BBC newsreaders overpaid; Jack Straw

MUMBAI: House of Commons leader Jack Straw said that the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) newsreaders are paid too much. He mocked those journalists who 'prance' around TV studios. At the same time, Labour MP Chris Mullin alleged that the tabloid virus is beginning to infect BBC television news.

Straw became the leader of the House of Commons earlier in May. During a debate at the House of Commons, he preferred presenters to actually sit at a desk and read the news.

As reported by BBC News, BBC newsreaders are overpaid and should not 'prance around studios', Commons leader Jack Straw has said.

The former foreign secretary said he thought that was what newsreaders were paid for - "and too much".

A spokesman for BBC News said: "We welcome feedback from all quarters of our audience."

Straw was responding to Labour MP Chris Mullin, who complained that BBC newscasters "walk around the studio like a couple of ham actors emoting".

Mullin said: "Can we find time to debate the extent to which the tabloid virus is beginning to infect BBC television news? "Have you noticed that newscasters increasingly no longer read news to camera, but they walk around the studio like a couple of ham actors emoting?

"I think it is called news with attitude."

Mullin also said the Six O'Clock News was "cynically edited" to delete the fact that the prime minister had quoted former Conservative leader Michael Howard during prime minister's question time.

"Do you agree with me that if the BBC can't do better than this it is going to have difficulty justifying its licence fee?" he asked. Straw said he would pass his remarks on but editorial decisions were a matter for the BBC, not for MPs.

"On the issue of accuracy, all journalists, including the BBC, have a responsibility to ensure that quotations are attributed accurately," he said.

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