BBC Radio 5 Live had Scott Quinnell on the 6/11/09 breakfast show*, for Dyslexia Awareness Week. Unfortunately, his conversation on the breakfast show gave him an opportunity to plug Dore unchallenged. We have a number of concerns about this radio segment:
- Quinnell is allowed to state that by “stimulating…three senses” Dore “allows the neural pathways to be automatic between the cerebellum and…your thinking brain”. There is not good evidence for this claim, but Quinnell is allowed to assert it unchallenged.
- The BBC presenter talking with Quinnell comes across as supporting such claims, stating that it is “extraordinary…to think that [Dore exercises] can translate into being able to look at a page and to read”.
- There is no mention of the lack of good evidence that the Dore treatment is effective.
- There is no mention that Dore UK went into administration last year.
- There is no mention of the fact that Dore is a commercial (and rather expensive) programme, nor that Dynevor, which now owns Dore, was established by Quinnell
- The presenter has to check pronunciation of ‘Dore’ while discussing it with Quinnell on air. I am not sure if this speaks to the quality of the pre-broadcast research into Dore and dyslexia.
In response to a previous complaint, I was told that the BBC
never intended to give Quinnell a platform in any way to promote Dore
I wonder what the intention was with this national radio slot?
It is a shame that Dyslexia Awareness Week could not have been used as a reason for discussion of evidence-based approaches to dyslexia. It is not appropriate for the BBC to allow an expensive and highly time-consuming commercial dyslexia treatment – without good evidence of efficacy – to be promoted in this way. I will be complaining to the BBC about this. I would encourage readers to do the same.
* on iplayer now, about 2:56 in.
PS: apologies if there is some repetition of this post: some of the mistakes made were similar enough that I found this hard to avoid.