back to article MPs grill BBC heads over Manuelgate

MPs at a meeting of the Culture, Media and Sport Committee have been giving BBC bosses a bit of a hard time over the Russell Brand and Jonathan Ross Manuelgate scandal, the corporation reports. Auntie chairman Sir Michael Lyons and director general Mark Thompson appeared before an "ongoing inquiry into the commercial …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    What a ball-less organisation the bbc is now days, and how petty and worthless the s--- eating politicos are.

  2. Pete

    over or under reaction

    This is one of two public rows at prsent - the other one being the baby that was battered to death while apparently under the "protection" of the local social services. However, the reaction of those in positions of authority in these two failures could not be more stark.

    In the BBC's case of s a silly phonecall by two puerile presenters, a couple of senior managers resigned. In the infinitely more serious case where someone died, all the people involved are still able to sit around, pointing fingers and saying "nothing could be done".

    Now I don't know if the beeb over-reacted with the sackings/departures, or if they just take themselves far too seriously, or lack the spine to stand up to the rabble-rousing of the tabloid media. However, it seems there is a huge and inexplicable in the standards of responsibility and punishment being meeted out here. We know that the police now treat any road death as a serious crime scene, maybe a similar approach is needed for deaths when social services fail, too?

  3. Aaron Scully

    More time wasting

    I think any MP wasting their time on this should be hanged for treason. Surely they've got better things to do?

    Proof again (as if any was needed) that our political system doesn't give a damn about this country, especially when a good media opportunity / band wagon arises.

    As for the BBC, who the hell gave them the right to take a programme I find entertaining off the air (Friday Night with JR) and then give the money to charity? Cheeky sods.

  4. Steve Kay
    Thumb Down


    The only lamentable part of the whole stupid business is the frenzy of bile-spewing psychotic sheep the press created with its coverage. Quite why the BBC is being talked to by MPs is utterly beyond me. If the Daily Fail hadn't kicked off over this, followed by The Sun et al, it would have remained a minor incident in radio history.

    The wally that cleared it for broadcast (against Andrew Sachs' wishes) should have been disciplined for dropping the ball, maybe even fired for such a dip-shitted mistake, Andrew Sachs should have been apologised to in private (rather than appeasing the moronic public), and Voluptua of the Satanic Sluts (sexual preference: swinger) should have remained an obscure stripper and faced prosecution under the Criminal Justice and Immigration laws for publishing violent & homicidal sexual imagery.

    As it is, the peon masses were whipped up into a marauding horde, demanding heads on plates and generally proving why mob justice should remain an uncomfortable historical relic.

    Jeebus, I don't like paying my licence fee much either, but is it any wonder that the noisiest papers about this whole incident are also the ones which have interests which compete with the BBC?

  5. Anonymous Coward

    Wossy is still quids in

    What's this "without pay" crap? Do some research El Reg.

    Ross is still trousering our tax money* as the production company for his Radio 2 show (which he owns) still gets paid the production costs they would have incurred, even though they are now not incurring these costs - money for nothing!

    See that Johnny Woss? He's fucked your wallet he has.

    *The license fee is a tax, time it was scrapped.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    While we're on the subject of sniggering

    What is it with Robert Peston, BBC economics correspondent that, even while talking down the economy and delivering news that has many going WTF, he finds so funny? Is it that he thinks his salary is money for old rope?

  7. Chris Lovell
    Thumb Down

    $scandal . "gate"

    Dissapointed, El Reg. Must every vaguely scandalous piece of news be compared to Watergate so that the masses know it's a scandal? Is this even a scandal anyway?

    - Sits back and muses on the phonetics of 'scandal'

  8. Simon Riley

    Nothing better to do?

    The economy's going down the toilet and they're spunking their time away on "celebrity offends other celebrity"? God almighty!

  9. Jimmy Floyd

    I smell a rat...

    I noticed the young Ms Baillie on the cover of a trashy men's magazine (Nuts, Zoo, something similar) at the weekend. Hasn't she done well in such a short space of time? And her publicist is the famed Max Clifford, which is quite a feat for a previously unknown exotic dancer.

    It would, of course, be ridiculous to suggest that the anti-BBC coalition of The Daily Mail and Sky have furthered Manuel's niece's career simply so that they could score some points off Auntie Beeb while giving Georgina a boost in her quest to be a 'star' (or D-list celebrity - whatever).

    Yes, ridiculous. Of course. But there's far more to this than meets the eye.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Manuelgate and the Daily Mail

    Most of the objections were orchestrated by that organ of intolerance, the Daily Mail, which is well known for hating the BBC, and erm, well, pretty much everything. Ever. Funny how a couple of weeks ago Jezza Clarkson mentioned lorry drivers murdering prostitutes and Mail readers had no problem with that; probably because he is perceived to be right wing, whereas Brand and Ross are "edgy" and therefore must be lefties and a danger to the future of civilisation. Mail readers didn't even have a problem with the granddaughter in question being an exotic dancer; funny how the thought of a bit of thigh can get the morals all wobbly.

  11. Hollerith

    BBC - unimpressive

    I don't like Mr Brand, but I thought his apology was manly. My respect for him went way up. He sells himself as a 'lad' comic and behaved in character. The BBC should have known that they had a bit of a risky guy on their hands and not been asleep at the wheel. But, having been so, they shoudl ahve been on the ball and fulsome in their own apologies.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    scrap the lot

    and make the BBC officially commercial rather than the 'commercial' in 'public-service clothing' we have now, then none of this would matter and i would not be fleeced for 120 quid a year in return for "I'm an 2 bit-extra looking for a career, in the jungle".

    BBC has been trading on past reputation for too long now and i dont see the benefit to another tax for what little the BBC provides, why can't i simply pay for it like i pay for Sky or BT Vision. Then if i dont want it, i dont pay for it.

  13. Rachel


    I'd let fly about the way that the BBC have been manipulated by the Daily **** and let down their actual listenership, except, as Sir Terry Wogan said 'Why don't you all keep your gratuitous opinions to yourselves?'

    If only Adam and Joe, and Chris Evans, and Danny Baker, and Terry Wogan, and Nicholas Parsons didn't work for the BBC, I'd gladly stop listening to their compromised schedule.

    Adrian Edmondson (another of their staff members) wrote a very sensible article in the Independent.

    Grrrr, I say.

  14. Eddie Edwards

    What an amazing coincidence

    "Auntie chairman Sir Michael Lyons and director general Mark Thompson"

    By an astounding coincidence, I've actually shagged both their daughters.

  15. Ted Treen
    Paris Hilton

    @Eddie Edwards

    But not at the same time, I bet!

  16. Joe

    Re: "Wossy is still quids in"

    Quite right, apparently - according to the current issue of Private Eye "the BBC has announced that is will be compensating Hot Sauce, the production company that makes Ross's Radio 2 programme and his BBC1 chat show, for 'all relevant production costs' during the three months the programmes will be off-air due to his suspension. The owner of Hot Sauce? One Jonathan Ross."

    Ross might be an idiot, but he's not stupid!

  17. Ben
    Thumb Up

    All I can say is..

    You wanted blood (judging by the majority of the original comments on here), you got it - and then some. Using this issue as a trojan horse to attack the BBC generally was always going to turn out badly if it meant making a pact with the Daily Mail and Murdoch. Now the whole thing predicatably looks like a media scare. Useful idiots comes to mind.

    I'd say scrap the BBC if I thought it'd stop the Brits moaning, but I'm sure they'd then suddenly lapse into misty eyed nostalgia for the good old days.

  18. Luther Blissett

    @AC 12:48 - Organs of intolerance

    You label the Daily Mail an "organ of intolerance", then proceed to demonstrate just how tolerant it is.

    "You couldn't make it up" - as they say :-)

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down


    "....whereas Brand and Ross are "edgy"..."

    is that a euphemism for 'irritating, unfunny, egotistical tosspots'?

    i must admit i do get a kick out of seeing 'toss' and 'bland' coming a cropper but the irony of the story isnae lost on me either. if poor old grandpa manuel was shocked and upset by someone making a prepubescent prank call about his granddaughter, i'd hate to think of his reaction when he finds out said grandaughter has been hawking her worn out oul' pussy all round fleet street and beyond, to anyone with a camera and a full-page spread to fill.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Apt that Radio was the original source of the BandWagon

    Very strange that only 2 complaints had been received on the night and then apparently nothing further for another 8 days. Once the publicists got involved it was going to roll as the media are obviously jealous of JR's deal compared to their own, been blindingly obvious for years.

    Once there is a bandwagon rolling and a major catastrophe the country is facing, there is absolutely no way that the Nulab Spin merchants are going to pass up on that. All so predictable and bears weight to the old tale of Nero fiddling while Rome burned. Maybe it was true after all. The NuLab policies have shafted the country and much of the global economy and instead of the media focusing on that and bringing it to our attention, here they all are chasing JR and RB, and they are still doing it today.

    Interesting also that the baby P fiasco bandwagon, which puts more NuLab policies and government non performance in a bad light has not been jumped on by our MPs. Strange that!

  21. Mark
    Black Helicopters

    re: I smell a rat...

    No, the woman will get her tits out and she's been in the news. What else do Nuts/Loaded/et al need for a reason?

    Put the tin hat back on, boy...

  22. Mark
    Black Helicopters

    Terry Wogan talking bollocks???

    "as Sir Terry Wogan said 'Why don't you all keep your gratuitous opinions to yourselves?'"

    That's rich coming from someone trousering a SHITLOAD of money based on jibbering on about his own gratuitous opinion in the morning. That doesn't mean he's not entertaining doing so, but if he were to follow his own advice, he'd be penniless.

    FFS Terry, stop being a right wing nutcase and realise this hasn't cost your mate/mucker Woss a frigging penny. It means he may get 16 million rather than 18 million over three years.

    Big fucking whoo.

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