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Monday, 11 July 2011

Freedom of Information request for Iceland programme - response

Freedom of Information request – RFI201107xx

Thank you for your request to the BBC of 24th June, seeking the following information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000:

1) Excluding Mr Vine, how many other BBC staff travelled to Iceland in support of this broadcast?
2) What were the travel costs incurred as a result of the visit to Iceland by Mr Vine and his associates?
3) What was the additional cost (studio hire, satellite link, etc.) incurred by the BBC in broadcasting a live programme from Iceland as compared to broadcasting from the London studio?
4) What was the total subsistence and accomodation cost for Mr Vine and his associates?
5) On what date and at what approximate time did the group leave the UK?
6) On what date and at what approximate time did they return to the UK?

The information you have requested is excluded from the Act because it is held for the purposes of ‘journalism, art or literature.’ The BBC is therefore not obliged to provide this information to you and will not be doing so on this occasion. Part VI of Schedule 1 to FOIA provides that information held by the BBC and the other public service broadcasters is only covered by the Act if it is held for ‘purposes other than those of journalism, art or literature”. The BBC is not required to supply information held for the purposes of creating the BBC’s output or information that supports and is closely associated with these creative activities.

You may not be aware that one of the main policy drivers behind the limited application of the Act to public service broadcasters was to protect freedom of expression and the rights of the media under Article 10 European Convention on Human Rights (“ECHR”). The BBC, as a media organisation, is under a duty to impart information and ideas on all matters of public interest and the importance of this function has been recognised by the European Court of Human Rights. Maintaining our editorial independence is a crucial factor in enabling the media to fulfil this function.

That said, the BBC makes a huge range of information available about our programmes and content on We also proactively publish information covered by the Act on our publication scheme and regularly handle requests for information under the Act.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Oh how i hate the use of "you may not
b aware". How patronising