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BBC Scotland must report 55% Yes poll – or be damned

In the wake of the frankly scandalous ‘Trial of Alex Salmond’ presented by Kirsty Wark on BBC Scotland this week, renewed anger at the obvious anti-Scottish independence bias of the BBC has reached fever pitch.

You would expect this from committed supporters of independence but even Unionist newspapers such as the Daily Mail and the Telegraph rounded on the BBC, with the Daily Mail claiming that the BBC could: “These days more honestly have a flagship programme called Brass neck.”

The Telegraphs damming review stated: “The verdict in the Salmond case, by the way, was not guilty…”


“However, it was pretty clear that the programme-makers hoped he would be found guilty.”

Today, a Panelbase poll for Business for Scotland recorded support for independence at 55% to 45% No. This landmark poll reverses the 2014 indyref result and is undeniably news in itself, but it also confirms a trend that can be seen when analysing all polls conducted in 2020. 

BBC Scotland has in the past refused to cover polling as a main news story. Any polls are mostly reported on as background after the fact when covering news stories that resulted from the polls, such as Boris Johnson’s ill-advised pseudo state visits to Scotland (which would appear, by this poll, to have had a negative effect for the Union). 

The BBC claims it doesn’t report on individual polls in isolation and instead waits for patterns to emerge in polling and report on that instead, in accordance with their guidelines. 

However, having largely ignored recent polls that have been demonstrating a sustained rise in support for independence, they cannot ignore this poll and the undeniable pattern that has emerged. 

This is now the 6th poll in a row covering June, July and August that has found Yes to independence in the lead. Independence support in those five polls was as follows: 52%, 54%, 54%, 53%, 54% 55%. 

The previous five polls in 2020 *1 found Yes to independence at 50%, 49%, 52%, 51% 50%. 

Thus the most recent six polls rounded average is 4% higher than the polls between January and May 2020.

In order to best demonstrate to the BBC that (by their own editorial guidelines) a pattern has emerged, we have compiled this data table listing all the polls using standard questions and including 16-18 years conducted in 2020 by accredited polling companies such as Panelbase, Survation and YouGov. 

We have also noted the important political milestones and how they may have impacted on popular support for independence.  

This is a landmark poll and demonstrates the momentum towards independence as more and more people are beginning to believe in Scotland. 

It also confirmed the trend and if the BBC ignores this as a main news story on top of the blatantly biased Kirsty Wark documentary, then BBC Scotland will be damned as completely biased and untrustworthy in the eyes of the Scottish. 




Note: The National has previously pointed out that the BBC has broken its own editorial guidelines on single polls 27 times, they just have not done so when it comes to independence polls. 

Data tables available here.



About the author

Gordon MacIntyre-Kemp

Gordon MacIntyre-Kemp is the Founder and Chief Executive of Business for Scotland. Before becoming CEO of Business for Scotland Gordon ran a business strategy and social media, sales & marketing consultancy.

With a degree in business, marketing and economics, Gordon has worked as an economic development planning professional, and in marketing roles specialising in pricing modelling and promotional evaluation for global companies (including P&G).

Gordon benefits (not suffers) from dyslexia, and is a proponent of the emerging New Economics School. Gordon contributes articles to Business for Scotland, The National and Believe in Scotland.


  • “if the BBC ignores this as a main news story on top of the blatantly biased Kirsty Wark documentary, then BBC Scotland will be damned as completely biased and untrustworthy in the eyes of the Scottish”

    I think that boat sailed a long time ago. Despite promises from Ms MacKinnon, the BBC has done nothing to amend it’s unionist bias. I imagine that if it ever did, threats to cut its funding would be implemented.

    In an independent Scotland most of its upper echelons would have to be scrapped, assuming they didn’t emigrate.

  • YES, and I Believe that after the Wark/Clements Mockumentary on A.S’s Trial that it’s Will be 57% in Early September 2020!
    Piling More Pressure on the Murrells to go for INdyRef2 Before the S.G.E in May 2020.

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