Editor's leader: BBC will not be derailed by Salford bashing


By The Drum Team | Editorial

February 16, 2011 | 4 min read

The Drum's editor Gordon Young offers a non-London perspective on the BBC's move north in light of the latest attacks on the corporation's relocation plans.

That has never been more true in the case of the BBC. Love or hate it, few can deny it is not only the UK’s pre-eminent media organisation, but possibly the world’s best.

It has made many individuals famous.

Take Robert Peston, for example, who recently used a blog in The Guardian to join in with a chorus of criticism of the move plans, which the Daily Mail described as ‘lunacy’.

This man is the nearest the business press corp have ever had to a superstar. His books sell by the million and his BBC blog is visited by millions.

But he owes this fame, and the value he can extract through it, to his employer the BBC. He is without doubt a great talent, but there are many other great talents who have not had the benefit of his exposure.

If he had the misfortune of being buried under the next banking crash, the BBC would carry on regardless. And whoever got his spot would become equally rich and famous because of the power of this unique organisation.

That is why the BBC should clamp down hard on these employees resisting the move. The fact is they need the BBC more than the BBC needs them. And if they quit in a creative flounce then others with similar ability will be found to take their place.

The same goes for politicians seeking publicity or stars seeking to plug their latest films. Of course they will travel to the likes of Glasgow or Manchester if they will be given access to the power of the BBC in return.

Far from insanity, the BBC plans will do much to transform how the UK perceives itself. As well as creating new industries, communities and tapping new seams of talent, it will give the 40m people who live outside the Metropolitan area a real voice for the first time.

With the din of those resisting change in London reaching fever-pitch proportions it is important to raise that voice now. Certain camps need reminding that the organisation under discussion is the BRITISH Broadcasting Corporation.


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