01/06/2012 Newswatch


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Those live pictures coming from the Elysee Palace. Now it is time for


Newswatch. This week, the choice of Welcome to Newswatch. Later in the


programme - should images show the full horror of last week's massacre


in Syria be broadcast? First, there was this. And as the International


has accused the United Nations failing to show leadership matching


the courage of protesters in Syria. Amnesty says the UN Security


Council has been exposed as redundant in the face of crimes


against humanity being perpetrated in the country. That a logo does


not represent the UN Security Council, but a body called the UN


Space Command, formed in the 22nd century, led by Lord Hood. A


fictional part of a game series called the halo. One viewer was


The BBC apologised for the error and replace the image in later


bulletins. But another case of mistaken identity was to follow. On


Sunday the website carried a powerful photograph of a row of


bodies attributed to an activist. To illustrate a story about the


massacre of more than 100 people near the silly and -- Syrian town


of Houla. But the picture was taken almost a decade ago by a


The BBC's social media editor, Chris Hamilton, has published a


There were more general concerns about the coverage of the killings


in Houla. Again on the use of pictures and articulated here by


We are going to show an example now of the recovery urge from a report


of the recovery urge from a report by Humphrey Hawksley last weekend.


It does contain some distressing images.


The people of Houla buried their dead. They quickly dug mass grave


as the community absorbs the brutality and shock. Distress,


disbelief and anger. A video too gruesome to show in false. Women,


children, everyone in the path of Syrian troops was in the path -- a


target they say. What was broadcast was too much for


With me now is Jawed Iqbal, a senior editor in the BBC newsroom.


What do you say to viewers such as Mary Giles, who says the BBC has


abandoned respect and compassion? There is a process around using


pictures. It is not a case of gratuitously putting them out there.


What I would say in the context of these particular pictures, some are


exceptional. They conveyed something of the conflict in Syria


that it was exceptional. It raised lots of questions and if you look


at the coverage this week, the international condemnation of these


images and some of the diplomatic behaviour subsequent to that


broadcast, is the way the story has developed and moved. There is a


strong editorial justification. what extent can you tell the story


and the importance of the story without bringing dead bodies into


people's living rooms? Television news is about pictures as much as


anything else. I understand the sensitivity of dead bodies and we


do not gratuitously put them out, but at the same time in reporting a


conflict and reporting this incident, the pictures were


exceptional. Our warnings important? If so, what is your


policy? Sometimes there is a warning on the first time,


sometimes there is under a warning. Viewers don't know what to expect.


Warnings are they keep part of the treatment and are important. We


would expect with the use of disturbing or harrowing images,


viewers should know these images are about to be broadcast. Warnings


are integral and we shouldn't be casual about them, just because we


use them in the first instance, does not mean 24 hours later we


shouldn't use the warning again. We need to be careful about the time


of day, the outlook concerns... Children watching? Absolutely. You


know there is a responsibility at 6pm. That might change at 10pm.


Some say decades ago the BBC wouldn't have shown such pictures.


Has your criteria changed and are they influenced by an the internet


showing everything, essentially? wouldn't say the criteria has


changed. The process we have, the rigour, the process and selection


is always the same as it has always been. Viewers are seeing images and


there are more images out there than there has been. We still think,


what is the justification? What do people expect the BBC to do? The


idea things have changed in that respect, I don't think that is the


case. Is there a problem when the news story is over, using these


pictures as casual wallpaper over and over again? Just because an


image has been sanctioned for use in an immediate news story, does


not mean 72 hours later the image should be used in a way that has


been desensitised or as wallpaper or background. We need to have


people and teams are looking at that image and thinking, are we


right to use it? Do we need to warn people about it? Is it still


justified as part of the storytelling.


Jawed Iqbal, thanks very much. What else has been bothering you?


News at Ten started with a couple of Government U-turns.


Minister has backtracked on some of controversial budget plans. Plans


to impose VAT on pasties are to be withdrawn. It is common sense, it


will save money at the end of the day. The previous proposal would


have cost thousands of jobs. Plans to levy VAT on static caravans have


also changed. Clear enough, but the quote from


David Davis cropped up again in Nick Robinson's story. The other U-


turn is on static holiday caravans. They were going to have to pay 20%


VAT, but a new special 5% rate will be levied. The it is very good news.


It is common sense, it will actually save money at the end of


the day. The previous proposal would have cost thousands of jobs.


Peter Heaton-Jones from Swindon Meanwhile, it is some loose


language usage that has been Finally, there has been more big


names and drama at Leveson Inquiry, with Jeremy Hunt's appearance


taking a many hours of the news channel on Thursday. It kept many


Well, Lord Justice Leveson is due to report in October. So the answer


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