News Anjem Choudary refused to condemn Lee Rigby's murder

Broadcaster criticised for prime slot in which he refused to condemn murder Lee Rigby

Pandora: The Box

And pigs might fly

Birt defends BBC's political independence

John Birt, the BBC's Director-General, yesterday belatedly gave the corporation's toughest political interrogators the sort of full-hearted backing they have not always been able to count upon from him.

Interviewers do more than ask the punters' questions

Trevor Phillips on journos and angels

Major likens Blair to Uriah Heep

Tony Blair has been likened to the hand-wringing and ever-so-humble Uriah Heep, the Dickensian character, by John Major. Anthony Bevins, Political Editor, watches as the former prime minister returns to the fray.

Politics: Labour and BBC in new bust-up

Labour stepped up its war of nerves against the BBC yesterday after the presenter of a radio programme told listeners that the party had "withdrawn co-operation" because Harriet Harman, Secretary of State for Social Security, had not been available for interview.

BBC row: Harsh words in exchange of letters

Edited extracts from the exchange of letters between David Hill and John Barton.

BBC row: Harriet Harman interview at heart of controversy

The interview at the centre of the controversy ran for almost five minutes on Wednesday morning. Harriet Harman was pressed by John Humphrys to say whether the lone-parent benefit cut was designed to force single mothers into work. The Secretary of State for Social Security refused to answer the question at least four times and during the exchanges Mr Humphrys interrupted her several times and talked over her.

Labour at war with `Today'

Labour has declared war on BBC Radio's Today programme, threatening to suspend co-operation in retaliation for `the John Humphrys problem'. Anthony Bevins and Louise Jury observe some brutal arm-twisting.

Televison: The cosmetics of democracy

Unwary viewers with half an hour to kill before last Sunday's roast may have tuned into On the Record (BBC1), and discovered - to their surprise - John Humphrys interviewing a dapper yellow-skinned man with rouged cheeks and a slight slant to his nervous eyes. It seemed, for an extraordinary moment, as though Humphrys had mistakenly drawn into his net an elderly Shanghai homosexual (shall we call him Toh Nee Blair?), who was originally booked on to the programme to recall Oriental gay life in the Thirties, but now found himself accused of the rape of 20 Cantonese virgins. "But John," protested Toh, close to tears, "People think I am a pletty stlaight kind of guy, and I am."

BBC vacancies after reshuffle

The BBC is looking for new editors for the Today programme, the Nine O'clock News, Newsnight and The World Tonight after kicking a host of editors up stairs to become `super editors' in the latest reorganisation of the Corporation's management.

Games: Chess etc

The World Team Championship in Lucerne ended in disappointment for England, who, after eyeing possible gold medals throughout the event, ended up with a 2-2 draw with Ukraine and a 11/2-21/2 defeat by Armenia pushing them into fourth place. The winners were Russia, who beat Georgia 4-0 in the last round to edge half a point ahead of the US.

BBC poses Paxman question

The BBC is to research viewers' attitudes to its interviewers' technique as part of a new set of ``performance promises'' disclosed by the corporation yesterday.

Women are the losers in pay game

They May be playing with the boys - but they aren't being paid like the boys. While women are beginning to break through the glass ceiling and make it to the top, they are still not paid as much as their male colleagues.
Sport
Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi during Barcelona training in August
footballPete Jenson co-ghost wrote Suarez’s autobiography and reveals how desperate he's been to return
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newsMcKamey Manor says 'there is no escape until the tour is completed'
Voices
Hunted: A stag lies dead on Jura, where David Cameron holidays and has himself stalked deer
voicesThe Scotland I know is becoming a playground for the rich
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people
Arts and Entertainment
Architect Frank Gehry is regarded by many as the most important architect of the modern era
arts + entsGehry has declared that 98 per cent of modern architecture is "s**t"
Money
Welcome to tinsel town: retailers such as Selfridges will be Santa's little helpers this Christmas, working hard to persuade shoppers to stock up on gifts
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Soul singer Sam Smith cleared up at the Mobo awards this week
newsSam Smith’s Mobo triumph is just the latest example of a trend
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Laurence Easeman and Russell Brand
people
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Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker