Charlie Brooker’s Newswipe often carries out cutting features on how news reporting is driven by celebrity and the desperate need for anything that would constitute an “exclusive”.
So it seemed obvious that Brooker would team up with the people behind Starsuckers for a segment on the News of the World’s treatment of their film, in which they sold fake “scoops” to the tabloid.
But the segment never appeared. Why?
A couple of months ago I filmed a piece for Charlie Brookers excellent Newswipe, the intention being to expose the gaping hypocrisy and contradiction of the NOTW’s stance. The piece gained even more potency after the NOTW broke the John Terry story, and Tom Crone had been publicly claiming that News International were ruthless defenders of free speech. Brooker’s team had specifically asked us to hold back the story of our legal battle, to give Newswipe the exclusive. Last week we were told that the Starsuckers vs NOTW story would definitely be in this weeks final show, neatly coming after the John Terry section.
This afternoon we were told that the piece has been cut, and we have heard from several sources that this is due to the BBC caving in and avoiding a fight with the NOTW.
UPDATE: Brooker says on Twitter: “Just to be 100% clear, the BBC hasn’t blocked Starsuckers piece. We ran out of room and edit time. No conspiracy & it may be used in future”