BBC fails to sort fact from opinion

Published: 8th Aug 2014

This week's Private Eye cast an especially watchful glance over the BBC's complaints department.

In an episode of Broadcasting House on 13th July journalist Jon Snow seemed to suggest that fewer than 50% of Oxbridge pupils were from state schools (listen 19:35 in).

One listener complained to the BBC this wasn't right - the latest figures show 57% of Oxford students are from state schools or colleges; 63% for Cambridge.

The BBC apparently didn't appreciate that Jon Snow had even made a factual statement:

"... We make no editorial comment or judgement on the views expressed by contributors to our programmes, and our aim is simply to provide readers with enough information for listeners to make up their own minds. This may include hearing opinions which some people may personally disagree with ..."

We hope the BBC is more discerning when Full Fact next has cause to point out an error.


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We aim for our factchecks to be as accurate and up-to-date as possible. If you think we've made an error or missed some relevant information, please email team@fullfact.org.

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