Speak out to broadcasters

Broadcasting houseBroadcasting house

Phone-ins and e-mails

Some current affairs programmes allow viewers and listeners to express their views. Metrication is a topic that has come up regularly - speak out your views!

On the radio many local stations give opportunities to join phone-ins. Some TV and radio programmes read out e-mails. Key points to make when phoning or writing in are:

  1. Focus on one main point and try to get that across well
  2. Keep to a reasonable length without rambling on
  3. Be polite and calm
  4. Use humour if appropriate
  5. Be specific and factual
  6. Sum up with a clear punchy sentence

Feedback on usage

Broadcasters are often very muddled when it comes to measurement unit usage. Some programmes have policies, others do not. It is worth giving feedback on the clarity of usage both positive and negative. It is good to praise good usage as well as complain about poor or confused usage.

In situations involving education, health and safety, food and features on metric countries, there should be no excuse for not using metric. The international system of units (SI) is the basis of the school curriculum and failure to use it in educational programmes is simply undermining what is taught. Similarly, health and safety rules are metric and it is important that employees are not confused.

The BBC's style guide, while sensible in many respects, sits on the fence with regard to measurement usage. When people have complained about the lack of metric in programmes, the BBC has frequently replied either that they should reflect popular usage or that some viewers or listeners would not understand metric. If the same logic had been followed on the introduction of decimal currency, the BBC would still be giving information in "old money". It is worth reminding the BBC that their mission is to 'inform, educate and entertain'. If the BBC believes that the public is not familiar with Britain's official metric units then the BBC has a duty to help educate their viewers and listeners.

Similar arguments can be used with other broadcasters.

Some individual programmes may have e-mail contacts given on their channel's website but sometimes there is a separate centralised complaints centre.

Television and radio contact

Today there are many television channels which cannot be listed in full here. Here we provide contact information for the main broadcasters, namely the BBC, ITV, Channel Four, Five and Sky. For other channels, go to Media UK for contact details.

The BBC

BBC logo

The BBC has a central service dealing with feedback on news reporting called Newswatch.

newswatch logo

In early 2005, the BBC introduced a central point of contact for complaints and other feedback. This is available on the web

BBC complaints logo

or by telephone 03700 100 222

Other broadcasters and channels

ITV logo

Complaints to ITV can be made on the web

Channel 4 logo

Complaints to Channel 4 can be made on the web

five logo

Complaints to Five can be made

sky logo

Feedback on any Sky channels can be given

sky news logo

Feedback on Sky news programmes can be given

Comprehensive listing

If you do not find your TV or radio station on the above list please go to the Media UK website that provides a comprehensive listing.

media UK logo

If you find that any of the above links do not work, please use our feedback form to let us know.