BBC rejects complaint about vaccination inaccuracy citing ‘satire’

The Jewish News reports on a complaint made about the April 9th edition of the BBC One “satirical news quiz” ‘Have I Got a Bit More News for You’.

“A complaint has been lodged to the BBC after actor David Tennant read out a comment on a popular comedy show, saying Israel “ignores the Arab population” when it comes to vaccinations. […]

During the clip, Tennant said: “According to the current roadmap, Britons will only be able to travel to countries with ‘a similarly high level of vaccination rate’.”

Displaying a list of the most vaccinated countries, which has Israel at the top on 61 percent and Britain second on 46 percent, he said: “As you can see Israel have populated 61 percent of their population which is pretty much everyone there if you ignore the Arab population, which they do. So they’re done.””

Arab Israelis have of course not been ‘ignored’: all Israeli citizens over the age of 16, regardless of religion or ethnicity, have had exactly the same opportunity get vaccinated.

The Jewish News reports that:

“A BBC spokesperson said: “The comments were satirical and in keeping with audience expectations of this well-established topical entertainment show.””

Satire is defined as a “work of art which uses humour, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize prevailing immorality or foolishness, esp. as a form of social or political commentary”.

Making up – or copying – a blatant falsehood does not fall into the category of satire.  

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  1. says: Michael Zeffertt

    I see. So libel can be legitimately perpetrated provided it is done in the context of a satirical programme. As everyone has been told we Jews have no sense of English irony.

  2. says: Grimey

    Tenant’s comment was not in the least satirical – it was Jew-baiting and just the sort of stuff that the BBC wants to be heard said by a paid performer.

  3. says: Philip Pharm

    Stating Israel ignoring the Palestinians vaccination is not satire, it’s BBC’s common garden variety anti-semitism & Israel bashing

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