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Response to OFCOM: Thematic Review of Representation and Portrayal on the BBC

Introduction

The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB), founded in 1997, is the largest umbrella body in the UK with over 500 affiliates, seeking to represents the common interest of Muslims in Britain. It is pledged to work for the common good of society as a whole.

The Muslim Council of Britain’s affiliate base reflects the diversity of Muslims in the UK, being made up of hundreds of mosques, educational and charitable bodies, cultural and relief agencies and women and youth groups and associations across the UK from a range of ethnic, geographical and theological backgrounds and traditions.

The BBC is a valuable and much needed institution for the flourishing of British life and culture both at home and abroad. As a bastion of free speech combined with high integrity in its reporting and output the BBC can continue to be a great informer for many communities and bridge any divides to make Britain a more cohesive and prosperous place to live.

The MCB welcomes the opportunity to input into the BBC Thematic review of representation and portrayal on the BBC. This document reflects a consensus view of our affiliates, and, we believe, across a broad spectrum of Muslim communities in the UK.

The majority of the British Public say what they know about Islam is acquired through the media,1 and whilst some of the most reprehensible anti-Muslim bigotry is documented to be within the print press and especially in the tabloids, this submission puts forward concerns related to Islamophobia and the portrayal of Muslims in the BBC.

This submission is split into the following sections

  • Section 2: Language
  • Section 3: Guest Contributors
  • Section 4: Inaccuracies
  • Section 5: Consistency
  • Section 6: Imagery