Username:  Password: 
Login with Social Media Follow BBCRadioForum on Twitter

Author Topic:  Why did Mark Thompson lie?  (Read 36364 times)

Tiger

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2829
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #15 on: November 21, 2012, 10:34:39 PM »
Thankyou, Darcy, I will listen asap.

The Guardian has a Greenslade blog today re Thompson and details of a reply from Thompson to Stuart Purvis blog.

  "Thompson feels the heat in New York over Jimmy Savile allegationsShare 6
inShare.0Email Mark Thompson, the former BBC director-general, is coming under sustained attack in his new job as chief executive of the New York Times company. And some of the criticism is appearing in the New York Times itself.

Media Guardian reported last month on criticisms levelled at Thompson by the paper's public editor and by columnist Joe Nocera, which resulted in many readers urging the NY Times owner, Arthur Sulzberger, to think again about the appointment.

But the hostility towards Thompson moved last week into the news columns with the publication of an article headlined Letter raises questions about when BBC ex-chief learned of abuse cases.

It tells of a legal letter sent to the Sunday Times by lawyers acting for Thompson and the head of news, Helen Boaden, which threatened to sue the paper for libel over contentions in a proposed magazine article that Thompson and Boaden had been involved in killing off Newsnight's investigation into Jimmy Savile.

According an unnamed aide quoted by the New York Times, Thompson "orally authorised the sending of the letter [but] had not known the details of its contents. The aide said:

"It's not clear if he was shown it, but he doesn't remember reading it."

This denial prompted the New York magazine to run a short piece with a sarcastic headline, Mark Thompson had no idea what was in that letter from Mark Thompson.

The letter was sent 10 days before Thompson left the BBC in September. Its timing and substance are regarded as significant, says the New York Times article, because Thompson stated the following month that "during my time as director-general of the BBC, I never heard any allegations or received any complaints about Jimmy Savile."

The Sunday Times carried a story about the letter's existence on 11 November and later put up a copy of it online in pdf form.

On Sunday (18 November), the paper returned to the matter with a news story headlined "Former DG feels heat over lawyers' letter" which said:

"The former BBC director-general missed warnings about alleged child abuse committed on BBC premises by Jimmy Savile and other stars."

Written by Miles Goslett, the reporter who has made all the running on the dropping of the Newsnight investigation into Savile (see here), his article said that Thompson's ignorance of the legal letter "has provoked incredulity in New York."

The story about Thompson and the Savile saga has also been explored in great detail by Stewart Purvis, former chief executive of ITN and Ofcom executive, on his blog.

Purvis, now professor of television journalism at City University London [Full disclosure: I teach there too], has drawn up a timeline going back to September.

A spokesman for Thompson sent a reply to one of Purvis's blog posts, which said:

"Mark will not be making any statement on this issue other than to reinforce what was said to the Sunday Times, namely that he verbally agreed to the tactic of sending a legal letter to the paper, but was not involved in its drafting, nor was he aware of the detail beyond the central and false allegation put to the BBC that he had influenced the decision to abandon Newsnight's investigation into Jimmy Savile.

Such legal letters are a common occurrence at the BBC and Mark would invariably follow the advice of the legal and press teams. As Mark has repeatedly made clear, he was not aware of the allegations against Jimmy Savile until the pre-publicity ahead of the ITV documentary."

I have a hunch, however, that Purvis has more questions to raise with Thompson. Meanwhile, the Nick Pollard review into the cancellation of the Newsnight investigation into Savile continues."

Really, legal letters relating to the DG himself, defending an accusation that he blocked a Newsnight program exposing a major BBC are apparently " a common occurrence" if that is in any way true, the Thompson's judgment is nil!

Tiger

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2829
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #16 on: November 23, 2012, 11:58:32 PM »
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2237506/Jimmy-Savile-Newsnight-inquiry-Ex-BBC-boss-Mark-Thompson-flies-answer-questions.html

Of course, he will blame everyone that he employed to act on his behalf.

He is neither responsible nor accountable in any way. That is why the fee payer paid him thousands and thousands of pounds to be in charge of the BBC.

Tiger

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2829
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #17 on: November 26, 2012, 11:42:45 PM »
Mark Thompson, who has earned a huge salary for being the DG, gave his evidence to the Pollard Inquiry last week(err, nothing to do with me!) sort of evidence, I would expect.

 Unfortunately for Thompson, Stuart Purvis, has now submitted a dossier to Pollard identifying 10 occaisons where he would have been alerted to claims that Savile abused children on BBC premises.

Mark Thompson, if he  has any integrity at all needs to be very clear as to why he failed in his job, and he must, if others are to blame be clear about that too.


And if there is personal blame he has got to take that and not slime away. The future of the BBC is hugely more important than the reputation of Mark Thompson.


NB* Rob Wilson MP, is to publish proposals for BBC reform. They include a licence fee referendum. That is how serious this is.

Tiger

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2829
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #18 on: November 27, 2012, 01:53:20 PM »
Mark Thompson's position has become even more uncomfortable today.

When questioned directly by MPs today Chris Patten refused to show any support for Thompson's explanation about his role, merely saying it was the job of Pollard(but non verbal impression v clear)

Patten went further later, when asked about his own failure to look at press cutting re the Newsnight shelve. he said he would have expected Thompson to raise the matter during their weekly meetings, which included subjects around editorial difficulty.

Patten, also during the hearing made continual reference to Thompson's massive salary in the context of Entwistle pay.

Tiger

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2829
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #19 on: December 02, 2012, 04:37:02 PM »
It must be the case in our media that leading figures are not allowed to escape their accountability for certain actions or non actions they have taken to preserve their own reputations. They must be honest and not blame those beneath them when they are forced to admit their dishonesty. The case of Mark Thompson demonstrates this beyond anything else.

This forum is relieved to report that Freedom of Information requests activated by journalists have now been released.

Let us remember that Thompson has insisted that he knew nothing about the Savile allegations before he left the BBC on 16/9/2012.

The first email chain now released under FOI shows that in February 2 of Thompson's closest staff  emailed to a personal account(one requiring his personal attention) of Thompson, a query asking whether it was true that he was aware of the Newsnight Investigation into Savile. Remember that this was sent to his personal action account.


Further emails have been released showing that Thompson's office was more than aware of  FOI requests relating to the Newsnight broadcast, which they formally declined to answer in May, which prompted direct action by a freelance journalist which forced an appeal. at which point Thompon's office said they had no written information and wanting all info regarding the FOI, therefore, confirming that Thompon's office were heavily involved before Thompson left the BBC.


This latest discovery raises very serious questions about Thompson, he has already had to correct himself several times.


to read the emails(feb), go to.

thesundaytimes.co.uk/news

Tiger

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2829
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #20 on: December 04, 2012, 10:48:01 PM »
AND serious questions about Mark Thompson and his covert licence fee settlement  with Jeremy Hunt remain unanswered, despite many FOI requests. There is no public record of what took place, despite this being a matter that involves billions of tax payers money? and has resulted in frontline BBC services being cut, including local , national and international journalism. In the meantime senior executive pay was ringfenced and protected.

Tiger

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2829
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #21 on: December 04, 2012, 11:50:06 PM »
Of course he is delaying meetings with the actual staff at the NYT, that was his strength at the BBC and earned him a vote of no confidence!

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/clay-waters/2012/12/03/mark-thompson-update-fresh-questions-when-nyt-ceo-found-out-about-bbc-c

darcysarto

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2150
  • Viva Happiness
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #22 on: December 05, 2012, 09:30:20 PM »
It must be the case in our media that leading figures are not allowed to escape their accountability for certain actions or non actions they have taken to preserve their own reputations. They must be honest and not blame those beneath them when they are forced to admit their dishonesty. The case of Mark Thompson demonstrates this beyond anything else.

This forum is relieved to report that Freedom of Information requests activated by journalists have now been released.

Let us remember that Thompson has insisted that he knew nothing about the Savile allegations before he left the BBC on 16/9/2012.

The first email chain now released under FOI shows that in February 2 of Thompson's closest staff  emailed to a personal account(one requiring his personal attention) of Thompson, a query asking whether it was true that he was aware of the Newsnight Investigation into Savile. Remember that this was sent to his personal action account.


Further emails have been released showing that Thompson's office was more than aware of  FOI requests relating to the Newsnight broadcast, which they formally declined to answer in May, which prompted direct action by a freelance journalist which forced an appeal. at which point Thompon's office said they had no written information and wanting all info regarding the FOI, therefore, confirming that Thompon's office were heavily involved before Thompson left the BBC.


This latest discovery raises very serious questions about Thompson, he has already had to correct himself several times.


to read the emails(feb), go to.

thesundaytimes.co.uk/news

Thank you for this Tiger, now although it's behind the Times paywall, you would imagine the emails would be available from the BBC FOI website?  In their Disclosure logs?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/foi/publication_scheme/classes/disclosure_logs/

I looked but I could not see?

darcysarto

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2150
  • Viva Happiness
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #23 on: December 06, 2012, 01:58:44 PM »
Thank you for this Tiger, now although it's behind the Times paywall, you would imagine the emails would be available from the BBC FOI website?  In their Disclosure logs?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/foi/publication_scheme/classes/disclosure_logs/

I looked but I could not see?

Although Mr. Purvis has a round up on his blog http://profpurvis.com/2012/12/02/the-savile-email-evidence-about-mark-thompson-the-bbc-hasand-hasnt-released/

And even the link to the emails is not actually behind the paywall, which is handy: http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/multimedia/archive/00309/Emails_obtained_fro_309943a.pdf

Tiger

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2829
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #24 on: December 07, 2012, 06:41:51 PM »
Glad you sorted that out Darcy

Well bad luck, licence fee payers again, for ever employing Mark Thompson. It seems he not only supressed the Newsnight broadcast into Savile to protect his legacy and reputation to enhance his incoming role at the NYT, but he was happy to take licence fee money for top class flights to the US beforehand.*

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2244161/Mark-Thompson-spent-thousands-travel-expenses-US-months-quit-BBC-New-York-Times.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

 * ps ,allegedly in case some little brown nose gets ants in his pants.


 I hope that the Pollard Inquiry will be publishing all relating evidence to Mark Thompson, because if Pollard fails to deduce from the email evidence and legal letters etc, not to mention Xmas parties etc, that Thompson played a leading role in the dumping of Newsnight then he really should go back to "Independent Inquiry School" and let a more serious inquiry do some work.

« Last Edit: December 07, 2012, 07:00:56 PM by Tiger »

Tiger

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2829
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #25 on: December 08, 2012, 10:22:12 PM »
It has to be hoped that Nick Pollard and his Inquiry(what is it now over 2 months?) are not just awaiting large tins of white paint. There are questions being raised about the integrity of this inquiry now, why is it limited to to a narrow judgement on the editorial decision about the Newsnight broadcast?

If it has any value, whatsoever, to the new guardians of the BBC, or has any respect at all for the fairly patient fee payers(who are paying for it!) It must answer the question "why was the Newsnight broadcast dumped and WHY were tribute Savile programs aired.Who made that choice and given that there is now evidence to suggest that senior managers, including Mark Thompson were aware of that dilemma, scrutiny is on them"


We need to have those questions answered. The BBC is supposed to be the most trusted media in the World, and the corruption of truth already shown by Mark Thompson has to be addressed and dealt with. Because it must not be allowed to happen again. New Yorkers have been dealt a marked card, but lets hope their journalism is robust.


And if Pollard fails to even address why senior management failed to follow up the Newsnight findings into Savile ,then I feel that licence fee payers would be right to demand a refund on any public money being spent on this inquiry.  Because ITV did follow up, and without that bravery we probably would still be watching tribute TOFP programs to Savile, whilst the victims struggled in their imposed lonely silence.


Anyway, the Spectator has a summary here.


"Why has ex-BBC DG Mark Thompson been re-scheduling his meetings? the net beginning to tighten on Mark Thompson? The Sunday Times have run a story on either the ex-BBC chief, Savile or Newsnight every week since 28 October, and a picture is emerging that Thompson may have known more than we had previously thought about Newsnights now infamous axed investigation of Savile.

I hear that Thompson, now the $4 million chief executive of the New York Times, has been forced to postpone two long-standing open meetings with his new colleagues.

He was originally going to chair the Town Hall meetings on December 17 and 18. These were supposed to have been a chance for as many people as possible to see me face to face and for us to begin a conversation about the future direction of this great news organization.

In an email sent to staff across the pond last Friday, Thompson wrote that the reason he had decided to push the meetings to a later date was:

because I expected them to come after the publication of Nick Pollards enquiry into the BBCs handling of the Newsnight investigation into Jimmy Savile.  I know that theres been considerable and quite understandable interest in this topic inside as well as outside The Times.  I wanted to address questions about it at the Town Halls once the enquiry was out and all the facts were known. It now turns out that Nick Pollard will not submit his report at the end of November as originally planned but some weeks later.  As a result, I believe it makes sense to move the Town Halls to early in the new year. By then, anyone who is interested can look at the report and I can address their questions on the basis of the facts.
It looks like early 2013 could be a turbulent time for the Gray Lady"


Tiger

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2829
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #26 on: December 09, 2012, 10:57:35 PM »
Have been meaning to post this contribution from Prof Winston.(bit of can of worms)

Robert Winston: BBC is dumbing down science
Lord Robert Winston has threatened to leave the BBC for a rival broadcaster and accused the corporation of dumbing down its science programming.
 
Prof Winston said BBC managers were reluctant to commission programmes on complicated issues like climate change despite the fact they are 'not difficult to explain' Photo: Andrew Crowley for the Telegraph By Nick Collins, Science Correspondent
7:20AM GMT 30 Oct 2012
205 Comments
The fertility expert, who presented the BAFTA award-winning series The Human Body, said executives were more concerned with pursuing viewing figures than producing quality programmes.

Speaking in a webchat for the Times Educational Supplement, Prof Winston said BBC managers were reluctant to commission programmes on complicated issues like climate change despite the fact they are not difficult to explain.

He said: They seem to think that they have to pursue viewing figures but actually if you get something that is interesting and well-made, people will watch it. So I'm probably going to make some of my television programmes on different channels now.

The public is perfectly capable of understanding difficult subjects but rely on things like documentaries to explain them properly, Prof Winston added.

He said: The trouble with climate change is its an extraordinarily diverse and complex issue, but for example if the BBC would let me make some of the programmes Id like to make on climate change, I bet you there would be a change of emphasis.

 
The Labour peer's remarks are not the first in which he has criticised the BBC for showing a lack of ambition.

In 2008 he accused the BBC and then-director general Mark Thompson of "cowardice" and a lack of "spine" in its leadership, citing the example of the departure of BBC1 controller Peter Fincham over a controversial trailer which included misleading footage of the Queen.

He also said the decision by the BBC to shift its content towards entertainment and away from more heavyweight programmes was "a massive error of judgment that will come back to haunt the BBC".

He said at the time: "Of course Peter made an error. But if he was going to resign, it should have been because there isn't enough factual programming on BBC1.

"I don't think Mark Thompson has led well from the top. It's not just my perception. Many of the scientific community feel very, very uneasy, and the news people clearly do."


I believe other people have used the word "catastrophe" to describe Thompson.

darcysarto

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2150
  • Viva Happiness
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #27 on: December 10, 2012, 11:11:08 PM »
It has to be hoped that Nick Pollard and his Inquiry(what is it now over 2 months?) are not just awaiting large tins of white paint. There are questions being raised about the integrity of this inquiry now, why is it limited to to a narrow judgement on the editorial decision about the Newsnight broadcast?

If it has any value, whatsoever, to the new guardians of the BBC, or has any respect at all for the fairly patient fee payers(who are paying for it!) It must answer the question "why was the Newsnight broadcast dumped and WHY were tribute Savile programs aired.Who made that choice and given that there is now evidence to suggest that senior managers, including Mark Thompson were aware of that dilemma, scrutiny is on them"

We need to have those questions answered. The BBC is supposed to be the most trusted media in the World, and the corruption of truth already shown by Mark Thompson has to be addressed and dealt with. Because it must not be allowed to happen again. New Yorkers have been dealt a marked card, but lets hope their journalism is robust.

And if Pollard fails to even address why senior management failed to follow up the Newsnight findings into Savile ,then I feel that licence fee payers would be right to demand a refund on any public money being spent on this inquiry.  Because ITV did follow up, and without that bravery we probably would still be watching tribute TOFP programs to Savile, whilst the victims struggled in their imposed lonely silence.

I can only believe that the new guard at BBC knows it has to answer all these questions Tiger.

I also believe there are many people outside the organisation, as there are inside, who care greatly for the ideal of the BBC and it's remit and some who seem increasingly edgey - Patten for one - as to what state exactly Thompson has manage to leave the corporation in.

Tiger

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2829
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #28 on: December 14, 2012, 11:51:33 PM »
It appears that Pollard will be delivering some white paint on Wednesday. If it turns out that this publicly funded inquiry has failed to explore why tribute programs were aired in the knowledge of the Newsnight findings that would be grounds for considerable public anger and if Mark Williams Thomas has not been fully questioned that would be a scandal.


http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2012/dec/14/pollard-inquiry-savile-abuse

darcysarto

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2150
  • Viva Happiness
    • View Profile
Re: Why did Mark Thompson lie?
« Reply #29 on: December 16, 2012, 12:03:07 AM »
It appears that Pollard will be delivering some white paint on Wednesday. If it turns out that this publicly funded inquiry has failed to explore why tribute programs were aired in the knowledge of the Newsnight findings that would be grounds for considerable public anger and if Mark Williams Thomas has not been fully questioned that would be a scandal.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2012/dec/14/pollard-inquiry-savile-abuse

My favourite quote from that article has to be:

Quote

Advisers for Thompson, who was director general at the time of the aborted programme, also declined to comment. He is only fairly peripheral to the work of the inquiry having not been aware of the Newsnight film that never aired until after it was axed.

Is Curious George going to end up the fall guy again?  I hope we find out which creative genius thought all these Savile tributes would make for good entertainment, given the high esteem we know he was held in by colleagues...


Share via delicious Share via digg Share via facebook Share via furl Share via linkedin Share via myspace Share via reddit Share via stumble Share via technorati Share via twitter

Similar Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies / Views Last post
xx
Mark Thompson will quit.

Started by Tiger

17 Replies
5113 Views
Last post February 02, 2012, 09:50:16 PM
by Tiger
thumbup
At last! Mark Thompson to go in the autumn!

Started by Tiger

11 Replies
4411 Views
Last post April 14, 2012, 10:54:36 PM
by Tiger
xx
Mark Thompson's Christmas Address.

Started by Tiger

1 Replies
1591 Views
Last post December 29, 2011, 01:23:44 AM
by Tiger
xx
No Honour & No Portrait For Mark Thompson

Started by darcysarto

2 Replies
1423 Views
Last post March 30, 2014, 10:12:18 AM
by darcysarto
xx
A Vote Of No Confidence In Mark Thompson

Started by Tiger

14 Replies
5515 Views
Last post January 25, 2012, 05:22:57 PM
by Tiger