Jon Snow remark about ‘white people’ at pro-Brexit protest was most-complained about TV moment of the year, Ofcom reveals

Celebrity Big Brother topped the list for most complaints received in the past ten years, said the watchdog

Jon Snow on pro-Brexit protests: 'I've never seen so many white people in one place'

Broadcasting watchdog Ofcom received 2,717 complaints after Jon Snow said he had “never seen so many white people in one place” while broadcasting from a pro-Brexit protest, making it the most-complained about TV moment of 2019.

Snow was presenting Channel 4 News live from the march in Westminster on 29 March at the time he made the comment.

The veteran broadcaster was found not to be in breach of Ofcom’s code, as his comments were “factually accurate” and did not use “negative or pejorative language, tone, intent, or implication”.

In a list of programmes with the most complaints over the past decade, Ofcom also revealed Celebrity Big Brother was right at the top of the list.

An episode of the TV show prompted 25,327 complaints to be made between 30 August and 1 September 2018, during an incident involving two contestants.

In the episode, ex-Emmerdale actress Roxanne Pallett claimed she had been punched by housemate Ryan Thomas, which she later said was “massively wrong”.

Loose Women on ITV came in second, garnering almost 8,000 complaints over a heated interview with guests Kim Woodburn and Colleen Nolan.

Viewers said Woodburn was being bullied by the panel and Nolan, which ITV rejected.

Tony Close, Ofcom’s director of content standards, said the amount of complaints a programme receives does not necessarily mean it has broken broadcasting rules.

He noted the most contentious programmes in the past decade were reality shows, due to the “rise of social media”.

“In a time of political change, social media has also shaped increasingly passionate debate around news coverage,” Mr Close added.

This year, Ofcom found that its broadcasting rules were broken 55 times and the watchdog revoked two broadcasting licences due to concerns around hate speech.

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