If you’re thinking of staging a publicity stunt make sure you put in a call to the BBC, because they’ll give you all the publicity you want – on the condition, of course, that the cause you’re seeking to publicise is one to which the BBC is also sympathetic.
You’ll need to look elsewhere for exposure if you’re planning to protest atrocities committed against muslims by other muslims, rocket attacks on Israeli civilians by Palestinian terrorists, or high levels of crime committed by illegal immigrants.
But if you want uncritical and disproportionate coverage of a pathetic little demonstration against ‘climate change’, then you can rely on the BBC to make sure that your message is heard loud and clear around the world.
If placement on its news website is a guide, then the BBC considers four Greenpeace ‘activists’ climbing on top of a plane at London’s Heathrow airport in a protest against plans for a new runway to be among the dozen or so most important stories in the world today – the story was on the front page for much of the day before being shunted off to the UK pages this evening.
The fact that security at one of the world’s busiest airports was breached so easily is certainly newsworthy, and it would make perfect sense to report the story from a security standpoint, while making a passing reference to the nature of the protest.
But because the BBC is a fully paid-up member of the global warming alarmist movement the security angle is secondary to the nature of the protest. So the headline is ‘Climate protest on Heathrow plane’, and a large part of the story is given over to quotes from the protestors:
Greenpeace said protesters put a banner reading "Climate Emergency - No Third Runway" over the plane's tailfin at about 0945 GMT.
It said two women and two men crossed the tarmac at the airport after the passengers had disembarked.
One protester, Anna Jones, said: "Our planet and the people who live on it are in danger.
"Climate change can be beaten but not by almost doubling the size of the airport.
"We are here to draw a line in the sand and tell Gordon Brown his new runway must not and will not be built."
Needless to say, because the BBC takes it as read that ‘climate change’ poses an imminent threat to the world, the unsubstantiated claims of the protestors go unchallenged, and the issues involved go unexamined.
The canard that ‘Our planet and the people who live on it are in danger’ is repeated in some form on an almost daily basis by the BBC, while it either plays down or ignores altogether the steady stream of articles and data suggesting otherwise.
The BBC doesn’t find it newsworthy that Antarctic ice coverage is at record levels, or that Arctic ice coverage has returned to normal seasonal levels after reaching a record low during the summer – an event on which the BBC provided almost weekly updates, or that large parts of North America and Asia are experiencing record cold temperatures and snowfall.
And it will be interesting to see how much coverage the BBC gives to this event (related thoughts from WSJ's John Fund here).
Aside from the BBC acting as PR merchants for global warming alarmists, there’s another issue here. There are plenty of lawful ways to make a protest, but sensational coverage of dangerous and criminal behaviour is bound to encourage more of the same from Greenpeace and their fellow eco-warriors.
But then again the odd broken leg, a night in the cells and disruption for air travellers are a small price to pay for saving the world.