. That said, when I was a kid, I readily admit that I was a Big Head, but now I’m perfect!

        As for Malcolm Colemann, THAT was the user-name I set the account up in yonks ago, and as I’ve explained on at least a couple of occasions on here when I posted a comment and didn’t notice that it had changed back to the original user-name, it was a joke name that an old girlfriend used to call me.

        Anyway, you can call me Malcolm if you like timfrom, I really don’t mind at all. Interesting name by the way……. where’s it fromtim?

      4. Like yours, an old joke name from a different site (The Void RIP) where circumstances required circumspection (I was signing on at the time).

        Now in the true spirit of Socialist solidarity, shall we concentrate on fighting the REAL enemy? 😃

    2. If I went to a particular meeting and every time I went to said particular meeting I was subjected to a specific form of hate speech and discrimination, knowing this is how people at the meeting operated, I would record them and take it to the police, report them and ask the police to formally act upon my evidence . Those people interviewed claiming such were not asked if they did this. Go figure

    3. I think one of the reasons the programme didn’t really received any traction is that is was so absurdly over the top. In one way it has stopped the antisemitism smear in its tracks.

      1. If only that were true doc, but it’s all down to conceivability, and the bigger the lie, or lies, the more inconceivable it is to most people that they could be lying. And I’m not sure in which way it has stopped the anti-semitism smears in their tracks, cos they just keep coming.

      2. Dr large we’ve got a pause whilst the writs are flying at Watson,but he will surface soon when he gets short of readys his bosses at the embassy supply!

    4. Allan, see ‘Jewish Dissident’ website piece 12/7/19 lot of those appearing were Jewish Labour Movement Officers – biggest stitch up against the Labour Party since the Zionviev fake letter published by the Daily Mail just before a GE in 1924?

    5. Allan, as you say. why would she stay in the Labour Party if people were telling her things like ‘Hitler was right’?
      I thought I’d look up Izzy Lenger in case I could see which CLP she might be in. Two minutes later a search took me to this

      it’s from the Birmingham Mail, November 2015. it starts
      “A Jewish University of Birmingham student faced vile abuse after highlighting an Adolf Hitler poster she said was “plastered” over the campus.

      Police are investigating comments aimed at Izzy Lenga after she tweeted an image of the poster, which showed Hitler and the phrase: “Hitler was right”.”

      So, either she happened to witness exactly the same words used twice, or the “Hitler was right”, incident is not connected to the Labour Party at all.
      ….and if i can find something which casts doubt on the veracity of her account so easily, why didn’t the Panorama researchers do likewise?

    6. Allan, I’ve nicked a bit of your research and posted the info on the JVL website as well.
      Hope you don’t mind 😉
      Oh, and Izzy Lenga was a CLP delegate for Chipping Barnet (and member of the group FFS)in September 2018. I wonder what other LP members there make of her accusations?

    7. Well said Alan. I have wondered why these accusers don’t go straight to the police. Some of these attacks are awful and a few decades in gaol is the least that these thousands of abusers and bullies and their families deserve.
      I cry out loud whenever I think of these brave souls persisting as members under such circumstances yet even achieving high positions of authority, standing stout, firm and true in the fury of years of abuse and hatred. Sitting in meetings where all the talk is of holocaust denial and Hitler.
      Having said that I do wonder why they join and remain in such an hostile movement. I have not got the strength of character or iron will to withstand such constant hatred and intolerance.
      Full marks for finding the strength to stay in. All truth seekers must stand together untill we have destroyed the Labour party. All we have to defend ourselves with are the media and the other organisations that we have created out of thin air and a few bob from here and there. Remarkable and inspiring. This is the determination which is needed to evict members of the mob who hold such foul views that they have managed to keep it secret even from themselves.
      Our brave comrades who can see evil wherever it lurks. From a more hilariously tinged than three months ago (climate change, acid rain) member. Thanks for your honesty. Limping on to the GE.

  4. Alan , I think we can safely say she was lying , unless she can bring forth co-oberative evidence , such as witnesses at any of the CLP meetings to back her claims , then this is just a statement at best . Wouldn’t stand up in court not a chance , which is why non of this has been reported or subject to Police action.

    1. Rob I will have to buy a dictionary if you, others and RH continue toimpress us with the English language

      1. Steady on Joseph! Co-oberation isn’t in my dictionary.

        Corroboration is, though! 😀

    2. Well, as you in fact implied rob, it would only take Labour Party HQ a few minutes to establish which CLP she would have attended – if at all – and to then give them a quick buzz to determine if she DID in fact attend meetings, and if she is lying about that – and it wouldn’t surprise me one bit if she was – then the LP should release a statement to that effect.

      Put it this way, if she works for the JLM – which she DOES – and worked for them back in 2015, then SURELY she would have told her colleagues there about it if all the anti-semitic abuse she alleges was REALLY going on, and THEY would have submitted complaints to the NEC which, as we ALL know, they are not shy about doing. But even if she WASN’T working for them back in 2015, what on earth would stop her from submitting complaints HERSELF. I mean if YOU *really* had people telling you that “Hitler was right” and that he “didn’t go far enough” etc, then they would undoubtedly be expelled from the LP, and bear in mind that she very clearly made it sound as if there were a number of people involved. I mean she gave the impression that it was ALL going on quite openly AND that other Jewish people attending were subjected to it (I wonder who they WERE?!, and if any of them complained to the NEC about it), so how on earth would the chairperson and other committee members have not been aware of it, let alone a bunch of other people, and it is of course inconceivable that THEY – the committee members – wouldn’t have turfed the culprits out there and then the first time it happened and told them to never come back – that they were barred – AND they themselves reported the culprits to the NEC. Or are we supposed to belive the chairperson and other committee members and everyone attending were wearing brown shirts and all heiling the Fuhrer.

      The point is that it COULDN’T have happened more than ONCE anyway, because the culprits would have been slung out on their ears tout suite AND permanently barred from meetings, and THAT is just further proof that it’s all lies and fabrication and that she is lying through her teeth, if anyone NEEDS further proof, that is.

      PS My apologies, but my post turned out to be considerably longer than I initially thought it would!

  5. Why hasn’t this programme been reported to ofcom? Recently Ofcom fined RT for, amongst other things, editing a document to give the wrong impression, but mostly for these sort of complaints:
    “We also observed that Mr Galloway and Ms Pertiwi, as the presenters of the programme, did not present any challenge to the views of Mr Nekrassov (as discussed above) in their questioning or elsewhere in the programme. Although Mr Galloway asked the studio guest various questions, in our view, the questioning of this interviewee primarily had the effect of encouraging or reinforcing Mr Nekrassov’s views, and therefore did not provide any effective challenge to those views”.

    Compare this to just about every Today programme about Labour issues and most certainly the entire Panorama programme

  6. I think it’s worth saying that people like me and others here didn’t wake up one morning in 2015 when Ed Miliband resigned and thought “Ah, today would be a good day to start campaigning against Zionists in the Labour Party”

    However, when it was known that Jeremy Corbyn was on the list of possibles to become Labour Leader, the Zionists in the Party DID wake up on whatever day it was and said “No way are we going to allow this to happen and the weapon we are going to use to prevent it is ANTI-SEMITISM.

    From that moment on, the Zionists chose the weapon and the battle ground and because Iain McNicol, the JLM and the LFI were their footsoldiers since Blair had Zionised the Party, they thought they would have a walk-over. To an extent, because of Labour’s continuous appeasement, they were correct and it has been left to others in the Party to challenge them and fight back against the smears and allegations which were launched to destroy Jeremy. This has put US in the firing line just because we are trying to defend Jeremy and bring to the public’s notice the nature and source of the attacks.

    Instead of the Party helping and protecting us, because of the overwhelming influence of Zionists in the Party, they have colluded by sacrificing those such as Chris Williamson, Jackie Walker, Cyril Chilsom and others and most incredibly of all, stupidly accepting the trap known as the IHRA definition.

    Because they have allowed an internal enemy, acting on behalf of an external power to take control, the Party’s handling of this situation has been abysmal and now they are trying to dig themselves out of a hole of their own making by producing guidelines for this that and the other when all they need to do is what everyone should do when attacked by bullies – fight back or the bully will come back for more.

    1. Jack, if anyone ‘fights back’, they themselves are condemned and smeared. You say in your post that it’s been up to ‘others’ to fight back because the leadership won’t, and then say that THEY have put themselves in the ‘firing line’ by doing so, but wouldn’t the leadership just be putting themselves in the same ‘firing line’ if THEY tried to fight back. Of course they would, and it’s for THAT reason that they haven’t, generally speaking. And on the odd occasion when people HAVE tried to fight back and defend themselves, they just got condemned and smeared again, Ken Livingstone being the perfect example, not to mention the recent ‘reaction’ to the Labour Party’s denunciation of the Panorama program and the ex-staffers.

      As I KEEP saying, it’s a no-win situation, and all Jeremy can do is ride the storm, but WE, his supporters, CAN, if we want, expose those who are whipping UP the storm for WHO and WHAT they are, and that was my objective in ‘dismantling’ the Panorama program and exposing the credibility of those who took part in it AND those who produced it, and John Ware of course. And as for the IHRA definition, as Jonathan Cook said, in effect – and I’ve posted it at LEAST a couple of times recently – the LP was forced to do so by the constant bombardment by the plotters over a period of many weeks – ie the ‘moderates’, the JLM and the CAA etc, and the MSM and the Jewish newspapers.

      1. Allan, sorry, as on other occasions you’ve completely missed the point.

        Even though the Leadership have chosen not to fight back there was still no need to go even further and sacrifice those who decided that the Zionists could not be allowed to have it their own way. The way the Party has acted is the same way that cowards behave, they try and get others to take the blame for their actions or lack of actions.

        Has it worked?

      2. But as I just explained in my post Jack, NOTHING will work, and that’s why it’s up to US at the grass-roots level to get the truth out there, by putting leaflets together and putting them through peoples doors – ie get the truth out there about Ken (who was alluding, in passing, to an historical fact AND his detractors KNOW it of course) and Jackie (who didn’t say anything remotely anti-semitic and is Jewish herself of course) and Marc (who didn’t even know that Ruth Smeeth was Jewish, not that he said anything anti-semitic ANYWAY) and Pete Willsman (who was covertly recorded at a private meeting the first time – and is of course entitled to his opinion – and the second time was undoubtedly set up, although I suspect he had had one too many at that stage, perhaps TWO too many). And of course Chris!

      3. Allan, if as you say, NOTHING will work, why put leafelets out?

        Your problem is, you came to a conclusion some time ago that the Leadership has adopted the right strategy but desite it being proven time after time not to have worked you are just too entrenched to admit it.

        It’s patently obvious that if they had fought back, especially considering the nature of the enemy, there would have been massive push back but this should not have prevented them from doing it.

      4. Jack, what I am saying – and I’ve said it on a number of occasions before during the past year or more – is that if Jeremy/the leadership try to fight back, they will just get shot down, and that’s why WE, at the grass-roots level, must do all we can to expose the falshoods and get the truth out there FOR him/them, because unlike THEM, WE are not on ‘their’ radar, and so they can’t smear us, cos how on earth would they know who we are anyway.

      5. Bollocks to this. I’m starting my own party, Monumemental. I am the guvnor . I decide who is in or out. I get all the subs, xes and I decide who is a socialist and what democracy is.
        Yours with one eye on the meds trolley, Jimmy Seadog. X

      6. Ha! It’s the only way to ensure solidarity! (Split personalities notwithstanding) 😵

  7. The Media Reform Coalition report ‘BBC Panorama on anti-semitism: a catalogue of reporting failures’ is very damning.

    It concludes:

    ‘The BBC has declined to respond to criticisms beyond stating that it “stands by its journalism” and completely rejects “any accusations of bias or dishonesty”. This is, in many ways, the most serious failure: the failure to account for what appear to be, at best, serious errors of judgement on the part of the journalists and editors who produced the programme.

    MRC values independent and investigative journalism as essential for democracy. When leading broadcasters fall short of their own guidelines, we should expect detailed responses and critical scrutiny. A one-sided and misleading attack on Labour reveals an underlying bias against the left that discredits its mission as a public service broadcaster.’

  8. The day Jennie Formby walked into the job was the day our AS problem was called out
    1/20th of 1% of members 0.05% 250/500,000
    Worst case I watched was Channel 4 news report from Prestwich in Manchester, 13 year old states she is frightened because of what JC says about the Jewish people
    There was no follow up, either to find out what she thought had been said or any counter factual to whatever it was,
    Wrong on so many levels, but so far off the scale that it backfires, when the media frame a story so poorly it has zero traction
    If any of it had been remotely true over last 3 years we would have been finished as a party
    My counter factual on AS is the party have been irresponsible by not standing up for our members and supporters

  9. Doug. “The day Jennie Formby walked into the job was the day our AS problem was called out”

    Apart from the fact we don’t have an anti-Semitism problem, we have a Zionist problem, who called it out? Jennie Formby certainly didn’t do it!

    1. Jack T
      Good example of both of us being spot on,
      JF gave us the facts and a gold standard, fact is others refuse to use this information to kick out vexatious claimants, for me all roads lead to John Lansman and Momentum, as well as the usual suspects

  10. Here is Dr. Alan Maddison’s forensic examination of Ruth Smeeth’s claim to have received 25,000 antisemitic tweets. It is clear from this alone that the truth is little more than an inconvenient obstacle for those involved in this campaign against the Labour Party and its leader.

    In a world where reality/news is now moderated by the likes of Steve Bannon, Lynton Crosby and Dominic Cummings, plus of course our old friend Alastair Campbell, is it any wonder?

    1. Excellent article, and Margaret Hodge should also be questioned by the NEC as to how the vast majority of people SHE complained about turned out NOT to be LP members AND how she could have possibly concluded that they WERE, when they WEREN’T. And Jess Phillips should be questioned about the claim she made four months ago in a Sky TV interview in which she claimed that the police were investigating death threats made against her by a LP member, and it goes without saying of course that they were a left-wing Jeremy Corbyn supporter. It’s funny how it’s been four months now and we’ve heard nothing more about it. But as with Ruth Smeeth and her 25,000 abusive messages, do they all just happen to say “Oh, hello, I’m a Jeremy Corbyn supporter and a member of the Labour Party, and then threaten to kill her, as Jess Phillips would have people believe, or fire off racist abuse at her, as Ruth Smeeth would have people believe. The BIGGER the lie the better, eh!

      As I’ve often said before, isn’t it strange how there’s (supposedly) all these supporters of Jeremy’s doing everything they can to sabotage his chances of winning a GE and forming a government. Very odd that!

    2. if as has been reported members can be thrown out of the party on prima facie evidence can party in the interests of our members and supporters throw out those who are clearly making vexatious claims
      can the party at least make an announcement to that effect
      now has she gone yet

    1. ‘BBC insists it stands by it’s Journalism????? What Journalism?’

      Dunno. Maybe they mean the shite excuses they roll out when they’ve been collared sending threatening letters about Tv licence evasion to the deceased.

      One thoroughly obnoxious institution, that. In many, many ways.

      1. What they mean of course is that the stand by their black propaganda!

  11. All these complaints will have some effect but it is difficult to know how much. The BBC is hardly going to tell us. So, well done, to all those who complained about this dreadful programme.

    I think I read somewhere that Peter Oborne asked the BBC for a programme on Islamophobia in the Conservative Party but they refused.

    1. I’m sure Margaret Hodge’s BBC news editor daughter Lizzi Watson put her foot down on anything that would take the heat off Labour and their “A/S crisis”.

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