Jimmy Carr’s ‘offensive’ dwarf joke broke broadcasting rules, says watchdog

26012016C jimJimmy Carr’s joke about dwarves on BBC1’s The One Show was offensive and broke broadcasting rules, the media watchdog has said.

Carr, who was promoting of his greatest hits tour, told viewers he had once come up with a two-word joke.

“I tried to write the shortest joke possible,” he said. “So, I wrote a two-word joke which was: ‘Dwarf shortage’. It’s just so I could pack more jokes into the show.”

Fellow guest Rod Stewart attempted to keep a straight face while The One Show host Alex Jones grimaced.

Carr added: “If you’re a dwarf and you’re offended by that, grow up.”

Broadcasting regulator Ofcom, which received 11 complaints about the incident which aired in November, said that the comments were capable of causing “considerable offence”.

“We found this programme broke broadcasting rules because of offensive comments made by comedian Jimmy Carr,” said Ofcom.

“We found Jimmy Carr’s comments, which attempted to derive humour from the medical condition of dwarfism, were capable of causing considerable offence. Although one of the presenters made an apology towards the end of the programme, we considered it was not sufficient to mitigate the offence caused by Mr Carr’s remarks.”

Carr has a track record of making controversial jokes. At 2014’s Q Awards he reportedly made a tasteless joke about the death of Oscar Pistorius’s girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

In 2011, he was forced to issue a public apology after he made an offensive joke about children with Down’s syndrome in a live set.

The Eight out of 10 Cats host was landed with a £500,000 tax bill in 2014 after quitting a controversial off-shore tax avoidance scheme, known as K2, after it was investigated by HM Revenue and Customs.

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