BBC official resigns over report about queen

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LONDON, Oct 5 (Reuters) The head of the BBC's flagship BBC One television resigned today after a report faulted him for wrongly implying Queen Elizabeth had stormed out of a photo shoot in anger.

The incident was an embarrassment for the British public service broadcaster, which has faced a number of scandals this year including an unprecedented fine for faking the results of a phone-in contest on a popular children's show.

Unveiling the station's forthcoming lineup to journalists three months ago, BBC One Controller Peter Fincham presented footage from a documentary showing the Queen apparently storming out of a shoot with celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz.

That led to a host of tabloid newspaper headlines mocking the queen's apparent tantrum.

But in fact the queen had not stormed out. Footage of her entering the room had been edited out of sequence to make it look like she was exiting in a huff.

Fincham resigned today after a BBC report found that although the broadcaster did not intend to deceive, it had not done enough to ensure that its presentation was truthful.

''A vital relationship -- that between the BBC and the Royal Household -- had been, at the very least, placed under strain, and the reputation of the BBC, already having sustained recent damage over the issue of trust, was further tarnished,'' the report, published on the broadcaster's Web site, found.

Stephen Lambert, creative boss of RDF the independent company that produced the documentary, also quit, RDF said in a statement.

The BBC is funded by the public through a ''licence fee'' -- a mandatory tax on households with televisions -- which makes it extremely sensitive to allegations of unfairness.


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