Friday, December 18, 2009

BBC News Pseudo Apologizes for Homophobic Poll

12/18/09: From the Director of BBC World Service:

"The original headline on our website was, in hindsight, too stark. We apologise for any offence it caused. But it's important that this does not detract from what is a crucial debate for Africans and the international community.

The programme was a legitimate and responsible attempt to support a challenging discussion about proposed legislation that advocates the death penalty for those who undertake certain homosexual activities in Uganda - an important issue where the BBC can provide a platform for debate that otherwise would not exist across the continent and beyond"

The BBC does not understand that the nature of this poll is not only offensive, but provides a platform for homophobic and violent attitudes.

12/16/09: The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) is the subject of controversy over their latest 'Have Your Say' section asking "should homosexuals should face execution?"

The site discusses how Uganda is debating the death penalty for homosexuals, and asks users to weigh in.

Naturally this has brought up many intensely homophobic and some violent commentary. This is not a 'debate' to be had, and since it incites hatred and violence against LGBT people, this is totally unacceptable. The BBC has a rule against users leaving homophobic comments, yet many remain on the forum.

Voice your concerns with the BBC complaint form.


Peer Aagaard said...

The BBC has closed the "debate" after having rejected 189 homophobic comments. However, many homophobic comments can still be seen on their website. Surely the BBC owes the LGBT a huge apology?

W said...

What the they not realize how distressing that is to read as an LGBT person?

Diane J Standiford said...

Unbelievable. The BBC---holy hypocrisy, Britman!

planet trans said...

That article was a cheap journalistic attempt to garner attention by sensationalizing a potential human tragedy. I wish he comments were open because I would have left a ear full for the editors.

Anonymous said...

It breaks my heart that this question is still really being asked anywhere in the world!

Nox said...

so I guess "Should clueless journalists face lynching" would qualify as a "crucial debate" topic? I'd ask, but the answer is too tempting.

libhom said...

The BBC keeps getting more pathetic.

Anonymous said...

Oh, there are far worse and dangerous "platform[s] for homophobic and violent attitudes" than the BBC, like for instance the Ugandan parliament.

For many this is a much graver danger than getting your sensibilities shocked. By all hallmarks a variant of this law is likely to be passed.

That said, while a "stark" headline can increase awareness, it also frames the discussion so that the response could just as well be racist as homophobic, and that isn't helping matters.

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