asked the Minister of Information which directorate of his Department is responsible for the subject matter, the form of its issue and repetition of certain items of the news broadcast by the British Broadcasting Corporation in the Home and Forces Programmes; whether he is aware that the policy of hiding up unsatisfactory news leads to listening to enemy broadcasts; and what steps it is proposed to take to improve the news service by stating facts which are frequently released for publication in the Press?
The B.B.C. is responsible for the selection of subject matter and the form of issue of their news bulletins in the Home and Forces Programmes, but under the general supervision of the Ministry of Information. Some repetition of news in successive bulletins is unavoidable owing to the fact that the great majority of listeners only listen to one bulletin a day, choosing the one that fits most conveniently with their hours of work. I can assure my hon. Friend that there is no policy of hiding up unsatisfactory news; and I have, in fact, received complaints that the bulletins are too pessimistic. My own view is that they succeed in giving an adequate summary of all reliable news of the day.