Spot the difference

I am a great fan of the BBC, as you know. Institution, example to the world, etc, etc.

The fuss over the Ross/Brand broadcast was, of course, manufactured outrage by the Daily Mail that spurred Middle England into action (despite very few complaints at the time of broadcast). And the fallout from that affair is still settling – not least within the BBC, which has (according to some insiders) become noticeably more risk-averse in the last few months.

But the BBC does itself no favours with Chris Moyles. He can, it seems, broadcast blatantly homophobic material mocking Will Young, be found in breach of the broadcasting code by Ofcom for doing so (despite just eight complaints), but continue broadcasting without any apology. Oh, he has been “spoken to” by the Radio 1 controller, but that’s it. (And it’s not his first offence either.)

Contrast with Clare Balding. Interviewing the winning Grand National jockey she made a joke about his poor teeth. I saw it and laughed, as did those around her. The jockey was mildly embarrassed but it was all in good humour. And yet the BBC received nearly 1500 complaints and Balding has now had to apologise.

I just do not understand this.

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