BBC news


(screencaps of @bbcnews story on 12 Years A Slave winning the TIFF audience award, the linked story, the original tweet from BBCNews’ feed, highlighted by me, and Steve McQueen appears to question the BBC’s life choices in this delightful cap from the TIFF press conference.) 

When did Benedict Cumberbatch become a black man by inference? When BBC News decided that naming him the star of 12 Years A Slave was a better idea than crediting the actual star, Chiwetel Ejiofor. 

ICYMI: During the premiere/press conference, I wrote a couple of posts about the unconscious bias being displayed by the media in coverage of 12 Years A Slave (link to follow-up post/press conference transcription, etc., is at the bottom of that linked post.) 

AGAIN, LET ME EXPLAIN YOU A THING, MEDIA: If a film directed by a black man, written by a black man, and STARRING a black man wins an award and your tweet/news story does not have a picture of a black man on it and doesn’t even mention a black man other than the director until WAAAAAAY down the page, you are being racist. I don’t care if you intend to be, you are. 

Why? Because you are putting a white man who has a supporting role (and not even the big supporting slot occupied by Michael Fassbender or Sarah Paulson) ahead of the STAR OF THE FILM and its director. 

Regardless of how well-known or talented, or what kind of person that white man is, (Don’t hate me, fandom, this is on the BBC and not Benedict Cumberbatch) it does not make him the star. 

Please join me in a loooooong moment of facepalming. 


ETA: IT GOT WORSE. GOOGLE. OH GAWD GOOGLE. Added a cap of the search result for “Author of 12 years A Slave.” Embiggen it. h/t to @laurakeet who found the result. Solomon Noethup. No. Nonono. 

We’re sad to report the death of Kate O'Mara, who played renegade Time Lord the Rani on Doctor Who. 

“A shining star has gone out and Kate will be dearly missed by all who knew and have worked with her,” said agent Phil Belfield, who labelled the actress “extraordinary”.

On hearing the news of her death, Doctor Who co-star [Colin] Baker tweeted: “Oh my goodness. Kate O'Mara is no longer with us. Sad sad news. A delightful, committed and talented lady and actress. We are the poorer.”

The actress last posted a message on Twitter on 17 March.

“Thank you so much for your kind tweets,” she wrote.

“It’s both humbling and completely overwhelming to read all of your messages. Much Love x.” (x)


Red River Women 

Tina Fontaine was 15‐years‐old when she disappeared from the streets of Winnipeg, Canada last August.  Days later her body was found wrapped in a “bag‐like” materiel and floating in the city’s Red River. Tina was Aboriginal and lived on a reserve north of Winnipeg, but had traveled to the city to visit her mother.   

So why are so many of Canada’s Aboriginal women being killed or going missing - Jo Jolly went to Winnipeg to talk to the community, police and activists who are fighting to bring the issue to national prominence

BBC News - Doctor Who actress on Matt Smith departure

Doctor Who star Jenna-Louise Coleman has admitted filming her final scenes opposite Matt Smith will be an emotional experience.

“I don’t even want to pick up that script just yet!” she said in one of her first interviews since Smith announced he was leaving the BBC show.

She insisted she has no idea who will play the next Doctor.

The actress was speaking after meeting The Queen at the official opening of the BBC’s Broadcasting House.

Coleman, who plays the Doctor’s assistant Clara, said it was “such an honour” to meet Queen, and that she was the only person who did not try to quiz her about the identity of the next Doctor.

“Everybody else in the building has asked me who the next Doctor is, and I can tell you honestly we don’t know. It’s going to be a long, long search. But yes, I’m being asked that question a lot.”


A 75-year-old man said he spent 13 years crafting a “boring” hedge into a 150ft-long (45.7m) giant dragon.

John Brooker sculpted the mystical creature out of the 10ft-high (3m) privet alongside his rented farm cottage in East Rudham, Norfolk.

The topiary features bulging eyes, flaring nostrils and a crested back.

Mr Brooker said: “I was standing at my kitchen sink one day and thought the hedge was boring so decided to do something with it.” (x)

The shark attack survivor who loves sharks

“I don’t know if you’ve ever seen a shark with its jaws dislocated. It’s the scariest thing you’ve ever seen. And it’s charging at you.”

South African lifeguard Achmat Hassiem lost a leg in a shark attack off the coast of Cape Town. He went on to become a medal-winning Paralympian and a marine conservationist advocating the protection of endangered sharks.