Last night’s Panorama Special covered the Jimmy Savile child abuse scandal and the events surrounding the dropping of a Newsnight investigation into the matter.
The investigation was of course shocking in what it revealed about the scale of the abuse and covered in detail the events surrounding the dropped Newsnight investigation and it was fascinating to see the depth of feeling expressed in the 38,243 tweets about the programme. It was also refreshing that vast majority of tweets took the subject matter seriously, with relatively few cheap jokes to be found.
A lot of the tweets expressed a mixed sentiment of horror at the failures of the BBC but huge praise for the programme itself and the fact the BBC had chosen to air such a self critical piece, including this from Rufus Jones which was the most retweeted of the night:
This Panorama about the BBC at its worst is the BBC at its best.— rufus jones (@rufusjones1) October 22, 2012
Another similar tweet from Iain Dale:
This Panorama programme is the BBC at its best. Shame it also reveals the BBC at its very worst. Incredible stuff. Superb journalism.— Iain Dale (@IainDale) October 22, 2012
There were also tweets from those involved in the story itself including from Liz Macklean, the Newsnight correspondent at the heart of the investigation:
#Panorama not comfortable viewing for anyone involved, no doubt, but glad it’s all been said and Karin heard— Liz Mackean (@lizmackean) October 22, 2012
Liz Macklean recieved lots of praise for her part in the investigation:
Others felt that Peter Rippon should have appeared on the programme to give his version of events:
Another thing to note is that the show had a very long tail of engagement. Even though the show finished at 11.40pm the tweet rate remained high after the show ended:
For us it was another example to dispel the myth that Twitter engagement is limited to lightweight television programming.
by Ted Littledale