Monday 20 April 2009

Religious Broadcasting continued . .

I am still waiting for responses to my complaints to the BBC about religious broadcasts. However latest developments indicate the door is beginning to open. Can they have been delaying their reply until they had something positive to say? Below are some extracts from a BHA article. The last paragraph suggests the BBC have never had a proper justification for resisting change. Perhaps the fact that they have resisted for so long, in the face of perfectly reasonable arguments, indicates the entrenched influence of the religious lobbies.

From: "New body liaising with BBC to include humanists"

"In a significant development and welcome break with past policy, humanists are to be represented alongside religions in a new body liaising with the BBC – the Standing Conference on Religion and Belief. The Standing Conference on Religion and Belief succeeds the Central Religious Advisory Committee (CRAC), but independent from the BBC, and will liaise with the BBC on matters of common concern to the BBC and religious groups and, now, humanists.

For the last six years the Communications Act 2003 has been in force which, at section 264(6)(f) defines public service broadcasting as requiring ‘a suitable quantity and range of programmes dealing with each of the following, science, religion and other beliefs...’ and at section 264(13) defines ‘belief’ as ‘a collective belief in…a systemised set of ethical or philosophical principles...’ During the passage of the Act, the responsible minister (Lord McIntosh) made it clear that this included Humanism. Nonetheless, the BBC never extended the remit or membership of its Central Religious Advisory Committee (CRAC) to recognise the BBC’s new remit of ‘religion and other beliefs’, even though that remit was reconfirmed in the Charter renewal of 2006."

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