We are informed that the BBC has appointed a new director of the BBC World Service Group.
“BBC director of news Fran Unsworth has been appointed director of the BBC World Service Group.
Unsworth is the first female director in the 82-year history of the World Service. She replaces Peter Horrocks, who last month said he was to step down from running the BBC’s global news operations – the World Service, BBC World News TV channel, BBC.com/news website and BBC Monitoring – to “find a new challenge”.”
Ms Unsworth clearly has good intentions:
“I promise to be the guardian of the best of the BBC’s values of independence, impartiality and fairness in our international services, while continuing the successful modernisation of the World Service Group to take our journalism to new audiences worldwide.”
One of the operations set to come under Ms Unsworth’s authority – the BBC World News TV channel – recently lost several million viewers from its “audiences worldwide” due to the fact that the Israeli satellite television provider ‘YES’ has decided to drop the channel from the range of those on offer to its customers.
“The Israeli satellite television provider YES, which serves over 500,000 households nationwide, is dropping the venerable BBC World news station from its roster of channels on offer, Globes reports. It will be replaced by France 24’s English-language international news channel.
The BBC is widely considered to be “anti-Israel” by the public here, and YES has gotten plenty of complaints from customers on that score. […]
“Customer satisfaction with the channel is low, which is demonstrated in part by the data on the number of people watching it, which is very low,” stated YES. […]
“The British perspective, which [BBC World] presents, will continue to be represented by Sky News,” YES said.”
Clearly – as one hopes Ms Unsworth appreciates and can rectify – there is a tangible price to the failure of the corporation’s commercial services to live up to those famed ‘BBC values’ of accuracy and impartiality.