It is a big disgrace for an international mainstream media organization in the capacity of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), to be dishing out fake and fictitious information to the people. It was really disgusting that on Thursday 9th September 2021, when this media outlet published fake pictures to hoodwink the people that Biafrans welcomed President Muhammadu Buhari to Imo State on a working visit, as planned by the Supreme Court administrator of the State, Mr. Hope Uzodimma.
It will interest you to know that the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), declared a Sit-At-Home, in the whole of Biafraland to tell the whole world that they do not want to welcome President Muhammadu Buhari. The Sit-At-Home Order was obeyed to the letter, throughout Biafraland. The streets and roads were completely deserted.
And in order to fulfill their satanic agenda, BBC shamelessly downloaded old pictures of End Sars crowd protest and got them published as crowd that welcomed Buhari. This was done to confuse the people that the President was given a mammoth reception. A brilliant Biafran journalist however, spottedly exposed this which made them to hurriedly pull them down. What a shame!
Ethical journalism strives to ensure free and sound exchange of information that is accurate, fair and thorough, but BBC is not after all these. The organization is only hell-bent on giving its audience, fake, concocted and distorted information. According to Bob Woodward, “there are several key ethical standards that appear across global news organizations that every journalist must know and work with. At the highest level, they call on journalists to seek the truth, act in the public interest and minimize harm”. But BBC is not after giving people good and right information. Ethical journalism is the bed rock of every news organization but most unfortunately, a giant news media organization like the BBC, lacks all of these.
Among the key ethics of journalism is Honesty. Journalists have an obligation to seek out the truth and report it as accurately as possible. This requires due diligence which means, making every effort to seek out all the facts relevant to a story. Journalists should also corroborate any information with multiple sources, but from what BBC did, we can see that it does not care about reporting the truth.
The second is Independence* Journalists should avoid taking political sides and not act on behalf of special interest groups. Any political affiliations or financial investments that might constitute conflict of interests with the subject they are writing about, should be declared to editors and readers. Some organizations characterize this principle as “objectivity,” while others, especially non-profit civic journalism projects, reject this term, as they position themselves explicitly on the side of public interest.
Third, is fairness* In addition to being independent, journalists must show impartiality and balance in their reportage. Most news stories have more than one side. Journalists should capture all sides to a story. Two different perspectives on equal footing where one is unsupported by evidence, should not be presented to the public. The exception to the impartiality rule is opinion writing, as well as “gonzo” journalism and creative non-fiction.
Fourth is public accountability* News organizations should listen to their audience. To enable the public to hold them accountable, journalists should write under their own ethical bylaws and accept responsibility for their words. When news outlets publish factual errors, they need to issue a correction. BBC lack accountability and so, should not be a News Media House.
The fifth ethic is harm minimization* Not every publishable fact should be made public. If the amount of harm that could come to individuals, particularly children, as a result of disclosures which exceed the public good that would come out of such, the news outlets might choose not to publish the story. This is less of a consideration when it comes to public figures. It is huge however, in matters of national security, where lives could be on the line.
The sixth is avoidance of libel* This is legal as well as moral, for journalists. Journalists cannot print false statements that damage people’s reputation. In most jurisdictions, true statements cannot be libellous, so journalists can protect themselves by rigorously checking out the facts. BBC is known for its libellous news and misinformation.
Lastly, another factor that must be imbibed in ethical reportage is proper attribution. Journalists must never plagiarize. If they use information from another media outlet or journalist, they must attribute the information to the rightful source.
The above mentioned qualities are what BBC lacks. Any media house that lacks any of these qualities should not have existed in the first place.
The world should know that the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), is not worth the onions and should be avoided. Fake journalism is equal to terrorism. BBC is better known as a media-terrorist organization rather than a news organization. It has totally lost its integrity before the well informed.
Written by Chidiebere Obulose
Edited by Chukwuemeka Okechukwu
For Family Writers Press International