openDemocracyUK

Can we trust the BBC? Come join a public debate on 10 Dec

openDemocracy invites you to an open discussion on the future of Britain's most important cultural and current affairs institution. How do we re-establish trust between the BBC and the public?

OurKingdom Ourkingdom
22 November 2012

The new Director General of the BBC, Tony Hall, has now been appointed, just ten days after the ill-fated George Entwistle left the post under a cloud of scandal. OurBeeb's petition that the process be transparent and open to the public was not heard (read about the petition and its wide-spread support here). 

Even more reason to have a public debate on the future of the BBC. Please all join us for an open discussion on the Corporation, its future, and how we make this most important of Britain's cultural and current affairs institutions work for and belong to the British people. 

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Can we trust the BBC? 

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

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: the apparent burying of the story of an alleged serial pedophile and the false implication of a Tory ex-minister of the same crime. Heads have rolled and are rolling. 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.  

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. 

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Stop the secrecy: Publish the NHS COVID data deals


To: Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

We’re calling on you to immediately release details of the secret NHS data deals struck with private companies, to deliver the NHS COVID-19 datastore.

We, the public, deserve to know exactly how our personal information has been traded in this ‘unprecedented’ deal with US tech giants like Google, and firms linked to Donald Trump (Palantir) and Vote Leave (Faculty AI).

The COVID-19 datastore will hold private, personal information about every single one of us who relies on the NHS. We don’t want our personal data falling into the wrong hands.

And we don’t want private companies – many with poor reputations for protecting privacy – using it for their own commercial purposes, or to undermine the NHS.

The datastore could be an important tool in tackling the pandemic. But for it to be a success, the public has to be able to trust it.

Today, we urgently call on you to publish all the data-sharing agreements, data-impact assessments, and details of how the private companies stand to profit from their involvement.

The NHS is a precious public institution. Any involvement from private companies should be open to public scrutiny and debate. We need more transparency during this pandemic – not less.


By adding my name to this campaign, I authorise openDemocracy and Foxglove to keep me updated about their important work.

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