BBC admits faking baby crying footage - Press Gazette

BBC admits faking baby crying footage

The BBC has apologised for adding the sound of babies crying to its footage of quintuplets born to a Russian woman.

The five girls, delivered at an Oxford hospital on November 10, are the latest individuals to be drawn into the broadcasting fakery row.

The John Radcliffe Hospital distributed clips of the five babies and their parents, who had defied the advice of doctors in Moscow that they should abort some of the foetuses.

While broadcasters such as Sky and ITN ran clips of the footage without the audio, the BBC’s footage contains the sound of children crying, even though the babies had respirators in their mouths.

A spokeswoman for the Oxford hospital said: “There was no audio on our clip.”

A BBC spokesman said the corporation should have left the footage alone.

He said: “We received the film without sound and on reflection we should have kept it that way.”

The sound effect was later removed from the story.

The admission follows a series of broadcasting scandals over authenticity.

ITV was criticised for wrongly claiming the final scene of a documentary showed an Alzheimer’s patient dying.

BBC1 Controller Peter Fincham resigned after a promotional tape for a documentary on the Royal Family implied the Queen stormed out of a photoshoot.

Director general Mark Thompson recently called on BBC staff to be as transparent as possible.