Last word Foul word play

An executive who cleared it for daytime transmission even said the word would delight many of its audience

In fact, the Corporation decided that the word – most abhorrent to women – has lost much of its " shock value" and is tolerable for radio and TV, the alt39 Daily Mailalt39 reported, without revealing the word.

An executive who cleared it for daytime transmission on flagship alt39 Radio 4alt39 even said it would " delight" many of its audience, who would " love it". The scripted reference, in a joke by presenter Sandi Toksvig, was approved before the programme was broadcast first at 6.30 PM and then as a repeat the following day at 12.30 PM, the newspaper said.

The BBCalt39s ruling is outlined in the rejection of a complaint from a member of the public, who took offence to a reference to the word on alt39 The News Quizalt39. But the BBCalt39s rejection of the complaint has infuriated MPs and campaigners, who say the use of the phrase carries connotations of sexual abuse.

John Whittingdale, chairman of the Commons Culture, Media and Sport select committee, said: " The vast majority of people still regard this an offensive term and it should not have been broadcast at this time." However, the BBC defended its ruling, saying, " Context and tone are key to determining whether strong language is editorially justified.

The News Quiz is a long- running panel show aimed at an adult audience.

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