BBC staffers are told not to express personal views on Twitter

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The BBC has told all its new staff that they could face internal sanctions for expressing their personal views on Twitter, after a number of employees publicly condemned the corporation for putting the LGBT rights in question. It comes after high-profile employees, including BBC Breakfast presenter Ben Thompson, hit-out at the BBC’s Question Time for letting an audience member ask if it is “morally right that five-year-old children learn about LGBTQ+ issues in school.” The current affairs show, hosted by Fiona Bruce, debated LGBT+ inclusive education after protests organized by conservative Muslim parents at schools in Birmingham and Manchester. And now the company states that if their workers expose their personal views on these issues on Twitter, they will face disciplinary punishment. In an email sent out to news staff, obtained by the Guardian, the corporation’s director of news warns: ““Our editorial guidelines say BBC staff must not advocate any particular position on a matter of public policy, political or industrial controversy, or any other ‘controversial subject’. That applies to all comments in the public domain, including on social media. There is no real distinction between personal and official social media accounts.”

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