A technical failure foretold? My interrupted BBC TV interview on the… BBC's bias

You may recall that on Greek election day I issued a missive to the BBC, suggesting that they recover forthwith the journalistic standards which they seemed to have dropped in the run up to the Greek election. That missive, might I add, came from a long standing friend and contributor to the BBC. Indeed, I hold the Beeb in the highest regard and always sided with it in the face of BBC-bashing (especially in the UK). So, it was with great relief that I received a call from their TV News Dept offering me a chance to make my point on camera. But as I was coming to that point, the link surreptitiously caved in. Now, I have no doubt that it was, most probably, a genuine technical failure. Having said that, the fact that I was not given a chance to complete my point at a later stage raises questions. Questions that some in Greece have put in the form of this video. (Nb. the text that someone pasted on the screen below the moment of the ‘technical glitch’ says: “The weather in Germany probably cause the link to fail; to be followed by a recapitulation of the German narrative”)

My final message to the Beeb, on this issue, is: Greek election day was not your finest hour. 

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mYn_APuovvY&feature=player_embedded]

30 Comments

  • Funny one…you seem to have annoyed the PTB’s Yanis.

    Because, sure, the Beeb is quite good, but it would not embarrass the ‘owners’.

    May I point out another noteable gaffe of the Beeb widely reported on Youtube etc., when, on 9/11, it announced the collapse of WTC7 (the third skyscraper that collapsed that day) … BEFORE it actually happened.

    In fact the building could be seen standing in the background as the BBC reporter announced its collapse.
    Questions as to the source of the BBC story were not answered.

  • I’m afraid your narcissism has now reached the point of needing treatment. It may look like an aggressive comment, but, really, being a shrewd mind, you should be able to recognise it yourself.

    • And your lack of critical thinking, of doubting the motivations of media organisations, suggests a rather dulled mind. There is no treatment for that, though.

    • Your insults need a bit of treatment. Wit, intelligence, cutting edge – all of these things are lacking. Off to the doctor with you, don’t come back until you have raised your game.

  • That has high comedy. Yannis was on such a roll, they shut him down. I refuse to believe that was a technical glitch. Come on!

  • They let you put the dagger in but stopped you from twisting it. Too bad this wounded dog won’t learn from its mistakes.

  • I love the helium talk! 🙂 LOL.

    How come didn’t we think of this earlier?:-)

    What do you expect Yani? You just told them that the loans will not be paid back (which means UK economy implosion) and a frantic London producer started screaming: “Cut, cut, cut”.

    • The evident lack of surprise from the announcer (as well as the rapidity with which they dealt with this) is indicative of a setup. It is rare for a dedicated videolink like this (it was not skype) to break at all, let alone so definitively.

      I do not share Yani’s good opinion of the BBC: they have deteriorated consistently and horribly since I was a child. Now, their news programmes consist of two or three moronic women gossiping about the economy and whatever else … The dumbing down is so bad, that it is embarrassing to have a passport with the same nationality as this tv company.

  • Yanni,

    Generally BBC is good.
    The only instance I remembered BBC with not only bias but outright censorship of information was in some war time occasions (Serbia, Iraq) which is partly justifiable as there is national interest.

  • Yiani,

    I confess that I have only been made aware of your contribution to economic theory recently. You are either being quoted or appear in media sources particularly as they delve in the Greek/Euro crisis. In order to maintain credibility and further explain SYRIZA’s position, please address the following:

    – Do you consider the Greek public sector bloated or efficient?
    – Is the Greek public sector corrupt or not?
    – If so, what should be done about it?
    – Do you consider the Greek tax system a model or a disaster?
    – If the latter, what should be done about it?
    – Do you consider that the Greek private sector a model or disaster?
    – If the latter, what should be done about it?
    – How is it possible for hundreds of billions of euros exit Greek banks? Who are the owners of these funds?

    These are the sort of questions that you should provide succinct and clear answers to so that you and Syriza can claim credibility.

    Respectfully,

    Nick

    • I am sorry, but why would Varoufakis have to address ANYTHING you ask – whether you individually trust him or not is rather irrelevant to everyone else and the crisis in general.

      If this sounds harsh, its because I found the presumption inherent in your post quite annoying.

  • Interesting….. I never thought that they would come to such a frustration. I can’t imagine what was going on in the control room!!!
    Τους πήρες φαλάγγι και τρομαξαν.
    Keep walking

  • In all honesty professor you should not have made a deal out of this.

    Mind you if I had to guess I’d say this technical difficulty was anything but.

    Still putting this on your blog gives some the right to paint you as narcissistic (or even worse as γραφικός), which I wouldn’t care less about (I am sick of pretentious modesty), if it didn’t harm your “cause” to illuminate the real issues.

    Having said that keep up the hard work and never buckle under.

    As a former student of ΝΟΠΕ it increasingly embarrassing to have the government list read like the member of faculty one. You (and a handful of other professors) are the Oikonomiko’s only saving grace.

    • Nobody can be 100% sure about what happened.But he suddenly starts to seem less “γραφικος” once you consider that he has been blocked out of the Greek media for a considerable amount of time.That in combination with the fact that what you consider as a “part” of “Oikonomiko’s only saving grace” has been very often asked to comment in media worldwide says something.

  • It’s definitely a technical mistake. You can deduce that also from the fact that the tape of the german official has worn out. They have played it too many times.

  • LOL, Quite funny! No, there is mention of a technical glitch “Apologies, we seem to have lost our link”. Seems pretty straightforward to me.

    Yanis, by British standards (“Keep calm ,carry on”) your talk would be considered quite inflammatory. Never mind that there is a broad consensus emerging among the experts, ranging from countries as afar as the US (Paul Krugman) and Australia (Stephen Grenville, Reserve Bank Australia) similar to what you just expressed (just not as heated).

    I wonder what would happen if you tried delivering the same content, but with the sedative tone of that BBC presenter (I’m sure at normal speed he’d send you all to sleep – unintentional, I’m sure). Hmmm…..

  • We will all see the truth of it, if and when the Beeb come back for another bite of the interview. They surely cannot refuse, Yanis is all they have that is talking about an alternative viewpoint from the existing Euro orthodoxy? May I remind them, (someone there must read this web site to keep up to date with events), to re-read the recent thread regarding the revision of the Moderate Proposal http://yanisvaroufakis.eu/2012/05/19/a-modest-proposal-for-overcoming-the-euro-crisis-version-3-0-policy-3-significantly-amended/

    They can redeem themselves with a wider debate.

  • Yiannis
    What the media are trying to do is to keep secret the whole banking system failure. They blame Greece for the obvious issues highlited correctly all these years but at the same time nobody is saying anythging for the banking cricis. And the fact that this crisis would heat Greece irrespective of how well this country is directed and operated, as happens with Portugal, Spain, Italy…..
    But why i claim this to be a “secret”?
    Just because they would not be able to implement austerity measures to all European South (and not only) otherwise. They just argue for the bad countries that now have to pay the bills.
    Also how else north could convince their voters for paying additional taxes for monies that are intented to cover banks failure ? and how people can convinced if they know that have to secure the risk undertaken by the banks while the banks will benefit from excessive interest (for risk undertaken) ?
    By all this story a temporary support to the banks is achieved along with what is called achieving competititre advantage measures in the south (salaries derease, increased individaual taxes and so on) and monies blending from the citizens to the banks.
    Even if there was no Greece in the zone they would have to find the bad one country or political party who risks euro currency by not following austeriry measures.
    In my opinion media bias will continue to be exerted over all those that will not accept their only true.

    Respectfully,

  • @Crossover

    I by no means consider Yani γραφικός, you misunderstood me. All I am saying that sticking to this “incident”, that cannot be proven to be foul play, he’s playing their game of labeling reasonable voices like Yanis’ as kooks.

    How to put it….drop this one, it’s better to let it slide cause there are more important battles.

  • I am VERY shocked to realise that you all have not noticed that the BBC has actually changed its name to the BULLSHIT BROADCASTING CORPORATION, long time ago! Please do ignore them. They are nothing more than a bunch of Greek-like “civil servants” feeding off a peculiar and obligatory taxation on television ownership (!!!!), they call the “licence-fee”…
    They are in particular bullshitting the world on “foreign news” since the “foreigners” have not yet figured out how to use the complaints system of the BBC to demand an apology and redress on air (which does happen from time to time for their “regular” “news”) on the BULLSHIT they broadcast!

    • Whats so bad about greek civil servants? They work 10 hours a day. Or would it be better to work for a greek-like “businessman” whose only purpose is to reap greek and eu monetary grants and then close his fake business and invest the money into houses at mykonos.

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