30 October 2008

Users Debate BBC’s “Sachsgate” Online

Newspaper readers are flocking to their keyboards to make their feelings known about the Brand-Ross saga at the BBC.

The comments sections of news sites are playing host to some heated debates about the conduct of presenters Russell Brand and Jonathan Ross during a recent radio show.

Reports and blog pieces about their prank calls to actor Andrew Sachs have attracted far more posters than usual as the debate continues.

Moderators at the BBC’s Have Your Say are currently swamped as more than 32,000 messages have been submitted since a thread on the incident was opened (almost 20,000 of which are yet to be moderated).

While the Daily Mail’s online coverage of the furore has prompted over 1,000 comments from visitors and a post on The Guardian’s Organ Grinder blog has elicited over 600 responses so far.

A discussion thread on the topic from The Sun has reached over 300 posts and a Telegraph.co.uk article has received over 200 submissions from readers.

Plus these comment threads are being used by some journalists to form part of their stories.

The Daily Mail ran an article pointing to comments posted on Organ Grinder as evidence that even Guardian readers have been upset by the actions of Brand and Ross.

And YouTube is also a beneficiary of significant public interest in the incident, with an audio clip of the broadcast in question chalking up almost 700,000 views in the past week.

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