PODCAST NEWS: The Prof, the news and BBC Reporting Scotland

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Dr John Robertson

By a Newsnet.scot Reporter

The BBC’s Reporting Scotland was hailed as TV news programme of the year for 2014 by the Royal Television Society this month, after a controversial period dominated by coverage of the Scottish referendum campaign.

The award coincided with the completion of a series of damning critiques by Professor John Robertson, media analyst of the University of the West of Scotland, who irritated BBC Scotland greatly by his earlier criticism of the programme in 2013.

Robertson’s argument is that the BBC is more susceptible to Opposition arguments, and that its coverage of the SNP and its administration at Holyrood is more hostile than it should be – and more hostile than that of STV News.

Professor John Robertson
Professor John Robertson

He explains his approach in an exclusive interview with Derek Bateman (to listen just click the player above this item).

The Professor ran a series of more than 20 Newsnet.scot commentaries┬ácomparing the two channels’ coverage of Scottish politics during the first half of 2015, covering the run-up to the May 7 general election. His conclusions were that the BBC’s use of language, selection of news stories and presentation of items continued to demonstrate a similar “bias”.

For its part the BBC has ignored Robertson’s work, and has┬ánot responded to his commentary on Reporting Scotland’s ongoing coverage. His latest academic paper – based on that 2015 research – has been published on his own site, Thought Control Scotland.