Public to have their say on BBC policy for the first time

     For the first time, licence fee payers are being asked for their views on new editorial guidelines for BBC programme makers, before they are published next summer. According to the BBC, the draft document includes new guidance on "intimidation, humiliation, intrusion and aggression" following last year's Radio 2 prank calls row. There are also revised guidelines on bleeping out swear words. The BBC guidelines are updated every five years. Richard Tait, chair of the BBC Trust's editorial standard committee, said licence fee payers expected the organization "to meet the highest standards". "The editorial guidelines exist to guide programme makers in making considered editorial decisions which balance freedom of expression with their responsibilities to the audience, contributors and others. In the consultation document, licence fee payers are asked for their views on the BBC's policies on accuracy, impartiality, harm and offence. Opinions are also being sought on the "overall clarity of the guidelines". That report, published in June, called for the new guidance on derogatory remarks as well as clearer warnings about programme content.

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