BBC complaints procedure 'convoluted'

BBC television centre Image copyright bbc
Image caption Peers suggested Ofcom take over the BBC's complaints procedure

This round-up of Wednesday's main media stories looks at criticism of the BBC's complaints procedures.

The BBC's complaints process is "convoluted" and "overly complicated", a group of peers has said. BBC News reports the Lords communications committee said it was hard for viewers, listeners and website users to know whom to contact at the corporation to make a complaint. It recommended the creation of a "one-stop shop" to simplify the process.

The Guardian adds that the House of Lords Committee suggested media regulator Ofcom, rather than the BBC, should have the final say over complaints about impartiality and accuracy in the corporation's programmes. The paper says the recommendation is likely to raise concerns within the BBC about the corporation's editorial independence.

A high profile interviewer and columnist was at the centre of a plagiarism row, reports the Guardian, after he said he added quotes taken from his subjects' writings into his interviews with them. Johann Hari said in a blogpost entitled "interview etiquette" that when "I've interviewed a writer" he inserted quotes from their other published work. He said he did so when they've expressed "an idea or sentiment" more "clearly in writing than in speech".

Washington Post blogger Elizabeth Flock comments on the Johann Hari debate: "Let's say you once interviewed Martin Luther King Jr. for a story, but he wasn't all that articulate about his hopes for racial reconciliation. So you decided to just quote his 'I have a dream' line in the story and pretend he told it to you. That's fine, right? According to a well-known interviewer for the British newspaper the Independent, it is."

The BBC's former deputy director-general, Mark Byford, received a redundancy payment of almost £950,000, according to figures in the corporation's forthcoming annual report, says Patrick Foster in the Daily Telegraph.

Listening to the radio makes people happier and gives them higher energy levels than watching TV or browsing the internet, according to new research reported in the Daily Telegraph. Radio came out top in the study called 'Media and the Mood of the Nation', commissioned by the Radio Advertising Bureau.

On the eve of strike action by teachers and other public sector workers, the papers offer predictions about the impact of the walkouts, as reported in the BBC's newspapers review.