Mark Thompson, the new CEO of the New York Times Co., has flown to London to testify regarding the BBC's Newsnight program brushing aside its report into sexual abuse by the late Jimmy Savile. Thompson was BBC director general before taking the position with the New York Times.
Savile's scandal has shocked the United Kingdom and continues to draw media attention. The BBC sat on the issue (as Savile was a BBC on-air talent for decades). Now it is being called to answer questions in its conduct.
Nick Pollard, the former Sky News chief, is leading the inquiry into Newsnight. Thompson will be giving his testimony to Pollard, as he is questioned by Alan Maclean on what he knew about the allegations of child sexual abuse by Savile. Pollard expects the inquiry to be wrapped up by mid-December.
Thompson has previously said that he had no knowledge of the allegations until he saw an ITV documentary on the subject in October. Does anyone really buy that? Thompson has also said that he did not interfere in the investigation and order anything to be shelved.
On top of this comes Newsnight running a hit piece on a British politician in error. There is an increased push for tougher media regulations in the United Kingdom - see the previously posted piece about Hugh Grant for more information on that.
Thompson's successor, George Entwistle, has already resigned as director general after only 54 days on the job.