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Booker on the BBC and Tesla

April 16, 2016

Booker has picked up on my story last week re the BBC’s shameless plugging of Tesla:

Why is the BBC advertising the Tesla?

The BBC assures us on its website that it is “not permitted to carry advertising or sponsorship on its public services”. So, at the start of this month, eyebrows were raised when for days on end its programmes and website featured puffs for a new electric car, soon to be produced by the US firm Tesla.

We know the corporation likes to show unbridled enthusiasm for all things “green”. But so relentlessly did its reporting on the Tesla Model 3 echo the firm’s own publicity material for what it claims to be “the first affordable electric car” (although at $42,000, this figure seems somewhat relative) that Paul Homewood was able to reproduce no fewer than seven such items on his website Notalotofpeopleknowthat.

He was also intrigued to see the top 20 companies invested in by the BBC Pension Fund. Considering how puritanical the BBC is about fossil fuels, smoking and tax avoidance, it seems odd that it should invest hundreds of millions of pounds in Shell, BP, Imperial Tobacco and several firms under fire for their tax arrangements. Appearing at 15th on the list is Tesla Motors Inc.

Those non-stop plugs for Tesla may not strictly be “advertising”, in that no money was paid (although such a torrent of publicity can do little harm to the pension prospects of BBC employees). But the manufacturers have some way to go in persuading us all to abandon fossil fuels. Last year, despite the £5,000 government bribe given to every customer who bought one, less than 10,000 electric cars were purchased: well under half a percent of all the cars sold.

  1. April 17, 2016 12:13 am

    “how puritanical the BBC is about fossil fuels,”

    their puritanical approach might have made sense had there been empirical evidence that relates warming to fossil fuel emissions; but the only evidence presented so far is a correlation between cumulative values. this correlation is spurious. please see:

  2. Gary smith permalink
    April 17, 2016 1:03 am

    BBC is an establishment proxy defending status quo

  3. S Jenkinson permalink
    April 17, 2016 5:50 am

    Yes its shocking the BBC advertising the Tessla in such a blatant way and using licence payers money to do so. But this is not an isolated incident. I’ll list a few more examples.

    Cinema – both on TV and on-line the BBC promotes new films at the time they are released and often interviews the stars. Who knows how much this relentless advertising boosts the pockets of Hollywood ?

    Sport – by reporting on major sporting events the nation is being brain-washed in to spending hard earned cash on expensive tickets for Premiership football and Formula 1 etc. Such coverage is often transmitted before the watershed. Who knows how many young minds are being conditioned to buy tickets to so-called sporting events in later life ?

    Music – its not just TV though. I can reveal that licence fee payers money is squandered on so called ‘radio stations’. A big part of their out put is to bombard listeners with coverage of new releases by so-called recording artists. Members of the public exposed to this left wing propaganda then have no choice but to order this new music on CD or download. Worse a wide range of BBC backed stations cover a diverse range of musical taste and age. There is no escape!

    Food – have you noticed how many cookery programmes there are on the BBC? And have you wondered why? Could it be that by going out to supermarkets to buy ingredients to prepare recipes created by so-called ‘celebrity chefs’ they are putting money straight in to the pockets of the big four supermarkets. I wonder if the BBC pension fund invests in these companies also ?

    The sooner those left wing looneys at the BBC are shown the dole queue the better. Sky and Fox would provide a more than adequate replacement.

    • April 17, 2016 11:10 am

      On the list was Whole Foods designer grocery store.

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      April 18, 2016 9:43 am

      An advertising campaign is devoted to a particular brand or product. Perhaps if the BBC provided similar coverage for other new cars your criticism might have validity.

  4. Ex-expat Colin permalink
    April 17, 2016 6:59 am

    However, we have had to pay them to broadcast it and on threat of prison or criminal record at minimum.

  5. April 17, 2016 8:34 am

    The phrase ‘conflict of interest’ springs to mind.

  6. April 17, 2016 9:47 am

    The BBC in general continues its religious attachment to renewable energy, especially in its so-called “science” programmes, which often resemble marketing broadcasts, complete with a go-to academic to confirm the spin.

    I emailed “Inside Science” (radio 4) recently about this, and I suspect many others did likewise, because they referred to this last week as “a great deal of interest in our report on solar energy”, and my name was read out as someone asking about how to convert “supplying X homes” to kilowatts, when in fact I just pointed out that 1800 homes is a piddling amount of electricity, and not worth destroying the ecology of a lake for.

    • April 18, 2016 5:22 am

      “Oneside Science”.

    • RobbertBobbertGDQ permalink
      April 20, 2016 10:03 am


      Australian science program ‘Catalyst’ (ABC of course) did a ‘Battery Powered Homes’ Special Feb 2nd 2016 and it would be the best half hour uncritical advertisement for renewables and the marketing dept of a green company may as well have provided the script. Website available with that script.

      The only surprise regarding the perfection of the renewable home product being it not repeated during Religious hour but , then again, would Govt TV actually have a religious hour these days other than that devoted to The Big Green Infallible God!

      Dead Set I do not have expertise in this area but the gobsmacking unsubstantiated assumptions were blatant and some of the glaring problematic issues were never addressed in any way. Cost.(only good) Over supply. Under supply. Effectiveness.( only fabulous) Real conservation or fake conservation. Home usage versus Mass Industry usage barely touched except for one (naturally) wonderful experimental works.

      Brother Love’s Travelling Green Salvation Show. Hallelujah!!! From a purported Science Show.

  7. It doesn't add up... permalink
    April 17, 2016 10:23 am

    Booker’s no fun without the comments…

    • A C Osborn permalink
      April 17, 2016 10:49 am

      Yes why no comments on those articles?

      It is interesting to note that the BBC has picked up on the last English Golden Eagle dying.
      But absolutely no mention of the decimation of the Golden Plover (a protected species) population mostly due to Wind Turbine Farms.
      Green Hypocrites in the extreme.

      • A C Osborn permalink
        April 17, 2016 11:35 am

        Actually, much to my surprise the BBC have covered the Golden Plover story.

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