Thanks for contacting us about ‘Jeremy Vine’ on BBC Radio 2.
I understand you objected to an item about a cyclist with a helmet camera being cautioned by a police officer being one of the discussion topics on 17 January as you felt it to have been too old a story to be seen as news. I note you also believe it to have been poorly researched.
Jeremy described the video as a “the latest Youtube sensation”, and it certainly has been picked up by many newspapers and media outlets in the last week or so, despite the video having been available on Youtube for a number of months, it has only recently gone “viral” and been covered by the media. Therefore we feel it entirely justified to cover it and use it as a discussion topic to look at police cautions and whether or not it’s appropriate to argue the law with officers, as this cyclist did in the video.
We’re sorry if you felt the item was misleading by not mentioning the date of the video; this wasn’t our intention but we don’t believe the date of the video is particularly relevant to the discussion that followed – the talking points under discussion were not time sensitive. We’d also disagree with your view that the item was poorly researched
We appreciate that not every listener will agree with the choices we make as regards what to talk about in any broadcast of ‘Jeremy Vine’; in the end it’s selective and subjective, but we do thank you for your feedback.
Please be assured your complaint will be added to our audience log, a daily report of audience feedback that's made available to many BBC staff, including members of the BBC Executive Board, channel controllers and other senior managers.
The audience logs are seen as important documents that can help shape decisions about future programming and content.
Thanks again for taking the time to contact us.
Response sent 23/01/12:
You state that the video had "been picked up by many newspapers and media outlets in the last week or so" and "it has only recently gone “viral” and been covered by the media". I understand this to mean that the video's belated surge in popularity following coverage on a media bandwagon including the Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail and others was the sole reason for it to become "news", rather than its content. Is that correct?
If my understanding is correct, I am left puzzled. In other correspondence with yourselves (ref. CAS-1254170-QBRMQX) I was told "Factors such as how much national interest there is in the subject matter, whether it is news that has just come in and needs immediate coverage, and how unusual the story is will all play a part in deciding the level of coverage in programmes like Jeremy Vine.". I take this to mean that these factors are applied to ALL stories featured on Mr Vine's programme.