BBC plays short clip of Thatcher death 'celebration' song

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Story highlights

  • Sales of the Wizard of Oz song "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead" have soared
  • Facebook campaign is urging people to buy the track to celebrate Thatcher's death
  • The BBC played a few seconds of the song on its weekly chart show
  • Margaret Thatcher remains a highly polarizing figure in Britain
The BBC aired just a short clip of the Wizard of Oz song "Ding Dong! The Witch is Dead" on its pop chart show on Sunday -- not the whole song -- after sales of the tune skyrocketed in the wake of the death of Margaret Thatcher.
A Facebook campaign has been encouraging people to buy the track to celebrate the former prime minister's death on Monday, and by the end of the week it reached number 2 in the official national charts.
BBC Radio 1 controller Ben Cooper called the decision to play an excerpt on the Official Chart Show "a difficult compromise," the BBC reported.
On Sunday's show, a reporter explained the context to the song: "Tributes poured in from across the world for Margaret Thatcher when she died on Monday, but there were also people who threw street parties around the UK.
"An online campaign began in 2007 to try to get this song, 'Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead,' to number 1 in the charts the week Lady Thatcher died." A few seconds of the song, featuring the lyrics: "Ding dong! The wicked witch is dead," were then played.
Thatcher remains a highly polarizing figure in British politics.
Many Britons blame her for creating soaring unemployment, when she reduced or eliminated many government subsidies to businesses and took on unions. Her battle with striking coal miners won her few friends in mining communities in northern England and Wales.
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