Extraordinary goings-on at the BBC... Jonathan Ross suspended for 3 months without pay, Russell Brand out the door.
Because some rude messages (included in the broadcast on 18 October) were left on Andrew Sachs's answerphone concerning the fact that Brand had sex with Sach's 23-year-old grand-daughter. Well, nobody's going to condone swearing into people's answerphones on BBC radio - Sachs was pissed off and rightly so. But Brand and Ross both admitted they'd overstepped the mark and apologised, Sachs accepted the apology, and perhaps we would have thought the matter would have ended there - maybe with a fine for the presenters.
Instead, one of Radio 2's flagship presenters is gone for 3 months (at least it'll save the Beeb some money as he's grossly overpaid, but that's an argument for another day) and another popular show is off the air for good.
And why? Basically because the Mail on Sunday got hold of the story and ran it ten days after the show was recorded. These desperate fuckers at the Mail, who are in all probability far more depraved than Russell Brand could ever dream of, sell their filth - far more disgusting and warped than anything on Radio 2 - to an equally desperate audience.
There were 1,585 complaints received by the BBC after the Mail on Sunday story ran. How many complaints were received by the BBC before the story ran in the Mail? TWO.
The whole thing is a f***ing joke which once again proves that BBC director-general Mark Thompson is a government patsy put in to reduce the Beeb to a compliant zombie institution in the wake of the Hutton report in 2003. Your licence fee is now being used to pleasure Daily Mail readers... I wish Brand and Ross had attacked the gutter press in their statements to the media after the story broke.
Have we really progressed any since the days of Mary Whitehouse? Doesn't feel much like it.