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Richard North, 18/11/2012  


Booker 506-gjh.jpg

The Booker column this week picks up on the Omnologos find and the networking detail which we added. The whole piece can usefully be read in conjunction with Booker's report on the BBC and climate change.

Looking at the comments on Booker's column though, I don't think the full enormity of the findings have been properly understood as we see DFID paying £520,000 of taxpayer's funds – ostensibly allocated to the foreign aid budget – to a third party organisation, of which the BBC is part. That money was then used, with the full knowledge and approval of DFID, for activities which included lobbying the BBC on climate change.

Thus, it isn't only the BBC that is in the frame here. As much part of the story is that huge amounts of public money are being used by government departments to lobby the BBC, seeking to change its broadcasting priorities and policies.

For sure, one mustn't lose sight of the BBC diemsion but, if you look at this smoking gun you will see appalling misuse of public funds. Identified in this one report is a DFID allocation of £468,000 to "Media Research", paid to an organisation of which the BBC is part, plus other jaw-dropping activities.

This is the other "dirty little secret". The government as well as the BBC is implicated in this scandal, one which the legacy media has so far not thought fit to publish – with the notable exception of the Booker column.

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