HC Deb 24 July 1933 vol 280 cc2241-2W

asked the Postmaster-General (1) whether he was consulted before the British Broadcasting Corporation made representations to the French Government with a view to having Radio Fecamp, Normandie, closed down;

(2) whether he will use his powers under the charter to prevent the British Broadcasting Corporation openly attacking foreign broadcasting concerns such as Radio Fecamp and Radio Luxembourg, in view of the fact that such attacks are calculated to cause unfriendliness among other nations?


My hon. Friend appears to have been misinformed. The facts are as follow: At a meeting in May last of the International Broadcasting Union the representatives of the principal European broadcasting organisations discussed the practice of broadcasting advertisements in a foreign language contrary to the wishes of the broadcasting organisation of the country whose language was used; and a resolution was unanimously adopted urging that any such practice should be discontinued. So far as this country is concerned, it has always been the practice to exclude advertisements from the broadcasting programmes. The view has been taken by successive Governments and by the British Broadcasting Corporation that it is in the public interest to keep the broadcasting service free from advertising matter; and both the Post Office and the corporation have regarded with disfavour the development of the practice of broadcasting advertisements in English from continental stations. In these circumstances, a communication has been addressed to the French Government calling attention to the resolution of the International Broadcasting Union, and asking whether they propose to take any action in regard to the practice adopted at certain stations owned by French companies of broadcasting advertisements in English for reception in this country. No reply has yet been received to this inquiry, which was made by the British Government, and not by the British Broadcasting Corporation.