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 Updated: Nervy times...

The Telegraph reports that Ofcom will not ban RT over its take on the Salisbury nerve agent attack


Link Here 24th May 2018
russia today international logoRussia's international propaganda channel RT will not lose its UK broadcasting licence according to information reported by the Telegraph.

Ofcom has been investigating the news channel for continuously casting doubt about the Russian connection in the attempted murder of ex spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury.

Perhaps it is rather bizarre that a news content censors should be tasked with something that could lead to consequences such as retaliatory action and a further escalation of an already tense relationship with Russia. Surely when such risks are involved, diplomats and the Foreign Office should be taking the lead.

Perhaps Ofcom were thinking along these lines in taking the decision not to ban the channel. In a legal document entitled Update on the RT service , Ofcom has now said:

States sometimes commit, or will have committed, acts which are contrary to these values. In our judgment, it would be inappropriate for Ofcom always to place decisive weight on such matters in determining whether state-funded broadcasters were fit and proper to hold broadcast licences, independently of their broadcasting record.

If we did, many state-funded broadcasters (mostly those from states which may not share UK values) would be potentially not fit and proper. This would be a poorer outcome for UK audiences in light of our duties on plurality, diversity and freedom of expression.

Ofcom were a bit more bullish at the start of the investigation saying:

Should the UK investigating authorities determine that there was an unlawful use of force by the Russian State against the UK, we would consider this relevant to our ongoing duty to be satisfied that RT is fit and proper, the regulator said at the time.

Also it is a little strange to note that the Telegraph's story has not been picked up by other newspapers. The Express initially published the story but withdrew it a little later.

Update: Tit for tat

24th May 2018. From the FT

Ofcom have jsut announced that that 3 further programmes on the Russian propaganda channel RT will be investigated after an Ofcom move to continuously monitor the station's output. In response, Russian foreign ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova has informed reporters that relevant Russian structures have begun closely studying the content of the materials of the British mass media that are represented in the Russian Federation.

 

  Out of Order...

Frankie Boyle says that the BBC edited out comments about Israel and Gaza from his New World Order show


Link Here 23rd May 2018
frankie boyles new world orderFrankie Boyle has accused BBC television producers of editing out comments he made about last week's Palestinian deaths on the Gaza border and his joke about Israel being an Apartheid state.

The outspoken comic called out the censorship after he was screened discussing left-wing antisemitism with guest David Baddiel on last Friday's episode of his New World Order chat show series on BBC2.

Responding to criticism from viewers that he had failed to address the deaths of over 60 Palestinians following demonstrations in Gaza, Boyle tweeted:

There were, of course, various jokes in this weeks's New World Order monologue about the situation in Gaza, and about Israel being an Apartheid state.  Edited out for reasons nobody has yet explained to me, despite assurances to the contrary.

Ok. Happy to quote this sentiment, which I've had from literally hundreds of people, that anti-semitism in Britain should not be discussed while Israel commits warcrimes. The idea that Jewish people have collective responsibility for Israel is racist. Have a great day

 

  Wrong think...

Taiwan TV cancels World War II drama series after censorship demands from China


Link Here 16th May 2018
cast jiachangs heartDa Ai TV has canceled its new soap opera Jiachang's Heart, reportedly due to criticism from Chinese officials two days after the show's pilot aired, sparking concerns about the reach of Chinese censorship.

The show was inspired by the story of Tzu Chi volunteer Lin Chih-hui, now 91, who was born in the Japanese colonial era and served as a Japanese military nurse in China during World War II.

The show's trailer was panned by Chinese media, and local media reported that China's Taiwan Affairs Office sent officials to the foundation's office in Taiwan to investigate the show soon after the pilot aired on Thursday last week.

China's Global Times newspaper published an opinion piece by a Chinese official saying:

It is clear from the 15-minute trailer that the first half of the series is kissing up to Japan.

The show was duly pulled and Da Ai media development manager Ou Hung-yu explained:

The channel decided that the show's depiction of war is contrary to its guideline of purifying human hearts and encouraging social harmony.

The show might retraumatize certain viewers.

 

  Sing a song of censorship...

Chinese TV channel banned from broadcasting Eurovision after being caught censoring gay performers


Link Here 11th May 2018  full story: TV Censorship in China...TV censors SARFT
mango tv censorship eurovisionThe European Broadcasting Union (EBU) has barred one of China's most popular TV channels from airing the Eurovision song contest after it censored LGBT elements of the competition.

Mango TV was criticised for blurring rainbow flags and censoring tattoos during Tuesday's first semi-final. It also decided not to air performances by the Irish and Albanian entries.

The EBU said the censorship was not in line with its values of diversity:

It is with regret that we will therefore immediately be terminating our partnership with the broadcaster and they will not be permitted to broadcast the second Semi-Final or the Grand Final.

The Irish entry, Ryan O'Shaughnessy, told the BBC that he welcomed the EBU's decision. He will perform at the final in Lisbon on Saturday with a song about the end of a relationship. He was accompanied by two male dancers during the performance that was apparently censored by Mango TV.

 

  Misogyny Rumbled...

Saudi authorities apologize for 'indecent' female wrestlers at the Royal Rumble


Link Here 1st May 2018
rumble saudiThe Saudi Arabia government has apologised to its citizens after supposedly indecent images appeared on big screens during a world wrestling event in the kingdom, Daily Mail reported.

A statement was released by the Saudi General Sports Authority on Twitter, which apologised for the scenes of indecent women that featured in an ad before one of the matches. The statement came a day after a promotional ad featuring female wrestlers aired at the World Wrestling Entertainment Co's Greatest Royal Rumble in Jeddah.

The authority said there were shots of women who were indecent and it also said it will not show matches involving female wrestlers.

Men in the audience though cheered on the broadcast of the images during the transmission at the King Abdullah Sports City stadium.

Wrestling News reported that the video during which the indecent images aired was promoting WWE Network's upcoming dual-branded PPV Best of Both Worlds show, and showed women in wrestling attire.

 

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