Programs that show the bad side of religion often do not appear in "Religion & Ethics" category

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  • Message 1. Posted by Stephen Collings (U14174263) on Tuesday, 5th April 2011permalink

    Excellent documentaries that showcase the bad and damaging side of religion, such as "Louis Theroux Meets America's Most Hated Family in Crisis", often do not appear in the iplayer category for Religion ("Religion & Ethics"). The BBC has a tendency to reserve this category from programs that are friendly to religion, or have a softly-softly, don't-ask-any-awkward-questions approach to religion.

    The current "Louis Theroux" program is only given a "Factual" tag, and NOT a "Religion & Ethics" tag as well. And yet the program is all about the members and ex-members of the Westboro Baptist Church (an extreme Christian group in America). It is probably the best documentary on religion that I have ever seen! So, it should definitely appear in the "Religion & Ethics" category.

    An excellent Equinox episode (last year) about people trying to escape from a mormon sect was also remarkably absent from the "Religion & Ethics" category.

    And I know there have been others, but I can't recall their names. And I've probably missed others for, well, obvious reasons!

    As the BBC runs a category called "Religion & Ethics" it has a responsibility to present all programs about religion here, including ones which show the bad side of religion, and not just its "Religious Programming" output.

    I appreciate programs which report the damaging effects of religion, and I for one would like to be able to find them easily.

    So BBC, I suggest you get it sorted, and endeavor to flag up documentaries and news programs that show the damaging side of religions, with a "Religion & Ethics" tag!

    I haven't yet had the opportunity to watch "My Brother the Islamist", which *is* presented in the "Religion & Ethics" category. If this is the kind of program I have been talking about, then I thank you, and will admit that this is a step in the right direction. But I am still very concerned. If the BBC is really interested in putting programs which show the negative side of religion in the "Religion & Ethics" category, then it is going to have to widen its scope beyond individual programs which have give-aways like "Islamist" in their titles. (Am I right in suspecting that this one was produced by the Religious programming department and that this is the reason why it has succeeded to getting itself presented under "Religion & Ethics" ?).

    The BBC also needs to get those individual episodes of general documentary series and news series which happen to feature religion (such as "Louis Theroux meets..." and "Equinox") into the "Religion & Ethics" category too. I think this is the real hub of the matter.

    Thank you for your help.


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