Bbc style guide

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The BBC News Styleguide | Words |


Abbreviations & acronyms Active & passive Americanisms Attribution first Clichés & journalese Collective nouns Confusables Cues Danglers The definite article Devolution European Union FAQs Foreign phrases Jargon Numbers & measurements Names & titles Getting it right Reported speech Sensitivity Speaking out loud Superlatives Words



The BBC News Styleguide

The New BBC News Styleguide |


by John Allen
Every time anyone writes a script for BBC News they are potentially touching the lives of millions of people – through radio, tv and the internet.That is the privilege of working for one of the biggest news organisations in the world. It brings with itresponsibilities. BBC News is expected to set the highest standards in accuracy, fairness, impartiality – and in the use of language. Clear story-telling and language is at the heart of good journalism.This styleguide will help make your journalism stronger and connect better with our audiences. As my first news editor on a small weekly paper used to say: “Keep it plain and keep it simple.” Itstill holds true. Richard Sambrook Director, BBC News The BBC is a remarkable place. Much of the accumulated knowledge and expertise locked in people’s heads stays that way: occasionally we share, and the result is a bit of a revelation. This styleguide represents some of John Allen’s extraordinary wisdom surrounding the use of English in written and spoken communications.This is in many ways at theheart of what the BBC does and what it is respected for.This is not a “do and don’t” list but a guide that invites you to explore some of the complexities of modern English usage and to make your own decisions about what does and does not work. It should improve your scripts and general writing, not to mention making you feel better informed, challenged and amused. This guide is being madeavailable as a publication and online in order to make maximum impact. If you have any comments about it I would be delighted to hear from you. Nigel Paine Head of People Development


| The BBC News Styleguide

The New BBC News Styleguide | Index |



Why does the BBC need a styleguide? The bits that matter: parts of speech The basics Abbreviations and acronyms Active andpassive Americanisms Attribution first Clichés and journalese Collective nouns Confusables Cues Danglers The definite article Devolution European Union FAQs: from fewer to might Foreign phrases Jargon Numbers and measures Names and titles Getting it right: things you should know Reported speech Sensitivity Speaking it out loud Superlatives Words: simple, troublesome, in vogue and superfluous Finally …avoid irritating your editor Books and websites for more information and advice Acknowledgements

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| The BBC News Styleguide

The BBC News Styleguide |Why does the BBC need a styleguide? |


Why does the BBC need a styleguide?
Feather-footed through the plashy fen passes the questing vole.‘Yes,’ said the managing editor, ‘that must be good style.’ Scoop, Evelyn Waugh

Good writing is important to journalists, but it is especially important to BBC writers. Along with our commitment to accuracy, impartiality and fairness, it is part of our contract with the licence fee payer. A listener, Dr D.S. King, wrote from Essex: The BBC is listened to throughout the world and should be a beacon ofcorrect English. Listeners and viewers look to the BBC to maintain high standards. It is a responsibility that should be welcomed by a public service broadcaster, and it is a rôle the BBC has acknowledged since its creation.There is a good reason for this.Well written English is easier to understand than poorly written English. It is our job to communicate clearly and effectively, to be...
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