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Club 1872 Statement on BBC Scotland

Following our notification yesterday that BBC Executive Complaints Unit (ECU) had upheld a complaint regarding Tom English’s tweet about our statement on crushing at Kilmarnock, BBC Scotland gave a quote to the Sun newspaper yesterday claiming that they had already partially upheld this complaint. This is the second time that BBC Scotland has issued a misleading statement to the public regarding complaints correspondence with Club 1872 in the past 6 months. The previous instance in August was addressed in our statement here.

The following are direct quotes from the correspondence we received from BBC Scotland regarding this part of our complaint prior to the escalation to ECU.

In response to our initial complaint in August, BBC Scotland said, “BBC Sport Scotland senior staff have discussed this with Tom, and we acknowledge your concern at the tone and language of this tweet and that it wasn’t appropriate.”

In response to our follow up complaint to BBC Scotland their response in September was “Again, we acknowledge the first-hand accounts of crushing outside Rugby Park, and your concern at the tone and language of Tom English’s tweet and that it wasn’t appropriate.”

At no point in correspondence did BBC Scotland state that they had upheld or partially upheld our complaint. Acknowledging Club 1872’s concern at Mr English’s behaviour is not the same as upholding the complaint and expressing their own concern at his behaviour. In fact, BBC Scotland performed their usual mental gymnastics to deny that Michael Stewart, Tom English and others on Sportsound had deliberately presented a myth to the public that supporters were not endangered at this game.

If BBC Scotland are now claiming to the press that they have upheld our complaint regarding the tweet from Tom English, which led to a torrent of personal and sectarian abuse directed at our volunteer board members, then why is the tweet still on his timeline and why has there been no apology issued by Mr English and BBC Scotland? Is it the BBC Scotland position that, despite claiming to have upheld the complaint, there is no requirement for an apology and retraction? Is it the BBC Scotland position that even when they agree that their standards have been breached they do not need to remedy the situation? As usual, their position is to fight tooth and nail to avoid the further embarrassment of yet another apology for the ingrained hostility within Pacific Quay towards Rangers and Rangers supporters. Club 1872 will therefore direct these questions to the ECU in the hope that some action will finally be taken.

Mr English should apologise to Club 1872 and Rangers supporters publicly and BBC Scotland should apologise for once again attempting to mislead the public regarding their position on one of our complaints.

Issued by Supporters Voice Limited, a Club 1872 company

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