This is the Disasters Emergency Committee video appeal the BBC’s Director General, Mark Thompson, is unwilling to air because it would apparently compromise the BBC’s impartiality.
An article in today’s Guardian suggests part of Mark Thompson’s reasoning might be connected to the Balen report into its Middle East coverage, which is as yet unpublished, despite attempts to get it released under Freedom Of Information.
Update: today’s Guardian has further details that shed more light on this:
Under guidelines agreed between the DEC and broadcasters, three criteria warrant a nationwide appeal:
- substantial, urgent need in a humanitarian crisis;
- evidence that aid agencies can guarantee effective assistance on the ground;
- and sufficient “public awareness, and sympathy for” the humanitarian crisis.
All of which are currently met by the crisis in Gaza. But the BBC say: “Preserving our impartiality is the BBC’s main criterion when deciding whether to broadcast an appeal”. The DEC have been broadcasting similar appeals since the 1960s, and only this one and their previous appeal for the Israel-Lebanon conflict in 2006 have been rejected by the BBC for “impartiality” reasons. (Some have been rejected for failing to meet all of the three criteria above).
Previous DEC appeals the BBC broadcast include:
And many others that might not be considered “impartial“.
It seems Mark Thompson is now making up what the guidelines are when deciding to show the DEC’s appeals. Incidentally, Thompson has held meetings with Ariel Sharon, and has a Jewish wife, but I’m sure neither of those would be affecting his decision-making capabilities on this matter.
Glenrothes in Fife has been shortlisted for the annual Carbuncle Awards, “the prize that identifies Scotland’s most dismal town.”
The judges’ statement says:
Glenrothes is a classic Scottish New Town. However, the judges felt that unlike New Towns such as East Kilbride and even Cumbernauld, it has failed to move with the times. It is dominated by the vast Kingdom Centre which also serves as the town centre. From the outside it is an ugly and depressing complex which inspires little civic pride. Inside it feels like an 80s timewarp. Said Gordon Young, “The real failing with this town centre is the lack of civic space. The whole thing is internalised. It is really just a big mall. But with a little investment it could be so much more. “However, the shops are busy. But the judges felt this was more down to a lack of competition in the region which explains a sense that the Kingdom complex perhaps does not need to try too hard in terms of attracting local trade. “One almost gets the feeling that perhaps Historic Scotland should give this place a listing, as an example of how poor shopping centres used to be.”
That’s pretty accurate. Basically Glenrothes is a series of suburbs, most of which have a small shopping precinct. The only town centre is really the Kingdom Centre shopping mall, which is a large indoor shopping centre, mostly surrounded by car parks.
On the other hand, Glenrothes has a lot of public sculptures, a reasonable amount of green space, and seems well catered for by cycle paths and footpaths, although the transport system is dominated by roundabouts.
The other nominees for the Plook on the Plinth Award are Motherwell and New Cumnock.
There is also the Pock Mark Award for worst planning decision and the Zit Building Award for the most disappointing building.
Vote online here or see more Glenrothes photos here.
n! means n x (n − 1) x … x 3 x 2 x 1
Find the sum of the digits in the number 100!
Another one that had previously foxed me in CFML (on Coldfusion 5), but was simple in Python:
limit = 100
total = 0
product = 1
for i in range(limit, 1, -1):
product = product * i
prodStr = repr(product)
length = len(prodStr)
for i in range(length):
total = total + int(prodStr[i])
Similar code to problem 16. I work out 100!, then I turn the number into a string, work out the length of the string, loop through the string, adding up each digit.
This is only my second bit of Python ever, so I’d love some feedback from anyone with more experience of the language.