Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The failures of OFCOM? (and others)

Now I've had an interest in the subject of participation TV for some time and I noticed at the weekend that a story was running in the Mail on Sunday regarding the 'whistleblower' Bob Winsor, Bob has been seemingly tireless in his attempts to get to the bottom of unfair practices around ITV Play and others.

Bob was kind enough to send me e-mails covering his latest go at the' cover up' here is the contents: (be interesting to see who gets the new top jobs at ITV)

Subject: finally re public trust

Dear all implicated in parliamentary/Government malpractice,

I would just like to add how far Ofcom and the Government will go to cover-up this (besides sending police on a hoax suicide call, falsifying consumer complaint records and obstructing the fraud squad).

Channel 4 News and ITV evening news wanted to interview me at the height of the scandal but whenever I tried to return their calls Kate Mayne at ITN Legal ordered ITN telephonists watch for calls and to ask me the nature of my story. When I did call I was then told that no news teams wanted to know my story and that they were not interested. Channel 4 News were furious at this attempt by ITN Legal to censor the news.

Similarly, when I was interviewed by Jon Snow Kate Mayne then manipulate a police statement and gave it to Jon Snow to read out as BGTV's right to reply. The reply said that police had found all my allegations to be completely without foundation etc. Polce and CPS both confirm they said no such thing. Ofcom then refused to uphold my complaint about factual inaccuraces on a news programme. Victims then contacted Ofcom and BGTV (this is why the complaints are 49+) but were told by both Ofcom and BGTV that police had found all allegations to be without foundation and so no refunds would be given to victims. To drive this message home Ofcom's Tim Suter then went on Panorama and encouraged consumers to keep on playing (being scammed) by the quizzes.

To cap it all Michael Grade prevented me from giving evidence to deloitte's but when i did eventually manage give evidence to Deloitte's (with two ITV lawyers present) all my evidence was censored from the report and Michael Grade lied to C4 News and Newsnight by stating

'nothing even verging on criminality has ever happened at ITV. This is not me saying this it is the lawyers'.

The only way all of the above could have happened and Michael Grade could be so confident is his lies is through the Establishment, the Government and Ofcom and the select committees protecting him at a huge a cost to the electorate. As for the news censorship and manipulation of a police statement such behaviour is more akin to a dictatorship.

I am very well aware that apparent justice is everything as far public trust is concerned but if MPs are serious about cleaning up parliament, then I suggest something is done about this continuing cover-up. If it comes out later then the public will know that the current clean-up was no more than a PR/damage limitation exercise.

Bob Winsor

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