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Old 06-15-04   #1
Arty
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Fox News ticked off for failing to show 'respect for truth.' Is anyone surprised?

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/st...238901,00.html


Fox News censured for rant at BBC

Ofcom says Murdoch station broke programme code

Matt Wells, media correspondent
Tuesday June 15, 2004
The Guardian

Fox News, the US news network owned by Rupert Murdoch, has been found in breach of British broadcasting rules for an on-air tirade that accused the BBC of "frothing-at-the-mouth anti-Americanism".
Television regulators said the broadcaster failed to show "respect for truth" in a strongly worded opinion item, broadcast on the day the Hutton report was published, which also accused BBC executives of giving reporters a "right to lie".

Ofcom, which licenses commercial channels shown in Britain regardless of where they are based, received 24 complaints about the remarks. In a ruling published yesterday, it described the offending item as a "damning critique" but said it did not stand up to scrutiny.

It is the third ruling by British regulators against Fox News, which is available in Britain to Sky Digital customers, in the past year. It broke the rules on "undue prominence" in two previous news items which plugged beauty products and a seed manufacturer.

This is a tricky issue for Ofcom: how to regulate channels which are not produced principally for viewers in Britain. The Independent Television Commission, which preceded Ofcom, responded to complaints last year that Fox did not meet its strict "due impartiality" rules by issuing a ruling that is regarded in some quarters as a fudge to avoid a standoff with Mr Murdoch: it said "due" meant "adequate or appropriate", and Fox News could justifiably claim to have achieved a level of accuracy and impartiality that was appropriate to its audience in the US, where different rules apply.

Ofcom will begin work in July on a new programme code to replace the one inherited from the ITC, and it is likely to redefine the impartiality clause. It is expected, at the least, to redraw the rules to state specifically that they should only apply to channels aimed principally at British viewers. That would cover ITV, Channel 4, Five and Sky News, but exclude Fox and Arab channels such as al-Jazeera.

The Guardian understands that some Ofcom policymakers would like to draw the restrictions more narrowly, applying them only to ITV, Channel 4 and Five. That would allow Mr Murdoch, if he wished, to remodel Sky News into a British version of Fox.

It is unlikely, however, that the Fox rant would get past even a more relaxed regime in Britain, because of its lack of basis in fact.

The Fox presenter, John Gibson, said in a segment entitled My Word that the BBC had "a frothing-at-the-mouth anti-Americanism that was obsessive, irrational and dishonest"; that the BBC "felt entitled to lie and, when caught lying, felt entitled to defend its lying reporters and executives"; that the BBC reporter Andrew Gilligan, in Baghdad during the US invasion, had "insisted on air that the Iraqi army was heroically repulsing an incompetent American military"; and that "the BBC, far from blaming itself, insisted its reporter had a right to lie - exaggerate - because, well, the BBC knew that the war was wrong, and anything they could say to underscore that point had to be right".

Ofcom said Fox had breached the programme code in three areas: failing to honour the "respect for truth" rule; failing to give the BBC an opportunity to respond; and failing to apply the rule that says, in a personal view section, "opinions expressed must not rest upon false evidence".



It makes me profoundly grateful that we don't have to put up with stuff like that on our domestic news channels. I think that the laws here regarding TV news impartiality are useful things.

And for those of you who feel that impartiality isn't subjective, I would argue that basis in fact is not subjective, nor is the idea of letting all sides have their say.
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Old 06-15-04   #2
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FOX pretends to let all sides have their say...but they usually get a moderate democrat and an ultra conservative republican (IE, Hannity and Colmes).
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Old 06-17-04   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thefinalw0rd
FOX pretends to let all sides have their say...but they usually get a moderate democrat and an ultra conservative republican (IE, Hannity and Colmes).
Absolutely... this section from the article, details it perfectly.

Quote:
It is unlikely, however, that the Fox rant would get past even a more relaxed regime in Britain, because of its lack of basis in fact.
According to the right wing...
A purposely biased rhetorical "story" is more important than the "truth", as subjecting the crowds to your "ideology" is the most important aspect.
The "truth"... well its irrelevant, when your proudly biased.
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