August 30, 2019
The BBC has ruled that Jo Brand’s joke about throwing battery acid at politicians “went beyond what was appropriate”.
BBC Makes Ruling About Jo Brands Battery Acid Joke, But Nigel Farage Is Still Not Happy
Earlier this year, Jo took a lot of heat following an appearance on the BBC Radio 4 show Heresy, in which she said: “Certain unpleasant characters are being thrown to the fore and they’re very, very easy to hate and I’m kind of thinking: ‘Why bother with a milkshake when you could get some battery acid?’”
The joke drew laughter on the show, after which the comedian quickly added: “That’s just me. Sorry, I’m not gonna do it, it’s purely a fantasy, but I think milkshakes are pathetic, I honestly do. Sorry.”Jo later apologised for the comment, with the BBC now revealing that they have partially upheld the complaints received about her remarks.
The BBC’s Executive Complaints Unit said: “Whilst the ECU recognised that the wider message from this episode is an argument for more civility in political discourse, not less, and Ms Brand’s contribution is not intended to be taken as face value, the ECU felt that it went beyond what was appropriate for the show.
“So it was partially upheld against generally accepted standards of BBC output. The ECU also noted that in the right context and with the right treatment, there is no subject matter which should be beyond the scope of comedy.”
Former UKIP leader Nigel Farage – who had a milkshake thrown at him earlier this year – was among the biggest critics of Jo’s joke and revealed on his LBC show that he’s still not satisfied with the BBC’s ruling.“[They] said that they thought the joke went beyond what was appropriate, but they have concluded that the ECU does not uphold the aspects of complaints on incitement of violence,” he said.
“So it’s fine, just carry on. Why not Jo Brand go a bit further? Urge stabbings or shootings? Why not? The BBC won’t sanction you, indeed they’ll go on paying you lots and lots of money.”
While the BBC has its own system for dealing with complaints, media regulator Ofcom also received 444 complaints about the controversial joke.
The watchdog only considers complaints broadcast on the BBC once they’ve already been through the corporation’s own complaints unit.
As is standard procedure, they’re now assessing viewers’ concerns, before deciding whether to launch their own investigation.READ MORE... Police Will Take No Action Over Jo Brand 'Battery Acid' Comments Jo Brand Pulls Out Of Charity Event After 'Battery Acid' Joke Controversy Have I Got News For You Sexual Harassment 'Jokes' Episode Tops BBC Complaints
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