National media opinion on Greg Dyke’s suitability as BBC director
general was almost split evenly between those for and those against.
Initial public opinion was more in favour: two-thirds of those polled in
a weekend omnibus survey agreed that Dyke was the best man for the job,
while just 19 per cent thought his Labour links should disqualify him.
In contrast, nearly half the media messages derided Dyke’s links with
Tony Blair and the Labour Party.
Negative media opinion was volubly led by the Times (’BBC governors have
scripted a tragedy’, 25/6/99). Other broadsheets highlighted the Times’
Murdoch-driven campaign against Dyke bringing his populist touch to the
war for ratings against Sky.
William Hague stepped up his anti-Dyke crusade, drawing reproof from
Tory grandee Ted Heath to the glee of most commentators.
Latterly, the media attempted to drag the Tories down for reportedly
paying a six-figure sum to monitor a year’s worth of BBC output for
Evaluation supplied by Echo Research. Cuttings supplied by Broadcast
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