Well. The sh!t has hit the fan now. Today the Ofcom report into Channel 4′s Big Brother race row came out. And guess what it turns out – that Channel 4 didn’t tell us about a secret game of limerick being played at night and denied there was any racism going on in the house.
Ofcom has released a transcript of the racial incidents inside the house. This was the transcript of what they didn’t play or acknowledge.
Tuesday 16th January 2007 approx. 23:40:
Cleo: Just my luck.
Jade: What happened?
Cleo: Got full again.
Jade: Yeah, but I wanted a drink and it just went â€“
Cleo: Oh, I miss my huge mouth the whole time. Itâ€™s so embarrassing in restaurants when you go like this andâ€¦ Thatâ€™s why I never drink red. It really shows. No. Itâ€™s not going for you.
Jo: There once was a house that was happy.
Jade: Iâ€™ve got a great one, but Iâ€™m not allowed to say it.
Danielle: Why? Why? I want to know.
Cleo: She canâ€™t if she canâ€™t say it.
Jo: There once was a house that was happy, â€˜mi ni mi ni mi ni mi niâ€™ and then there enteredâ€¦
Cleo: Youâ€™re all going to go to Big Brother prison.
Danielle: How do you know what â€“
Cleo: And youâ€™re going to need me â€“
Jo: But it ends with a nappy. Whatâ€™s wrong with you people?
Jack: But if you say, â€˜Along came some people who were tackyâ€™.
Jade: There once was a house that was happy, untilâ€¦
Jack: They made it really tacky.
Jade: Until there entered aâ€¦ Until there entered aâ€¦
Jo: Strappyâ€¦ Strap-on.
Jade: No, no, no, there once was a house that was happyâ€¦
Jo: Until someone got yappy.
Jade: Yes. There once was a house that was happy, until someone got yappy.
Jack: She nearly killed everyone with a chicken.
Cleo: But everything ended up finger-lickinâ€™.
Jo: Now youâ€™ve got to do something that rhymes with a nappy.
Cleo: Oh, God, donâ€™t give that to Danielle, for Godâ€™s sake.
Danielle: And it all ended up â€“ Being crappy.
Cleo: Oh, dear me.
Danielle: That could have been rather disturbing, that.
Jo: That was a good one.
In addition to that, Big Brother also gave a formal warning to Jo (transcript below) but neither told viewers about it nor admitted later that there was any evidence of racism.
Saturday 20th January 2007 approx. 19:47 â€“ DIARY ROOM WITH JO Oâ€™MEARA:
Jo: I thought I was coming to collect some beers.
Big Brother: Hello, Jo.
Big Brother: Jo, please could you switch off your microphone and take the battery out for Big Brother please? You should still know youâ€™re being recorded.
Jo: Okay. Am I in trouble? There you go.
Big Brother: Thanks, Jo. Jo, Big Brother would like to make it clear that what weâ€™re about to talk about is a matter that Big Brother has decided to raise with you. Just to be clear, this has not come from any of the other housemates. Do you understand?
Jo: Right. I think so.
Big Brother: To clarify, Big Brother has decided to raise this matter with you.
Big Brother: Jo, it has only now come to Big Brotherâ€™s attention that you have made remarks that Big Brother considers to be racially offensive.
Jo: Oh, youâ€™re kidding. Like what?
Big Brother: On Tuesday night, which was day 14 in the Big Brother house, you and other housemates were playing a game where you were making up limericks about Shilpa.
Big Brother: As part of this game, you used rhyming slang to replace what other housemates called â€˜the â€œPâ€ wordâ€™. The rhyming slangs you used were the words â€“
Jo: I never said the â€˜Pâ€™ word.
Big Brother: The rhyming slang you used were the words â€˜nappyâ€™, â€˜happyâ€™ and â€˜strappyâ€™, amongst others.
Jo: That depends on how you take it. Iâ€™m not a racist person at all, ever, and I never, ever have been. I know that.
Big Brother: Jo, itâ€™s clear to Big Brother that, in this conversation, this game, that these rhyming words were references to the racial insult â€˜Pakiâ€™.
Jo: Right, okay.
Big Brother: Do you understand that this is considered racially offensive language?
Jo: Yes, I do. I didnâ€™tâ€¦ really didnâ€™t mean it in that way, though.
Big Brother: Big Brother would like to give you some time to respond.
Jo: I donâ€™t know how to respond to that, to be honest. I donâ€™t consider myself to be racist at all, against anybody or any religion orâ€¦ and, like, if Jermaine is praying or Shilpaâ€™s praying, I always stay out of the room, I stay out of the way and I let them do what they do, and I ask questions about it andâ€¦ and I want to know more about their religions and stuff. I donâ€™t see that as a problem at all. I didnâ€™t realise the seriousness of it and I apologise if I offended anybody, but I never, ever meant to.
Big Brother: Do you remember the incident?
Jo: Yeah, I do.
Big Brother: Can you take Big Brother through your version of the events?
Jo: Oh, God, I donâ€™t know if I remember it to that extreme. It was just playing rhyming slangs and I was justâ€¦ So you say whatever. You say lots of different stuff.
Big Brother: Do you remember any of the lines of the limerick?
Jo: Do you know what, I really donâ€™t, because in here, we were talking earlier on about being in the servantsâ€™ quarters, and that feels like about three or four months ago. So, no, I donâ€™t, to be honest.
Big Brother: Do you remember who was involved in the game?
Jo: Meâ€¦ the same people that always play the limerick game, so that would be me, Jade, Danâ€¦ maybe Cleo. She sometimes plays. And Jack.
Big Brother: In the limerick, do you remember what you intended the words â€˜happyâ€™, â€˜strappyâ€™ â€“
Jo: Well, no, because it couldâ€™veâ€¦ we couldâ€™ve said anything. It didnâ€™t necessarily have to mean that. Do you know what, it didnâ€™t even mean that. Itâ€™s just how you take it. You come out with all different stuff. Weâ€™ve come up with loads of rude things playing that game. It doesnâ€™t necessarily mean itâ€™s intended to be racist.
Big Brother: Jo, during the game, Jack said that the word rhymed with â€˜tackyâ€™.
Jo: Well then, thatâ€™s Jack, isnâ€™t it? Thatâ€™s not me.
Big Brother: Do you understand how it might have been considered racist to be using a rhyming slang that rhymed with â€˜Pakiâ€™?
Jo: Yeah, I can now, but do you know what, I didnâ€™t really take much notice of it at the time. Itâ€™s justâ€¦ you just play silly games in this house and do silly things when thereâ€™s nothing to do, so you just find ways of trying to entertain yourself. Todayâ€™s been another day which has been really tough for everyone because weâ€™ve not had anything to do again. And itâ€™s getting to that point now where everyoneâ€™s, like, â€˜Ughâ€™. I never meant for it to be that way, and if it was that way, then I apologise.
Big Brother: Jo, just to be clear, do you understand that the word, and any inference using rhyming slang of that word, could considerâ€¦ could be considered to be racially offensive?
Big Brother: Jo, Big Brother will not tolerate any racist behaviour or anything that could be seen to be racist behaviour in the Big Brother house.
Jo: Yeah, Iâ€™m sorry. Iâ€™m not aâ€¦ Iâ€™m not racist at all, though. Thatâ€™s the thing. Iâ€™m really, really not. Really not. Iâ€™ve not seen eye-to-eye with Shilpa throughout this whole game, and Iâ€™m not going to start pretending that sheâ€™s my best friend but sheâ€™s aâ€¦ Iâ€™ve got on a lot better with her today than I have throughout the whole show.
Big Brother: Why do you think that is?
Jo: I have got no idea. I really, really donâ€™t know, butâ€¦ I just think the group is slowly starting to get smaller now and youâ€™ve got to start spending time with different people, because people are going. I think, is it six people, have left now. And I suppose, as the group gets smaller and the people youâ€™re left with, youâ€¦ you have to communicate more and talk more with, so Iâ€™ve been speaking a lot more today, and Iâ€™ve spoken a lot more to Jermaine today as well. Weâ€™ve been playing games. And I know that Iâ€™m not a racist person because my cousin is married to an Indian and half of the side of, like, that side of my family are all Indian. So Iâ€™m not a racist person at all. All my couâ€¦ Iâ€™d say, wellâ€¦ my cousinâ€™s married to an Indian man and theyâ€™ve got four children and all theirâ€¦ his family interact with my family, so Iâ€™m surrounded by Indians a lot, because theyâ€™re part of my family, so I wouldnâ€™t be racist. My cousins are Indian.
Big Brother: Jo, as a result of this incident, Big Brother has no option but to issue you with your first and only formal warning.
Big Brother: Any further incidents could result in your immediate eviction.
Jo: Okay. So Iâ€™ve had a warning and thatâ€™s my last one.
Big Brother: Correct.
Big Brother: Jo, Big Brother would ask that you exercise care in the future.
Jo: Yes, I will, and Iâ€™m very, very sorry.
Big Brother: Big Brother would also like to remind you that, as always, all diary room conversations between Big Brother and housemates are confidential.
Big Brother: Do you understand?
Jo: Yes, I do.
Big Brother: Jo, Big Brother has arranged for you to have a short conversation, off camera â€“
Big Brother: With Steven, the psychologist. A brief chat to talk through this matter in confidence, for your benefit.
Big Brother: Big Brother will now hand over to Steven.
Big Brother: There may be a short pause while we ensure that the diary room is not being recorded.
Jo: Thank you.
Big Brother: Thanks, Jo.
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