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An open letter to the BBC

Dear BBC,


I’m not writing to you to request stuff like people used to in what we thought were more innocent times in the seventies. I am writing to you because I’m a bit concerned by your sudden collapse in the face of the forces of evil!


BBC, you and me go back a long way. I suppose at my age I’m the first TV generation who watched kids TV and the news and went to bed when you ended with the national anthem at 11 O clock every night in those long ago days when the media would actually end.

I was a Top Of The Pops kid who loved all the glam rock of the pre punk years and hated the gurning DJs who interrupted the music to push themselves to the front all the time. We often wondered why Jimmy Savile was even on there and had no idea what he had to do with a pop culture that he seemed to have no connection with. If only we knew then what we know now!


Me and the BBC have had some great moments, and also lots of rubbish ones where we switched off but then you were never there solely for me and I never minded sharing you with everyone else. So it saddens me to see all this Savilgate mess and your squirming in the media glare and your own navel gazing- your own personal trial by media! The media love to point out you are ‘lefty’ but I’m not sure what Jeremy Clarkson would have to say about that…

But in the last few days I’ve been getting a bit confused. It seems like you are having to apologise and face off the slavering right wing newspaper Hell hounds as they demand your blood in the wake of the Newsnight reports on firstly Jimmy Savile that you somehow didn’t show and the one that told of people going beyond the pale in the Welsh children’s home. I’m not sure if a lot of the pres reporting has been that responsible but there are lots of agendas going on here.


The fact you never mentioned any names in the second story was greeted by howls of derision from the press when it was broadcast from the same people who now want you closed down for causing a certain politican a lot of Internet grief and to threaten law suits for anyone who mentions his name in relation to this case.

I’m not an expert on the law and hopefully someone will explain this to me but I thought that if you don’t mention the names then you could not be sued but it seems like it was now your fault that the name was all over the internet because of the Newsnight story, maybe because you reported that the victim had said it was a top politicians but the name of the person had already been all over the internet, which isn’t right of course, before Newnsight and had even been on David Icke’s site years ago.

I’m not even sure why you had to apologise because the report itslef was pretty vague. It may not have been put together that well but what were you meant to do? Ignore the story? It was quite a big story and those poor people from the home were pretty sure who had messed their lives up although they seem to have suddenly changed their minds. Of course people have the right to sue to protect their names in court and no one is saying who did what here but we now have a situation where no-one can say anything and everyone seems to have forgotten the original case and the poor people who were sexually abused.


It seems odd to me that everyone is quite happy to rant on about Jimmy Savile and even if it looks like he was a thoroughly unpleasant charachter it has not been proven properly yet.


BBC, I’m glad that you are having an enquiry and at least you admit your mistakes but the whole story seems to have over shadowed the whole case. It seems clear that something was going on in that home and those other boys homes. No one knows who by yet and what excatly happened and no one should try and guess on line but does this mean it should all just be ignored? What can be reported any more? Just dodgy dead DJs? Or shall we just watch endless reruns of Blue Peter?


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Award winning journalist and boss of Louder Than War. In a 30 year music writing career, John was the first to write about bands such as Stone Roses and Nirvana and has several best selling music books to his name. He constantly tours the world with Goldblade and the Membranes playing gigs or doing spoken word and speaking at music conferences.


  1. John, this has an element of Louis Theroux style faux-innocence going through it. I think people do know that the BBC and any organization that runs partly through the money to be made by “Celebrity Culture” is going to be corrupt. Thats a given. The question now is, how much of the corruption is going to be placed before the public in the fake “look what we found out about ourselves” wide-eyed-gosh-sorta-way… And as corrupt people have no loyalty, they will probably “find out” about people who are not useful to them anymore anyway, and place them in front of the mob baying for blood. But the real corruption will remain untouched. The public won’t be allowed to know about the occult/freemason/rituals-with-children links, because frankly, they wouldn’t believe it.

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