Beeb coughs to Panorama WiFi-scare travesty
Wrists red raw with self-administered slappings
The BBC has admitted that the infamous Panorama programme in which Beeb investigators boosted public hysteria regarding health dangers around Wi-Fi in schools was "misleading". The BBC's Editorial Complaints Unit (ECU) found against Panorama chiefs in a recent ruling.
In essence, the ECU thought it was OK to make the programme in the first place because Sir William Stewart, Chairman of the Health Protection Agency and a distinguished biologist, had expressed concerns about WiFi. (Even though he said himself he had no real reason for doing so.)
However, the Beeb internal watchdog sharply criticised the way the Panorama editors went about their business, giving extensive airtime to three WiFi-fearmonger scientists and featuring only one voice of sanity. This "gave a misleading impression of the state of scientific opinion on the issue".
Adding insult to injury, the WiFi-is-probably-OK-actually savant, Professor Michael Repacholi, "was presented in a context which suggested to viewers that his scientific independence was in question, whereas the other scientists were presented uncritically. This reinforced the misleading impression, and was unfair."
So the Beeb admits that the programme was a travesty. However, it doesn't propose to actually do anything about it - such as firing anyone, for instance. (Even though it is currently firing other, inoffensive news staffers by the hundred.)
However, the Panorama team have had a more-in-sorrow-than-anger "discussion" with the ECU, and may be made to submit to some (hopefully) humiliating training on science/medical reporting.®
Nowt is wrong with Mobiles?
You all forget that no matter who says what, Panorama discussed evidence. Evidence like this:
About 100 biological effects here:
Recent studies (1995-2000) on the biological effects of radiofrequency and cell phone radiation,
Or if you like to do your own pick ‘n mix, go into the Pubmed medical database http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez
- and type eg “cell phone effects”.
Then look amongst your resulting list for
*reduction in melatonin (an antioxidant with cancer-fighting properties)
*weakening of the blood-brain barrier
and see how many of each you can find.
Or put each of these effects into Pubmed directly.
Of course some studies look for an effect but don't find it.
Also check out brain tumour studies. Don’t forget to look at those that included lots of long term heavy users.
Lots of work - but its better than sitting around slagging off Panorama...
The BBC is so cool.....
We don't need to worry about it - just remember, very soon in a broadcasting centre near you the only ones left with secure contracts to guide the BBC will be at the top table anyway. You know, the ones that were willing to step in and replace a Director General and board that wanted to tell the truth about CENSORED, and the ones that tell the journalists what stories are acceptable - sorry, scrub that - up to editorial standards.
William Stuart is the one to blame...
... for expressing unfounded concerns. He should stick to what he knows - presenting Fifteen To One on Channel Four.