A senior BBC executive has admitted the politically correct views of the corporation are at odds with most of its viewers.
BBC commissioning editor for documentaries Richard Klein admitted the broadcaster was out of touch with the British public, saying it was guilty of “ignoring” mainstream opinion.
Speaking to a room full of TV viewers and BBC staff, he suggested that if the current situation continued it could affect the organisation’s long-term future.
Klein said: “By and large, people who work at the BBC think the same and it’s not the way the audience thinks. That’s not long term sustainable.”
“We pride ourselves on being ‘of the people’, and it’s pathetic…..Channel 4 tends to laugh at people, the BBC ignores them.”
His comments, reported in the corporation’s in-house magazine, come on the back of news earlier this week that a string of BBC executives and journalists have admitted that the corporation is institutionally biased.
Details from a recent “impartiality” summit held at the BBC highlighted how some of the corporation’s own top staff now believe it is guilty of promoting left-wing views, is biased against Christianity and as an organisation is disproportionately dominated by gays and ethnic minorities.
It was also claimed the BBC overtly promotes multiculturalism and is anti-American and anti-countryside.
Klein, who made his views known at an “audience festival” organised by the BBC last week to find out what its viewers think, admitted that the BBC’s liberal internal culture did not match that of the wider British public.
He said: “Most people at the BBC don’t live lives like this, but these are our licence payers. It’s our job to reflect and engage.”
The TV executive, who sponsored a study to find out what issues concerned viewers, even warned other BBC staff about the dangers of ignoring popular opinion.
“They may be challenging to us, but don’t dismiss them”, he said.
His comments come after repeated claims that the BBC has misjudged the mood of British public.
Last month the corporation was deluged with complaints after a Muslim extremist was given 12 minutes of airtime on Radio 4’s flagship Today programme.
It also came under attack in the summer when it broadcast a “sick” comedy, which showed Tony Blair being assasinated and terrorists crashing a jet into parliament.
The BBC was also criticised last year after it was revealed that the corporation had cautioned journalists against using the word terrorist – claiming the word was too judgmental.
More recently the BBC has agonised over whether news-reader Fiona Bruce should be allowed to wear a necklace with a cross on it.
Research conducted by the BBC showed that many viewers felt “gagged and alone” and also believed mainstream views were being driven underground.
Ann Davies, who carried out the research for the corporation, openly questioned whether the BBC should change its approach.
She asked: “Should we, the BBC, be a pressure valve for that opinion? Should we help break the contraints of the PC police?”
Research into audience members views showed that many thought that politcal correctness had become endemic in Britain.
One said: “Politicians know more about how a Muslim lives than they do about what it’s like to be me, day in, day out.”