The BBC fakery scandal claimed its first high-profile casualties as a radio boss and the former editor of Blue Peter left their jobs.
Ric Blaxill, head of programming at 6 Music, resigned after a BBC inquiry revealed yet more instances of viewer deception at the digital channel.
Meanwhile, Richard Marson was reportedly sacked over the rigging of an online poll to name the Blue Peter cat. Viewers voted to call the kitten Cookie – but production staff changed the winning name to Socks.
The BBC was at a loss to explain why Cookie was deemed unacceptable.
In a bid to make amends, it is to introduce a new kitten called Cookie to the show next week, although Socks will remain on the programme.
An apology on the Blue Peter website told young viewers: “You may have seen reports about Socks in the news and we want to explain what happened and what we are doing about it. Back in January last year we introduced you to a new kitten and asked you to suggest names that would suit him. You gave us lots of great ideas and then voted for your favourite name on the website.
“Your first choice was Cookie and your second choice was Socks. Part of the production team working on the programme at the time decided that it would be better to choose Socks, as they felt this suited the kitten better. This was wrong because we had said that it was your vote that would decide.
“We are sorry about this, and we will be apologising on-air in the first programme of our new series, next Tuesday. We will also be introducing you to our new kitten, who will live with Socks, who is being given the name you chose, Cookie.”
Mr Marson was also at the helm when Blue Peter was involved in its first and most serious deception, in which a child visiting the studio was asked to pose as a phone-in competition winner. After that scandal was revealed, he was moved to another job.
He is now understood to have been sacked, according to the MediaGuardian website. A BBC spokesman declined to comment. Up to 25 people are believed to be facing disciplinary action.
News of the two departures followed the publication of a BBC statement which revealed four fresh instances of viewer deception, to add to the six uncovered in July. In addition to the Blue Peter cat, there were incidents involving the Tom Robinson Show and Clare McDonnell Show on 6 Music, and Film Cafe on the Asian Network.