Broadcasters barred from PM’s “Brexit Day” message

Stephen Chapman's picture
by Stephen Chapman

Number 10 has barred national broadcasters from recording the Prime Minister’s Brexit Day message tonight.

Boris Johnson’s “address to the nation” will be delivered at 11pm, to mark the country’s exit from the European Union.

However, Number 10 is not using the pool system, where one broadcaster films a speech or event, and shares it. Instead it will be recorded by an in-house team and then distributed to news and social media at the same time.

It’s led to broadcasters, including the BBC, saying they will make a judgement on the “news value” of the speech, before deciding on whether to air it.

“There’s a long-established process for recording statements by the Prime Minister at significant times where one broadcaster records it and shares the footage,” a BBC spokesperson told Prolific North.

“The BBC and the other broadcasters are well used to following this usual process, which respects our independence as broadcasters. If Number 10 wants to supply its own footage we will judge it on its news value when deciding whether to broadcast it, as we would with any footage supplied to us by third parties.”

Since August, Johnson used Facebook Live to make a series of broadcasts, which Number 10 stated was part of a bid to become the “first social media Prime Minister.”