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Author Topic:  MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.  (Read 3983 times)

Tiger

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MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« on: September 09, 2014, 09:27:39 AM »

Tiger

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Re: MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2014, 09:45:18 AM »
Rona says that she wants thoughtful debate about BBC in future.

She sees herself as being above all things in order to represent the public audience.

She sees herself as having skills to do job and loves the BBC!

She confirms that she was approached by headhunters .

Philip Davies now asking if BBC is so wonderful why does she not just leave it alone then, without her interfering in it?!!

Rona talks about critical times ahead for BBC and suggests change to come. Little bit of back and forward between them about impartiality. Rona admits that she has not read Trust report.

Davies now flagging the fact that she is a woman! Rona confirms this but showing she is suitable because of her experience not sex.

Tiger

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Re: MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2014, 09:52:55 AM »
Davies pushing now asking Rona what she thinks about Patten. Rona admits mistakes were made but will not bitch. Davies being very naughty! and taking her no comment for comment..


Conor Burns now asking about how she applied( translation did George Osborne put her forward) She says that she is not friends with George and may have seen his across the room at parents evenings! or at the odd function.In contradiction to press reports and the BBCs own Profile prog on R4. mobile rings in background could it be George arranging lunch?!

Tiger

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Re: MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2014, 10:01:16 AM »
Paul Farrelly now asking about her interview with Javid and what her findings were about committment. She says prob 3 days a week and she would be v flexible up to 7 days. Now being asked about her hats. She no longer has her government hat she intends to remain at HSBC and Pepsi and wear hats!

Uneasy questions now about HSBC she wears that hat for 1ish day a week. She  knows how to sleep on planes.

Is she creative enough asked Farrelly. She says yes, because she has experience at Pearson and that includes editorial independance.

Tiger

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Re: MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2014, 10:20:32 AM »
Whittingdale now asking about her politics. Rona says that she has never been politically active.

Ben Bradshaw now trying to be all Nigel Havers asking her how come she is so fit! Rona says that she consumes BBC often as a family. Now she is listing programs and genres.She watched W1A.

Rona now saying that salary is right looking through public service lens(good answer!) Question now about executive payoffs Rona says that things went wrong but she understands that they are being put right.


What is public service broadcasting to Rona?

She says the blah about newsgathering, creative base and education. And that it should be confined to BBC for clarity of delivery. The future she will not comment about! (worrying) she talks about limits to BBC role in future.

Tiger

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Re: MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« Reply #5 on: September 09, 2014, 10:30:16 AM »
Philip Davies now asking her about her 1m payoff from Pearsons. Rona will not apologise for coming from private sector.

Critical question now about her Pearson shares and conflict of interest. Rona says she will take advise if appointed.

Davies pushing her about conflict of interest ie BBC Active links to Pearson.

Davies saying that she is a bit of an establishment figure. Rona says that she will represent the audience.

Whittingdale saying that there had been a shareholder revolt when she was given her payoff and shares. Rona tries to show that she deserved them.

Tiger

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Re: MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« Reply #6 on: September 09, 2014, 10:45:16 AM »
Comment made that Mark Thompson will be remembered as DG who led by bad example. Ie abuse of position etc. Rona being asked about what she did at Pearsons re tax avoidance as reported in Private Eye last week. Rona talks about spirit of the law. Now she is being asked about the money laundering scandal at HSBC . Rona talking about controls going wrong and that what matters is how you respond. She avoids talking about her own responsibility but is being pushed now and implication is that she was warned beforehand. Rona saying that she got angry if anyone tried to supress anything. She believes in openness and trust. She is being pinned down again about people trying to warn her and what went wrong. Rona talks of processes and says that it is important to follow proper path.(hope that she knows that some of those processes at the Trust are non existant and ropey)

Tiger

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Re: MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« Reply #7 on: September 09, 2014, 11:27:24 AM »
Rona being asked about the recent scandals and whether she has read reports and would she have done things differently. Rona has read some things and on DMI says it was not managed properly. She is being asked about risk management and how that be done but within structure and she hopes that relationships are open and everyone working together.

Rona talks the talk about diversity and makes point that quality must not be compromised. Rona says creativity needed to apply equal opportunity for practical reasons. She does well here in showing that she will challenge way things are being done. She clearly likes apprenticeships as upskilling whole country.

Paul Farrelly now talking about failure of appointment in the past eg Entwhistle and a very non role of the Trust(translation will she fire and take control) Rona says that she will ensure that things are discussed and that if necessary she will oppose the Executive and use the Audience Councils( what a threat!) She also says stick with structure at moment.

She is being asked about commercialisation of BBC.This is where there is conflict of interest. She did not agree with Lonely Planet handling. Rona says there are some areas where competition is not appropriate Trust would assess. Rona says that she will listen

Tiger

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Re: MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« Reply #8 on: September 09, 2014, 11:36:23 AM »
Ben Bradshaw asking whether it is true that she has been chosen because she is open minded about the licence fee. Rona says that she believes licence fee is best way forward and is good value(oh dear George may cancel lunch!)


Supports BBC over no plan for breaking up of UK. She says impartiality is most crucial point at this stage. Time for plan is if there is need for change and enogh time for negotiation later. Good answer.


Rona does not support the idea of decrimilisation of licence fee. She says she welcomes debate.


Interview ends.



Tiger

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Re: MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« Reply #9 on: September 09, 2014, 12:08:34 PM »
So in concluse. Rona wants to be seen as someone who will represent the audience and protect their interests. She said this time and time again (who did she need to convince so badly, perhaps herself?) She wants to be seen as a strong independant chair not a government plant to destroy the BBC. Certainly she was v v clear that she is not a friend of George Osborne, but she clearly has many similar connections. I almost believed her on all this but will need convincing.

She was human and clearly thoughtful and one of drums was the importance of open and transparency, which she backed up with some detail at her time at HSBC.

She agrees with the licence fee. But conceeds that there will be change during the next charter.

She is open to thoughtful debate but will want to secure the best for the public. She has no experience of broadcasting but says that may be an advantage in questioning. She says that she will put as much work in as needed she was not bad on public service ethics. But is clearly compromised by her huge payoff at Pearson and the shareholders revolt and tax avoidance. She is conflicted I would say on her shares with Pearson and was clearly reluctant to give them up, but says she will do so if advised.

John Whittingdale asked her at the very beginning why she wanted the job? At the end of the interview, some 2 hours later, I am not sure of an answer to that?

I imagine it is to do with the high public profile and importance of the job itself rather than a zealot on a mission to protect the integrity and value of the BBC for the public and democracy . Either way she is not Chris Patten or Mark Thompson or Michael Lyons or Diane Coyle and that is to her credit.

darcysarto

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Re: MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« Reply #10 on: September 10, 2014, 07:07:44 AM »
So in concluse. Rona wants to be seen as someone who will represent the audience and protect their interests. She said this time and time again (who did she need to convince so badly, perhaps herself?) She wants to be seen as a strong independant chair not a government plant to destroy the BBC. Certainly she was v v clear that she is not a friend of George Osborne, but she clearly has many similar connections. I almost believed her on all this but will need convincing.

She was human and clearly thoughtful and one of drums was the importance of open and transparency, which she backed up with some detail at her time at HSBC.

She agrees with the licence fee. But conceeds that there will be change during the next charter.

She is open to thoughtful debate but will want to secure the best for the public. She has no experience of broadcasting but says that may be an advantage in questioning. She says that she will put as much work in as needed she was not bad on public service ethics. But is clearly compromised by her huge payoff at Pearson and the shareholders revolt and tax avoidance. She is conflicted I would say on her shares with Pearson and was clearly reluctant to give them up, but says she will do so if advised.

John Whittingdale asked her at the very beginning why she wanted the job? At the end of the interview, some 2 hours later, I am not sure of an answer to that?

I imagine it is to do with the high public profile and importance of the job itself rather than a zealot on a mission to protect the integrity and value of the BBC for the public and democracy . Either way she is not Chris Patten or Mark Thompson or Michael Lyons or Diane Coyle and that is to her credit.


Thank you Tiger for this balanced and enjoyable account of events.

I've only managed to hear the first hour of questions so far but would like to take a lead from Peter Preston and briefly review the committee.

John Whittingdale: Ooze
Ben Bradshaw: Eew
Angie Bray: Snooze
Philip Davies: Bruise

Well done to Burns and Davies for their determined questioning. With it being announced late yesterday afternoon of unanimous support for Rona from the committee, I hope that she may take away with her the thought that the reason she had some difficult questions to address was due to the hard work and reporting of people and journalists not employees of the BBC.

Tiger

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Re: MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« Reply #11 on: September 10, 2014, 08:42:25 PM »
The public trust was in the hands of the MPs. And it really does expose them.

I have no complaint with Philip Davies or Conor Burns. They know their role.

I was very impressed by Paul Farrelly . He is clearly an MP who takes his role seriously and sets an example.

The performance of others was pretty shocking. Tracey Crouch attempted to put a very important question about the recent scandals at the BBC and should have delivered that about problems in the past over Pollard. It was vital. But she closed her own question down by answering her own question by saying that she undersood that Rona did not want to critise. If she had actually bothered to listen Rona herself had introduced the issue of public trust being damaged. Truly awful questioning. This MP has no place on this committee, totally out of her depth. And with the Janet Smith Review upcoming unforgivable.


Angie Bray was a loose cannon , not listening to answers and asking about the licence fee out of context.

Ben Bradshaw? seriously? asking about her fitness? that might be a good human resources tool at interview to
ask about personal interests, but on this question it came with a bit of drooling that was eeww!

Well, anyway it was their vote that has decided the new chair.

Tiger

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Re: MPs interview Rona Fairhead for Chair of BBC Trust.
« Reply #12 on: September 20, 2014, 06:56:30 PM »
Please listen to her interview and maybe read the timeline. Mrs Fairhead does come with some baggage and that has been reported. However, she is likely to be confirmed and part of the reason for that is her pledge to represent the public and fee payers. She at least got that right. Something that Lord Patten never seemed able to grasp and the same could be said of others working at the Trust and indeed those who have now left, including Michael Grade and Christopher Bland.

You can view the interview here.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/democracylive/house-of-commons-29112640
« Last Edit: September 20, 2014, 09:40:31 PM by Tiger »


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