one in which information flashes around the planet in minutes, and TV programmes made here are sold and seen in dozens of countries.
Years ago,people in Japan and Mexico would have been oblivious if someone made a disparaging remark on a British TV programme, because the BBC didn't have a vast international marketing operation. That has changed, and with it comes a new set of responsibilities - people in other nations are understandably sensitive about disparaging references, and programme makers should have the wit to understand that.
I have absolutely no sympathy for the Top Gear presenters - they make a habit of getting a laugh at other peoples' expense, and it's time they grew up.
Stephen Fry is somewhat different - he's not known for insensitivity. I watched the transmission in question, and I have to say I think the Japanese have overreacted to what was said. I'm not Japanese however, and I might have felt differently if I was.