Government set for clampdown on BBC advertising itself

Working for the BBC remains one of my proudest professional achievements, nevertheless there are certain aspects of the institution which require scrutiny.  A couple of weeks ago I wrote the following after yet another trumped up story on BBC Breakfast about Top Gear:

“Advertising through the back door (of a reasonably priced car): Apparently Top Gear is coming back to the BBC very soon. I know that because the BBC keeps telling me. I thought we paid our licence fees so there is no advertising on the BBC and its news coverage is impartial. Has the unrelenting promotion of Top Gear got anything to do with the amount of money it makes for the corporation?”

This cash cow is an extreme example, but the gap between the majority of BBC programmes is filled with adverts – because that’s what they are – for the corporations own programmes.  I don’t often read the Mail and I’m certainly no supporter of the government, but I have an open mind and a money off voucher for today’s paper.  However, the following caught my eye: