BBC’s Guide to Rolling Cigarettes Sparks Medical Row

Senior doctors have blamed the BBC that they are “breathtakingly irresponsible” and endanger people health by showing readers on its website how to make roll-up cigarettes.

Physicians have exclaimed against their article “how to roll a perfect cigarette” claiming that BBC promotes smoking.

rolling tobacco

rolling tobacco

Dr Gabriel Scally, regional director of public health for south-west England, saw the article when he was analyzing roll-up cigarettes for a local anti-smoking campaign of National Health Service. He wrote to the BBC’s director-general, Mark Thompson: “By allowing this type of content to be carried under a BBC logo gives an implied level of legitimacy for what is effectively a ‘How 2′ guide to shortening your life and experiencing chronic, life-altering illness.”

Scally added that he is displeased and angry with advantage of the residents of the south-west that the BBC are glad to give such information on what is a proven source of spreading health diseases, premature death, massive NHS expenditure amongst many other ‘beneficial’ qualities to the public who provide an ongoing licence fee.

Professor John Britton, head of a tobacco advisory group at the Royal College of Physicians, said that it is breathtakingly irresponsible for the BBC to deliver such information on their website on how to roll the perfect cigarette. This article is available to teenagers and even children, who may be attracted to try smoking after reading this information.

“There would be widespread outrage if the BBC had information on their website how to inject an intravenous drug. It is no less irresponsible for the BBC to explain how to make roll-up cigarettes.”

Scally say that roll-up cigarettes are even more dangerous than regular cigarettes because while making them people do not put filters into them. He added that helping people to make roll-up cigarettes is not the BBC’s role in society. This article has a disastrous influence on youth people.

Nick Reynolds, a social media executive at BBC Online, said the article would not be removed. It is on a part of the BBC website called H2G2, which is targeted “to encourage the community to write about all aspects of human existence for a collaborative guide to life, the universe and everything” and the article had been written by a member of the public, not a BBC journalist.

“The article is not written by the BBC journalist and that is why it is not subject to the rules around impartiality that would apply to our own articles. Smoking is not illegal, H2G2 is not focused upon children and the article carries a denial: ‘This entry in no way wishes to endorse the smoking of tobacco’. That is why we do not agree to remove this article from H2G2,” Reynolds declared.

The Department of Culture, Media and Sport refused to be drawn on the BBC article, saying: “Responsibility for their online content rests with the BBC.”

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