London - McAlpine - Social Media Guidance - Editorial Policy Meeting - Thurs 14th Nov 2013

Created on 12 Nov 2013

This month’s Editorial Policy Meeting will take place on Thursday 14th November from 11.45am to 12.45pm in the Council Chamber, Old Broadcasting House.

The agenda will feature the following:


Last month, Ofcom upheld complaints against episodes of Newsnight and This Morning which led to Lord McAlpine, a former senior Conservative politician, being wrongly implicated in child sex abuse allegations. Although Newsnight did not name Lord McAlpine, the report, combined with social media activity made eventual jigsaw identification possible. Increasingly, third parties can create problems for us either before or after broadcast by tweeting or blogging names. So what editorial and legal steps should we take when programmes make defamatory allegations without identifying the alleged wrongdoer?

Valerie Nazareth, Head of Editorial Legal will discuss the legal implications.  

On-Air References to Social Media

Social media offers powerful and popular new ways of interacting with audiences which are not available on However, these new platforms are owned by companies which can benefit commercially from any on-air references. So how can we embrace the new opportunities while avoiding any impressions of endorsement or that we are unfairly favouring one platform over another? When is it editorially justifiable to refer on air to a BBC presence on a social media platform and should we use hashtags or social media logos in our programmes or in trails?

Using examples, the meeting will discuss these and other issues with the Social Media Editors from Television, Radio and Sport and launch new guidance in this area.  

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