Melon Farmers Original Version

Diplomatic Censorship at Ofcom


Ofcom get caught up in international relations


 

Propaganda victory...

Chinese propaganda channel CGTN works round Ofcom's ban and will now again be available across Europe


Link Here 10th April 2021
Full story: Diplomatic Censorship at Ofcom...Ofcom get caught up in international relations
China's state propaganda channel CGTN could soon be back on British TV screens, as French authorities have agreed to regulate, so overriding a decision by the UK TV censor Ofcom to ban the channel.

Ofcom decided to pull CGTN off air in February after finding it unacceptable that the channel is editorially controlled by the Chinese Communist party.

France does not have rules that prohibit state-controlled broadcasters from airing in the country.

But now that the channel is officially regulated by another Council of Europe country, then Ofcom is bound by treaty to accept that CGTN can now broadcast to Britain.

The treaty between members of the Council of Europe, a 47-member organisation that is separate from the EU and therefore not affected by Brexit, mandates that an international broadcaster can beam into the territories of signatories as long as it falls under the jurisdiction of one member.

Saying that, it is not yet clear whether Sky will be including the channel in its package. However Sky currently carries the channel on its networks in Italy and Germany.

 

 

Escalation...

Ofcom escalates censorship of China's propaganda channel CGTN by adding 225k fine to the previously announced ban


Link Here12th March 2021
Full story: Diplomatic Censorship at Ofcom...Ofcom get caught up in international relations

Ofcom has fined China's propaganda channel CGTN £225k for biased news reports about the Hong Kong democracy protests. Two fines were levied with one being explained as follows:

Ofcom has imposed a financial penalty of £125,000 on Star China Media Limited in relation to its service CGTN for failing to comply with our broadcasting rules.

Between 11 August 2019 and 21 November 2019, CGTN broadcast the following five programmes:

  • The World Today, 11 August 2019, 17:00

  • The World Today, 26 August 2019, 08:00

  • The World Today, 31 August 2019, 07:00

  • The World Today, 2 September 2019, 16:00

  • China 24, 21 November 2019, 12:15

Each programme was concerned with the protests which were ongoing in Hong Kong during this period. These protests were initially in response to the Hong Kong Government's Extradition Law Amendment Bill that would have allowed criminal suspects in Hong Kong to be sent to mainland China for trial.

In Ofcom's Decisions published on 26 May 2020, in Issue 403 of the Broadcast and On Demand Bulletin (PDF, 706.0 KB), Ofcom found that each of the five programmes had failed to maintain due impartiality and had breached Rules 5.1, 5.11 and 5.12 of the Broadcasting Code.

 

 

Fake news...

Ofcom bans the Chinese propaganda news channel CGTN


Link Here4th February 2021
Full story: Diplomatic Censorship at Ofcom...Ofcom get caught up in international relations

Ofcom has banned the Chinese propaganda news channel CGTN. The channel came into the focus of the tV censor for blatant propaganda and also for unacceptable reporting methods. However Ofcom has explained the ban in terms of a licence technicality, presumably for diplomatic reasons. Ofcom wrote:

Ofcom has withdrawn the licence for CGTN to broadcast in the UK after its investigation concluded that the licence is wrongfully held by Star China Media Limited.

China Global Television Network (CGTN) is an international English-language satellite news channel. In the UK, broadcasting laws state that broadcast licensees must have control over the licensed service - including editorial oversight over the programmes they show. In addition, under these laws, licence holders cannot be controlled by political bodies.

Our investigation concluded that Star China Media Limited (SCML), the licence-holder for the CGTN service, did not have editorial responsibility for CGTN's output. As such, SCML does not meet the legal requirement of having control over the licensed service, and so is not a lawful broadcast licensee.

In addition, we have been unable to grant an application to transfer the licence to an entity called China Global Television Network Corporation (CGTNC). This is because crucial information was missing from the application, and because we consider that CGTNC would be disqualified from holding a licence, as it is controlled by a body which is ultimately controlled by the Chinese Communist Party.

We have given CGTN significant time to come into compliance with the statutory rules. Those efforts have now been exhausted.

Following careful consideration, taking account of all the facts and the broadcaster's and audience's rights to freedom of expression, we have decided it is appropriate to revoke the licence for CGTN to broadcast in the UK.

 

 

Political censorship...

Ofcom fines Indian channel Republic TV for hate speech against Pakistan


Link Here 24th December 2020
Full story: Diplomatic Censorship at Ofcom...Ofcom get caught up in international relations
A right leaning Indian news channel known for its strong pro-government stance and firebrand host has been fined by the UK TV censor Ofcom for broadcasting hate speech about Pakistan .

Republic TV was fined £20,000 for airing a segment on its UK service, which conveyed the view that all Pakistani people are terrorists, including their scientists, doctors, their leaders, politicians [...] Even their sports people.

The primetime show Poochta Hai Bharat aired on 6 September 2019 on the Hindi-language version of the channel, Republic Bharat.

Republic TV is one of the most widely watched channels in India, with news anchor and founder Arnab Goswami hosting aggressive current affairs debates, which regularly air rightwing opinions while pointing and shouting at viewers down the camera.

Ofcom said it had received multiple complaints from viewers for the highly pejorative references to members of the Pakistani community (eg continually referring to them as 'filthy') on Goswami's show.

Ofcom summarised that the show failed to comply with UK broadcasting rules as it had spread, incited, promoted and justified such intolerance towards Pakistani people among viewers.

 

 

Under duress...

Ofcom warns Abu Dhabi TV that it will be considered for a fine for airing 'confession' extracted under duress from prison


Link Here23rd November 2020
Full story: Diplomatic Censorship at Ofcom...Ofcom get caught up in international relations
Qatar's National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) has welcomed the decision of the UK's TV censor, Ofcom, condemning Abu Dhabi TV channel for broadcasting an interview that it claimed were confessions of Qatari citizen Hamad al-Hammadi during his arbitrary arrest and detention in Abu Dhabi prisons in 2013.

Ofcom said that the channel, a subsidiary of Abu Dhabi Media Company (ADMC), which has a licence from Ofcom, broadcasted an interview on June 22, 2017 alleging they were confessions of a Qatari intelligence agent, who was discrediting the UAE. Ofcom said that broadcasting the interview against al-Hammadi's will, who was tortured and ill-treated in prison, was a severe breach of the principles of fairness and privacy set out in the Ofcom Broadcasting Code.

Ofcom found that Mr Al-Hammadi was treated unjustly or unfairly in the programme as broadcast and that his privacy was unwarrantably infringed both in the obtaining of the footage of him and in its broadcast.

Ofcom also considers that the breaches of Rules 7.1 and 8.1 of the Code are serious and Ofcom is therefore putting the Licensee on notice that Ofcom intends to consider the breachesfor the imposition of a statutory sanction.

 

 

Offsite Article: Pressure grows on Ofcom to ban Chinese propaganda channel CGTN...


Link Here27th July 2020
Full story: Diplomatic Censorship at Ofcom...Ofcom get caught up in international relations
Surely a decision that could possibly be part of a chain of events leading to World War 3 should be taken by government ministers and diplomats, not a TV censor

See article from digitaltveurope.com

 

 

So how will notorious censors respond to being censored themselves?...

Ofcom censures Chinese propaganda channel for parading a Briton making a forced confession


Link Here6th July 2020
Full story: Diplomatic Censorship at Ofcom...Ofcom get caught up in international relations

China 24, News Hour
CCTV News, 27 August 2013, 12:00 and 14 July 2014, 21:002

CCTV News broadcast China 24, a news programme which reported on the arrest of Peter Humphrey and included footage of him appearing to confess to a criminal offence. It then broadcast a follow up report during News Hour, which reported on Mr Humphrey's subsequent conviction and included footage of him apologising for having committed the offence. He was named in both programmes, although his face was blurred.

Ofcom found that:

  • The programmes included footage of Mr Humphrey which had the potential materially and adversely to affect viewers’ perception of him. The Licensee did not take sufficient steps to ensure that material facts had not been presented, omitted or disregarded in a way that was unfair to Mr Humphrey.
     

  • The Licensee had not provided Mr Humphrey with an appropriate and timely opportunity to respond to the allegations of wrongdoing being made about him in the programmes as broadcast.
     

  • Mr Humphrey had a legitimate expectation of privacy in relation to the filming and subsequent broadcast of the footage of him without his consent. In the circumstances, Mr Humphrey’s legitimate expectation of privacy was not outweighed by the broadcaster’s right to freedom of expression and the audience’s right to receive information and ideas without interference. The Licensee had therefore unwarrantably infringed Mr Humphrey’s privacy in respect of the obtaining of the material included in the programmes and in the programmes as broadcast.

Ofcom also considers that the breach of Rules 7.1 and 8.1 of the Code is serious. We are therefore putting the Licensee on notice that we intend to consider the breach for the imposition of a statutory sanction.

 

 

Propaganda fines...

High Court confirms Ofcom's fines for RT


Link Here 28th March 2020
Full story: Diplomatic Censorship at Ofcom...Ofcom get caught up in international relations
A High Court justice has dismissed a Russian Today complaint that a massive £200,000 fine imposed by Ofcom last year was disproportionate. The court endorsed the TV censor's decision to fine RT for a breach of its impartiality rules.

RT had issued legal complains that Ofcom's decisions were a disproportionate interference with RT's right to freedom of expression and said other stations had received smaller fines for more serious breaches.

Following an investigation in 2018, Ofcom found that RT had broken TV impartiality rules in seven programmes discussing the Salisbury nerve agent attacks. Ofcom said RT had failed to give due weight to a wide range of voices on a matter of major political controversy.

RT has yet to respond to the ruling.

 

 

Surely a job for diplomats, not TV censors...

Ofcom set to investigate complaint against Chinese propaganda channel CGTN


Link Here 29th November 2019
Full story: Diplomatic Censorship at Ofcom...Ofcom get caught up in international relations

A former employee of the UK's consulate in Hong Kong has filed an official complaint to Ofcom about the broadcast by China's state-run CGTN of a confession he says he was forced to make.

Simon Cheng, a Hong Kong citizen who worked for the UK government for almost two years, was detained for 15 days on a trip to mainland China in August. Mr Cheng says he was forced to confess to soliciting prostitution.

CGTN aired the confession in the UK as evidence of his alleged guilt.

The channel is the international arm of China Central Television (CCTV) and airs on UK platforms including Sky.

Ofcom told the BBC: We have received a complaint about a programme broadcast on CGTN which we are assessing as a priority.

In September, the media regulator said it was investigating whether CGTN broke impartiality rules in its coverage of the Hong Kong demonstrations. In May, it launched an investigation into a confession aired by CGTN of a British investigator.

 

 

Toxic foreign relations...

Ofcom fines Russian propaganda channel 200,000 for biased news on the Salisbury poisoning


Link Here 26th July 2019
Full story: Diplomatic Censorship at Ofcom...Ofcom get caught up in international relations

Ofcom has fined the news channel RT £200,000 for serious failures to comply with our broadcasting rules -- and required the channel to broadcast a summary of our findings to its viewers.

Ofcom has rules in place requiring broadcast news to be presented with due impartiality.

Our investigation found that RT failed to preserve due impartiality in seven news and current affairs programmes between 17 March and 26 April 2018.

Taken together, these breaches represented serious and repeated failures of compliance with our rules. We were particularly concerned by the frequency of RT's rule-breaking over a relatively short period of time.

The programmes were mostly in relation to major matters of political controversy and current public policy -- namely the UK Government's response to the events in Salisbury, and the Syrian conflict.

Ofcom decided to impose a financial penalty of £200,000; and direct RT to broadcast a summary of Ofcom's findings, in a form and on dates to be determined by Ofcom. We consider this sanction to be appropriate and proportionate. It takes into account the additional steps that RT has taken to ensure its compliance since we launched our investigations; and that we have not recorded any further breaches of our due impartiality rules against RT to date.

Ofcom will await the conclusion of RT's application for judicial review of our breach decisions before enforcing the sanction.

 

 

Offsite Article: Ofcom launches investigation into forced confessions broadcast by Chinese state TV CGTN...


Link Here8th May 2019
Full story: Diplomatic Censorship at Ofcom...Ofcom get caught up in international relations
It seems bizarre that something that could have diplomatic consequences should be decided by a domestic TV censor.

See article from theguardian.com




 

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