I asked around my virtual office and Ilicco Elia, head of Mobile, Reuters Europe, (@Ilicco) usefully told me that the BBC News feed was a fake being run by a Twitter squatter. (He pointed to this blog post from a few days back).
The fake feed looked pretty genuine as it linked to BBC News articles and did little else. But the squatter was ousted when Gary Williams (@sputnik101) received a reply from the feed.
Williams had tweeted:
"@BBC You are an absolute DISGRACE for refusing to air the Disaster Emergencies Committee’s Gaza appeal: http://www.dec.org.uk/"He was more than a little surprised when he got this tweet coming back in his direction from 'the BBC':
"@sputnik101 so are you :p".Jem Stone, one of the BBC's Future Media gurus, describes how the BBC contacted Twitter to claim the feed after they had become aware of the incident. You can find a couple of comments from Jem on the 14sandwiches blog.
Twitter sorted it all out pretty pronto and the BBC have now taken control of the feed.
Rest assured: www.twitter.com/bbc is genuine. And by way of celebration the BBC twitterers took the opportunity to point out some other BBC twitter feeds that are also real.
The question is: who's now been pressed into action at the Corporation to run the feed?
Update: The answer, at least for the time being, is in the comments...