Simon Singh has made a complaint to BBC Sussex and BBC Surrey about Penny Edwards appearing on the Joe Talbot show on 28 July 2012. According to his own statements, he "rang the producer and asked why a homeopath was appearing on the programme." In other words, he complained about the fact that a homeopath was being given any air-time, regardless of what they were going to say.
After the broadcast he contacted Sara David, Editor, BBC Sussex and BBC Surrey, and, as a result, Ms David has stated that:
“I have reviewed the programme and spoken to its producer, and made clear that this was the wrong kind of guest, and the wrong kind of advice, for a phone-in programme on BBC Sussex and BBC Surrey.”
Homeopathy is used by some 6 million people in the UK alone. It was included in the NHS when the NHS was founded over 60 years ago. However, in the last seven years there has been a sustained propaganda campaign against homeopathy. Simon Singh has played a prominent part in this campaign, and has been willing to ignore scientific rigour even to the extent of redefining science to suit his purposes, and to claim that homeopathic remedies are "merely ... placebo sugar pills" despite the evidence that these remedies are biogically active.[6,7]
If you would like to complain about what amounts to censorship:
You can send feedback on BBC programmes at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/england/feedback.shtml.
Complaints can be made at the new complaints section at http://www.bbc.co.uk/complaints/.
You may want to contact the local press about the issue, as letters in the paper about BBC censorship would be embarrassing for the BBC.
You may want to write to your MP too (http://findyourmp.parliament.uk/), pointing out that the BBC has an obligation to provide for minorities, and yet it is censoring information of value to 10% of the population. Your MP might like to ask a question about what proportion of the population does a minority have to be before the BBC will recognise its needs and interests. It is worth pressing the point that there is a deliberate attempt to prevent homeopaths and their patients from advertising or having any access to the media.
- Notes for MPs on the propaganda campaign against homeopathy are available here.
- A draft letter with a range of referenced statements is available here.
Make sure that you add your own views too. You will need to include your contact details, especially when writing to your MP, who will require your address and postcode to verify that you are a constituent.
Sense About Science has complained to us that the information on this page is wrong. Their letter and our reply are available here.
1. Simon Singh’s blog at <http://simonsingh.net/2012/07/my-polite-complaint-to-the-bbc-its-impact/>.
2. Professor Woods, response to Q211, House of Commons Science and Technology Committee, Evidence Check 2: Homeopathy (London: The Stationery Office Limited, 2010), p. Ev 70.
3. Summarised in our leaflet.
4. See William Alderson, Halloween Science (Stoke Ferry: Homeopathy: Medicine for the 21st Century, 2009), especially pp. 7-11.
5. Simon Singh’s blog at <http://simonsingh.net/2012/07/my-polite-complaint-to-the-bbc-its-impact/>.
6. Gudrun Bornhöft and Peter Matthiessen (eds), Homeopathy in Healthcare – Effectiveness, Appropriateness, Safety, Costs: An HTA report on homeopathy as part of the Swiss Complementary Medicine Evaluation Programme, trans. from the German by Margaret M. Saar (Berlin, Heidelberg, New York: Springer-Verlag, 2011), pp. 17-19.
7. The Faculty of Homeopathy website page on research at <http://www.facultyofhomeopathy.org/research/basic_science_research.html>.