BBC stars' salaries to be kept secret
The salaries of the BBC's top-paid staff will not be revealed, director general Mark Thompson has said as he believes publishing them would be ''damaging and destructive''
The salaries of the BBC's top-paid staff will not be revealed, director general Mark Thompson has said.
It had been reported the wages of the network's biggest personalities - which includes Grahame Norton, Jeremy Paxman, Gary Lineker, Fiona Bruce and Anne Robinson - would be exposed so the general public could learn exactly how their TV license fee is being spent.
However, Thompson says publishing individual salaries would be "damaging and destructive".
He said: "I continue to believe that it would be wrong and it would be damaging and destructive to the BBC and its ability to get top stars to actually publish individual salaries because we're in competition with other broadcasters in an industry where no other broadcaster publishes this information."
Last week, Michael Lyons, Chairman of governing body the BBC Trust, said the wages should be revealed.
He said: "The BBC should be clearer about who the highest paid individuals are, both on screen and off.
"We recognise this is not a simple process. Often stars work for independent producers. Some existing BBC contracts have confidentiality clauses that would prevent publication of salaries. But we are challenging the Director General to work urgently on a plan to deliver greater transparency about who is at the top end of the pay scale.
"There is concern about whether the license fee is being used effectively in relation to senior manager and talent pay. We know licence fee payers appreciate on-air talent, but this must not come at any cost."