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Can we trust the BBC?

Join an openDemocracy / OurKingdom public debate on the BBC in Cafe Oto, London on Monday 10th December at 8pm. Panelists include Peter Oborne, Jacky Davis, Omar El-Khairy and Anthony Barnett.

4 December 2012

Date: Monday 10 December 2012

Place: Cafe Oto, 18 - 22 Ashwin St, Dalston, London, E8 3DL

Door Times : 8pm

Tickets : £4 advance / £5 on the door (from cafeoto.co.uk)

The UK's most important cultural and current affairs institution is in turmoil, its future uncertain. The most recent scandals, Savile and McAlpine, alone shake its foundations: heads have rolled. A spanking new Director General has gone, a new one put in place by the same 'old boys'. The enemies of public broadcasting are delighted. The Murdoch press smells the blood of others.  Now Leveson has reported.

The Corporation talks of "re-gaining the trust of the public". But perhaps the BBC needs to belong more to us, the British people, and feel answerable to us, if the meltdown of management is to be solved by becoming a broadcaster fit for the 21st century.

How can it be open, transparent, engage with the creative digital age and above all give us creative and relevant drama, music and documentaries? What would such a BBC look like and how would we get it? 

If the BBC wants to revive it needs to learn to trust and listen not 'know best'. In this spirit, openDemocracy invites you to an open discussion on the future of the BBC. It will be kicked off by the panellists named below, but the main participants will be you, the public.  

Panellists - Peter Oborne (chief political commentator of The Telegraph), Dr Jacky Davis (Co-Chair of NHS Consultants Association, founder member of Keep Our NHS Public), Omar El-Khairy (writer for stage and screen), Anthony Barnett (founder of openDemocracy).

This is an openDemocracy / OurKingdom event. 

openDemocracy website.

News from OurBeeb: Last week, we launched a petition asking that the appointment of the new Director General be open and transparent (here is thestory of the wide-spread support behind the petition and how it fell on deaf ears). Now a closed-door decision has been made. We wish Tony Hall the best luck and we will now seek to engage with him. 


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Violence, corruption and cynicism threaten America's flagging democracy. Joe Biden has promised to revive it – but can his new administration stem the flow of online disinformation and shady political financing that has eroded the trust of many US voters?

Hear from leading global experts and commentators on what the new president and Congress must do to stem the flood of dark money and misinformation that is warping politics around the world.

Join us on Thursday 21 January, 5pm UK time/12pm EST.

Hear from:

Emily Bell Leonard Tow Professor of Journalism and director, Tow Center for Digital Journalism, Columbia Journalism School

Anoa Changa Journalist focusing on electoral justice, social movements and culture

Peter Geoghegan openDemocracy investigations editor and author of 'Democracy for Sale: Dark Money and Dirty Politics'

Josh Rudolph Fellow for Malign Finance at the Alliance for Securing Democracy

Chair: Mary Fitzgerald Editor-in-chief, openDemocracy 

Further speakers to be announced

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