Tuesday, October 07, 2008

[Chosun Ilbo, September 30 2008] Broadcasters Must Become More Accountable

The Citizens Coalition for Fair Media announced the results of research showing the contents of KBS and MBC news programs over a 71-day period between April 18, when Korea-U.S. beef talks were concluded, through June 26, when U.S. beef imports resumed. The findings show that the news programs dedicated a quarter of their daily broadcasts or between six and seven articles per program to news related to the mad cow scare. The ratio of news dedicated to conveying the position of the anti-import protesters versus the government’s position was 68 : 16 at MBC and 53 : 15 at KBS, the coalition said.

In the way they reported on the violent protesters and their clashes with riot police, the newscasts painted a picture of protesters remaining peaceful in their methods, while criticizing law enforcement officials of going too far in clamping down on the unrest. The ratio of interviews supporting the protesters versus those carrying the government’s position was 64 : 26 at MBC and 44 : 26 at KBS.

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