The BBC was hit with nearly 500,000 viewer complaints in just 12 months amid concerns at ‘perceived bias’.
The broadcaster received 462,255 complaints in the year 2020 to 2021 which it said ‘was an increase of 93,878 on last year,’ according to its own annual report published this week.
Chair of the BBC’s Editorial Guidelines and Standards Committee Ian Hargreaves said: ‘The volume of complaints to the BBC remains a concern. This financial year has seen another sharp increase in the number of complaints received.’ The BBC’s annual report stated: ‘In the age of disinformation, echo chambers of opinion, and noisy partisan media outlets, a trusted, universal BBC has surely never been more important.
‘Our research shows, however, that too many people perceive the BBC to be shaped by a particular perspective.
‘This is not simply about the politics of left and right. We recognise that many feel the BBC does not get the world from their point of view.’ Analysis of BBC programming found that the list of complaints was topped by Emily Maitlis with her monologue on Newsnight about Dominic Cummings in May 2020, The Telegraph said.
Ms Maitlis, during a discussion about Mr Cummings’ journey from London to Durham during the first national lockdown, claimed Boris Johnson’s former adviser ‘broke the rules’ adding: ‘The country can see that, and it’s shocked the Government cannot.’