Media watchdog’s request stirs debate

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A request by the Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK) regarding the use of video footages in the coverage of lockdown news on TV channels has stirred a debate.

In a communique to broadcasters, the media watchdog said that TV channels are using the footages of dense crowds, which create the false impression that the public is ignoring the lockdown rules and security units are not fulfilling their duties to enforce the restrictions.

Some of those visuals used in the news broadcasts are file footages, RTÜK said.

“At a time when the entire nation is making sacrifices, it is important to show sensitivity and air empty streets and avenues instead of crowds,” the watchdog said.

İlhan Taşçı, a member of the RTÜK from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), criticized the watchdog’s request, saying that it amounts to “censorship.”

Ebubekir Şahin, the chair of RTÜK, defended the communique, saying that it was a “constructive” reminder.
“The purpose of this reminder is to support efforts to go through the lockdown. We will continue to do our job,” Şahin wrote on Twitter.

Hurriyet Daily News

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