Big Brother: Ofcom to investigate Channel 5 show after 1,225 complaints about racist abuse in the house
20:03 GMT, 9 July 2012
Ofcom is investigating Channel 5's Big Brother after viewers complained over three separate incidents.
More than 1,000 people have voiced concerns to the regulator about the programme and its spin-off show Big Brother's Bit On The Side.
Ofcom is looking into whether the incidents may have breached the broadcasting code.
Any material which fails to meet “generally accepted standards” must be justified by context according the code.
Abuse: Deana Uppal's treatment at the hands of Conor McIntyre has drawn over 1,000 complaints prompting an Ofcom investigation into racism in the Big Brother house
One incident – in which housemate Conor McIntyre launched a tirade of insults against Miss India UK title holder Deana Uppal – has prompted 1,108 complaints. Many viewers thought it amounted to bullying.
McIntyre was warned about his behaviour by Big Brother, in which he used a string of expletives and called her a piece of s***.
another, which prompted 114 complaints, contestant Caroline Wharram
described a black housemate, Adam Kelly, as a 'ridiculous gorilla' with
'no sanitation' which some viewers saw as racist.
The house has once again become a racial hotbed after a string of housemates have made some regrettable comments.
Bad boy: Connor was called a bully after his aggressive behaviour towards Deana, and the show received complaints about him
in a further incident during an edition of Big Brother's Bit On The
Side, former BB housemate Victor Ebuwa used the word 'functioning
retard' to describe contestants, prompting three complaints.
year Big Brother was found to have breached the code after airing
offensive language immediately following the 9pm watershed.
Former boarding school girl Caroline Wharram sparked a row after calling African-American Adam Kelly a 'gorilla'.
20-year-old blonde was summoned to the Diary Room and told her comments
were unacceptable after Big Brother took a zero tolerance attitude
toward the remarks.
Naughty girl: Caroline Wharram was warned that her words were potentially offensive after calling a housemate a gorilla
Big Brother warned Wharram that all of her comments were both 'unacceptable' and may be deemed 'potentially offensive'.
Once she was made aware of this she
apologised instantly to Big Brother and said: 'I really didn't mean it
at all. I just didn't think. That was really horrible. I'm really
She also told Adam:
'It's not a personal attack. I do really like you. I just don't react
well and I'm really sorry. I genuinely like you.'
it was too late for the housemate as viewers had already taken to
Twitter to slam the demeaning comments and some called for her to be
expelled from the house after she compared the burly male to a gorilla.
Say what Adam Kelly was confused as to why Caroline reacted so badly to him helping her during her task
In the dock: Caroline was summoned to the Diary Room where she was warned about her offensive language and told to watch her self
Former Big Brother series seven contestant Aisleyne Horgan-Wallace weighed in on the argument and said: 'CAROLINE WOULD NOT HAVE USED THE WORD 'GORILLA' TO HAVE DESCRIBED ANY OTHER HOUSEMATE, THEREFOR IT WAS A RACIST DESCRIPTIVE END OF #BBUK'. (sic)
Another user said: So caroline called the black guy a gorilla.. Erm! And she's not kicked out whyyy #bbuk'.
In 2007, Emily Parr was kicked out of the house for using a racist word to a housemate and in the same year Jade Goody, Jo O'Meera and Danielle Lloyd were involved in a race row against Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty.
Viewers were also left shocked when Becky admitted that she did not know who Hitler was and she claimed she had no interest in learning about history.