Iain Dale has this to say on the BBC's desire to get exclusives
"Surely the role of BBC News is to report the news, rather than create it. Surely it is the role of Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition to challenge those in power, rather than BBC journalists. BBC journalists are there to report the news in the most impartial manner possible. That's not to say that no BBC journalist should report on matters unfavourable to those who wield power, but the story has to warrant it.
We need fewer hyped up reports which start with the words "the BBC has learned". This sentence is used to create the impression that a journalist has been burrowing away to discover information which someone has tried to keep from them. Sometimes that is indeed the case, but it often means that they have either picked up some good gossip which is worth a punt, or they have been leaked some information by someone with an agenda. You'll see the same thing on the front page of The Times most days. "
I don't agree completely but I think there is a lot in What Iain Dale says. The BBC is agonising over its failure to win much at the Royal Television Society awards and has identified 'exclusives' as the means of doing better next year.
Fair enough but, our expectations of the BBC are slightly different than those we have of newspapers. They have a duty to be impartial and to get things right, even if that is sometimes at the expense of splashy exclusives. That, essentially, was were the BBC went wrong over Gilligan/Kelly/Hutton.