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BBC complains after Conservatives use footage of presenters in Facebook ads


By John Glenday, Reporter

November 29, 2019 | 2 min read

The BBC has demanded that the Conservative Party cease distribution of political ads which have used footage of its presenters out of context, amid fears the tactic undermines the broadcasters perceived impartiality.


BBC fears impartiality hit as Tories appropriate footage of presenters for political purposes

The corporation was alarmed to find unsanctioned clips of journalists Laura Keunssberg and Huw Edwards spliced into paid-for adverts to make the case to viewers that a vote for the Conservatives would bring an end to divisive Brexit debates once and for all.

Among the controversial clips is footage of Keunnsberg uttering the words "pointless delay to Brexit", ostensibly as an independent critique of the political logjam - which turned out to be a quote from prime minister Boris Johnson.

Further archive footage of Edwards, the BBC’s election night host, was also unearthed gravely speaking of "another Brexit delay", complete with horror music for added effect.

In a highly critical statement, the BBC said: “This is a completely unacceptable use of BBC content which distorts our output and which could damage perceptions of our impartiality. We are asking the Conservatives to remove these adverts.”

The Conservatives have taken the gloves off in a high-risk campaign strategy Recently, that backfired with the rebrand of its press office Twitter account as a ‘fact check’ service.

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The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters are at Broadcasting House in Westminster, London.

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