The discovery that the BBC has paid out almost £1 million in costs and damages for libel from current affairs programmes in two years has shocked the Sunday Express, but not Richard Sharpe, writing on ETC’s Keep It Legal Blog.
“The BBC received 71 complaints about libel since January 2008 and spent £121,000 on lawyers to defend itself, says the Sunday Express.
“Consider just one fact about the output of the BBC: over 78,000 radio hours in its past financial year over 10 radio networks. And it has 8 TV networks also pumping out hours of viewing.
“Current affairs is a central part of the BBC. The BBC spends £4.5 billion on operating expenditure, putting out those radio and TV hours, putting up the websites and all the support needed to do that.”