Page last updated at 16:57 GMT, Thursday, 12 June 2008 17:57 UK

Viewers' anger at Brother 'bully'

Alexandra De-Gale enters the house
De-Gale has been reprimanded for her "abusive behaviour"

Hundreds of Big Brother 9 viewers have complained to media watchdog Ofcom about alleged bullying by housemate Alexandra De-Gale.

Ofcom received 433 complaints about Alexandra's behaviour after she abused three fellow contestants.

Channel 4 confirmed it had received "around 300" complaints immediately after the broadcast on Tuesday night.

It said she had been reprimanded for "unacceptable behaviour", but said the atmosphere in the house had improved.

The row - broadcast in Tuesday night's highlights show - broke out after fellow housemate Rebecca Price offered to cook some food and then burnt the chips, prompting a stream of abuse from Alexandra.

"If you want to play games with your food, do it at home," the 23-year-old shouted at Rebecca.

Rachel Rice and Stephanie McMichael went to Rebecca's defence, but were confronted by more abuse, leaving Rachel in tears.

"It's bullying and it upsets me," she said in the diary room.


"Following the argument between Alex, Rebecca, Stephanie and Rachel, Big Brother called Alex to the diary room and reminded her of the rules regarding unacceptable behaviour," said a statement released by Channel 4.

"Alex is getting on with her fellow housemates and the atmosphere in the house has been calmer, but as ever Big Brother is closely monitoring the housemates and house activity."

Big Brother contestant Rachel Rice
Housemate Rice complained to Big Brother about "bullying"

A spokeswoman added that Thursday night's episode would include footage of Alexandra in the diary room saying she had curbed her behaviour since the incident.

This year's Celebrity Big Brother was axed after the 2007 version attracted a record 45,000 complaints to Ofcom.

The row centred on the alleged bullying of Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty by fellow contestants Jade Goody, model Danielle Lloyd and singer Jo O'Meara.

The watchdog found that Channel 4 breached its code of conduct and made "serious editorial misjudgements".

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