Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 23 July 2014

BBC defends Whitney TV coverage

Whitney Houston's funeral coverage on the BBC led to complaints

The BBC has defended its coverage of Whitney Houston's funeral on its news channel following complaints from viewers.

The broadcaster said it recognised that "the duration of the coverage was too long for some viewers".

But it said that the "significant interest" in the star's death was reflected in the viewing figures for the News Channel's coverage of the four hour service.

The BBC, which received 118 complaints, said: "We are sorry if this wasn't to the satisfaction of all our viewers but it is part of the News Channel function to be there when major stories take place, and we felt that this was such an occasion."

Stevie Wonder, Alicia Keys, R Kelly and a host of gospel stars performed at Saturday's service at New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, New Jersey.

Actor Kevin Costner, who starred with Houston in The Bodyguard, fought back tears as he gave a moving eulogy.

Houston's former husband Bobby Brown walked out of the heavily religious service, designed to be a celebration of Houston's life and career.

The singer, 48, was found submerged in the bath in her hotel room on the fourth floor of the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles.

The cause of her death remains unclear and the results of toxicology tests are awaited.

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