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The BBC Hit With Record Number Of Complaints For Its Wall-To-Wall Prince Philip Coverage

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The BBC Hit With Record Number Of Complaints For Its Wall-To-Wall Prince Philip Coverage

The BBC's coverage of the death of Prince Philip has been the most complained about moment in UK television history.

The UK's national broadcaster threw out its schedule last Friday (April 9) when news of the death of the Duke of Edinburgh was announced.

The Beeb committed to wall-to-wall coverage of the Prince's life and included tributes flooding in from all corners of the globe.

BBC4 was taken off air altogether and radio stations also changed their schedule to include coverage of Prince Philip's death.

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Credit: PA
Credit: PA

However, that meant Friday night staples like Eastenders and Masterchef had to be shelved, leaving tens of thousands of people angry.

According to the Guardian, a record 110,994 people have contacted the BBC to complain about the coverage.

The BBC set up an official complaint form for people who weren't keen on the non-stop broadcasting of the Duke of Edinburgh's passing and the Beeb ended up having to take it down.

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One person's complaint read: "Coverage of this event took up the entire evening broadcast to the exclusion of all other topics, including the ongoing topic of the pandemic. Some coverage was justified, but not to this extent."

Another added: "It was sad news Prince Philip [sic] died on Friday and I understand the BBC had to acknowledge the fact but on every single one of its channels? Why [not] just put it on one channel for those that want to listen to that drivel and the rest of us can have a bit of music."

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

The number of complaints has smashed the previous record of 63,000 complaints back in 2005 when the BBC aired Jerry Springer: The Musical.

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Russell Brand's prank call to actor Andrew Sachs in 2008 also copped a whopping 42,000 complaints.

The BBC has hit back in an article on its site and said ITV and Channel 4 both changed their schedule to have extended news coverage of the Prince's death.

However, it confirmed ratings plummeted as a result of their own coverage.

BBC One's audience dropped six per cent, while BBC Two saw up to a 66 per cent loss of audience. Only 340,000 tuned in at any time on that channel between 7pm and 11pm that night.

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By comparison, the most watched programme that night was Channel 4's Gogglebox with 4.2 million viewers.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: prince philip, UK News, News

Stewart Perrie
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