Dear BBC Trust
While I have made an official complaint and did wait for many hours in your reception for you not to reply to me, I now feel compelled to write this open letter to you.
While I am generally most satisfied with your service, today I have what I think is a serious complaint against your own editorial guidelines.
I would like to stress that you are not alone, but as a tax payer funded institution you should lead the way for change!
Time is pressed with only 2 days to remedy the situation, but that does not mean you can not make amends. After all you do say in 19.4.2 that you will respond in a timely manor.
There are a number of issues that I wish to raise about the quality of journalism and standard of impartiality you have expressed in your ‘coverage’ of our #Option2Spoil and use of “who” instead of “how” during the #GE2015 campaign. 19.2.2
As an Independent Candidate in a constituency that is not important (after all I do not want to make this a constituency issue) I would like to draw your attention to section 4.1 or your General Election Guidelines which indicates giving “a higher profile to candidates in general”.
As a candidate campaigning on the issue to educate the Nation of our #Option2Spoil I have seen or heard of no coverage from any candidate that covers this unrepresented mechanism of engaging in our electoral system and therefore believe your editorial guidelines should allow this view to be represented.
Section 4.1 also suggests that the BBC has an “obligation of fairness in ensuring the audience is informed of all the main strands of the argument.”
I believe that educating people about the option to spoil their ballot is just as important as educating people about the different parties. After all it is a voting choice that is available in 100% of the constituencies, not many parties can say that!
Section 3.2 states that individual programmes “should normally achieve proportional and appropriate coverage within the course of each week of the campaign.”
Being a regular watcher of The Daily Politics Show, I can not think of a single show, yet alone week that has given appropriate coverage. In addition a search of your website produces woeful results.
Section 3.1 states that “determining appropriate levels of coverage should take into account levels of past and current electoral support.”
A survey of 15,840 people by a House of Commons Select Committee show what 71.8% of people would like to have ‘none of the above’ on the ballot paper. While they also fail to mention that your #Option2Spoil exists now, both represent a mechanism for illustrating a dissatisfaction with the current system. This indicates overwhelming support exists for this subject.
Section 10.4.23, 10.4.32 and 10.4.34 ask you to sceptical towards, question the credibility of and trustworthiness of polls.
Section 10.4.2 states “particular care should be taken with the use of language” in the context of voting and parties.
By consistently asking the question “who are you voting for” instead of “how are you voting” do you not think you may be influencing people to vote for a specific individual and guide them away from exercising their legitimate #Option2Spoil?
For a comprehensive list of the other questions that I have about #Option2Spoil and your editorial guidelines please search “@HOWnotWHO @BBCPolitics”
David Neil Thomas Harvey