BBC reports on 2015 internet ‘falsehoods’ – but not its own

Promoted using the heading “Fakes and Falsehoods” and with the sub-heading “Eight ways the internet lied to you in 2015”, the BBC News website published an article on December 27th similarly titled  “How the internet misled you in 2015” which opens with the words “it was another busy year for journalists debunking fake or misleading images on social media.”Internet fakes art

It was also another busy year for those “debunking” inaccurate and misleading content on the BBC News website and on the corporation’s additional platforms. Here (in no particular order) are a few examples of some of the ways in which the BBC misled its audiences in 2015.

1) In September the corporation’s Middle East editor Jeremy Bowen repeatedly told audiences that refugees fleeing Syria were doing so because of ISIS and whitewashed the Assad regime’s attacks on its own civilians.

BBC News’ migrant crisis coverage: Bowen embeds with Assad

More BBC Bowen beating of the Assad regime drum

More BBC amplification of the ‘ISIS worse than Assad’ meme

2) In March the BBC told its audiences that the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran brought “plenty of positive side-effects” for women in that country.

How the BBC whitewashed the issue of women’s rights in Iran

3) In July the BBC’s Razia Iqbal told audiences that Iran does not threaten Israel.  

No wonder BBC WS presenter Razia Iqbal got Iranian threat to Israel wrong

BBC ECU upholds complaint concerning Iranian threats to Israel

4) In August the BBC told audiences that “Israel has used administrative detention against Palestinians but not against Jewish suspects.”

BBC News misleads audiences on administrative detention

BBC News website corrects inaccurate administrative detention claim

BBC responses to complaints on accuracy failures

5) In April the BBC News website told audiences that Israeli forces had fired 88 mortar rounds at a school in the Gaza Strip in 2014.

BBC article on UN Gaza report includes inaccurate representation of its content

BBC amends inaccurate claim on Gaza mortar fire

6) In August the BBC told audiences that Jerusalem has a “secular majority” and, in October, that the city is not Israel’s capital.

The figures behind the BBC’s claim of a ‘secular majority’ in Jerusalem

BBC News website corrects Jerusalem “secular majority” claim

BBC News gets Israel’s capital city right – and then ‘corrects’

7) In September and October the BBC repeatedly misrepresented Temple Mount by describing it as “the Al Aqsa Mosque” and “a Muslim site”. Audiences were even misled by BBC Arabic’s Nawal Assad on the issue of the status quo regarding prayer at the site.

A worldwide platform for incitement from BBC Arabic’s Nawal Assad

Disturbing themes in BBC coverage of the wave of terror in Israel

More conspiracy theory amplification from BBC’s Yolande Knell – and why it matters

8) In July the BBC told us that terror attacks in Israel are “not comparable” to terror attacks in Tunisia or Kuwait and that the stories are “very different”.

The BBC, terrorism and ‘consistency’

BBC Complaints: terror attacks in Jerusalem and Tunisia are “very different”

9) In June the BBC yet again misled audiences with regard to the naval blockade on the Gaza Strip and reports produced throughout the year continued to mislead on the issue of why reconstruction there is so slow.  

BBC’s English and Arabic flotilla reports promote inaccurate information

BBC News website corrects Gaza Strip naval blockade inaccuracy

A side to the Gaza reconstruction story the BBC isn’t telling

Yolande Knell’s political campaigning continues in BBC ‘Gaza anniversary’ coverage

10) Also in June, the BBC told audiences that the first suicide bombing carried out by a British citizen abroad took place in 2014. 

BBC News inaccurately claims first suicide bombing abroad by a British citizen was in 2014

BBC News website corrects ‘first British suicide bomber’ claim

Readers are invited to add other examples to the list in the comments below. 

 

 

 

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