The BBC must not be intimidated by the press vendetta against Jess Brammar
What did Jess Brammar do to the Tory press that could justify their venomous attempts to ruin their careers or their cruel ridicule of their young family?
As a young editor, she has inspired the newsrooms at BBC Newsnight and HuffPost UK as an advocate for journalism of public interest and as a protective guide to their reporters when they are shot at by those in power.
Now Brammar is under attack without anyone defending them. She was branded as the “leftist” a rough takedown in The Mail on Sunday attempting to undermine her chances of being named Executive News Editor on the BBC and mocking her personal life. This is a very nasty media vendetta.
A millennial woman with a broadcast and digital news background, Brammar is out of the press establishment, but in March she was the first editor to criticize the Society of Editors’ response to Meghan Markle’s allegations of racism in the media . “I know I won’t make myself popular with my colleagues,” Brammar tweeted, “but I’ll just get up and say: I don’t agree [the] Statement from my trade association that it ‘It is not true that parts of the British press were bigoted. “
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In the storm that followed, the Society of Editors plunged into crisis and its managing director, Ian Murray, resigned. Parts of the press industry have not forgiven Brammar for their role in this.
Also, her partner is Jim Waterson, who as the Guardian’s media editor as a commentator has a rare influence on the rest of the news industry. The Mail on Sunday quoted Politico’s reference to Brammar and Waterson as Westminster “power couple” and took the chance to injure them both at the same time, insulted Waterson as Brammar’s “toy boy” and stressed that their young son was born after fertility treatment.
The attack on Brammar caught across the Tory press and has lasted six weeks since she was found to be a top candidate for the BBC job in July. In the Daily Telegraph, Charles Moore pored over Brammar’s deleted tweets that he – or someone else – had somehow received, and concluded that she had “strongly leftist views” and was “particularly combative about ‘identity politics'”. Guido Fawkes scoured her Instagram account, which was mostly filled with baby photos, and wrote the headline: “Top runner at the top of BBC News supports Black Lives Matter.”
Brammar had only posted a black square out of sympathy for George Floyd. As an editor, she is a staunch advocate of ethnic diversity in the media. at HuffPost UK, she stood up for Nadine White, a young black reporter, and political correspondent Arj Singh when they were publicly attacked by Equality Ministers Kemi Badenoch and Jacob Rees-Mogg, respectively.
Commenting on Brammar’s treatment by the press, White, now racing correspondent for the The Independent wrote, “If an anti-racism stance against blacks can get a white professional like Jess in such hot water, imagine how black people fare.”
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Brammar’s potential appointment, according to her critics, is a crucial test of the stated commitment of new BBC Director General Tim Davie to improve impartiality at BBC News. It is certainly a test of Davie’s commitment to running an independent BBC.
This affair came about with on July 9, exclusively in the Financial Times, suggesting that Robbie Gibb, a non-executive director of the BBC, tried to thwart Brammar’s candidacy in news to Fran Unsworth, BBC director of news and current affairs, and the from an angry. leaked to the newspaper are BBC insiders. Gibb was appointed to the BBC by the government with the assistance of Dougie Smith, an orchestrator of Downing Street’s culture war politics. He is in turn close to Badenoch, whose spit became personal with Brammar.
Gibb served Theresa May as communications director during her tenure and was instrumental in founding GB News. He began his career as a Conservative advisor and then spent years as a BBC journalist, directing BBC Westminster and directing live political programs. Yet he seems to question Brammar’s impartiality.
The state-trained Brammar worked as a producer Question Time and ITN before becoming assistant editor of Newsnight, where she won awards for reporting on the Grenfell Tower disaster and bullying in Westminster. She was a producer for Laura Künssberg, whose own impartiality was questioned by critics of the left.
Brammar is eminently qualified for the post of senior news editor (who also runs the BBC’s ongoing news channels), a post inflated for dramatic effects, but a “third-tier role” on BBC News is Planke.
She was judged on a twisted take on her Twitter and Instagram posts. Davie has warned employees against expressing personal views on social media, but the future of the BBC will not do well if it closes its doors to a generation that has lived their lives on such platforms by taking control of their historical posts allowed by third parties to determine who appoints it or not.
Who would even apply after receiving treatment for Jess Brammar?