Source description last updated: 30 December 2020

In brief: BBC News, a department of the British Broadcasting Cooperation (BBC), headquartered in London, is a public service broadcaster, gathering and broadcasting news and current affairs.

Coverage on

News articles (Media)

Covered daily on, for countries of priorities A and B2.


“The Royal Charter is the constitutional basis for the BBC. It sets out the BBC’s Object, Mission and Public Purposes. The Charter also outlines the Corporation’s governance and regulatory arrangements, including the role and composition of the BBC Board.

The current Charter began on 1 January 2017 and ends on 31 December 2027.

The Government will carry out a mid-term review of the Charter, focussing on governance and regulatory arrangements. This review is not a full Charter Review and so will not look at the BBC’s mission, purpose or the method by which it is funded.” (BBC website: Charter and Agreement, undated)

“The BBC must be independent in all matters concerning the fulfilment of its Mission and the promotion of the Public Purposes, particularly as regards editorial and creative decisions, the times and manner in which its output and services are supplied, and in the management of its affairs.” (Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport: Royal Charter for the continuance of the British Broadcasting Corporation, Incorporation and Ojects, p. 4, December 2016)

“The Mission of the BBC is to act in the public interest, serving all audiences through the provision of impartial, high-quality and distinctive output and services which inform, educate and entertain.” (Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport: Royal Charter for the continuance of the British Broadcasting Corporation, Incorporation and Ojects, p, 5, December 2016)


According to the financial statement for the fiscal year 2019/20, the BBC generated a total income of 4.943 billion pound sterling comprised of 3.52 billion pound sterling worth of licence fee incomes and 1.423 billion pound sterling from sources referred to as “other income”. For the same period, a deficit of 119 million pound sterling was listed. (BBC: BBC Group Annual Report and Accounts 2019/20, The BBC's consolidated financial statements, p. 171, 2020)

Scope of reporting:

Geographic focus: Worldwide.

Thematic focus: International news, entertainment, sport, science, and political news, (also information on: capital, culture, cars, food, arts, nature, local news).


“Each page is published by the teams of online journalists based in the main newsroom in BBC TV Centre at White City, west London, at BBC World Service at Bush House in central London, in national and regional newsrooms across England, in Glasgow, Belfast and Cardiff and in an increasing number of the BBC's many international bureaux worldwide.

Much of the material is written by these journalists and the rest comes from writers in the BBC's specialist units, covering everything from business and social affairs to foreign news. Many of the BBC's correspondents operating worldwide also contribute as well as those at BBC Monitoring. Non-BBC journalists are frequently commissioned to contribute.” (BBC News website: News sources, undated)

“Where appropriate to the output, we should: gather material using first hand sources wherever possible; check and cross check facts; validate the authenticity of documentary evidence and digital material; corroborate claims and allegations made by contributors wherever possible.” (BBC News website: Editorial Guidelines, undated)

Language(s) of publications:

Apart from English, BBC News is available in a broad selection of languages representing communities present in the United Kingdom. See:

Further reading / links:

BBC Academy BBC News Styleguide

BBC News Editorial Guidelines

BBC Group Annual Report and Accounts 2019/20

Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport: Royal Charter for the continuance of the British Broadcasting Corporation, December 2016


All links accessed 30 December 2020.