The BBC should be ashamed of themselves. Once-upon-a-time their international news website was held up as the benchmark by which all others were judged, now it’s starting to look about as hip as a tweed jacket.
In the past, as a regular ‘international’ user of the site, I have been frustrated by dead links and 404 pages, but now the final straw – advertising has come to the BBC. Today the BBC news homepage makes a bigger feature out of it’s ad banners for British Airways than it does of the crisis in Pakistan.
- You will have noticed that the BBC website features a limited amount of advertising when viewed from outside the UK.
- That’s the only alteration – the content of the site remains unchanged and continues to feature the same high quality journalism and entertainment that the BBC has always pioneered.
- We’ve introduced advertising to visitors outside of the UK because the new revenue created will allow us to further improve our journalism, our programmes and our website in the years ahead.
- Impartiality is of the utmost importance to us at the BBC and for this reason advertising will be clearly separated from editorial content. Advertising will not have any bearing on the news, information or programme content or create the impression of endorsement by the BBC.
If you ask me, it’s the beginning of the end for the BBC as a respected international news source. They are deluded if they think a ‘small’ amount of advertising will not alter international regard for their ‘impartiality’; deluded too if they think sticking a banner for a wristwatch in the navigation bar will not affect the usability of the website.
I shall henceforth be turing to France24 for all my current affairs updates, and only returning to the beeb for the occassional sports result, and I shall be recommending that everyone else do the same.
France24 is a modern, impartial, full rich media, streaming content, RSS, accessible, multi-lingual, ad-free website; and is now the benchmark international news website by which all others should be judged.